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Apple Cider Caramels

apple cider caramels

I’ve been waiting to post this for…24 years.

The Day It Raind Candy One day it was raining out side. And then the rain started to get harder and harder because the rain got harder. Is thet it was candy. than a little girl. Saw the candy comeing down from the sky and then the little girl want outside with a big bag and got some of the candy that was …

I wrote this story in the first grade (I think). I’ve learned a few things looking back at it.

  1. I have always and will forever love candy.
  2. This is confirmation I have chosen the wrong career path. What part of this says engineer? It screams food blogger.
  3. People used to write on paper.
  4. I’ve always had “the gift of gab” as my Grandma says. See the teacher’s comment? I’ve spared you the last 3 pages. My story went on to say something about the girl eating so much her pants popped open. So she went inside, changed and came back out to get more candy. Of course.
  5. Punctuation has never been my strong suit.

What a plot, but not a bad idea. I’d definitely grab a big bag if a rainy forecast called for this caramel falling from the sky. The idea of apple cider caramel popped into my head one day when I wanted a caramel apple but didn’t want to make them. So instead of putting the caramel on the apple I put the apple in the caramel, stirred some things around and held my breath. Most caramel uses corn syrup, but here I used honey. Knowing what a science sugar is when it comes to caramel, I really didn’t think honey would work. In fact, I had such little confidence in this recipe that I took zero pictures of the process. But then…it worked. Holy crap, it worked! I thought about making it again to take pictures of the ingredients and the process. But then I would have had a second batch of caramel candies and I read somewhere once that too much candy makes your pants pop. So I decided against it.

These candies are chewy and buttery, everything you want in a caramel. The apple cider adds a slight tartness. A little something different. A little taste of fall. These would be perfect placed out on a tray for dessert or as a host gift for the holidays. I personally enjoyed keeping them for myself with a cup of hot tea and a blanket. Go ahead, cozy up. They’re calling for a cold, windy day…with a chance of caramel. Apple Cider Caramels (recipe adapted from David Lebovitz and here) Ingredients: 2 cups apple cider (I used spiced cider) 2/3 cup heavy cream 1/4 lb salted butter (1 stick) 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon 1½ cups granulated sugar 1/4 cup honey 1/4 cup water 1 teaspoon kosher salt Directions:

  1. Line an 8×8 baking dish with parchment paper.
  2. Boil the apple cider in a saucepan until it reduces to about 1/3 cup. This took about 30 minutes for me. Set aside.
  3. Meanwhile, add the cream, butter
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    and cinnamon to a saucepan and heat on medium until butter is melted. Stir. Add the reduced cider to the cream mixture.

  4. In a saucepan (I used the one that the cider was in after wiping it out), combine the sugar, honey, water and salt. Stir until the sugar is dissolved. Once dissolved, stir as little as possible. Cook until a candy thermometer reads 310-320 degrees. Tilt the pan to get an accurate reading.
  5. Slowly stir the cider mixture into the sugar mixture. Be careful and watch for splattering. Cook until the combined mixture reaches 260 degrees.
  6. Pour the caramel into the prepared dish. Let cool completely. And I mean completely.
  7. Lift the candy out of the pan using the parchment paper. Cut into squares. Serve at room temperature.


  1. I didn’t wrap mine, but I would suggest wrapping the candies individually in wax paper or parchment. The second they touch they become one.
  2. I did layer mine on parchment and stack them. The bottom layer flattened out because of the weight of the top layer. If you don’t wrap them, keep them in a single layer, separated on parchment.
  3. Store these in the refrigerator, covered. I actually froze some and really enjoyed them. They harden and then melt in your mouth. Enjoy!

38 thoughts on “Apple Cider Caramels

  1. This is adorable! Love that you still had that story ;)

    My mom said that I was little (we lived in Moscow), I would tell the story about making candy when we rode the bus. Turns out my recipe just had water, And all you had to do is stir it, and eventually you’ll have candy! One lady on the bus thought I was serious and asked the recipe.

    • That’s hilarious! Your candy sounds pretty healthy. My mom saved every piece of school work I ever did so I have a bunch of these. I wrote about candy and rabbits a lot. Strange kid.

  2. Best. Post. Ever. I love that you are yellow with blue hair and arms in your drawing. And that you combined candy with glitter pumpkins. It’s almost too much goodness all at once. I need that photo :)

  3. Oh my! I agree with your sister on all counts. I love that you kept this. Also love that you did not tell that your mother (me) kept every single piece of work you ever brought home from school! Now…the educator in me wants you to know that little people still write on paper; the exact paper that is pictured here. And…you have really come very far in the writing process! Great penmanship. Work on spelling and puctuation!!! Love you.

  4. What a sweet post :)

    I make goodie tins with sweets at x-mas for friends and they love it. These seem like a great addition – a couple of these added to the tins would be great. Something different and still homemade.
    Awesome. :)

  5. Thank you for posting this! I was actually scouring the web earlier today looking for good caramel recipes and I couldn’t find a single one without corn syrup! Do you think actual apple cider could replace the apple cider vinegar or is the vinegar necessary?

  6. Krissy, you’re always making it rain…..candy! I’m SO glad I was reminded of this story for the ages.
    Do you think these would be good if you dropped one into a cup of hot tea? Instant sweet apple cinnamon tea? or crazy gross mess?

  7. This is just the cutest cosy winter post! Your teacher’s comment is really suggesting you have the talent in you and this recipe and pics of candy are so mouthwatering I instantly wanna make them. I hope I get to it soon!

  8. Haha! That story is too cute. I used to think I was going to be an author/illustrator so I’ve got quite the collection of similar stories. These candies look delicious! :)

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  14. Aren’t those childhood early writing attempts just the best? In my late 40′s, I still have some of the ones I produced in nursery school and first grade, and they’re always good for a laugh!

    Thanks for producing a cider caramel recipe that’s free of corn syrup (nasty stuff). I plan to try these soon, now that fall is settling in for the long haul. Have had success with other caramels, and these look just awesome.

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Posted on November 19, 2011

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