Even though people are often sad to say goodbye to summer, the fall comes with a lot of great perks. We get to snuggle in our favorite sweaters, brew cups of tea, enjoy the crisp air, and treat ourselves to some snacks reserved for the cooler weather. With those delicacies comes caramel apples, the tasty indulgence that transports us back to our youth in one bite. We're here to teach you how to make caramel apples just as sweet as the ones you used to love when you were younger.

Caramel Apple Recipe

three caramel apples with crushed peanuts

What You'll Need

  • 8-10 apples
  • Apple skewers or popsicle sticks
  • 2 cups of brown sugar
  • 1 cup of light corn syrup
  • 3/4 cups of butter
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of vanilla
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 can of 14-ounce sweetened condensed milk
  • Candy thermometer

Steps

  • Wash each apple with warm water to remove any wax finish. Follow by removing the stems, sticking a skewer into each apple, and placing them in the refrigerator.
  • Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper and leave aside.
  • In a saucepan, mix the butter, light corn syrup, salt, and brown sugar; bring everything to a boil.
  • Once the mixture reaches a boil, add the condensed milk and reduce heat to medium. Stir everything until your candy thermometer reads at least 248-250 degrees F.
  • After the desired temperature is reached, remove the mixture from heat and transfer to a heatproof bowl; stir in the cinnamon and vanilla. Let the caramel cool until it reaches a temperature of 200-205 degrees F.
  • Dip your cold apples in the caramel and let the excess drip into the bowl. Place each apple onto the cookie sheet lined with parchment paper after you dip it in the caramel.
  • Once all the apples are coated, leave them on the cookie sheet for 10-15 minutes or refrigerate for 30 minutes to set the caramel.
  • You can eat them after the allotted time or stick them in the fridge until you're ready to indulge.
caramel apples on a white plate decorated with various garnishes

Additional Methods

There are lots of ways you can make caramel apples your own. You can drizzle chocolate over your apples, roll them in peanuts or crushed walnuts, or use different types of apples to alter the sweetness. It's up to you how to make caramel apples that cater best to your tastes, but keep in mind that you'll need to roll your apples in garnishes while they're still hot.

If you don't quite have the ingredients required to make caramel of your own you can always melt store- bought caramels. All you need to do for this is get:

  • 2 tablespoons of milk or water
  • 1 package of caramels

From there you can:

  • Melt everything in a saucepan, stirring constantly to prevent sticking and burning.
  • Transfer the caramel to a heatproof bowl and dip your apples in, letting the excess drip off.
  • Place on parchment paper and allow to cool until caramel sets.

An added bonus is that if you need to bring a snack with you to an autumn potluck, you can make an adorable miniature version of caramel apples too. Caramel apples are delicious treats you can make for friends in the fall or ring in Halloween; just like Halloween candy, sometimes things are better when they're smaller.

decorated candy apples on a white plate

Teaching yourself how to make caramel apples is a terrific way to munch on the sweet treat that made our childhoods. They may have seemed like an impossible snack to make when we were kids, but they're super simple and a versatile treat to easily make your own. They're also great snacks to have your little ones bring with them to school as a classroom treat. Grab some chocolate syrup, crushed nuts, or even your favorite candy like M&M's to make things even more decadent.

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