Make sure the apples you use have intact skin, any cuts will cause the juice from the apple to leak out and cause the caramel not to stick.
Remove the stems from the apples. Cut the lemon in half and dip into the bowl of baking soda. Scrub the apples with the baking soda and lemon to remove the wax. Rinse the apples to remove the baking soda.
Dry the apples and put them in the fridge for at least 2 hours, but I recommend refrigerating them overnight to make sure they are very cold.
How to Make the Caramel
Combine the brown sugar, white sugar, light Karo syrup, salt, and water in the inner pot of the Ninja Foodi or a heavy bottom pot on the stove.
Turn the heat on high sear/sauté if using the foodi or medium-high to high on the stove. Stir the sugar mixture until all the sugar has melted and then don't stir and let it come to a boil.
When the temperature has reached between 245-247°F/118-119°C, add the butter and stir. Slowly add the cream and stir. Keep the heat on high sear/sauté or medium-high to high on the stove and bring the temperature back up to 245-247℉/118-119°C and then turn the Ninja Foodi or the burner on your stove off.
Remove the pot and stir. When the boiling subsides, add the vanilla extract and stir. Allow the caramel to cool to 190°F/87°C before dipping the apples.
How To Dip the Apples
Line a tray with parchment paper and apply a thin layer of butter so the caramel doesn't stick.
Remove the apples from the refrigerator just before dipping them. Insert the popsicle sticks through the core going about ¾ of the way into the apple. Dry the apples very well before dipping. I find it best to dry each one just before dipping in case any condensation has formed.
Tilt the inner pot of the Ninja Foodi or regular pot to the side so the caramel collects on the side. Dip the apple about ¾ of the way up and twirl the apple in the caramel 3 times. Allow the excess to drip off and then hold the caramel apple upside down for a few minutes to allow the caramel to set. This prevents the caramel from pooling on the parchment. You can also dip the caramel coated apple in a large bowl of ice water.
Place the apple onto the buttered parchment lined tray. Repeat for each apple and put them directly in the refrigerator for 5 minutes if you are doing a second dip or until you are ready to serve them if only dipping once.
If dipping your apples twice, remove them from the refrigerator after the 5 minutes and repeat the dipping process. If your caramel has cooled too much, warm it back up and make sure it isn't not hotter than 190°F/87°C before dipping. Keep your apples in the fridge until the caramel is the right temperature.
If you want to decorate your apples, finely crush the toppings you want to use. Sprinkles can be left whole.
Put a thin layer of the topping on a flat plate. When the caramel is still tacky, press the apple sides into the topping and then press the bottom of the apple into the topping. Place the decorated apples on the sheet pan and refrigerate until you are ready to serve them.
Cutting and serving the Caramel Apples
Slice the apples down the side avoiding the core and cut into wedges. Serve & Enjoy!
There will be some left over caramel, but the nutritional values are calculated based on using all of the caramel because there is no way for me to determine how much you will have left over.This recipe will make 6 double dipped small apples or 10-12 single dipped small apples.Nutritional values are provided as a courtesy and thesaltedpepper.com makes no guarantees of accuracy. We do our best to ensure they are accurate, but many factors influence nutritional values that are beyond our control. Different brands of items have different nutritional values, so it is always best to do your own independent nutritional analysis based on the items you are using in a recipe if you require a high level of accuracy. Thesaltedpepper.com will not be held accountable for any errors in the displayed nutritional information.