Candied Apples Did Not Get Hard

by John

Can you tell me why my candied apples did not get hard on the outside?

Here's the recipe I used:

  • 3/4 cup of H2O (water)
  • 10 apples
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 cup corn syrup, light
  • 8 drops red food color

  1. Mix sugar, corn syrup & H2O in saucepan, low heat stirring til all sugar was dissolved.

  2. Stopped stirring and let cook for 30 to 45 mins. I dropped a spoonful into water to see if it would harden it seemed to so I put the vanilla and food color in quickly.

  3. I then dipped my apples on a stick into the hot mix and placed them on a greased sheet to harden.

They did not harden all the way. They are still a bit tacky after 2 days.

Help, what did I do wrong?

~Pappy (John) of the year by my grand girls for making them candied apples!

Hi Pappy John,

How fantastic that you are making candied apples for your grand girls! :-)

My diagnosis would be that you didn't let the mixture get to a hot enough temperature.

Maybe you only brought it to the hard ball stage. In the water method that you used, the syrup should have become thread-like.

If you have a candy thermometer, you want to bring the syrup to around 300 degrees F. I'd say at least 290 degrees for candy apples.

You can read more about the candy syrup stages if you like.

Hope you can give it another try and reach success!


Comments for Candied Apples Did Not Get Hard

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Nov 01, 2014
candied apple mixture turned to hard sugar NEW
by: a sims

i recently made candied apples using the cinnamon candy recipe. i also used the cold water test. my mixture past the water test and i began to dip. after apples sad for a while they all turned to a hard brittle sugar that fell off in sheets when cut. what the heck did i do wrong? also, my caramel apple mixture went on just fine but, this morning all of the caramel slid off of the apples and are in a big puddle! what the heck!

Apr 25, 2012
Candy apples too hard and sticky...
by: Angie

Hi Tamara,

I moved your question here since we're already talking about troubles making candy apples over here.

A lot of people say that their homemade candy apples are too sticky, but I do think that kind of just goes with the territory.

You'll notice that Gemma made a suggestion above about using glucose instead of corn syrup to get a better finished candy. It's worth trying, though I haven't made any lately so haven't put the suggestion to the test.

I probably wouldn't put my candy apples in the fridge, either. I know that some recipes say to do so, but with the humidity in the fridge, that seems like it would pretty much guarantee you were going to end up with sticky toffee apples. :)

You might find it is better to cut the candy apple into smaller segments before eating if you are finding it too hard to bite into them.

Apr 25, 2012
Candy apples are hard and sticky!
by: Tamara

Followed everything right to the tee, but my candy apples came out kinda hard to bite into and it's like a mouth trap, its so sticky when chewing.

I did the 1/2 cup light corn syrup, 2 cups sugar, 3/4 cup water, and blue food colouring.

I used the temp thing and once it got to 300ish I took it off and put on my apple and placed into the fridge..

What did I do wrong?

Oct 31, 2010
try this instead
by: Anonymous


please try to use glucose instead of corn syrup. glucose is best if you want to achieve a hard texture of the mixture.

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