Line a baking sheet with wax or parchment paper and set aside.
Wash and thoroughly dry the apples.
In a large saucepan over medium heat stir the butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and sweetened condensed milk until combined.
Bring to a boil stirring constantly and cook until a candy-thermometer read 245 degrees.
Remove from heat and stir-in vanilla extract.
Dip each apple into the hot caramel and immediately add toppings if desired.
Place on prepared baking sheet and allow to cool before serving.
Expert Tips for Making Gourmet Caramel Apples:
The caramel will take about 25 minutes to reach desired temperature. It's important to stir it constantly in order to prevent it from burning.
Once the caramel reaches 245 degrees things will move very quickly. It's best to make you have all the materials in place and organized prior to starting to make the caramel.
Move quickly when dipping the apples. If the caramel becomes to thick you can place it back on the heat for it to soften up again
You may want to dip your apples multiples times to get the desired level of thickness.
Have fun with your toppings! Try sprinkles, nuts, decorative sugar, chocolate drizzle and cookie crumbs.
Make sure the apples are free of wax or polish and thoroughly dry or the caramel will slip off.
Calories: 390kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 31g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 81mg | Sodium: 272mg | Potassium: 248mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 1066IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 22mg | Iron: 1mg