Halloween weekend is upon us and if you’re looking for a last-minute treat to whip up for some of your favorite Trick or Treaters, these caramel apples will definitely fit the bill. Growing up, I adored caramel apples and although I only ate maybe one per year, I was always excited to try a different flavor. The candied apples though? With that shiny red coating? I was never a fan. Give me caramel apples all the way! I had always wanted to try my hand at making these – you can get so creative with it! – and while on a recent trip to Toronto we picked one up as a souvenir of sorts (truthfully, more of a “We Survived Toronto” t-shirt substitute). It was an “apple pie” version, with the caramel covered in white chocolate and then rolled in a brown sugar and cinnamon mixture. Pure bliss. So that one was definitely on my list to recreate, and many other ideas starting flowing. These really aren’t very difficult and don’t take much time, and would be a blast to do with any kiddos you know.
Okay, so these aren’t 100% homemade; I cheated and used the little caramel melting bits that you can buy at the store.
Since it was my first time I figured I’d just use those and then next time do a homemade caramel sauce. I am a little mad at myself for not just going all out because the caramel was okay, but I’m certain that a homemade caramel would be more than fabulous.
Let me introduce you to my inaugural varieties:
The Apple Pie Caramel Apple (white chocolate rolled in a brown sugar and cinnamon mixture)
The Snickers Caramel Apple (milk chocolate rolled in chopped peanuts)
The Reese’s Caramel Apple (milk chocolate rolled in peanut butter chips)
The Rocky Road Caramel Apple (dark chocolate rolled in mini semisweet chips, chopped walnuts and miniature marshmallows – inspired by a favorite ice cream concoction at Marble Slab)
So, give me the scoop… What is your favorite flavor of caramel apple? Or do you prefer candied? Have you ever made them at home?
Homemade Caramel Apples
Yield: 10 apples
Prep Time: 45 minutes (active), 1 hour (inactive)
Total Time: 45 minutes
2 bags Caramel Bits
10 Granny Smith apples
Assorted chocolates for melting
Assorted candies, chips, etc. for rolling
1. Wash the apples, remove the stems (and any stickers!) and refrigerate them overnight.
2. Line a baking sheet with wax paper and spray with a non-stick cooking spray. Insert wooden or lollipop sticks into the center of each apple.
3. In a small saucepan, melt the caramel according to the package directions. One at a time, dip the apples into the caramel, swirling and using a spoon to get it covered. Place on the baking sheet and repeat with all of the apples. Place the apples in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
4. In a 2-cup measuring cup (this works perfectly for this!), melt whatever chocolate you are using. I used the microwave at 50% power in 30-second increments. Have your candies and chips ready. Dip the caramel apple into the chocolate, covering it as much as possible, and then roll it in the desired toppings.
5. Apples will keep for 1 to 2 days in the refrigerator.
Note: I add 1 tablespoon of vegetable shortening per 1 cup of chocolate chips when melting. It keeps the chocolate thin (no clumping) and it dries nice and smooth.