​National Caramel Apple Day – October 31, 2019

Thu Oct 31

What is National Caramel Apple Day?

As if October 31 wasn’t awesome enough with costumes, ghouls, candy, and spooky things galore – it’s also National Caramel Apple Day! Caramel apples and Halloween go together like ghosts, goblins, tricks, and treats. The tradition stretches back decades to the day a creative Kraft confectioner invented the wonderfully simple recipe while trying to figure out what to do with a bunch of excess Halloween caramels. We say, “Bravo, sir! Excellent idea!” And then we take a big, sweet, crunchy bite.

 

History of National Caramel Apple Day

In the 1950s, a Kraft Foods employee had a plethora of caramel candies leftover from the ghoulish holiday and, apparently, a few apples as well. Figuring out a way to use up these extra caramels, the confectioner, Dan Walker, decided to melt them and covered the apples with the melted caramel, creating an immediate autumnal classic. 
 
As fall is associated so commonly with apple picking, apple cider and caramel apples don’t fall far from the metaphorical tree. So as apple season comes to a close in late October, the remaining apples are either used to create a hot cider, apple pie, or deliciously sticky and sweet caramel apples. 
 
It didn’t take long for caramel apples to become the official snack of hayrides and corn mazes, but it did take long for caramel and apples to become what they are today. From their advents in the Middle East to the tall tale (or fact?) of Johnny Appleseed, apples have a long history with humans. Caramel was created roughly around 1000 AD and, since then, the candies have held a firm place in the drawers of grandparents everywhere and, more recently, atop delicious apples.

 

National Caramel Apple Day Related Holidays

Is there a better time to munch on a caramel apple than while wandering the neighborhood on a cool October evening searching for other candies? Maybe, maybe not. Regardless, Halloween and caramel apples go hand in spooky, autumnal hand. 
 
Celebrating the life and legacy of John Chapman, otherwise known more popularly as Johnny Appleseed. This holiday takes a look at his devotion to not only his practice as a nurseryman, but also his legendary generosity and kindness. 
 
Whether it’s a granny smith, honey crisp, red delicious, or gala, this day celebrates apples of every variety, shape, and size. Caramel, pie, or cider – make all the apple treats on this holiday.
 
 

​National Caramel Apple Day timeline

​1970s

Kraft made it easy as apple pie​

Kraft Foods introduced "Wrapples" (with commercials featuring "Johnny Wrappleseed"). These were small slices of caramel that could be wrapped over apples to make quick-and-easy caramel apples at home.

1950s

Dan Walker invented the caramel apple

According to legend, a Kraft Foods employee named Dan Walker invented the first caramel apple one day during the 1950s when he was trying to figure out what to do with a bunch of extra caramel candies. Good thinkin', Dan!

1800s

​Trick or treat!

Halloween became a bonafide holiday celebration due to the influence of Irish and Scottish immigrants. By 1900, many Americans celebrated the spooky holiday, which ultimately grew into a cultural phenomenon — from sea to "The Shining" sea.

​1000 AD

​Caramel entered the sweet food scene

There's no consensus as to the origins of caramel, but some experts say a hard, crunchy version of caramel was first concocted by Arabs.

​6500 BC

How ya like them apples?

According to some historians, apple trees were the first trees to be cultivated by humans. In fact, experts argue, the origin of all modern-day varieties of apples was in Anatolia (near present-day Turkey).

​National Caramel Apple Day FAQs

When is National Caramel Apple Day?

National Caramel Apple Day is every year on October 31. 
 

What month is National Apple Month?

October is National Apple Month. 
 

How do I make a caramel apple?

Step one: Melt caramels. Step two: roll apples in caramel.
 

​National Caramel Apple Day Activities

  1. Get your hands on some

    All food-related holidays and observances are best experienced with gusto — and National Caramel Apple Day is no exception. Get one before they're gone!

  2. Make your own caramel apples

    We know the basics: melted caramel, an apple (Granny Smith, Fuji, etc.) and a stick. But there are so many ways to prep this Halloween standard. Cover your caramel with peanuts, sprinkles, or kosher salt (our fave) — whatever you like!

  3. Spice up the proceedings

    Create a tasty caramel apple (how 'bout a Granny Smith apple with caramel and white chocolate?) and then gorge on it while wearing a super-creative Halloween costume (how 'bout dressing up as Maria Ann "Granny" Smith herself?).

​5 Things To Chew On While Enjoying Caramel Apples

  1. Apples in the New World

    Colonists in the 1600s first introduced North America to the apples we eat and enjoy today.

  2. Don't be too crabby

    The only apple native to North America is the crabapple, which most people find sour and unpleasant to eat.

  3. A reverend planted the first American orchard

    Rev. William Blaxton, the first colonist to settle in Boston, planted an apple orchard in 1625 — the first one on the North American continent.

  4. ​Johnny Appleseed was a real dude

    John Chapman, better known as Johnny Appleseed, introduced apple trees to many parts of the American midwest.

  5. ​There was once a cosmic-sized caramel ball

    In 2015, Cosmos Creations of Junction City, Kansas, made the world’s largest caramel corn ball. It weighed 6,780 pounds.

Why We Love ​National Caramel Apple Day

  1. Caramel apples are golden AND delicious

    Apples are perfectly tasty on their own, of course. But the addition of a caramel coating turns the whole apple-eating experience into something extra yummy.

  2. Golden, delicious caramel is apple-friendly

    There's just something sweet and special about the way melted caramel coats the outside of a bright red apple. It's like they were made for each other.

  3. Caramel apples keep your hands clean

    Caramel apples are delectable treats — and with the clever addition of a stick, you don't have to goo up your hands while you're eating one. Unless you want to, of course. Stick-less caramel apple-eaters unite!

​National Caramel Apple Day dates
YearDateDay
2019October 31Thursday
2020October 31Saturday
2021October 31Sunday
2022October 31Monday
2023October 31Tuesday