Have you ever gone somewhere or saw something that instantly transported you back to your childhood?
It happens to me all of the time. It’s usually a smell or sound but this time it was the sight of a table topped with Pease’s Caramel Apples. These fall treats have been apart of my life for as far back as I can remember. They were so darned good I would have traded my whole bucket full of Halloween candy just for one caramel dipped apple.
But these days … well, to be honest, they just aren’t as good as I remember. Even my mom mentioned the caramel flavor was just … off.
So I decided to make some of my own with my tried and trusted caramel recipe. The best part, I get to pick which variety of apples I want to dip and this is a fun Halloween treat to get the kids involved with. You may want to keep them busy elsewhere while you make the caramel but they can definitely help with the decorating.
We even dipped some in caramel and then chocolate for a doubly delicious apple treat.
Caramel Apple Dipping Tips
- If you’re using paper straws, make sure they’re a good quality that won’t snap. Insert a wooden kebab stick into the straw before sticking it in the apple. The sharp tip helps it get through that tough core.
- Let the caramel cool overnight on the apple before dipping in chocolate or decorating.
- Use the smallest apples you can find, they’re a lot easier to dip!
- Wash the apples, give them a light scrub with a (new and clean) scrubby sponge, rinse and dry. It helps the caramel stick.
- 12 small Granny Smith Apples
- 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1-14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 2-1/4 cups golden brown sugar (or use half light and half dark)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla bean paste (or 1 tablespoon vanilla extract)
- Wilton candy melts in black and orange
- Halloween colored sprinkles
- Prepare the apples by washing, scrub lightly with a scrubby sponge, rinse and dry.
- Place sticks through the top center of each apple going almost to the bottom of the apple. Set aside on a sheet of wax paper.
- In a large heavy duty pot over medium heat, melt the butter.
- Once fully melted add the corn syrup, milk and brown sugar.
- Use a flat edged wooden spatula to stir the mixture, taking care to scrape the bottom and avoid the sides of the pot.
- Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pot, making sure the end is inside the mixture but not touching the bottom.
- Continue stirring constantly until the thermometer reaches 244 degrees F (or soft ball line if labeled on thermometer)
- Immediately remove from heat and stir in vanilla bean paste.
- Allow the caramel to cool for about 1 minute then dip one apple at a time. You may need to tilt the pot side ways so the caramel is deep enough to coat the apple to the top.
- Allow the excess caramel to drip off the apple for about 30 seconds then place it on the wax paper. Repeat until all 12 apples are dipped.
- Cool the apples overnight before decorating.