Healthy Crockpot Apple Cider
Today, I’m going to share a delicious crockpot apple cider recipe that’s easy on the sugar, with the same great taste! You’ll get all the goodness of the apple, but it’s not overly sweet. In fact, you can make it however sweet you want!
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Apple Cider Made with Whole Fruit and Spice Ingredients
You know that this is a wholesome crockpot apple cider recipe because everything is made straight from the original source! There is absolutely nothing fake or weird in this recipe. I saw plenty of other recipes that involved apple juice as the liquid base, but there’s so much added sugar in that alone!
Whole apples are already high in naturally-occurring sugar, so that is the last thing this recipe needs. You do need some kind of natural sweetener though. I’ve recently discovered that pure maple syrup is an amazing sweetener for fall treats! Check out my other post on Guilt-Free Apple Crisp to see how it compares.
The only hard work involved with this recipe is cutting up all this fruit. But once that’s done, just dump it all in and wait! You’d be surprised that more fruit than just apples goes into this crockpot apple cider recipe. One lemon and one orange is vital for that apple cider taste. I’ve even seen other recipes use whole cranberries, too.
Basically, every ingredient that relates to fall in some way is in this recipe. So it’s definitely fall in a cup. By the way, you can get fall in your bathroom too with this super easy and chemical-free DIY Pumpkin Spice Hand Soap.
What Makes this Apple Cider Recipe Sugar-Free
While there are certainly naturally-occurring sugars in this crockpot apple cider recipe, you won’t find any added sugars in here. If you’re trying a sugar-free diet, or at least trying to reduce your sugar intake, this recipe is perfect for you.
You can still enjoy the lovely food and drink of fall without reverting back to your old sugar habits! I personally think that just about any kind of desert or “naughty food” can be remade in a healthier way. And it usually tastes better than the sugary one!
Our bodies are better equipped to handle sugars that nature makes, like honey and maple syrup. That’s why you’ll see a lot of my dessert recipes use these natural sweeteners. I also love to use Stevia instead of regular sugar in my tea.
When it comes to which kind of sweetener you want to use, it is crucial that you pick the right one. Otherwise, you’ll be putting all those added sugars back into your diet. And all that work will be for nothing.
For this recipe, you’ll need pure maple syrup. Most other syrups have added sugars and other preservatives that you simply don’t need. Plus, it tastes much more authentic! I’ve found that your typical maple syrup is much too sweet.
The same thing goes for honey. You want raw, unfiltered honey without any extra additives. Unfiltered honey has all the antioxidants from the plants left behind, which helps with immunity, among many other things. Plus, there are not many instances where the raw, original version is worse than the synthetic version!
Which Crockpot I Use
I thought I’d quickly share which crock pot I use, if you’re in the market for a new one. If you’ve never tried cooking with a crockpot before, it’s seriously life-changing! I love being able to dump a few ingredients in there and leave it for the day.
There’s nothing better than coming home to dinner all ready to go. I especially love to make casseroles and stews in my crockpot in the fall time. It’s the ultimate comfort food maker! Here’s the one I use below:
It’s easy to use, and cooks everything just fine. I especially like that the lid snaps on, which keeps any extra heat from escaping. So let’s move onto the recipe, now that we have all our ingredients and crockpot ready to go!
My Healthy Crockpot Apple Cider Recipe
You will need:
- 6-7 medium-sized apples of various kinds (honey crisp, gala, fuji)
- 1 lemon
- 1 teaspoon of whole cloves
- 4-5 whole cinnamon sticks
- 1/4-1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- Water to cover everything
- Cut up all of your fruit into about 1/4 inch disks. Don’t worry about taking out the apple seeds, it will all get strained out anyway!
- Add the cloves and cinnamon sticks to the crockpot first, then add all of your cut-up fruit. This will help keep the spices from rising to the top and potentially losing some flavor.
- Drizzle the pure maple syrup over everything in the crockpot, and add just enough water to cover all your fruit. Everything will naturally rise to the top, so don’t worry too much about keeping absolutely everything submerged.
- Cook your apple cider on low for about 6 hours, or on high for 4 hours.
- When time is up, mash your fruit up in the crockpot with a potato masher and cook for another hour on low. This will really help to release all the flavor.
- Strain out the fruit from the apple cider and serve immediately, or keep in the fridge! Discard the mashed-up fruit, or you can eat it if you like.
Some Final Thoughts and Reactions to This Healthy Apple Cider
I’ll admit I was a bit scared to try this drink out. It seemed like such a weird combination of fruits and spices. But I was pleasantly surprised! My crockpot apple cider came out just as tasty as store-bought! In fact, it was even better. There was just the right amount of sweetness from the maple syrup and apples, but it wasn’t overpowering.
However, I will say that the aftertaste had a bit of a bite from the bitterness of the apples. It caught me off guard at first, but I learned to like it. I think I could remedy this by adding a bit more maple syrup, because I made my batch with the lowest amount needed.
I couldn’t bring myself to eat the apples and citrus afterward, because it didn’t look that appetizing. But if you really want to get your money’s worth from buying all that fruit, it’s perfectly fine to eat! It should taste just like cooked, spiced applesauce.
I’m so glad that I discovered this recipe, because I plan on making it every year now! I gave it to a few family members, and they couldn’t tell the difference. My jug is already close to empty. Now I plan on enjoying crockpot apple cider all the way until the end of the holidays!
Have you ever made crockpot apple cider? What do you think of this recipe? Let me know in the comments below!
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