“Seasonal Cooking” brings you delicious home-cooked recipes with the freshest ingredients of the season. Bring a little taste of fall into your home with these DIY caramel apples from Lauren Grier of The Curious Plate.
What comes to your mind when you think of a caramel apple? The sweet taste and the loud crunch — what a combo.
Now, you might be tempted to purchase said caramel apple after a day of autumnal adventures, say strolling through a pumpkin patch or one of those pick-your-own farms. However, did you know that you can make your own caramel apples at home?
Homemade caramel apples are actually quite easy to assemble and require only a few ingredients. Many recipes call for using a candy thermometer, but not this one. I’ve simplified this recipe even more by using store-bought caramels.
By using store-bought caramels all you need to do is unwrap them and add them to a saucepan with some whipping cream — this ensures the caramel sauce doesn’t become too thick for dipping and helps the caramels melt smoothly which results in a luxurious, silky sauce.
Here are a few words of wisdom when it comes to perfecting homemade caramel apples:
Wet = Mess
After washing your apples make sure you thoroughly dry them prior to dipping them into the hot caramel. Any trace of moisture left on the apples will cause the caramel sauce to slip right off. Once they’re dry and you’ve melted the caramels, you’ll insert a lollipop stick into the center of the apples and then dip them into the caramel.
Now, this is where things can become a little adventurous if you choose to add different toppings to your caramel apple. Sprinkles, mixed nuts, and shredded coconut are favorites in my household. The key here is that the smaller, more finely chopped the toppings are, the better chance you have at them staying on the caramel as it cools.
You can also stay the purest route and enjoy the caramel apple as is. If you want to offer them at a party, you can let your guests have a say with a choose-your-own-adventure style.
Cool avoids pool
Don’t be afraid to go big and add a second layer of caramel to the apples. If you do choose to live dangerously, you need the first layer to cool completely before dipping. Fifteen minutes in the fridge should do it.
Easy Caramel Apples
- 8 Harry & David apples
- 18 ounces caramels (wrappers removed)
- 3 tablespoons heavy whipping cream
- 8 lollipop sticks
- coconut flakes, chopped nuts, sprinkles, etc.
- Wash and thoroughly dry your apples.
- Take a lollipop stick and press it firmly into the top of each apple and place on a baking sheet that has been lined with parchment paper.
- Put desired toppings into small serving bowls. Set aside.
- Add the caramels to a medium saucepan that has been preheated to medium-low heat. Next, add the cream and continue to stir until the caramels melt and the mixture is smooth.
- Take an apple and dip into the caramel mixture, shaking off any excess and place on the parchment paper.
- If you would like to add toppings, roll the caramel apple carefully into the toppings of your choice.
- Once you’ve assembled your apples, place them in the fridge for the caramel to set, at least 15 minutes. Once firm, serve and enjoy!