You can tell when the apple butter is done when you can draw a line through the mixture with a spatula and the line does not close the gap.
Peel, core and slice apples and add to a large dutch over or extra large saucepan. Toss apples with lemon juice. Add sugar, cinnamon and clove tossing to coat.
Add apple cider and vanilla and stir. Cook over medium heat until apples are tender. When done, use immersion blender to puree apples or transfer in batches into a blender to puree.
Return to dutch oven and reduce heat to low. Cook stirring occasionally for one to two hours until apple butter is thick and has the consistency of jam. Add to jars or storage container and store in refrigerator for up to a month.