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Toffee apples

04 November 2015

Try making these sweet and crunchy toffee apples with the grandchildren for a tasty autumn treat.

Toffee apples
Toffee apples

Preparation time

20 minutes

Cooking time

20-23 minutes




  • 8 small Cox’s or Granny Smith apples, stalks twisted off 
  • 400g (14oz) Fairtrade Tate & Lyle Golden Caster Sugar 
  • 120ml (4floz) water 
  • 4 tbsp Lyle’s Golden Syrup 
  • 50g (2oz) unsalted butter


You will also need 8 wooden ice-lolly sticks, a thermometer and a baking tray lined with parchment paper.


Put the apples in a large bowl, pour over boiling water to cover and then quickly pour it off. This will remove any wax coating from the apples and will help the toffee to stick. Polish dry.

Push the sticks halfway into the core of the apples at the stalk end.

Next, combine the Tate & Lyle Golden Caster Sugar and water in a large heavy-based pan and stir constantly over a low heat with a wooden spoon for about 5 minutes until the sugar has dissolved.

Add the Lyle’s Golden Syrup and butter and stir until melted and combined.

Bring to the boil without stirring, otherwise the sugar may crystallise, until the mixture reaches 149°-154°C (300°-310°F) or the hard-crack stage for about 15-18 minutes. If you don't have a thermometer you can check that the toffee is ready by dropping a teaspoon of the mixture into a bowl of cold water. It should harden instantly and, when removed, be brittle and easy to break. If you can still squash the toffee, continue to boil it.

Remove the pan from the heat, let the bubbles subside a little, then tilt the pan, and quickly and carefully dip the apples one at a time in the toffee, twirling them as you do, to completely cover. Let any excess drip away before placing on a baking tray to harden. If you find the toffee becomes too thick because the temperature has dropped, just heat it up again.

Storage tip

Once set, store the toffee apples in an airtight container in a dry place, not the fridge, and eat within 24 hours or the toffee will soften and start to liquefy.

Cooking tip

Do keep children well away when you’re making the caramel as it can cause nasty burns.

Our thanks to Lyle's Golden Syrup for providing this recipe.

For more great ideas for cooking with children, see our section on baking with kids.


The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.