Easy Caramel Apples

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Enjoy a classic fall treat with these easy caramel apples! Perfect for parties or fun family activity, these apples are dipped in creamy caramel and rolled in your favorite toppings.

Suitable for gluten free and vegetarian diets.

An apple with caramel and sprinkles with a stick in it.

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You can enjoy this classic fall treat at home with this easy caramel apples recipe. Perfect for parties or fun family activity, these apples are dipped in creamy caramel and rolled in your favorite toppings. Whether you’re celebrating Halloween, Thanksgiving, or just a cozy Fall day, these are fun to make and eat.

Caramel Apples

These make wonderful gifts, especially during the holiday season. Wrap them in clear cellophane and tie them with a ribbon for a beautiful, homemade present. They’re also a great addition to any dessert table or party platter, adding a touch of nostalgia and sweetness that everyone will love.

They’re a staple at fairs and carnivals, often bringing back childhood memories. There’s something magical about the combination of crisp apples and gooey caramel that takes me back to those carefree days. No bills, responsibilities – you feel me!

An apple dipped in caramel and nuts

Making them at home can be just as fun and delicious, allowing you to create new memories with your family. We also love to make edible gifts, like this Instant Pot Vanilla Extract, which makes a lovely teacher gift, or these Easy Hot Chocolate Bombs.

Ingredient Notes

  • Caramels – Use good quality caramels for the best flavor. Pre-packaged caramels are convenient and melt smoothly, but you can also use homemade caramel if you prefer.
  • Whipping Cream – The cream helps to make the caramel smooth and easy to dip. If you want a richer flavor, you can use heavy cream instead of whipping cream.
  • Apples – Choose firm, crisp apples like Granny Smith, Honeycrisp, or Fuji. Their tartness pairs well with the sweet caramel, and their firmness holds up well during dipping.
  • Garnishes – You’ll need about 1 cup of each garnish. Use a variety of toppings such as crushed candy, shredded coconut, chopped nuts, and colorful sprinkles to add different textures and flavors. Make sure to have these ready before you start dipping the apples.
  • Sticks – Use sturdy sticks or wooden skewers that can support the weight of the apple. Insert them firmly into the apples to ensure they don’t slip off when dipping.
Ingredients for apples on a stick.

How To Make Caramel Apples

Get complete ingredients list and instructions from the recipe card further below. 

An apple on a stick being dipped into caramel showing how to make caramel apples.

Step 1 – In a heavy saucepan, add the unwrapped caramels and whipping cream. Cook until the caramels are fully melted. Wash the apples thoroughly and dry them completely. Insert a stick into the top of each apple, pushing it about halfway through.

An apple being dipped into coconut.

Step 2 – Dip each apple into the caramel. Roll each caramel-coated apple in your choice of garnish. Press the garnishes into the caramel to help them stick. Place the apples on a lined baking sheet to cool and set for about 30 minutes. Enjoy!

Caramel Apples For Gifting

These caramel apples make thoughtful gifts. Anytime a friend makes a handmade gift, it is super special. Once the apples are completely set, wrap each one in clear cellophane and tie it with a festive ribbon to match the occasion. This not only makes them look beautiful but also keeps them fresh.

We like to make these for trick-or-treating on Halloween. Let your children’s imaginations run wild with the possibilities for any occasion.

A candy apple wrapped in plastic with a bow.

Bintu’s Tips

  • Have all your ingredients and garnishes ready before you start melting the caramel. This ensures you can work quickly while the caramel is still warm.
  • After washing your apples, make sure to dry them completely. Any moisture on the apples can prevent the caramel from sticking properly.
  • Cold apples can cause the caramel to harden too quickly, making it difficult to get an even coating. Let the apples sit at room temperature for a bit before dipping.
  • When melting the caramels with cream, stir constantly to prevent burning and ensure a smooth, even mixture.
  • If the caramel is too thick for dipping, add a bit more cream to thin it out to your desired consistency.
  • Dip each apple into the caramel and twirl it to get an even coating. Let any excess caramel drip back into the saucepan before adding garnishes.
  • After dipping in caramel, roll the apples in your chosen garnishes and press them in firmly to help them stick.
An apple dipped in caramel and sprinkles.

Delicious Variations 

  • Double Dip – For an extra indulgent treat, double dip your apples. After the first layer of caramel sets, dip the apples in melted chocolate and then roll in your favorite toppings.
  • Leftover Christmas candy – Roll the caramel-dipped apples in crushed candy for a fun, colorful twist. Try crushed chocolate bars, candy canes, or candy-coated chocolates for a sweet crunch.
  • Cookie Crumbles – Roll the apples in crushed cookies like Oreos or graham crackers for a different texture and flavor. This adds a crunch and extra sweetness.
  • Drizzled Chocolate – After the caramel sets, drizzle the apples with melted dark, milk, or white chocolate. This not only looks beautiful but adds another layer of flavor.
An apple dipped in caramel and sprinkles.

Prep And Storage

  • Prep Ahead – You can prep the toppings ahead of time.
  • Store – Store them in the refrigerator to keep them fresh and prevent the caramel from melting. Place them in an airtight container or wrap them individually in plastic wrap. They will stay fresh for up to 3 days
  • Freeze – Freezing the apples on a stick is not recommended as the texture of the apple can become mushy once thawed.

FAQs 

Why won’t my caramel stick to my apples?

Wax coating on store-bought apples can prevent caramel from sticking. Wash them with warm water and vinegar or baking soda and then dry thoroughly. Ensure apples are completely dry before dipping, as moisture can cause the caramel to slide off. Let apples reach room temperature and make sure the caramel is thick and slightly cooled before dipping.

How long do caramel apples last?

They can last up to 3 days when stored in the refrigerator. Place them in an airtight container or wrap them individually in plastic wrap to keep them fresh. For the best taste and texture, enjoy them within a few days.

Do you put caramel apples in the fridge to harden?

Put them in the fridge to harden. This helps the caramel set quickly and keeps the apples fresh. Place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet and refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until the caramel is firm.

An apple dipped in caramel and coloured balls.

Similar Recipes

Serve With:

  • Popcorn – The light, salty popcorn will provide a nice counterpart to the sweet candy taste.
  • Air Fryer Nachos – Balance the sweetness with a savory snack like nachos.
  • Air Fryer Churros – This is a great dessert combo.

Thank you for reading my caramel apples recipe post. And please come visit again as I continue to slice, dice and dream up affordable Air Fryer recipes, Instant Pot recipes, Southern Recipes, and more. Thanks for supporting Recipes from a Pantry, food blog.

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An apple with caramel and sprinkles with a stick in it.
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Caramel Apples

These caramel apples are super fun to make with your children.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time10 minutes
35 minutes
Total Time1 hour
Course: Edible Gifts, Snack
Cuisine: american, western
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Servings: 8 servings
Calories: 370kcal
Author: Bintu Hardy

Ingredients

  • 60 caramels unwrapped
  • 2 tablespoons whipping cream
  • 1 cup candy, coconut, nuts, or sprinkles optional
  • 6-8 apples
  • 6-8 sticks

Instructions

  • In a heavy saucepan, add the unwrapped caramels and the whipping cream. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until the caramels are fully melted and the mixture is smooth. This should take about 10 minutes. Make sure to stir continuously to prevent the caramel from burning.
  • While the caramel is melting, wash the apples thoroughly and dry them completely. Insert a stick into the top of each apple, pushing it about halfway through to ensure it stays in place.
  • Once the caramel is melted and smooth, dip each apple into the caramel. Twirl the apple in the caramel to coat it evenly, letting any excess drip back into the saucepan. If the caramel is too thick, you can add a little more cream to thin it out.
  • Immediately after dipping in caramel, roll each apple in the garnish of your choice (candy, coconut, nuts, or sprinkles). Make sure to press the garnishes into the caramel to help them stick.
  • Place the coated apples on a parchment-lined baking sheet to cool and set. Allow the caramel to harden at room temperature for about 30 minutes before serving.
  • Once the caramel is set, your caramel apples are ready to enjoy. They can be stored in the refrigerator if you prefer a firmer caramel coating.
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Notes

    • Have all your ingredients and garnishes ready before you start melting the caramel. This ensures you can work quickly while the caramel is still warm.
    • After washing your apples, make sure to dry them completely. Any moisture on the apples can prevent the caramel from sticking properly.
    • Cold apples can cause the caramel to harden too quickly, making it difficult to get an even coating. Let the apples sit at room temperature for a bit before dipping.
    • When melting the caramels with cream, stir constantly to prevent burning and ensure a smooth, even mixture.
    • If the caramel is too thick for dipping, add a bit more cream to thin it out to your desired consistency.
    • Dip each apple into the caramel and twirl it to get an even coating. Let any excess caramel drip back into the saucepan before adding garnishes.
    • After dipping in caramel, roll the apples in your chosen garnishes and press them in firmly to help them stick.
    • Store – Place them in an airtight container or wrap them individually in plastic wrap. They will stay fresh for up to 3 days.

Nutrition

Calories: 370kcal | Carbohydrates: 77g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 8g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 9mg | Sodium: 186mg | Potassium: 310mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 63g | Vitamin A: 160IU | Vitamin C: 7mg | Calcium: 114mg | Iron: 0.3mg

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