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I love the taste of a crisp, sweet caramel apple on a brisk fall day. If you’re making caramel apples soon and you’re wondering about the best storage methods to use in order to keep them fresh and make them last longer, then you’ve come to the right place!
As a general rule, you should store caramel apples in a refrigerator if they are not going to be eaten that same day. If the caramel apples are eaten the same day, they can be stored at room temperature. However, make sure to keep them in an airtight container to prevent them from getting soggy.
Here I’ll show you some of my favorite storage tips and tricks for storing caramel apples at room temperature, in a container, in the fridge, and even in the freezer so that you can enjoy your caramel apples for as long as possible.
How To Properly Store Caramel Apples?
Generally speaking, caramel apples should be stored in the refrigerator if they will not be eaten within an hour of making them. If a refrigerator is not available then the caramel apples can be stored in an airtight container or placed in the freezer for longer storage.
It’s relatively easy to safely store caramel apples without the risk of them spoiling or ruining their delicious caramel coating. The method you choose is going to depend on how quickly you plan on enjoying them.
Here’s a breakdown of how long caramel apples last in each storage method:
|For up to 1 hour||For up to 1-2 weeks||For up to 2 weeks||For up to 2-3 weeks|
If you’re looking for a good set of airtight storage containers, I recommend getting the Rubbermaid Brilliance Leak-Proof Food Storage Containers with Airtight Lids.
I’ve used these containers for a couple of years now and I’ve successfully stored all of my food and baked goods in room temperature, fridge, and freezer. I’ve even used them in the microwave! These containers come in many different sets, so choose the right one for you. You can check out these containers on Amazon!
If you’re planning on eating them within the same day you can safely store them at room temperature for up to one hour.
The only caveat to this is to try to prevent the caramel from melting, so make sure your room temperature isn’t too warm or you’ll end up with a sticky mess.
If you’re waiting for guests or you’re not serving them until later that evening then your best bet is to go ahead and store them in the fridge.
The fridge is the optimal temperature since the apples will stay cold enough to remain crisp and the caramel coating will be chewy.
When storing them in the fridge be sure to place them in an airtight container in order to prevent them from unnecessary air exposure. Exposure will cause your apples to go bad more quickly than necessary.
How Do I Keep Caramel Apples Fresh Overnight?
In order to keep caramel apples fresh overnight, they should be stored in the refrigerator. Make sure to place them in an airtight container to keep them from hardening while in the refrigerator. This is because the caramel will oxidize and harden with direct contact with air.
While it is highly recommended to store caramel apples in the fridge if you’re not going to eat them right away, many people run into the problem of the caramel beginning to harden.
*Side Note: You might also want to know How To Turn Condensed Milk Into Caramel. I recently wrote an article about A Complete How-to Guide to Turning Condescend Milk Into Caramel, which you can check out here!
Fortunately, there are a few easy fixes you can use to keep them from hardening.
I recommend using wax paper to help separate your caramel apples if you plan to store them overnight. If you’re using smaller containers you can use a piece of wax paper to place your apples on and then use an additional piece between the apples to keep them from sticking together.
If you’re transporting them and you’re trying to keep them from hardening, then you can use cellophane wrap to gently wrap each one. This will keep bits of dirt and other materials from getting onto the apples and will keep the caramel nice and chewy.
How Long Do Caramel Apples Stay Fresh At Room Temperature?
As a general rule, caramel apples will stay fresh for up to 1 hour at room temperature since the caramel will begin to harden if left out longer than that. Caramel apples should be eaten as soon as they are made in order for them to taste fresh every time.
Caramel apples are a very popular treat to make for school fundraisers, festivals, and holidays, so it makes sense that many people wonder, “how long do they last if they’ve been left out at room temperature?”.
If you’ve left your caramel apples out then you’ve got about one hour before they start to go stale and get hard. Because caramel sets very quickly its chewy texture will either start to harden or melt depending on the temperature.
*Side Note: I recently wrote an article that talks about All The Ways To Store Buttercream Frosting To Keep It Fresh Longer. This article breaks down exactly how to properly store buttercream frosting correctly in each type of storage method. You can check out this article here!
How Long Do Caramel Apples Last In Containers?
Generally speaking, caramel apples can last for up to 2 weeks in containers before the fruit begins to spoil. If the containers are stored at room temperature, the caramel apples will last for about 5 days. However, if the containers are stored in the refrigerator, they will last for up to 2 weeks.
I usually store my caramel apples in 4x4x4 Inches Clear Apple Individualized Containers every time I make caramel apples. These individualized boxes are big enough to fit normal size apples without leaning on the walls while keeping the caramel fresh. You can check out these boxes on Amazon!
When it comes to storing caramel apples, containers with a fitted lid are a convenient way to keep them fresh. Whether you’ve got one or a dozen you can make it last longer by lining your container with wax paper.
This paper will keep the caramel fresh and prevent it from hardening while in storage.
When you’re ready to enjoy your caramel apple you can simply pull it out of the fridge and let it thaw for about fifteen minutes to allow the caramel to become more pliable. Then you can slice it up and enjoy it!
Do Caramel Apples Have To Be Refrigerated?
As a general rule, caramel apples have to be refrigerated if they are not eaten right away to prevent spoilage of the apple or hardening of the caramel. Caramel apples will stay fresh for around 2 weeks when stored in an airtight container and placed in the refrigerator.
If you’re not eating your caramel apples the right way, they should be refrigerated within an hour in order to prevent them from going bad. Also, caramel apples have a tendency to become contaminated with whatever particles come in contact with them.
*By the way, you might also want to know How To Store Melted Chocolate To Make It Last. I recently wrote an article that talks about The Best Way To Store Melted Chocolate, which you can check out here!
This is particularly true if you’ve let your apples sit outside for too long. No one wants to be in the middle of enjoying a caramel apple only to notice specks of dirt or gnats appear in the caramel!
So you should go ahead and store your caramel apples in the fridge within an hour or so of making them.
If you’re wondering how long they last before they go stale in the fridge, then you’ll be happy to know that you’ve got two weeks before you need to toss them out.
If you have made too many caramel apples and are looking for ways to store your extras for even longer than two weeks then you can place them in the freezer. If you plan on freezing them then be sure to place them in freezer bags and gently squeeze out the excess air to prevent freezer burn.
Can You Store Caramel Apples In The Freezer?
In general, you can safely store caramel apples in the freezer for up to 3 weeks, however, I wouldn’t recommend it since the apples and the caramel will lose their quality when they’re defrosted. If you must freeze them, extra precautions must be taken to avoid freezer burn and cross-contamination.
Freezer storage is not recommended for caramel apples for a few reasons. First of all, apples are a temperamental fruit to begin with.
They are susceptible to spoilage when they aren’t stored quickly and will soon rot once they’ve been sliced into. Also, the caramel coating might lose quality the longer it stays in the freezer.
However, you can safely store caramel apples in the freezer with a bit of prep work in order to keep them from becoming stale and hard.
First, make sure you use individual freezer bags for each caramel apple you’ll be storing. Air is your enemy when it comes to keeping them fresh, so place one apple in each bag and gently squeeze the excess air out.
After you’ve done this you can get a plastic storage container and then place each bag inside, but be careful to not overcrowd your apples! After you’ve sealed them up you can place them in your freezer.
You might wonder how long do they last if you store them in the freezer and whether it makes a difference in quality. Typically, a frozen caramel apple will last a couple of weeks before you start running into quality issues. So a general rule of thumb is to try to enjoy your caramel apples as soon as possible!
*By the way, I recently wrote an article talking about If You Can Freeze Muffins in Liners. This article discusses in-depth how to properly store muffins in the freezer. You can check out this article here!
How Many Days In Advance Can You Make Caramel Apples?
Generally speaking, caramel apples can be made up to two weeks in advance by safely storing them in an airtight container and placing them in the refrigerator after preparation. Make sure to separate each caramel apple from one another so that they don’t stick together in storage.
*Side Note: You might also want to know How To Properly Store Cookies. I recently wrote an article that talks about all you need to know for Storing Cookies To Make Them Last, which you can check out here!
While there are many different desserts you can cook well in advance of your special event, I do not recommend making caramel apples any more than two weeks in advance.
Apples aren’t the easiest fruit to preserve and they tend to spoil much more easily than other fruit. When it comes to caramel apples, you want to make them as close to the event as possible.
Since they’re relatively easy to create, I usually make mine within a few hours of serving them.
I do like sticking them in the fridge for about an hour before serving them, as it gives the caramel coating enough time to harden and form a nice, glossy sheen.
Can Caramel Apples Spoil? Can They Go Bad?
As a general rule, caramel apples can go bad and spoil if not properly stored. If left out for too long, apples will begin to rot and the sugar in the caramel will begin to spoil. Spoiled caramel apples may be contaminated with listeria which can cause food poisoning.
Yes, just like any other food caramel apples can (and will) go bad. Caramel apples actually go bad relatively quickly and spoilage sets in within two weeks, even under optimal circumstances.
You’ll notice that the caramel on your apple will develop a fuzzy fungus on the outside. This is due to the high sugar content of the caramel.
What might not be so noticeable is that the fruit inside starts to rot. Your apples might become misshapen as rot sets in.
If you notice a fungus on the outside or that its shape is starting to look a little “iffy” then just toss them to be on the safe side. Caramel apples can cause listeria which is known for causing significant food poisoning.