Caramel Apples


12 small McIntosh apples (about 3 pounds)
12 wooden ice cream sticks
2 14 ounce packages soft caramels (such as Kraft)
1/4 cup shelled pistachios, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup peanuts, coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons chocolate sprinkles
3 tablespoons vanilla sprinkles
1 ounce semisweet chocolate, broken up
1 teaspoon canola cooking oil


1. Line a large baking sheet with nonstick foil. Coat foil with nonstick cooking spray.
2. Remove stems from apples; wash and dry apples. Insert wooden stick into stem end of each apple.
3. Place unwrapped caramels in medium size saucepan. Add 3 tablespoons water; heat over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until caramels are melted and smooth.
4. Working quickly with one apple at a time, and keeping caramel over low heat; dip the apple into the caramel, turning to coat the apple completely (tilt pan slightly for easier dipping). Remove apple from caramel, letting excess caramel drip back into saucepan. Scrape bottom of apple on edge of pan, and transfer to prepared baking sheet. Repeat with all apples.
5. Press pistachios, peanuts or sprinkles onto bottom of apples and 1 inch up the sides; place in cupcake liners on new baking sheet. Refrigerate 10 minutes or until caramel is cool.
6. Meanwhile, melt chocolate with oil in a small glass bowl on HIGH in microwave for 1 minute. Stir until smooth. Transfer to a small plastic bag; snip off corner. Drizzle over apples. Refrigerate until hardened, about 20 minutes. Store apples in refrigerator.

Per serving: 378 calories; 9 grams of fat; 5 grams of protein; 74 grams of carbohydrates; 4 grams of fiber; 182 milligrams sodium; 5 milligrams cholesterol.

Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

Makes: 12 servings.