Caramel Apples

These caramel apples are enrobed in a buttery caramel coating made with butter, sugar, cream, maple syrup, and dark molasses. A great Halloween treat for the kids.

A metal tray with 4 caramel apples, with natural sticks as handles, two more apples on the table

Sweet. Sticky. Crisp. Gooey. Gonna go back for another one. These are the sorts of things that meander through our thoughts as we lose ourselves in the autumnal classic from childhood that still satiates, no matter the age. Go on. Try one. We dare you to defy the urge.–Renee Schettler Rossi

Caramel Apples

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 30 M
  • Makes 10 to 12

Special Equipment: 10 to 12 popsicle sticks or twigs sharpened to a point at one end

5/5 - 1 reviews
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  • 10 to 12 medium apples, preferably with some tartness, such as Granny Smith, Pink Lady, or McIntosh
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (4 oz)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon blackstrap or other dark molasses
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • A pinch of salt


  • 1. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Butter the foil or paper lightly. Insert a stick into each apple at the stem end. (I use the bottom of a heavy mug to “hammer” in the sticks, but be careful not to drive the handle all the way through the apple.)
  • 2. In a deep, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the sugar, butter, cream, corn syrup, maple syrup, molasses, vanilla, and salt. Stir gently with a wooden spoon from time to time to make sure no sugar is sticking to the bottom of the pan. Bring to a boil and cook until the mixture registers 236°F (113°C) on a thermometer, 5 to 7 minutes.
  • 3. Remove the pan from the heat and let the caramel cool to 180°F (82°C).
  • 4. Working with 1 apple at a time, dip it into the hot caramel, let the excess drip off the bottom of the apple, and then place it on the prepared baking sheet. The caramel should cling to the apple. If the caramel slides off the first apple, let the rest of the caramel in the pan cool for a minute or so and try again. You may need to tilt the pan to dip the last few apples. (To free your hands, place a wooden spoon under one side of the pan.)
  • 5. Let the caramel apples cool completely so the caramel sets. The apples will keep, uncovered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. (But who are we kidding? They’ll never last that long.) Originally published October 26, 2011.

What You Need To Know About Making Devilishly Dark Caramel Apples

  • To achieve a devilishly dark caramel apple, add the teeniest drop of black food gel to the caramel and swirl or stir until no streaks remain before dipping apples.

Recipe Testers Reviews

These caramel apples were delicious! The addition of molasses gave the caramel a depth that is not usually present in a caramel apple. I was able to purchase some fresh beautiful apples and maple syrup at the farmer’s market.

My apples were a bit smaller than what was called for in the recipe, and I probably could have made a few more with the extra caramel I had left, but I had run out of sticks. I used the remainder as a dip for apple slices. I will be making this again!


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  1. I would like to tell you that this recipe is absolutely delicious! I tried it over the weekend and it turned out perfectly – and the picture makes it impossible to not try this yourself!!

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