Family Fun Apple Picking

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CHARLOTTE – Fall is my favorite season and apple picking is one of my family’s favorite fall outings. We try to go apple picking at least once every year and always come home with 20 plus pounds of apples. This year, we decided to try out an orchard we had never been to before and ended up at Apple Hill Orchard in Morganton, NC.

Apple Hill Orchard has 22 varieties of apples with 18 available for u-pick. U-pick begins in mid-August and ends in early November. U-pick hours are Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. When we visited a few weeks ago, we were able to pick Honeycrisp, Arlet, and Gala apples. You can visit the orchard’s website at to see what varieties are currently available for picking.

We had such a nice experience at the orchard! Although we went on a Saturday, it wasn’t too crowded and we enjoyed a pleasant afternoon walking through the trees picking apples. We brought a picnic lunch and enjoyed delicious apple cider slushies and doughnuts from the bakery for dessert.

We went a bit overboard this year and picked an entire bushel of apples. A bushel is around 48 pounds! Although we eat lots of apples, there was no way we could eat our way through 48 pounds of them! Since we had a tremendous amount of apples, I decided to use some of them to make crockpot cinnamon applesauce. It was delicious and the entire crockpot full of applesauce only lasted about a day and a half at my house. It was such a hit with my family that I made it two more times.

I’ve shared my homemade applesauce recipe below. Enjoy!

Homemade Crock Pot Cinnamon Applesauce


10-12 apples

1/4 cup sugar

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup water

1 Tbsp. lemon juice


  1. Peel, core, and chop the apples. Place in crockpot.
  2. Stir in lemon juice, sugar, and cinnamon. Add water.
  3. Cook on high for 3-4 hours until apples are softened.
  4. Mash the apples with the back of a large spoon until a chunky applesauce consistency is achieved. Enjoy warm or refrigerate for later.
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