Easy Caramel Apples are one of the ultimate fall treats! This easy recipe is great to make with kids and it makes perfect halloween treat.
Crisp tart granny smith apples get coated in a thick layer of delicious caramel. Store bought caramels keep this recipe simple and kid friendly.
Last week the kids were off of school for teacher work days so we went to the park and came home to make these Easy Caramel Apples. Each of the kids easily made their own apples with minimal help from me.
While the caramels set we enjoyed the leftover caramel on slices of granny smith apple. Anyone else remember those Marzetti caramel dip cups? So much childhood nostalgia!
If you have any leftover apples you can always make an air fryer apple pie!
Easy Caramel Apple Ingredients
- Store-bought caramels – Store-bought caramels keep this recipe super easy and kid friendly. Any store bought caramels work for this recipe but the kids were really excited about ones they didn’t have to unwrap!
- Apples – I recommend using Granny Smith apples because the tartness will balance out the sweetness from the caramel. They also have a good firm texture so the hot caramel wont make them mealy.
- Heavy cream – half and half or even water will work but heavy cream will help the caramel set up better.
- Optional toppings – you can add anything you like to your caramel apples. We opted for chocolate and halloween sprinkles but the possibilities are endless just go for things that are smaller so they stick to the caramel.
How to Make Easy Caramel Apples
Prepare the apples: Rinse and thoroughly dry your apples. Insert a stick into center of each apple, we used cut bamboo skewers but lollipop or popsicle sticks work great too.
Prepare the toppings: Have any toppings you want to dip the caramel apples ready because you will need to work fast before the caramel sets.
Prepare a pan: Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
Make the caramel: place caramels and heavy cream into a small pot over medium heat. Stir consistently until melted and smooth.
Dip the apples: dip apples one at time turning them to the side to help coat the whole apple. The kids found using a spoon really helpful for this. Tip the apples upside down to let some caramel run back up the apple before you add toppings. The kids found this part a little hard once the apple was weighed down with caramel so they scraped a little caramel off of the bottom with a spoon.
Add toppings: dip or drizzle caramel apple with toppings of your choice.
Chill to set: chill caramel apples in refrigerator more a minimum of thirty minutes so the caramel can set up.
What are good Caramel Apple Topping?
- sprinkles: any kind of sprinkle will work but seasonal ones make it extra fun!
- nuts: chopped peanuts are the classic option but any nut will work as long as you chop it finely enough.
- coconut flakes: sweetened coconut flakes are a delicious pairing with the caramel topping.
- chocolate: milk, dark, and white chocolate all work great drizzled on caramel apples just make sure your caramel has set enough so the chocolate does not melt it off.
- crushed cookies: oreos, graham crackers, spice cookies, anything you like will work great.
- crushed pretzels: the salty sweet pretzel caramel combo is amazing especially when paired with chocolate.
- chopped candies: mms, snickers, recess pieces, any candy will work as long as it is chopped finely enough to stick to the caramel apple.
Tips for Caramel Apples
Can I Melt the Caramel in the Microwave Instead?
If you don’t want to use the stove top to melt the caramel you can definitely use the microwave. Heat in a microwave safe bowl in 30 second increments for 2-3 minutes. Stir well between each interval, until the caramel is melted and smooth.
How do you keep caramel from sliding off of the apples?
To keep the caramel from sliding off of the apples you want to pre wash your apples to remove any wax coating and make sure they are all the way dry.
You also want to refrigerate the caramel apples on a parchment lined sheet pan for at least thirty minutes so help them set up without running.
What do I do if my caramel gets too thick?
Reheat caramel that is becoming too thick in the microwave or on the stove until melted and smooth again.
How should you store caramel apples?
Caramel apples will keep in an air tight container in the refrigerator for up to a week.