Since apples are in ready supply this time of year, we’re starting to see beautiful candied apples popping up in the stores. Some are very simple with the red coating and whatever that yummy, crumbly stuff is and some are thickly coated with chocolate and all sorts of add-ons like sprinkles, smashed peppermint, nuts, M&M’s and other candies. They are beautiful and remind me of my childhood when it was a really special treat to have a candied apple!
I have always wanted to make candied apples but never had the guts. I figured it was way too difficult. Then I received a recipe from The National Honey Board for candied apples covered in a honey-based caramel. It sounded so good, I had to try. My game-for-anything daughter was more than willing to take charge of the assignment planning what we’d cover the coated apples with. She envisioned candy corn, mini M&M’s and, yes, sour gummy worms for a bit of whimsy. “You know mom, worms you’d actually WANT to have on your apples!” She had a point.
In doing a little research, I found out that candied apples are an American invention dating back to 1908 credited to a veteran Newark candy maker, William W. Kolb. Back then candy apples were typically coated in a sugar mixture, cinnamon and red dye. Not that I am that old, but I’m betting that was the typical recipe of the candied apples I remember from my childhood. I like the ones we made with honey much better!
I’ll share the recipe with you and then our step-by-step experience and the final works of, uh, “art.” The recipe is courtesy of The National Honey Board, which has lots of recipes that use honey from sweet, as you would expect, to savory.
Candied Honey Apples
Makes 6 apples
1 cup – packed brown sugar
1/2 cup – butter or margarine
1/2 cup – honey
1/4 cup – heavy cream
1/4 teaspoon – ground cinnamon
6 small (4 to 6 oz. each) – apples with sticks
1/3 cup – chopped nuts
Combine all ingredients except apples and nuts in 2-quart saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat to 265°F; stir constantly. Remove from heat. Cool 5 minutes. Holding apple by stick, roll in hot honey mixture to coat; roll bottom of apple in nuts if desired. Place on waxed paper squares to cool. Repeat with remaining apples. Makes 6 apples.
My candy thermometer ended up being mysteriously left behind at our old house when we moved so I had to wing it a bit on making sure we were at the right temperature. We boiled the mixture until it looked thick enough to coat the apples – not too runny or too thick.
Note: We found that as soon as the apples cooled, the coating got very hard and chewy. For the sake of the orthodontia on our kids, we sliced the apples, making it much easier to eat. We stored the uneaten apples in a covered plastic container and noticed that, the next day, the coating had softened. It was finger-licking good fun.
Try your own take on these Candied Honey Apples. What will you coat them in? Crushed nuts, cereal or candies? If it will stick, the sky’s the limit. These apples are a wonderful way to celebrate the autumn harvest but they would also make lovely gifts during the holidays. Enjoy.
* We did not receive monetary compensation for this review. Courtney was provided honey free of charge to facilitate this review.This will in no way sway our opinion of the product or service. The review is in our own words and is our opinion. Your results and opinions may differ.