apple pie with slice removed

Apple Pie Filling — For Canning


Yield: two pint jars, which is enough for one 9″ pie.
To make more than that, multiply all ingredients by the number of jars you intend to make. If you are making more than two pints, be sure you use a sauce pan large enough to hold all the peach slices and bring them to a boil.


  1. Processing Time: The USDA and the National Center for Home Food Preservation have not yet established a safe processing time for quart jars of pie filling made with pectin. That is why we say to can this pie filling in pint jars only
  2. Best to use fresh fruit. If using frozen fruit that have been defrosted, reduce the amount of water or the filling may be too liquidy.
  3. You can use other sweeteners that measure like sugar, and it's possible to use less sugar if you prefer the pie less sweet. (We used 1/3 cup mixed white and brown sugar.) It's also possible to use honey or another liquid sweetener, but we haven't tried it that way. Our best guess is ¼ cup up to ½ cup liquid sweetener.
  4. Leave out the spices if you want plain fruit pie filling. OR adjust spices as you prefer, so long as you do not exceed 1 tsp. of total spices. 
  5. This recipe can be made with apples, blueberries, sweet blackberries, mulberries, elderberries and ripe quince.  
Servings 2 pint jars


  • 5 cups apple slices peeled or not
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Pomona's Pectin powder mixed with sweetener
  • 3 Tablespoons water up to 1/2 cup if apples aren't very juicy
  • 3 Tablespoons lemon juice bottled
  • 1 teaspoon calcium water see step #1
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg see note
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon see note


  • Before You Begin, prepare calcium water.
    To do this, combine ½ teaspoon calcium powder (in the small packet in your box of Pomona’s pectin) with ½ cup water in a small, clear jar with a lid.Shake well. Extra calcium water should be stored in the refrigerator for future use.
  • Prepare 5 cups of apple slices. Set aside.
  • Measure sugar or room temperature honey into a bowl. Thoroughly mix pectin powder into sweetener. Set aside.
  • Measure apple slices, water, lemon juice, calcium water, and spices into a saucepan. Bring to a boil and boil gently for several minutes until apple slices are thoroughly heated.
  • Add pectin-sweetener mixture, stirring gently for 1 to 2 minutes to dissolve pectin while the mixture comes back up to a boil. Once the mixture returns to a full boil, remove it from the heat.
  • Funnel into clean, hot pint jars, leaving 1” of headspace. Wipe the rims, put on hot lids, tighten the rings to finger-tip tight, place in boiling water-bath canner, and boil for 15 minutes at sea level. Add 1 minute more for every 1,000 feet above sea level. Remove jars from canner and set on counter to cool. When completely cool, check seals; lids should be sucked down. Use within 1 year.

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30 Responses

  1. Anita
    | Reply

    My question concerns the yield for this recipe. I have re-read the instructions multiple times and don’t understand why I would multiply the ingredients by the number of jars since the yield is two pint jars. Could you verify? I’d like to make six pints so it would seem to mean that I would just triple the recipe. Thanks. Love Pomona’s Pectin.

    • Amanda
      | Reply

      You would multiply by the number of *pies* you want to make, not by the number of jars you want to make. This makes two jars worth, which is enough for one pie. Multiply recipe by two for two pies worth (four jars), etc.

  2. Robin Ann Brooks
    | Reply

    Thank you for posting this recipe. I never thought to check your site for this recipe, even though I was looking to use pectin, which we got from you and I love, to make apple pie filling. I love your pectin having it on hand to thicken more than canning is great.

    • Shelby Collings
      | Reply

      Thank you Robin, happy jamming!!

      • Thomas Cappiello
        | Reply

        Happy Jamming!

  3. Shelby Collings
    | Reply

    Hello Brittany,

    Thanks so much for choosing Pomona’s Pectin and for reaching out to us! Cooking the pie filling that long in the water bath should “deactivate”/kill the pectin, which means you will have not gelling. But you are always welcome to give it a try!

  4. Janet Atkinson
    | Reply

    May be a strange question but do you peel you apples for the pie filling? My mom didn’t and it was good. Just not sur in this recipe. I love Pomona and have been canning with it for about 7 years. Glad I found it when I wanted a low sugar alternative for our canning.

    • Shelby Collings
      | Reply

      Hello Janet,

      Great question! We have done it both ways…just be sure that if you leave the peels on, that you wash them really well before-hand. Cheers!

  5. Terria
    | Reply

    What is calcium water- could it be omitted

    • Shelby Collings
      | Reply

      Hello Terria,

      Thanks so much for choosing Pomona’s Pectin!

      Calcium water is the second part of our two part product. Instead of our pectin being activated by sugar, it is activated by calcium. Each of our order contains pectin (larger envelope) and monocalcium phosphate (smaller envelope). In the bottom left corner of our directions sheet are instructions for how to mix the calcium water (1/2 tsp calcium powder to 1/2 cup of water). You can find a copy of our directions here.

      The calcium water CANNOT be omitted from any of our recipes.


      • Terria
        | Reply

        Thank you, I hadn’t opened the box yet so I didn’t realize that it was included.

  6. Isabel
    | Reply

    I just started canning this year – am learning a lot, and am loving everything Pomona’s, as I follow a low sugar diet. Would I be able to adapt this recipe to other fruit pie fillings – I’m specifically thinking of peach and raspberry….?

    • Mary Lou Sumberg
      | Reply

      Hi Isabel,
      For peach pie filling, see the Cardamom Peach Pie Filling Recipe on our website. You can leave out all the spices if you don’t want them.

      For raspberry pie filling, start with the Blueberry Pie Filling Recipe on our website. It would help you to read through all the comments at the bottom of the recipe as people have substituted many fruits. With raspberries, because they are acid enough, you don’t need to add the lemon juice and you may want to up the sugar amount a little since they aren’t as sweet as blueberries.

      I hope this helps. Glad you discovered Pomona’s!

  7. Roni Ford
    | Reply

    If you can can quarts of applesauce why wouldn’t you be able to can quarts of pie filling?

    • Mary Lou Sumberg
      | Reply

      Dear Roni,
      The differences between applesauce and the apple pie filling in our recipe are that there is pectin in the apple pie filling and no pectin in applesauce; also the pie filling is slices of apple versus mashed apple.

      The two issues we are aware of are:

      1. Overheating the pectin can de-activate it so processing for longer than 15 minutes is likely to cause that problem.

      2. The thickness of the fruit in the jar matters for heat penetration all the way through the fruit. Apparently this is different for mashed apples than for slices of apple.

      The Ball Blue Book recipes that we referred to use pint jars for canning pie filling, not quart jars.

      I hope this answers your question.

      • Kari
        | Reply

        Hello Mary Lou,
        You stated that processing for longer than 15 minutes deactivates the pectin yet the recipe says to add 1 minute of processing time for every 1000 ft above sea level. Because I am at 3000 ft the processing time should be 17 minutes. New canner here so not sure what to do🤷‍♀️
        Thanks in advance for your help,

        • Shelby Collings
          | Reply

          Hello Kari,

          Thanks for reaching out! Yes, you are correct, for your elevation you will need to boil your jars for 17 minutes.

  8. Jolaine
    | Reply

    Hi, I love Pomona’s. I use hard sweet apple cider for my pies.

    When I use fresh apples for a pie in season, I cook the apples slightly with the hard cider (2/3 c.) plus sugar and spices, and then add a little cornstarch mixed in a little more apple cider (1/3 c.) to thicken.

    For canning apple pie filling, I still cook the apples in a little hard cider instead of adding a bit of water, and then I follow the above recipe for adding lemon juice, calcium water and then the pectin mixed with sweetener. I used to freeze the apple slices/cider/sugar mix ready made for pies. Last year I did both canning the filling with Pomona’s and freezing. Canning the recipe was work but made a far superior pie. Better flavour! This year all my pie filling is going Pomona’s!

    • Mary Lou Sumberg
      | Reply

      Dear Jolaine,
      Thank you so much for sharing your method and your experience with making apple pie filling with Pomona’s Pectin. We love to hear about the creative things that cooks do with Pomona’s.

      Your pie filling sounds quite delicious — I hope to try it one of these days now that apple season is here. Neither my sister nor I are big pie makers, but your way of doing it is enticing.

      Thanks for using Pomona’s — and happy pie filling making!

  9. LeonaMarkewich
    | Reply

    What a great idea! I have access to free apples this time of year,and do baking once a month to raise funds for our S.P.C.A..This is a bonus .Thanks again for a great product.

  10. JJ
    | Reply

    Such bummer!!!! We were so excited to put filling in jars instead of just freezing sliced apples. If we’re going to have to freeze it anyway, this isn’t worth bothering with! Just slice apples, freeze in ziploc bags, and toss them in a pie crust with a little sugar & cinnamon as if fresh, cover with the top crust, and you’re good to bake. They don’t have to thaw first! No need for the pectin (why would I put pectin in a pie?? That’s sort of weird anyway since apple pie sets up just fine as it cools!). Guess I’ll save the Pomona’s for more jam & jelly. I have been loving it for that — this is my first year using it and it’s been very satisfactory.

    • Mary Lou Sumberg
      | Reply

      Hi JJ,
      We now know the proper processing time for pint jars of pie filling without ClearJel and have changed the recipe to reflect our new knowledge. It’s no longer necessary to freeze our pie fillings! But they do need to be canned in pint jars, not quart jars.

      • JJ
        | Reply

        Yay! (I actually went ahead and canned mine anyway, assuming if i could can just apples and apple jelly it couldn’t be THAT dangerous!) I’m so glad it’s ‘official’.

      • Michelle
        | Reply

        Why pints instead of quarts?

        • Shelby Collings
          | Reply

          Hello Michelle,

          Pints are just the suggestion, you could use quarts if you prefer. Some preservers like to use their “pie filling” for other things such as ice cream toppings, danishes, etc. so it is much easier to use up a pint in the appropriate time than it is to use up a quart.


  11. Sheri
    | Reply

    Just made this for canning. Yummy. Worked out great.

  12. Diane
    | Reply

    Just starting using Pomona’s Pectin for Jams and it! I also ordered the book Preserving with Pomona’s Pectin and can’t wait to try the recipes! Just finished making the Apple Pie Filling from the news letter, it’s wonderful!
    I’m a very satisfied customer..thank you so much for a great product!

  13. Sarah in CA
    | Reply

    This is a fantastic idea. The apple orchards in my area are open for u-pick. One idea I’d like to try out is to use this recipe to freeze my apple pie filling. I’ll let you all know how that one works out. We have been canning with Pomona Pectin for 8 years now. Get great results every time.

    • Mary Lou Sumberg
      | Reply

      Hi Sarah, Yes, please do let us know how it works out to freeze the apple pie filling. I’m sure others will be interested in that option also. Thanks for using Pomona’s!

  14. Amanda
    | Reply

    Thank you so much for doing this! There wasn’t a recipe in the Pomona’s Book, but I figured it could be done.

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