Celebrate the Fall and the spooky Halloween season with a party for your grandkids. Decorate some creepy crawling candied apples. The kids will love getting creative, and who doesn’t love a candy bar! Bring on the toppings. It’s all treats and no tricks at this sticky-sweet dessert party. There’s just something special about digging into a sticky and sweet caramel apple during the fall season…
Creamy Caramel Sauce
For your convenience, use a slow cooker to heat your caramel and keep it warm for dipping. This makes it fun for everyone to get involved, and keeps you from standing next to the stove during the duration of your decorating party.
Here’s an easy recipe for creamy caramel sauce from justataste.com:
For 8 apples:
4 (4.51oz bags) of soft caramels (Werther’s are really great!)
3 Tblsp of heavy cream
Unwrap the caramels and place them in cooker at medium-low heat. Add the heavy cream and cook the caramels, stirring occasionally, until they melt and the mixture is a smooth consistency. Reduce the heat to low.
Prep the Apples
Before dipping your apples, be sure to wash them, remove the stems, and remove all produce stickers in advance. Use a scrubbing brush or pad to remove the wax off of the apples. Having a clean apple will allow the caramel to stick better and won’t run as it otherwise would on a waxy surface.
Provide a variety of apples for your guests. Some may prefer a sweeter taste while others may like something more tart. We like to use Granny Smith apples, because their tartness really compliments the sweet flavors of the caramel and toppings. We also really love the pop of bright green in contrast! Pink Lady, Honey Crisp, or Gala apples tend to be the best red apple choices.
To make things easier for the kids, prepare your apples on sticks in advance. The easiest way to do this is to use get handy and use a hammer. This allows you to focus on the dipping and decorating process of caramel apples. When choosing toppings for your caramel apple bar, choose a variety of flavors and textures. Pick some salty options, some sweet options, and some unexpected options. We really love mini chocolate chips, marshmallows, crushed candies, sprinkles, toffee bits, nuts, and shredded coconut.
- Keep your apples in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, until you are ready to dip. Cold apples will help the caramel set quicker and prevent it from running off of the apple
- Allow the excess caramel to drip off of the bottom of the apple and then use a spoon to scrape the excess off of the bottom.
- When dipping the apples, use a dip and spin technique to really cover the apple well and ensure it goes on smoothly.
- Flip the apple upside down and hold it that way for about 20 to 30 seconds to allow the caramel to set, before rolling or dipping into your toppings.
- When done dipping and decorating, place the finished apples on parchment paper. Pop them back into the refrigerator for about 10 to 15 minutes before allowing the kids to try them out. Doing this will prevent the apples from getting too sticky.
Helpful Tips and Tricks
You can also melt chocolate in a slow cooker as well, and dip your caramel apples in chocolate before decorating or using it to drizzle with on top. If you plan to dip your apples in chocolate, allow the caramel to harden first, before dipping, and always dip into the caramel first, before the chocolate. Otherwise, the chocolate will melt instantly when you swirl your apple into the caramel.
For toppings, keep different flavor profiles in mind that you think guests would like and be inclined to try, like s’mores, chocolate peanut butter, or cookies and cream and have those toppings on hand.
Don’t forget to include spoons or scoops for your toppings so that guests can help themselves. Small disposable plates are good to have on hand too in case things get messy!
Putting together a caramel apple bar is easy and a great way to welcome fall. It’s a fun activity for kids and adults alike — and a tasty one too!*
*Portions Resourced from https://www.marthastewart.com/1521834/dip-your-own-caramel-apple-dessert-bar