Poison apples are a fun Halloween food to have at your party. But the sugar and high fructose corn syrup and black food dye? I’ll take my apple without all of the poison, thank you! If you want to make an all-natural treat worthy of the best Halloween party, here’s how…
I love caramel apples. I used to love making the traditional poison apples for our Halloween parties. But after my health transformation, I’m super careful about what goes into my body. Traditional poison apples are made with caramel, which includes dairy, high fructose corn syrup, and black food dye. The Center for Science in the Public Interest has published studies showing food dyes to cause tumors, hyperactivity, and allergies. Do you really want to add those toxic drops to the food that your family is going to eat? Plus all of that processed sugar?
I wanted to see if I could recreate the poison apple but in a much healthier way. Done and Done!
An Apple a Day
First of all, you always want to purchase organic apples. Apples are one of the most pesticide-laden crops and are always in the #1 or #2 position in the EWG’s Dirty Dozen. Not to mention, the new genetically modified non-bowning apples that are hitting the stores. And finally, when it comes to apples, green apples have a lower Glycemic Index than red apples. An apple a day may keep the doctor away, but make sure you are informed about the apples you choose.
Charcoal – The Good, Bad & Ugly
Activated charcoal (not the kind in your grill) is the secret ingredient to turn the “caramel” black. It comes with the good, the bad, and also the ugly.
First, the good. Charcoal is a natural detoxifier. It helps to bind to toxins and flush them out of your body. It’s been used in emergency rooms and for trauma for years. Many who subscribe to a more natural or alternative health lifestyle use it to help with detox and to reduce bloating. It also MAY help decrease your hangover if you are drinking. Be sure to drink plenty of water any time you take charcoal, including in apple form, as it can cause dehydration.
Second, the bad. It will stain. Don’t wear your nice clothes when you make these apples. Be sure to check the bottle that you use for dosage. For example, mine said not to exceed 12 capsules a day for an adult. I used 6 capsules in this recipe. I probably could have used more to make it darker, but there is a thing called too much.
More importantly, it can interfere with medications and existing health conditions. The Mayo Clinic has a whole list of drug interactions for you to review and discuss with your doctor before consuming charcoal. Here are a few:
- Naltrexone (used for alcohol and opioid dependence)
- Tricyclic antidepressants
Finally, the ugly. You may experience gas and don’t forget that your bowel movements will be much darker. Don’t panic! Your tongue will be darker too. And it’s a tad messy, so you may want to cut it with a knife and eat it with a fork.
I picked up some sticks in the backyard, used a pencil sharpener to make a point, and speared them into the apple. Fun and festive!
When you make the caramel dip, add all of the ingredients into a blender or Nutribullet and blend thoroughly. I do this first before adding the charcoal. You can always add a little more vegan butter to make it creamier.
Don’t forget… this isn’t your sugary processed caramel dip. This is all-natural. Hubby was tasting as I was taking pictures and he said, “What is this? It seems like it’s supposed to be caramel but I know it’s not.” So it’s not going to have the same flavor and consistency, but it’s close.
If You Need a Laugh
Nothing like eating a caramel apple on Facebook Live and YouTube in front of the entire cyberspace!
Click on the recipe card to open a new window for a printable version.
This recipe will make enough caramel coating for 4-6 small apples or 3-4 medium or larger apples.
Again, let me repeat: it can interfere with medications and existing health conditions. The Mayo Clinic has a whole list of drug interactions for you to review and discuss with your doctor before consuming charcoal.
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