As we went about finding ways to make our favorite Halloween treats a little healthier to indulge in, we found we had the longest discussion around possibly the most classic treat of all: the candy apple. “If you keep the caramel coating thin, how unhealthy could it be? It’s got a whole apple!” went one line of reasoning. “Caramel is basically just sugar and butter boiled together” went the other.
Eventually, after much discussion and some light research, a compromise was found. We’d combine cashew butter and honey to make our own, healthier version of caramel.
We prepared the apples two different ways, depending on how we’d had them before, one on the stick and one with slices that you could dip in the caramel to snack on in a group. If you don’t have popsicle sticks at home, you can use leftover chopsticks for the handle if you go the whole-apple route!
- 3 -4 granny smith apples (or whatever your preference is)
- 1 cup smooth cashew butter (almond butter or a natural peanut butter work too)
- 5 tbsp honey
- 1 cup of Wholesome Goodness® Cranberry Vanilla Granola Cereal for each apple (or you can crush up one Wholesome Goodness® Apple Cinnamon granola bar per apple as well)
- In a small pan, bring honey to a simmer or rolling boil.
- Add cashew butter and stir until incorporated. Lower heat and continue to cook for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently. It’s important that you don’t remove from heat until you’re ready to assemble the caramel apples. If that means starting after you’ve already cored and sliced the apples, do it that way.
- If making whole apples, remove stems and then insert popsicle sticks/chopsticks into apple. If making slices, core the apples and cut into slices.
- Scatter granola pieces on a large cutting board.
- Being VERY careful not to get any of the caramel mixture on yourself, dip the apples in the pot, turning to coat completely.
- Roll the apple back and forth on the cutting board so that the granola adheres to the surface. The caramel will be very hot, so don’t touch it with your hands, just keep rolling until it’s coated to your liking.
- Wait for the caramel to cool and then enjoy!
- If you’re serving as a dip, simply pour the caramel into a bowl and top with a generous handful of granola.