Can we see a theme developing here?

I had extra apples and caramels from these so I thought I'd make good use of the extra in some more caramel apple-themed treats!

These are super easy, somewhat messy, but oh so delicious!  The Cheesecake Factory used to have this apple dumpling-type dessert that I loved.  It was a warm apple wrapped in pastry and filled with caramel.  I haven't seen it there in forever (maybe they've discontinued it?  I don't know), so this is my take on it… sans pastry of course.

Adapted from a Taste of Home recipe

4 Granny Smith Apples, cored
1/2 cup apple juice
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 cup unsalted butter
8 caramels
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
whipped cream

Preheat oven to 300 F.

Place apples in a square baking dish.  Pour apple juice over top of apples.  Divide brown sugar, butter, and caramels between each apple.  Sprinkle cinnamon on top of apples.

Bake for about 1 & 1/2 to 2 hours, or until apples are softened and caramel is melted.  (As you can see, my caramels could have gone for a little bit longer, but I was getting antsy!)

Top with fresh whipped cream (and snap your pictures fast, because it obviously melts quickly!).

While this isn't the pretties dessert ever, it's quite messy really.  It sure does have all of the flavors of fall that I really enjoy – and it's so simple to put together!  The waiting is the hardest part!

What's your favorite fall treat?