For a lot of years I was scared of anything involving a candy thermometer. It just all seemed so hard and complicated, not to mention dangerous (If you didn’t know, I tend to be a bit accident prone in the kitchen. And in life in general.) But then I tried it and discovered it wasn’t scary at all. In fact it’s the opposite (the opposite of scary being not scary. Just FYI.) Candy thermometers are super cheap and you can even usually find them at the grocery store. Or, if you’d rather get one in your pajamas, you can try a classic style or instant-read. Grab one on your next trip so you can make these apples!

I’ve made honey caramel before–it’s so easy, just a few ingredients. But I never thought to make a caramel apple with it until I saw a contributor at Everyday Magazine do it in a recent issue. I love honey, and honey caramel has a distinct honey flavor. It’s a slightly different taste combo than your normal caramel, so it’s fun to switch things up!

When say it involves just a few ingredients I’m not exaggerating. Really, only TWO main ingredients!

That’s right, honey and cream. Yum already, right? Other than that you just need a pinch of salt and a little vanilla.

Do you all remember our tip about measuring sticky stuff? Spray your measuring cup with non-stick spray first.

Then dump in the honey

and watch it magically slide right out without sticking to the sides of the measuring cup. (Please, hold your applause!)

Toss a hefty pinch of salt in there too and then bring it to a boil. That’s it! Just keep it simmering until it turns into a luscious golden caramel and then add a little vanilla.

Now it’s ready for dipping. Twirl some chilled apples in there. Red, green, as long as they’re crisp and cold they’ll be great! This would also be great to just dip cold, sliced apples in for snacking.

Chill in the fridge to set the caramel. At this point you could leave these honey caramel apples as is like I have. I think the unique flavor of the honey makes them interesting enough on their own, or you could drizzle in chocolate, roll in nuts or cookie crumbs, etc. See this post here for a great how-to.


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These honey caramel apples are a snap to make - only two ingredients!

Honey Caramel Apples

  • Author: Our Best Bites


This sweeter-than-honey caramel is a snap to make, and perfect for apple dipping!


  • 4 large (or 6 small) crisp apples, chilled in the fridge for at least 1 hour
  • 1 Cup honey
  • 1 Cup heavy cream
  • 1 pinch salt (about 1/4 teaspoon)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract


  1. In a heavy sauce pan over medium heat, combine cream, honey, and salt. Once warmed and whisked together, bring to a rolling boil. Reduce heat to a simmer (it should still be bubbling, but not so hot that is splatters all over). Stir and scrape sides of pot down occasionally until a candy thermometer reaches 260 degrees.
  2. To reach 260 degrees can take about 30 minutes, so while your caramel is cooking prepare your apples. Wash and dry them and skewer them with a popsicle stick or bamboo skewer. Place in the fridge to continue chilling until ready to use. Also line a baking sheet or cutting board with waxed paper or parchment paper and set aside.
  3. When caramel has reached 260 degrees, remove from heat and let sit for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. It should start thickening. You’ll have to eyeball the consistency for dipping. If you’d like to help it along you can place your pot in a bowl of ice. And if it gets too hard to coat the apples, just return it to the heat until it’s thin again.
  4. Remove apples from fridge and dry them thoroughly with a towel. Dip in caramel, rolling and twirling each one so it gets well coated. Let excess drip off and then place on prepared sheet. Refrigerate for 10-20 minutes to set the caramel and then enjoy!


  • Great tip: Once caramel is set, you can drizzle with chocolate, roll in cookie crumbs, etc. Search for “Gourmet-Style Caramel Apples” on our site for tons of great ideas!
 *Disclaimer: this post includes affiliate links, which just means that when you purchase items through our links, we earn a small commission, which helps us keep working hard to create recipes for you!


  1. I really enjoy caramel and apples but I prefer to dip my apple slices in caramel. Could I make this recipe then store the caramel in a container and just pull it out to dip apples slices in? If so, could it also double as an ice cream topping?

  2. Spraying the measuring utensil with cooking spray first?!?!?! GENIUS!!! I really don't know why I have never thought of that. You girls rock my world.

  3. this sounds interesting… but…

    I'm used to thick, oeey-gooey milky tasting home-made caramel. My favorite caramel apples came from a grocery store I used to work at and the caramel was actually made in the bakery. BEST. CARAMEL. EVER. They used to sell tubs of the caramel too.

    Alas, it's been a long, 13years since I've had any of that delicious-tasting, creamy, milky, home-made caramel.

  4. Could this be used to coat popcorn for Caramel Corn, too? Would it harden enough? I need to make some for a church activity and was looking for a good, simple and yummy caramel recipe.

  5. Pretend you wanted to make these caramel apples immediately but couldn't run to the store. Would whole milk be an okay substitute for the whipping cream?

  6. Looks yummy! Love the Miller Honey–lucky me he's my dad's best friend so I've got it coming out my ears! One question–when you place the apples onto the plate, do they stick when trying to serve them? Do you let them firm up on parchment or something before putting them on the plate?

  7. Okay kids… so this September I did something crazy and went to work at the SE Idaho Fair. Doing what you ask? Why dipping caramel apples!

    So, I have a few pointers. To reduce that amount of pooling at the bottom of your apple, immerse the entire apple in caramel- up to the stick then run the bottom of the apple (really the bottom 1/3 of the apple) around a wooden spoon handle. It will take all the caramel off the bottom leaving gravity to cover the rest of the apple with the top portion that is left. It works great and won't leave you with a carmeless apple and a puddle of gooey goodness. 🙂

  8. I just made caramel for the first time this year. I thought it would be so difficult, but it wasn't. Can't wait to try this recipe out! Yum!! – Carrie

  9. Not a good blog for a tired, hungry, pregnant woman!!!! I am wiping up my drool after scanning about a year's worth of recipes. Can't wait to try this, that, or the other thing!

  10. This looks delish!!! If you wanted a more solid caramel to dip your apples into, wouldn't you just cook it a bit longer? This would be yummy over ice cream!!!
    Cheers! Leslie
    PS Looks like you've pulled way ahead in the polls! Great job!

  11. Oooh I'm excited about this one! I have been looking and looking for a good caramel recipe that doesn't call for corn syrup. Thanks for posting this!

  12. So, with caramel, I usually have to stir and stir and stir. This recipe implies that I get to walk away from it all and just let it heat up. Is this really true??


  13. Sorry I've been out of town so I'm just now getting to the questions!

    Ramsey- yes, I mentioned in the post that it's great for just dipping apple slices. Just warm the caramel until it softens after setting.

    Brooke- here's the best caramel corn recipe!

    Merriam Fam- should work just fine. I'm in Boise, not too much lower than you.

    Whimsical Princess- the trick is making your your apples are 1. Dry and 2. Cold. It will definitely stick!

    Kristen- as Kate said, yes, definitely use cream!

    Leslie- I wouldn't cook it any longer than indicated. It's already at a perfect dipping consistency, in fact, when it sets, it would be too hard to dip slices, so just cook it as indicated and dip warm!

    Cindi- you just need to give it a stir occasionally, like maybe every 5-7 minutes or so. I just do stuff around my kitchen and stir it as I walk by every once and a while.

  14. I made these and they were delicious. Easy and wonderful – a recipe I will keep and pass on to my daughter.

  15. Hi Sara!
    Wow. This looks delicious. I just want to tell you that I can’t wait to try this recipe. It looks so much easier “then” traditional caramel and I love honey so it’s got to be good. Oh, and on behalf of those of us who appreciate you sharing this little treasure with the world, just ignore the unnecessary nit picker. ( They’ll probably take issue with the way I spell nit picker too.)

  16. Neato! I prefer the flavor of honey over sugar, but I didn’t know you could make honey caramel! This is great, since I never use corn syrup, which is another way I’ve seen it done. Thanks!

  17. Amazing isn’t it? I only just found out by accident that you can make caramel only with honey! If you like sesame, I have a tahini toffee on my blog, it’s just toffee and tahini (aka sesame paste)It may not go well with apples……though I am not so sure? dipped in caramel and sesame seeds? Hooray for the honey bee!

  18. I made these tonight and they turned out perfect!! Tomorrow I’m going to post about it on my blog 🙂 Love your blog, everything I’ve ever made from it has turned out great.

  19. How long in advance can I make these? I would love to make these for my wedding as a favor with small apples or crab apples. I was wondering if I could make them ahead of time and if so how should I store them? Just FYI my wedding is going to be 2 hours away so I will have to transport them.

  20. You ladies are fabulous. I was craving easy caramel apples and knew you would have something up your sleeves! You never let me down!!!

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