Homemade apple curd is a warm and cozy feeling of fall in a jar. This delicious recipe has hints of cinnamon and caramel. Apple curd is a rich spread loaded with an autumn flavor that is perfect in cakes, crepes, English muffins, toast, and so much more.
Have you ever heard of apple curd? Making any fruit curd follows the same process as the popular lemon curd. My favorite thing about this topping is its warm and cozy flavors.
In apple season, when apples are abundant, making this recipe can cost you less than a dollar! Affordable and tasty, you can’t beat that! If you have leftover apples, consider making this apple crumble, another British classic!
While curds are popular as cake fillings, I enjoy them on my morning toast. It is simple, practical, and oh-so-delicious in the morning!
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Affordable and easy to make.
- Needs just six ingredients
- A perfect gift, especially during the holidays!
What is Apple Curd?
Fruit curds are traditional English spreads for scones or toast. Curd is made with fruit juice, butter, eggs, sugar, and a touch of citrus. The result is a rich, smooth, melt-in-the-mouth delicious confection.
For this homemade apple curd recipe, I used a traditional English curd recipe with apples as the fruit. I added a touch of cinnamon to create the feeling of autumn. The result is a topping or condiment that tastes great on just about everything.
Apples – 1 and 1/2 cups – I recommend using fresh, crisp red apples. Honey Crisp and Pink Lady are good options. Granny Smith is very tart and does not work well with this recipe.
Brown Sugar – 1 cup– Use either light brown sugar or dark brown sugar. I recommend using dark brown sugar if you have both varieties in your pantry.
Butter – 8 tablespoons – Use unsalted butter softened to room temperature. When baking, it is preferred to use unsalted butter. This allows you, the baker, to control how much salt is added to the recipe. In a pinch, it is okay to use salted butter as long as you taste test before adding additional salt.
Egg Yolks – 2 beaten – Use standard large eggs. I use the leftover egg whites and make an omelet or scramble them for my dogs.
Ground Cinnamon – 1 teaspoon – Ground cinnamon brings this flavor together. It balances out the sweetness of the apples and provides a flavor dimension. I find a little bit goes a long way. Maple syrup is an excellent substitute.
Lemon – 3 tablespoons – First, I always say this, only use juice from a fresh lemon. I find the citrus helps balance out the flavor. If you have a small lemon, you can always add lemon zest to make up the difference.
Water – 2 tablespoons – When cooking the apples, I use a little bit of water to help facilitate the process. Instead of water, you can use apple juice for a little extra flavor.
- Double boiler or equivalent (I use a saucepan with a heat-safe glass bowl on top in place of a double boiler).
- Wooden spoon
- Masher, fork, or immersion blender
- Sieve (optional)
Time needed: 35 minutes
How to Make Apple Curd – In addition to the 35 minutes of cooking time, you will also need 4 hours for them to set.
- Apple Prep
Peel, core, and cut the apples into small pieces. Place the apples and lemon juice in a pot with two tablespoons of water. Cook on low to medium heat with the lid on until the apples are very soft. About 15-20 minutes. Using an immersion blender or a masher, puree to a smooth texture. You can use a food processor if you prefer.
Fill the bottom pan with 1 – 2 inches of water using a double boiler. Place on high heat until the water begins to boil, then turn the heat to low and keep the water at a gentle simmer. Add the apple puree, brown sugar, and cinnamon to the top pot or bowl and mix until thoroughly combined. Then add in the eggs. Whisk continuously to avoid curdling.
Add the butter one tablespoon at a time, stirring each until fully blended before adding another. Continue stirring for 8 – 10 minutes. If you prefer a thicker curd, cook for up to another 5 minutes.
- Finger Test
Dip a wooden spoon in the curd, then draw your finger across the back, leaving a path. If the path holds, you are done. If the path disappears, continue to cook.
Lay a piece of plastic wrap over the top and press it gently onto the surface. This will prevent skin from forming on the top. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 4 hours.
The nice thing about a good fruit curd recipe is that you can make it with whatever fruit is in season. Lemon is the most popular flavor, but some other fruits or fruit combinations include:
- Passion fruit
- Blood orange
- Black currant
- Mango lime
- Blackberry apple
- Caramel apple
- Coconut lime
- Lemon raspberry
- Caramel apple
Here is a list of 16 uses for this recipe.
-In a smoothie
-Mixed with oatmeal
-Stir with cream cheese
-Mixed with ice cream
-Stir with yogurt
– Thumbprint cookies
Frequently Asked Questions
If you taste metallic, it results from how the eggs and lemon react with a metal pan. To avoid this create a double boiler (this is what I do) out of a pot and heat-proof glass. Place the glass bowl on top of the pot. Use caution to ensure the water does not touch the glass bowl.
Follow the recipe using a heavy bottom pan and VERY LOW heat. Continuously whisk to avoid burning the curd or making scrambled eggs.
Fruit curd is a condiment served as a topping for scones, muffins, toast, and baked goods.
Refrigerator – Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Freezer – Once cooled, place in a freezer bag and remove all the air. Lay freezer bags flat in the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, move the freezer bag/s to the refrigerator for 24 hours to thaw. After thawing, store in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.
Canning – Use the water bath method to can. Follow the guidelines from the National Center for Home Food Preservation whenever canning.
Easy Apple Curd Recipe
- Wooden spoon
- Small or medium saucepan
- Masher or stick blender
- Double boiler or equivalent
- Sieve (optional)
- 1 and ½ cup apples peeled, cored, and cut into small pieces (187g) *Use crisp apples
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 cup brown sugar (213g)
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon (2g)
- 2 large eggs (beaten)
- 8 tablespoons butter (112g)
- Apple Prep: Peel, core, and chop apples into small pieces. Place the apples and lemon juice in a small or medium saucepan with water. On low to medium heat, cook with the lid on until the apples are very soft. About 15-20 minutes. Using a stick blender or a masher, puree the apples to a consistent texture.1 and 1/2 cup apples peeled, cored, and cut into small pieces (187g), 3 tablespoons lemon juice, 2 tablespoons water
- Curd: Using a double boiler, fill the bottom pan with 1 – 2 inches of water. Place on high heat until the water begins to boil, then turn the heat to low and keep the water simmering. Place the top pot or heat-safe bowl on top of the bottom bowl. In the top pot or bowl, over the simmering water, add the apple puree, brown sugar, and cinnamon and mix until fully combined. Then add the eggs to the brown sugar and cinnamon combination. Whisk continuously for two minutes to avoid curdling.1 cup brown sugar (213g), 1 teaspoon cinnamon (2g), 2 large eggs (beaten)
- Butter: Add the butter 1 tablespoon at a time, continuously stirring each tablespoon until fully blended before adding another tablespoon. Continue whisking for 8 – 10 minutes. If you prefer a thicker curd, continue cooking and whisking for up to another 5 minutes.8 tablespoons butter (112g)
- Finger Test: Dip a wooden spoon in the curd, then draw your finger across the back leaving a path. If the path holds you are done. If the path disappears, continue to cook.
- Setting: Lay a piece of plastic/cling wrap over the top and press it gently onto the surface. This will prevent a skin from forming on the top. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 4 hours. After the curd is set, place it in an air-tight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
- Optional: For a smooth texture, pass through a fine-mesh sieve.