If you’re a fan of fall treats, then you’re probably familiar with candy apples and caramel apples!
Both of these sweet treats are popular during the autumn season, but they’re not the same thing. While they might look similar at first glance, there are some key differences between the two that set them apart.
So what exactly is the difference between candy apples and caramel apples? The answer is fairly simple: the coating.
Candy apples are coated in a hard, glossy candy shell, while caramel apples are coated in a soft, buttery caramel. While both coatings are sweet and delicious, they offer a different taste and texture experience.
Whether you prefer the crunch of a candy apple or the chewy sweetness of a caramel apple, there’s no denying that both treats are a staple of the fall season.
We’ll take a closer look at the history of these treats and the differences between them, so get that sweet tooth ready!
Differences in Origin
Candy apples have been around for over a century. It is said that the first candied apples were created in 1908 in Newark, New Jersey by a candy maker named William W. Kolb. The initial idea behind candy apples was to sell more apples during the fall season. The bright red color of the candy coating made the apples more appealing to customers.
Although candy apples are now a popular treat, they were not always meant to be eaten. William W. Kolb created the candy apples as a marketing gimmick, to attract more customers to his store. It wasn’t until later that people started to eat them as a treat.
The history of caramel apples is a bit more recent than that of candy apples.
The first caramel apples were sold in 1936 by Hunter’s Candy in Moscow, Idaho. Of course, candy apples with hard coatings had been around but Hunter’s Candy came up with something new by coating the apples with their delicious caramel.
During World War II, these caramel apples became a popular treat among soldiers and were even shipped overseas to Korea, Japan, and England!
In 1948, the Kastrup family founded The Affy Tapple Company using Edna Kastrup’s recipe for their “The Original Caramel Apple” line, which they still use today.
Fast forward to 1960 when Vito Raimondi invented the first automatic caramel apple making machine, which replaced much of the process that used to be done by hand. Pretty cool, right?
|Candy Apples||Caramel Apples|
|Location||Newark, NJ||Moscow, ID|
|Creator||William W. Kolb||Hunter’s Candy|
|Purpose||Marketing gimmick to sell more apples||New product idea to attract customers|
|Popularity||Initially not meant to be eaten as a treat||Became popular among soldiers during World War II|
|Company||No specific company founded for candy apples||The Affy Tapple Company founded in 1948|
|Invention||No specific invention||First automatic caramel apple making machine in 1960|
|Ingredients||Apples and candy coating||Apples and caramel coating|
Differences in Taste and Texture
Candy apples are known for their hard, shiny candy coating that surrounds a crisp apple. The candy coating is made by boiling sugar, corn syrup, and water together until it reaches the hard crack stage. Once the candy coating is ready, it is poured over the apple and allowed to cool and harden.
Candy apples have a sweet, crunchy texture that shatters when you bite into them. The candy coating is usually flavored with cinnamon or other spices and can be dyed red or other colors. The flavor of the apple is not as prominent as the candy coating, but it adds a nice crispness to the overall texture of the candy apple.
Caramel apples, on the other hand, have a soft, chewy caramel coating that surrounds a crisp apple. The caramel is made by heating sugar, corn syrup, and cream together until it reaches the soft ball stage. Once the caramel is ready, it is poured over the apple and allowed to cool and harden.
Caramel apples have a sweet, buttery flavor that complements the tartness of the apple. The caramel coating is softer than the candy coating, allowing for a more satisfying chewy texture. The caramel can also be flavored with vanilla or other spices to add extra depth to the flavor.
Overall, the taste and texture of candy apples and caramel apples are quite different. Candy apples have a hard, crunchy texture and a sweet, cinnamon flavor, while caramel apples have a soft, chewy texture and a sweet, buttery flavor.
|Candy Apples||Caramel Apples|
|Texture||Hard, shiny candy coating that shatters when bitten||Soft, chewy caramel coating|
|Coating||Made by boiling sugar, corn syrup, and water to the hard crack stage||Made by heating sugar, corn syrup, and cream to the soft ball stage|
|Flavor||Sweet, cinnamon flavor that overpowers the apple||Sweet, buttery flavor that complements the tartness of the apple|
|Apple Flavor||The flavor of the apple is not as prominent as the candy coating||The tartness of the apple is well balanced with the caramel flavor|
|Color||Can be dyed red or other colors||Natural color of the apple with caramel coating|
|Additives||Can be flavored with cinnamon or other spices||Can be flavored with vanilla or other spices|
Candy apples are made using a variety of ingredients that give them their unique taste and texture. Here are some of the most common ingredients used in making candy apples:
- Granulated sugar
- Corn syrup
- Red food coloring
- Candy flavorings (optional)
Caramel apples are made using a variety of ingredients that give them their unique taste and texture. Here are some of the most common ingredients used in making caramel apples:
- Caramel candies
- Heavy cream
- Vanilla extract (optional)
Overall, the main difference between the ingredients of candy apples and caramel apples is the type of coating used.
Candy apples have a hard candy coating made from sugar, corn syrup, and water, while caramel apples have a soft and chewy caramel coating made from caramel candies, cream, and butter.
|Candy Apples||Caramel Apples|
|Coating||Granulated sugar, corn syrup, water, red food coloring, cinnamon, candy flavorings (optional)||Caramel candies, heavy cream, butter, vanilla extract (optional)|
|Texture||Hard, shiny candy coating||Soft and chewy caramel coating|
|Color||Red (or other colors) due to food coloring||Natural color of the apple with caramel coating|
|Additives||Cinnamon, candy flavorings (optional)||Vanilla extract (optional)|
I’m Griffin and I make my living as a freelance writer and wannabe sci fi author. Besides my obsession with words, I have a few others which may or may not include craft beer, backcountry hikes and spending time with loved ones – preferably in that order. Thanks for checking out my work and I hope you enjoy it!