Healthy Candied Apples Recipe

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These healthy candied apples are the perfect substitute for the regular version filled with food coloring and processed sugar.

There’s something about candy apples that just SCREAM Halloween. Don’t you think? These lovely dipped apples come together just like the regular version, only they are soooo much better for you. And yes, they taste just as good! They are also pretty quick to make and are a treat the entire family will love.

Two Healthy Candied Apples on a white platter against a black background.

Are Candied Apples Healthy?

The traditional variety is not. It may be healthier than eating a candy bar, but there is still a ton of food coloring, corn syrup, and other processed sugars in them. The recipe below changes all that.

What Are The Best Apples For Candied Apples?

You’ll want to decide if you prefer tart or sweet apples.

If you want sweet apples, consider honeycrisp, fuji, or even gala apples. Red apples will work for color, but they aren’t as sweet.

If you want tart apples, granny smith apples are the go-to apple.

What Is The Difference Between A Candied Apple And A Caramel Apple?

The difference in the traditional versions is that one is covered in a candy coating and one is covered in a caramel coating. This recipe is kind of a middle ground between the two, but definitely closer to being a candied apple.

How Long Do Candy Coated Apples Last?

Traditional versions will last about 3 days if kept in the fridge. I find that this recipe lasts a bit longer; up to about 5 days.

Are Candied Apples Vegan?

That all depends on what you coat them in. Traditional recipes may or may not be. But this recipe definitely is.

Two Healthy Candied Apples on a white platter.

How To Eat Candied Apples

You hold them by the stick and bite into them, or you can cut them up and then dip them into peanut butter dip or a healthy caramel sauce, maple syrup, honey, or any other dip you prefer with apples.

Recipe Variations

You can use different types of nuts. Almonds, cashews, and pecans would work just as well.

About The Ingredients

Large apples – Choose what is sweet and in season – wash and remove stems. Dry well.

Walnuts – Chopped.

Brown rice syrup – You can find this at your local health food store or on Amazon (see link below)

How To Make Healthy Candied Apples

  • It’s best to have all your ingredients prepared and everything you need, ready to go. Because once the “candy” is ready, you have to move quickly. I’ve found the best work surface for this is a cookie sheet lined with parchment. I used branch sticks for my apples, but it’s truly a lot easier if you use popsicle sticks (much less chance of swallowing a splinter too!). Lastly, try to choose apples that will “sit up” on their own. You don’t want them rolling around on the cookie sheet.
  • Push your sticks into the apples where the stem was.
  • Place your brown rice syrup into a small pot and bring it to a boil over medium heat. Once it bubbles, reduce the heat immediately to low. Simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • When the brown rice syrup has stopped bubbling, hold one of your apples by the stick, over the pot, and spoon syrup over the apple until it has a smooth, glossy coating.
  • Roll in walnuts (I did this right on the cookie sheet, but you can use a separate flat surface.)
  • Repeat with all your apples. (Recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, or quadrupled.)
  • Set the apple on the parchment and place the entire cookie sheet in the fridge. Chill for at least 1 hour.

How To Store Healthy Candied Apples

Keep these in the fridge for up to 5 days. Only wrap them if you want to keep them safe from other stuff in the fridge. Otherwise, they don’t really require wrapping as long as they are in the refrigerator.

Recipe Supplies

For this recipe, you’ll need a baking sheet, parchment paper, and popsicle sticks. Click on any of the images to be taken to that product on Amazon. (Affiliate links)

Cookie sheet set sold on Amazon. (Affiliate link)
Pre-cut parchment paper sold on Amazon. (Affiliate link)
Wood popsicle sticks sold on Amazon. (Affiliate link)

Healthy Candied Apples Recipe Card

Copyright Information For The Gracious Pantry
Clean Eating Candied Apples Recipe

Candied Apples

A delicious, healthier alternative to traditional caramel or candied apples!
No ratings yet
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 265kcal
Author: The Gracious Pantry

Ingredients

  • 2 large apples (choose what is sweet and in season – wash and remove stems. Dry well)
  • ½ cup walnuts (chopped)
  • ½ cup brown rice syrup

Instructions

  • It’s best to have all your ingredients prepared and everything you need, ready to go. Because once the “candy” is ready, you have to move quick. I’ve found the best work surface for this is a cookie sheet lined with parchment. I used sticks for my apples, but it’s truly a lot easier if you use popsicle sticks (much less chance of swallowing a splinter too!). Lastly, try to choose apples that will “sit up” on their own. It will make life a lot easier.
  • Push your sticks into the apples where the step was.
  • Place your brown rice syrup into a small pot and bring to a boil. Once it bubbles, reduce heat immediately to low. Simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  • When the brown rice syrup has stopped bubbling, hold one of your apples by the stick, over the pot, and spoon syrup over the apple until it has a smooth, glossing coating.
  • Roll in walnuts (I did this right on the cookie sheet, but you can use a separate flat surface.)
  • Repeat with all your apples. (Recipe can easily be doubled, tripled or quadrupled.)
  • Set the apple on the parchment and place the entire cookie sheet in the fridge. Chill for at least 1 hour.

Other Possible Toppings

  • Pecans, chopped
  • Grain sweetened or dark chocolate chips, chopped
  • Dried fruit, chopped fine
  • Almonds, chopped
  • Coco powder mixed with crystalized honey or coconut sugar
  • Homemade Granola (best if pulsed in the food processor first, but not necessary)

Notes

Please note that the nutrition data below is a ballpark figure. Exact data is not possible.

Nutrition

Serving: 0.5an apple | Calories: 265kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 9g | Sodium: 31mg | Potassium: 183mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 37g | Vitamin A: 60IU | Vitamin C: 5.1mg | Calcium: 49mg | Iron: 0.6mg

Recipe from the Gracious Pantry archives, originally posted on 10/30/2010.

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12 Comments

  1. Wendy @ Seriously Sassy says:

    They look amazing, as I knew they would!!
    Totally wondering if agave nectar could be used instead of brown rice syrup. I know agave is sweeter so maybe I could use less, but not sure if it’d work. I really need to get to Whole Foods to find whole wheat pastry flour and brown rice syrup!! Wish the nearest one wasn’t so far away!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Wendy – The problem is that agave does not get thick or caramelize the way brown rice syrup does. I tried. Hope you get to Whole Foods soon!

  2. Brandi R. says:

    They look delish. Can’t wait to try these yummios!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Brandi – You’ll love them! I think they are the best of all my Halloween recipes so far. Enjoy!

  3. Cailin @ Stir Crazy says:

    I LOVE candy apples and these sound amazing!

    1. The Gracious Pantry says:

      Cailin – They were REALLY yummy!

  4. Amanda_Creighton says:

    Since I’m new to this, I don’t know anything about brown rice syrup, but I stopped to look at this one becausey favorite indulgence is caramel coffee, latte or frappe. It’s the caramel and coffee combo that I love. Do you have any recommendations? Still loving your site and thanks for answering my other questions.

    1. Anonymous says:

      Amanda – I’m afraid that flavor is pretty hard to duplicate. Brown rice syrup isn’t the same flavor wise. But I’m working on another recipe that may come close. Still testing it though.

  5. McCaa Erdman says:

    Hi Tiffany, I don’t usually buy brown rice syrup – do you think that your mixture for the “carmel popcorn” of honey and nut butter would work well as a sub in this recipe?

    Thanks!!

    1. Anonymous says:

      McCaa – No, it wouldn’t be sticky enough to stay on the apple. It would all just run off. Sorry!

  6. I just made these…how fun and messy! I didn’t want to waste the left over brown rice syrup so I added some cocoa powder, organic peanut butter, and chopped almonds then dropped small spoonfuls onto the parchment paper to make little caramel candies…delicious! I haven’t tried the apples yet; I am waiting for the suggested hour to be up…but they look great!

    1. Anonymous says:

      Jha – Haha!!! Ya, it’s a little messy, but sooooo worth it! Hope you enjoy both creations!

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