Bright, crisp Granny Smith apples covered in sticky, buttery caramel and dunked in your favorite
Next time try Halloween Rice Krispie Treats - happy Frankenstein krispy treats, perfect fun food for the kids (big AND small!).
Why you'll love this recipe
On this post I'm not going to bore you with the history of caramel apples, I'm just going to tell you they are delicious! 😋
When we finished dinner the other day and Dan asked what's for dessert? I surprised him by pulling out this treat and he got the biggest smile on his face.
What can I say? Whether it's his favorite cookies or candy, my man loves his sweets!
Whether you are visiting the apple orchard, farmers market or grocery store, grab your favorite apples. These are a perfect Halloween treat! And as simple as they are to make, the whole family will enjoy making and eating them!
You'll love these because you're not going to need a ton of ingredients, not butter, corn syrup or brown sugar, just caramels for melting!
These are pretty enough for special occasions and easy enough to make tonight!
For the exact measurements, please refer to the printable recipe card at the bottom of this post.
- baking caramels (I used a bag of the individually wrapped Kraft brand).
- apples - smaller apples are best, choose tart apples like fresh Granny Smith apples, gala, Macintosh or fuji.
- popsicle sticks or wooden sticks - you can find these at the craft store or online.
Gourmet toppings for caramel apples
Oh my goodness, it's really your personal preference. I'm here to tell you though, they are ALL GOOD! If you have excess Halloween candy, you can even chop that up!
Are the toppings necessary? Probably not, I just think it's more fun! You can use a variety of delicious toppings, here are my favorites!
- heath bar - Dan's personal favorite!
- shredded coconut - makes me drool just thinking about it.
- mini m&m candies - so pretty and colorful.
- sliced almonds or chopped nuts - pecans, walnuts, peanuts anything works!
- mini chocolate chips - semi-sweet chocolate and caramel is a delicious combination!
- sprinkles - the more color the better, use your favorite!
- crushed cookies - Oreos, gingersnaps or vanilla wafers - yum!
- mini m&m's, toffee bits or mini marshmallows would be fantastic.
- chocolate drizzles would look super fancy!
- crushed candy bars.
- graham cracker crumbs.
- dark chocolate sprinkled with sea salt.
Each apple will need about ¼ cup of the topping, just plan accordingly for the
Prepare the apples
- The first thing you'll need to do is rinse well and dry the apples with a paper towel.
- If there is a wax coating on the apples dip each apple for 1 or 2 seconds in boiling water, pat dry.
- Remove the stems from the apples and insert a caramel apple stick into the center.
- Refrigerate the apples. The caramel will stick better to the cold apples.
- Prepare the pan to rest apples on after dunkin
g: Line a baking sheet or dish with parchment paper, spray with non-stick cooking spray.
Prepare the caramel
- Unwrap the caramel candies and place in a microwaveable bowl.
- Add 3 tablespoons of water to the bowl.
- Melt caramel. Place in microwave for two minutes, stir - microwave in 30-second intervals until it's "drizzly" enough to coat the apples.
I love using pre-made caramel. Melting the rich caramel in the microwave makes it super because there's no need to use candy thermometer.
Make the caramel apples
- Insert a wooden stick into the center of the apple.
- Dip apples in hot caramel.
- Allow the excess caramel to drain back into the bowl.
- Take dipped apples and dunk and roll the apple in your topping of choice. I use a variety of different toppings.
- Place apple on parchment paper.
- Refrigerate at least 15 minutes so the caramel will set and harden. Keep apples in the refrigerator until you're ready to serve them.
Easy enough, right? Man these are good!
These are done in a blink! It will take you longer to wash and dry the apples then it takes to make these fall treats!
There is no hard/fast rule for the best apples. Choose your favorite apples. Look for smaller, tart apples like crisp, tart Granny Smith apples, gala, Macintosh or fuji. Honeycrisp apples are amazing and organic apples are always a great choice!
Yes, the caramel will stick better to the apples and cool more quickly if you have cold apples.
Your apple could have a light wax coating.
Dip the apples into boiling water for just a second or two, then wipe them with a paper towel.
Yes, after making them, store gourmet caramel apples in the refrigerator.
Test kitchen tips
- Start with dry apples. Remove the stem and refrigerate them. I do this the day before because I found the caramel will stick to the apples better if they are good and cold.
- Allow excess caramel to drizzle off the apples before dipping into the topping.
- Use good crisp apples!
- Be sure to spray the parchment paper with non-stick spray to avoid sticking.
Store the apples in the refrigerator until you're ready to enjoy them. Remove them about 15 minutes prior to serving. They are best served at room temperature. That way the caramel will warm up a bit and won't be hard when you bite into it.
The kids will enjoy eating it just like a lollipop. Bigger kids (like you and me!) might appreciate having it sliced.
Instead of caramel to dip your gourmet apples, use melted chocolate, white chocolate, or pretty candy melts - YUM!
These are just like the fancy apples at the candy shop!
Once you're done decorating them, refrigerate the gourmet caramel apples. Remove them from the refrigerator about 15 minutes before serving.
To package them, I simply wrapped them in wax paper and tied each apple with a pretty bow. I wrote a short description
I took several apples and gave them to friends, dropping them off at their work with a little note. What a hit!
One gal even chased me down in the parking lot to give me a hug. It's amazing what joy a homemade gift bestows not just on the recipient, but the gift giver too!
Aren't these super fun? You'll love this classic fall treat! If you're having a get-together here are more yummy recipes for your Halloween party!
- For the main dish, how about a Mummy Meatloaf, YUM!! Or if you're keeping it casual, grill some Halloween Hot Dogs - so fun!
- This recipe for Halloween Meatballs uses a couple shortcuts. They take no time at all to make! Serve with marinara sauce for dipping.
- This post has loads of recipes for more Halloween Party Food!
Whether you're preparing for a party or just filling bellies before trick or treating, here are a few more recipes to check out!
- This recipe for Cracker Barrel Fried Apples is so delicious! You'll love how easy it is to make too! When you make it, double the recipe because it everyone will love it!
- This from scratch Pumpkin Butter is another wonderful treat - it tastes like pumpkin pie in a jar!
- Butterscotch Pudding Dessert - this is the most lovely fall dessert and another easy recipe! Perfect for a dinner party or Sunday supper.
- Full of tender, apples in a buttery cake this recipe for Apple Cake with Brown Butter Sauce, this cake is a delicious grownup dessert.
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Homemade Caramel Apples
- 11 ounces baking caramels I used individually wrapped Kraft brand
- 3 tablespoons water
- 5-6 apples Recommend smaller apples
- popsicle sticks, toppings of choice
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- Rinse the apples, remove the stems, dry apples with a paper towel and refrigerate until you’re ready to make the treat. Insert a stick into the core, set aside.
- Line a baking sheet or dish with parchment paper, spray with non-stick cooking spray.
- Unwrap the caramels and place them in a microwaveable bowl. Add the water. Microwave for two minutes, stir well. Depending on your microwave you may need to zap it again at 30-second intervals until melted.
- Insert a wooden stick into the center of each apple. Dunk the apples in melted caramel. Allow the excess caramel to drain back into the bowl. Quickly dunk and roll the apple in your topping of choice. Set on the parchment paper.
- Refrigerate at least 15 minutes to allow the topping to harden. Enjoy!
Tips for making Caramel Apple Recipe
- Clean the apples well, remove the stem and refrigerate them. I do this the day before because I found the caramel will stick to the apples better if they are good and cold.
- Start with a dry apple, if it's damp or wet, the caramel will not stick.
- Allow excess caramel to drizzle off the apples before dipping.
- Be. sure to spray the parchment paper with non-stick spray so the apples don't stick to the paper.
- Plan on ¼ cup topping for each apple.
- Remove from the refrigerator at least 15 minutes prior to serving.