Instant Pot Cracker Barrel Cinnamon Apples–-cooked tart granny smith apples in a brown sugar, butter and cinnamon sauce. A perfect treat that is healthier than a typical dessert.
Instant Pot Cracker Barrel Cinnamon Apples
True or false: I eat dessert every day of my life. True. It’s true. I can’t deny it. I need a little something sweet after dinner. It’s not always something crazy like trifle or chocolate chip cookies but at least a handful of chocolate chips or a bite of ice cream straight out of the carton. I’m definitely a moderator, not an abstainer according to Gretchen Rubin.
If you have a sweet tooth like me but want to eat more healthfully than you may want to try Instant Pot Cracker Barrel cinnamon apples. They are sweet, not overly sweet, and much healthier than cookies or cakes (since it’s fruit. Right??).
These apples reminded me of apple crisp without the crisp. They were delightful with a bit of vanilla ice cream served on top too (forget about what I say earlier about being healthier 😂).
How to make Instant Pot Cracker Barrel Cinnamon Apples
- Start warming up water in your Instant Pot using the sauté setting while you peel and slice the apples. You’ll want to use a baking apple like Granny Smith apples for this recipe. Otherwise they might not hold up to the pressure cooking. Other baking apples include: Braeburn, Cortland, Honey Gold, Jonathan, Fuji and Gala. You’ll also want thicker apple slices for the same reason.
- Place the apple slices into a steamer basket. By this time the water will be boiling. Turn off the sauté setting. Add the steamer basket full of apples into the Instant Pot and then pressure cook for zero minutes. Yes zero minutes. When you set your pressure cooker for zero minutes the Instant Pot will get up to pressure, then immediately switch off (it will switch to the keep warm function). Just because it says zero minutes on your display doesn’t mean the food will not get cooked. The food starts cooking while the pot is building pressure (and while it releases pressure). It will take about 5-10 minutes for the pot to reach pressure.
- Release the pressure using a controlled release. A controlled release just means you switch back and forth between venting and sealing. This is equivalent to how you open the 2 liter bottle of Sprite so that it doesn’t spurt and bubble all over.
- Remove the steamer basket from the Instant Pot. And then make a sauce of butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and cornstarch with the remining water in the Instant Pot. You’ll use the sauté setting for this part. It comes together almost instantaneously.
- Toss the apples into the cinnamon sugar sauce and enjoy hot with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or plain.
More Instant Pot Apple Recipes…
Instant Pot Snickerdoodle Apple Cobbler
Instant Pot Caramel Apple Cobbler
Instant Pot Apple Cider Donut Cake
Instant Pot Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal
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Instant Pot Cracker Barrel Cinnamon Apples
- Prep Time: 15 minutes
- Cook Time: 0 minute pressure cook time
- Total Time: 27 minute
- Yield: 4–5 servings 1x
Cooked tart granny smith apples in a brown sugar, butter and cinnamon sauce. A perfect treat that is healthier than a typical dessert.
Equipment needed: steamer basket*
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 3 large granny smith apples (mine were huge! you can use 4–5 small apples instead)
- 3 Tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- Pinch of nutmeg
- 1 Tbsp cornstarch
- Add water into Instant Pot. Turn Instant Pot to sauté setting so that the water starts heating up.
- Peel the apples and slice them into thick slices (if the apples are too thin they’ll get mushy).
- Add the apples into a steamer basket.
- Turn off Instant Pot (the water should be boiling by now).
- Lower the apples into the Instant Pot. Cover Instant Pot and secure the lid. Make sure valve is set to sealing. Set the manual/pressure cook button to zero minutes. When time is up move valve back and forth from venting to sealing in a controlled release until all pressure is released. Remove the lid.
- Move the steamer basket out of the Instant Pot.
- Turn Instant Pot to sauté setting. Add the butter, sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg into the Instant Pot with the water. Stir well and let the butter melt.
- In a small bowl mix cornstarch with a tablespoon of water, stir until smooth. Add the cornstarch slurry into the Instant Pot and let it thicken the sauce.
- Turn off Instant Pot. Toss the apples into the sauce until coated. Taste apples and make sure they are sweet enough. If your apples are overly tart you may want to add 1-2 Tbsp extra of brown sugar.
- Serve apples and enjoy! These apples taste great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
I used my 6 quart Instant Pot Duo 60 7 in 1*.
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Instant Pot
Now available! The 365 Days of Pressure Cooking Cookbook
The 365 Days of Pressure Cooking Cookbook is a recipe book with over 365 different easy and approachable electric pressure cooker (Instant Pot) dinner recipes. There’s also a chapter with breakfasts, appetizers and side dishes. The recipes in this book are generally fast, easy and approachable. Oh, and don’t forget DELICIOUS!
“If you have an Instant Pot, you need this cookbook. I have been following Karen for the past year or so, and her recipes never disappoint. They are clear, concise and easy to follow. I have many of her recipes on repeat and my family loves them as well. I would highly recommend this book”-Happy customer, DB
*Karen Petersen is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
I made the apples tonight. I followed all of your instructions. They were sooooo good! And yes, the DID remind me of Cracker Barrel’s apples. I’ll definitely make them again. My husband loved them too and even asked if I had saved the recipe! Thank you for sharing! 😁
So glad to hear it! Thanks for the 5 stars!
I tried making this recipe twice using large, firm Granny Smith apples cut into 8 thick slices each and got applesauce both times. I don’t want to keep trying it just to get applesauce each time that my family won’t eat.
Shaleen Stevenson says
I made this apple recipe twice. First time I was very disappointed, which had never happened before with one of Karen’s recipes. I think the apples may have been a little TOO ripe which made some of it mushy and I thought the sauce was too thick for my taste.
So I tried again today. Made sure gala apples were firm, cut them with my hand apple corer that cuts into 8 slices. I found that 1 minute was better for me than 0 minutes.
I decreased cornstarch to one teaspoon and added some of the hot liquid into the slurry before adding to the pot. I also cut the apples in half crosswise AFTER they were done cooking because I wanted smaller pieces.
ANOTHER HIT! Thanks, Karen, for all your wonderful recipes.
I’m glad you had a better experience the second time! Thanks so much for sharing your experience.
Shiny Thomas says
Can you make it without placing the apples in the liner and instead just put it in the instapot directly ? Dont have that red liner you showed or any accessories.
I’m afraid they will turn into applesauce if you do that.
Shaleen Stevenson says
I think you can use any kind of steamer basket. When I first got my IP, I used the metal vegetable steamer that I had always used on my stove pan with a pan of water. I used whatever I had while I slowly built my IP accessory inventory.
I just made these they were so good and so easy I already had everything 😍except the granny smith apples 🍏
Glad to hear it Brenda! Thanks for the 5 stars.
The flavor is amazing! I used a steamer basket followed the recipe instructions and ended up with applesauce 😆. Next time I’ll put the basket on a trivit. If that doesn’t work no problem the applesauce was fantastic
Mine too! Not sure my pot even came to pressure. Steam spewing out all around the lid and pin was down when I checked on it. Delicious applesauce 😆
Oh shoot! And you used granny smiths that were cut thick?
Yes, in fact I thought I cut them too thick. I had large GS apples that I cut each half into thirds. I’m not complaining as the applesauce tasted amazing. As mentioned, I’ll try putting the strainer on a trivet when I make it again…all good. Thanks for your speedy reply
Glad the applesauce was good 😂
SUSAN REYNOLDS says
DO YOU HAVE A RECIPE FOR APPLESAUCE OR APPLEBUTTER?
I am surprised at myself because I don’t! Here are some recipes from a trusted site: https://www.pressurecookrecipes.com/instant-pot-applesauce/ and https://www.pressurecookrecipes.com/instant-pot-apple-butter/
SUSAN REYNOLDS says
Thanks! I’ll try them and let you know
Thank you so much! My husband and I are really enjoying your recipes. Thank you for taking the time to send them.
Connie Gatto says
what if I don’t have a steamer basket.
I have tried it without the steamer basket and the apples turned into applesauce. So I wouldn’t make this recipe without the steamer basket. You could try just cooking the apples on the stove top instead.
I would LOVE to receive your recipes for a crock pot. I have been trying to convert them to my crock pot or oven. Sometimes it doesn’t work out so well. But all your recipes are soooo good. Thanks
Hi Debbie, if I do have a slow cooker version I put it in the recipe card. The best way to find my slow cooker recipes is go to the FILTER option and click slow cooker. You can see how here: https://youtu.be/_e8Ra9jAawk
Hi Karen!! Question: this is first time I’ve heard of “controlled release” I’m not sure how long you wait as you move back and forth between venting and sealing and how this yields a different result as opposed to using a regular manual pressure release. Thank you for your help and I can’t wait to try this recipe!! Love your website and videos I have learned so much from you !!
It’s a way to quickly release the pressure without foam spurting all over, like when you open a liter bottle of soda. You can just go back and forth 2 seconds at a time.