Cinnamon Baked Apples With Salted Caramel + Hazelnuts
Easy maple syrup-drenched baked cinnamon apples with a salted caramel in the middle and toasty hazelnuts are the perfect autumn or winter treat! Get ready to get cozy.
Baked apples are my absolute JAM because they are equal parts easy, pretty, fast and yummy.
This mega-simple recipe that comes out of the oven all ooey gooey, salted caramel-y, golden brown and maple-y gorgeous tastiness. Just a little pinch of salt goes a long way for amplifying the cozy, comforting flavors in this recipe.
Toasty hazelnuts take this dreamy baked apples recipe to the next level. The smell of roasting hazelnuts will fill your kitchen and have you counting down the seconds until you can take your baked apples out of the oven!
No apple corer needed. Just a handful of ingredients and at least 8 minutes in the oven on broiler mode.
Plus you’re eating fruit. So yeah, technically this baked apples dessert is an important part of a healthy diet. Or healthy-adjacent.
Also *judge me all you want* but these are also really good for breakfast on top of oatmeal, or just by themselves.
Bonus points if you get two or three differently colored apple varieties. It’s hard to deny… the result is pretty gorgeous right?Jump to Recipe
Video Tutorial: Watch Me Make This
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- Maple syrup
- Soft caramel candies
- Salt (ideally sea salt or another coarse salt)
- Brown sugar
How To Serve A Baked Apples Dessert
I LA-LA-LOVE to serve these beauties up with a big scoop of vanilla bean ice cream on the side. The best part is when the hot apple starts to melt the ice cream and you spoon that liquid vanilla cream goodness back on top of the apples and OOOOOOOH it is very good stuff.
Baked apples are also fantastic with a big dollop of whipped cream. Bonus points if it’s the fresh stuff, made with heavy whipping cream, powdered sugar and maybe a little dash of maple syrup or cinnamon to amp up that flava.
I would serve these apples with a fork and knife — they’re soft, but retain a bit of their crispness. Not mushy.
This is for two reasons: I don’t like mushy apples. But also, since we’re plopping a caramel candy in the middle of these apples, we don’t want the caramel to spend too much time in the oven and burn. If you want a softer apple, pop it in the microwave for a bit and let that baby steam up.
Making Baked Apples With Kraft Caramels
Any soft caramel candies will do, but Kraft caramels are generally widely available at your average supermarket. They come individually wrapped and are the perfect size for stuffing into the center of your apple!
Just be sure to steer clear of hard caramel candies. That would make for a very different baking experience.
Soft caramels (like Kraft) will start to get gooey and a little melty and caramelized on top when you place your tray of apples into the oven. Ahhhh-mazing.
One tip: Check on your apples as they near the 8-minute mark in the oven. The surface of these candies will caramelize and get dark golden brown, which I love, but you might prefer to keep them from caramelizing too much.
So if the candies are getting a little too dark for your liking, cover the surface with tinfoil to prevent from burning.
Topping Baked Apples With Brown Sugar
Apples are naturally sweet (duh) and this recipe uses a drizzle of maple syrup to kick it up a notch.
BUT if you are feeling *fancy* I would 110% recommend taking an extra few seconds to sprinkle brown sugar on top. It amps up the sweetness a little bit extra and adds to that beautiful warm, caramel-y flavor we’ve already got going on thanks to the maple syrup and caramel candies. It is really extra delicious.
Healthy Baked Apples?
Sure they are cozy and comforting, but each apple half will only run you about 130 calories! That is pretty dang good.
Apples are packed with fiber and Vitamin C.
Besides… Can I let you in on a little secret? Get close, get really close…
Calories don’t count if they’re dessert.
Cinnamon Baked Apples With Salted Caramel, Hazelnuts
- sheet pan
- Knife, food processor or mini blender
- tinfoil (optional)
- 6 apples halved lengthwise
- 12 soft caramel candies such as Kraft caramels
- 1/3 c. hazelnuts ground or chopped
- 1/3 c. maple syrup or more, to taste
- 2 tbsp. sea salt or more, to taste
- 2 tbsp. cinnamon or more, to taste
- optional: handful of brown sugar for sprinkling on apples
- Preheat oven to broil mode. Line sheet pan with tinfoil (optional) for easier cleanup.
- Using a knife, food processor or mini blender, chop hazelnuts to desired level of coarseness.
- Using a spoon, remove seeds from core of apple. Arrange apples skin-side down on sheet pan.
- Place soft caramel candy in the center of each apple. Evenly layer maple syrup, cinnamon, sea salt, hazelnuts and (optional) pinch of brown sugar on top of apples.
- Broil 8 minutes, until caramels are gooey. If you desire a softer baked apple, cover with tinfoil (to avoid burning of the caramels) and bake another 2-3 minutes or until tender.
- Spoon any drippings from the bottom of the pan onto the apples for extra sweetness and flavor. To serve, top with a little extra salt or brown sugar and serve with vanilla ice cream. Grab a fork and knife, and dig in!
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