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This Caramel Apple Dip is a popular dessert dip during the fall season. The simple yet satisfying snack has all the sweet flavor of caramel with crisp, fresh apple slices.
Featured with this recipe
- Ingredients in this Easy Caramel Apple Dip Recipe
- Texture of Caramel Apple Dip
- Directions for Making Caramel Apple Dip
- How to Store Caramel Apple Dip
- Soft-Ball Stage
- Caramel Dip Variations
- What to Serve with Caramel Apple Dip
- More Uses For Caramel Dip
- Tips for Smooth Caramel Dip (Avoid Crystallization and Grainy-ness)
- Frequently Asked Questions
- More Delicious Apple Desserts and Treats
- More Sweet Dip Recipes
- How to Make Caramel Apple Dip
- Caramel Apple Dip Recipe
This luscious caramel apple dip is the perfect fall appetizer for game days, Halloween holiday parties and more! The simple caramel apple dip recipe is better than anything you can buy at the grocery store and costs much less to make. It’s always a huge hit! My kids love dipping tart granny smith apples slices into this dip as an after school snack, and I love the fact that they’re getting delicious fruit in their bodies. Keep this delicious treat on hand for all kinds of occasions this fall.
Ingredients in this Easy Caramel Apple Dip Recipe
This caramel sauce comes together with just a few simple ingredients and a little patience at the stove. It’s completely worth it, once you taste the creamy, rich caramel. Here’s what you need:
- Sugar – one cup white sugar. You can substitute light brown sugar or dark brown sugar for part of the sugar mixture for a deeper color.
- Dark corn syrup – 8 ounces of the Karo brand DARK syrup.
- Butter – one cup or two cubes of your favorite brand of butter.
- Sweetened condensed milk – 14 ounces, or one can.
- Vanilla Extract – one teaspoon.
Texture of Caramel Apple Dip
Homemade caramel dip can be adjusted to your desired thickness and creaminess by controlling the cooking time and temperature of the caramel. This particular caramel apple dip recipe is not thick enough to hold a shape for wrapped caramels or to cover whole apples. The texture is smooth and creamy. It should be thick but not too thick, enough so it clings to apple slices without being too runny, but it’s the perfect consistency to dip apples, pretzels, crackers, just about anything!
Directions for Making Caramel Apple Dip
Now is the time to get comfy in front of the stove for a little bit. It takes just a bit of patience to get the perfect texture and consistency, but it is well worth every single step.
- In a heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, dark corn syrup and butter to a boil over medium Caramel apple dip can easily burn if you turn up the heat to help it boil faster. The key is be patient and keep stirring. It will come to a boil over medium heat.
- Next, add sweetened condensed milk and return to a boil, and keep stirring for another minute or two.
- Using a candy thermometer, boil to a soft-ball stage.(235–240 degrees Fahrenheit) The temperature rises quickly once the caramel gets to a certain point. Keep a close eye on the candy thermometer.
- Remove from heat and add vanilla extract. Stir once again.
- The caramel mixture is very hot! If you get it on your hands, it will cause a burn and the trouble is, it will stick to your hand and burn even more. Be careful.
- Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan and pour into a serving dish.
How to Store Caramel Apple Dip
Store at room temperature in an airtight container. You can also keep the caramel in the fridge for up to two weeks. Remove from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving. This recipe can easily be doubled if you are expecting a large crowd. Keep some on hand to serve over ice cream, or spread in layers over cookies or graham crackers.
It can be tough to determine if you don’t have a candy thermometer, but it can be done, using the soft-ball stage method. If you don’t have a candy thermometer, here’s the best way to know if your caramel is at the perfect soft-ball stage:
- Get a bowl of ice cold water
- Transfer a small amount of caramel to the cold water.
- If it forms a soft, pliable ball, it’s ready! If it falls apart in the water, continue to stir for a few minutes and then try again.
Caramel Dip Variations
There are numerous delicious variations you can try when making caramel dip for apples. Here are a few ideas:
- Salted Caramel Dip: Add a pinch of sea salt to your caramel sauce for that perfect sweet and salty combination.
- Chocolate Caramel Dip: Stir in some melted chocolate or cocoa powder to create a rich chocolate caramel dip.
- Nutty Caramel Dip: Mix in chopped nuts like pecans, walnuts, or almonds for added crunch and flavor.
- Cinnamon Caramel Dip: Add ground cinnamon and a dash of nutmeg to infuse your dip with warm, cozy spices.
- Pumpkin Spice Caramel Dip: Incorporate pumpkin puree and pumpkin spice for a delightful fall-inspired dip.
- Maple Caramel Dip: Replace some of the sugar with maple syrup for a distinctively sweet maple flavor.
- Coconut Caramel Dip: Mix in some shredded coconut or coconut milk for a tropical flair.
What to Serve with Caramel Apple Dip
Serve a big bowl of soft caramel with a variety of sliced apples. I like using granny smith, honeycrisp, gala, or any other tart apple. Use a little lemon juice on the apples to keep them from browning on your buffet table. Make a charcuterie board with a bunch of different yummy things to dip (or to dip your caramel apples IN):
- graham crackers
- cheesecake bites
- heath bits or toffee bits
- chocolate chips
- Pumpkin cream candies or candy corn
More Uses For Caramel Dip
Have leftovers or want to try something new with this caramel dip? Try adding a little extra heavy cream when re-heating to make a simple homemade caramel sauce! Drizzle a little over ice cream, pancakes, waffles, French toast, brownies, bread pudding, pie, apple crisp, or cobbler (YUM)! You can also add a little scoop to drinks like hot cocoa or caramel apple spice cider. There are SO many different ways you can use this delicious dip. Get creative and leave a comment with your favorite creations!
Tips for Smooth Caramel Dip (Avoid Crystallization and Grainy-ness)
Preventing caramel from crystallizing or becoming grainy requires some careful attention and the right techniques. Here are some tips to help you achieve smooth, velvety caramel:
- Use Clean Utensils: Make sure your saucepan, stirring utensils, and any measuring cups or spoons you use are completely clean and dry. Even a small amount of residue can cause crystallization.
- Add Acid: A tiny amount of acid, such as lemon juice or cream of tartar, can help prevent sugar crystals from forming. Add just a drop or a pinch when melting the sugar.
- Don’t Stir Too Much: While it’s important to gently swirl the pan to ensure even heating, avoid excessive stirring once the sugar begins to melt. Stirring too vigorously can introduce sugar crystals into the mixture.
- Wash Down the Sides: Use a wet pastry brush or a clean, damp cloth to wipe down the sides of the saucepan. This helps dissolve any sugar crystals that may have splashed onto the sides.
- Use a Lid: Cover the saucepan with a lid for a few minutes after the sugar has melted. This traps steam, which can dissolve any sugar crystals on the sides of the pan.
- Low and Slow: Cook the caramel over medium to medium-low heat to ensure gradual, even melting. High heat can cause caramel to develop hot spots and crystallize.
- Avoid Overcooking: Overcooking caramel can lead to crystallization. Remove it from the heat as soon as it reaches your desired color and consistency.
- Add Cream Gradually: When making caramel sauce, add cream or any liquids in a slow, steady stream while stirring gently. This helps incorporate the liquids evenly.
Remember that caramel can be extremely hot, so use caution when working with it. Even small splatters can cause burns. By following these tips and practicing patience, you can create smooth, silky caramel without unwanted crystallization.
Frequently Asked Questions
Using cold apples is helpful because it will allow the hot caramel to set faster and adhere to the apple when you go to dip them. But you can still dip apples, other fruit, cookies and pretzels at room temperature.
Use this caramel apple dip to dip apples, then garnish with chopped nuts, coconut, crushed cookies, sprinkles, toffee pieces, mini M&Ms or mini chocolate chips. Chopped nuts.
The apples provide numerous healthy benefits you won’t get from other sweets like candy or cookies. The caramel does have sugar in it, but all things in moderation. Plus the combination of tart apples and sweet caramel is scrumptious!
READ MORE:25+ Halloween Dinner and Dessert Ideas
More Delicious Apple Desserts and Treats
Apples make some of the tastiest treats and desserts. The fruit is so versatile and can be used in dozens of tantalizing recipes. Try some of our favorite apple treats:
More Sweet Dip Recipes
Sweet dips are the perfect party treat. Serve them as an appetizer or as a dessert with sliced fruit, cookies, crackers, or sweet breads.
How to Make Caramel Apple Dip
Caramel Apple Dip
- 1 Candy thermometer
- In a heavy sauce pan over medium heat, combine sugar, dark corn syrup and butter.
- Stirring constantly, bring to a boil and boil for 4 minutes.
- Add sweetened condensed milk and return to a boil, continuing to keep stirring.
- Using a candy thermometer, boil to a soft-ball stage.(235–240 degrees Fahrenheit)
- Remove from heat and add vanilla. Stir.
- Allow to cool for 10 minutes in the pan and pour into a serving dish. Serve with a variety of sliced apples.
- Store at room temperature in an air tight container.
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