1. In a large bowl, toss apples with other ingredients to evenly coat.
2. In a large, heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, combine apples with a few tablespoons of water. When the apples begin steaming, reduce temperature to low and cover pot. Stirring every 10 minutes to avoid scorching, cook apples for 45 minutes to 2 hours (cook time will depend on apples used). The apples are done when they’ve cooked down to a dark brown mash.
3. Using an immersion blender, blend apple butter until smooth. (Alternatively, you can allow apple butter to cool completely before blending in a traditional blender.) Allow to cool before use.