Raw Salted Caramel Apple Dip

Is it just me, or is salted caramel the new chipotle mayo? Although I would like to think I stay away from food fads, this Raw Salted Caramel Apple Dip would qualify as trendy. After seeing recipes pop up on so many food blogs, and restaurants featuring salted caramel in all kinds of desserts, I suppose I have been slowly brainwashed into believing this sauce is more than just a condiment, but a totally obsession-worthy miracle food.    

I gave up, or I gave in. But trying to get to the heart of the hooplah did not lead me down the path of refined sugar, butter, and cream. Of course not. In fact, the inherently unhealthy nature of salted caramel sauce inspired me to create something that is in fact, a wholesome indulgence. My Salted Caramel is totally raw, made of little more than fruit and nuts, and tastes so sinfully good you may find your fingers a suitable substitute for apples slices.

Now, don’t let the name fool you: Raw Salted Caramel Apple Dip is so much more than it suggests. For breakfast, this is a delicious spread on toast topped with bananas, it makes an incredible cake frosting, and can even be used to sweeten up a smoothie. However, the very best alternative purpose I’ve found for Raw Salted Caramel is to use it as a raw tart filling. Simply make this crust recipe, fill the tart shells with Raw Salted Caramel and top with thinly sliced apples and a dusting of cinnamon. This was a brain wave at work recently, and the tarts were enormously popular. Such a simple, yet elegant autumn dessert that really takes advantage of the beautiful fruits in season. Pears would also be lovely.

If you have kids, this is a great thing to have on hand in the fridge for snack time. For one, all the ingredients are pronounceable, it isn’t full of processed sugars, and it will actually get them to eat more fruit. Or try veggies – Raw Salted Caramel is even good on celery, seriously!


Raw Salted Caramel Apple Dip

Makes 2 cups

Ingredients:
2 cups pitted Medjool dates
¼ cup raw nut or seed butter (almond, cashew, sesame tahini, sunflower)
4 tsp. fresh lemon juice
½ tsp. sea salt (or more to taste)
1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped
soaking water as needed

Directions:
1. Soak dates for at least 4 hours in water.
2. Drain dates, reserving the soak water.
3. Add dates to a food processor along with all other ingredients, except for soaking water. Blend on high until dates are smooth. Add soaking water, 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired consistency is reached (for a sauce to pour or drizzle, add more water).
4. Store in an airtight glass container in the fridge for up to a week.

Copyright 2012 My New Roots at mynewroots.blogspot.com

72 comments

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  5. Bridget

    Hi Sarah my first post to your website. ( I have been lurking here a few months now) I just love love love this salted caramel and it’s now a regular basic in my fridge . Tonight I added a large tbs of “Salted Caramel” to a 1/2 shot of coffee blitzed with a banana and a swirl of yoghurt. Simple Delicious healthyish dessert. A crunchy “something” would have made it perfect so I might try a version of your cardamom biscuits next time. Thanks for all inspiration!!

    • jessumz

      A good way to give your snack a healthy ‘crunch’ is to use Kashi berry blossom cereal. They are really good fruity squares made from real fruit and no preservatives!

      • DW

        Unfortunately, Kashi — now owned by Kellogg’s — now makes products that aren’t particularly healthy. They use GMO grains and some non-organic ingredients, plus there’s a lot of sugar in everything they make. (I was a big Kashi fan until I knew.) Please google “Kashi GMO” for more information.

  6. Aviva

    Hi! I just made this and took your idea to make it as a tart with a raw hazelnut crust…. You. are. a. true. food. genius. THANK YOU!
    Also I was wondering that even if this is without any sugar and such is it important not to eat too much? (I know that it sounds kind of dumb, but dates have a lot of fruit sugar..)
    Thank you again!

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  11. Gita

    Dear friends, Brahmakumaris are vegetarian… and emphasize the importance of keeping thoughts pure… when preparing food… they either enhance or decrease the vibes of what we eat…thus affecting our health. There is Brahmakumaris meditation…that relaxes the mind…nurtures a healthy balance between inner and outer worlds…recharge… rejuvenate the inner-self…

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  14. Kathy-Lee

    This tastes so lovely~
    Where I live we might not have access to Medijol Dates but I found some lovely fresh dates from Iran at our store a few days ago and decided to give this a try
    At first I hesitated because the dates were quite sweet yet the soaking made them less sweet and gave them a lovely deep flavour and the whole caramel itself!
    Simply a perfect little indulgence
    I am very gratefull for this recipe and you indeed are a gifted Chef!

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  18. Sol

    This is sooo good, I think I have fount the perfect compliment to my apples and the answer to my sweet tooth cravings! I practically cleaned the food processor with my finger…

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  20. Hana

    this is brilliant thank you. Just made today and used for the caramel layer of raw millionaires shortbread that I make. Yummy. I am loving your whole site actually. Beautiful recipes. Thank you much.

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  22. Fanny

    The link to the crust is not working anymore! Which crust do you suggest to use to make the lovely sounding pie? I know you’re traveling so no rush!! I love your blog, have been traveling myself for months, but now back and have made no less than 5 of your recipes in 3 days. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

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  26. Ladies Holiday

    I have a very delicious and very unhealthy recipe for home-made caramel dip. I would say that I’ve been in search of healthy alternative to get me through the cravings, but I didn’t think one existed! This looks fabulous and I can’t wait to try it. Thank you!!

  27. Rachel

    Thank you Sarah, would love to welcome you onto the island and see what wondrous creations you could make with pineapples and coconuts! Sorry to be anonymous – I haven’t quite mistress-ed this comment form. Rachel

  28. Sarah B

    Hi Anon ~ Try using any dried date you can get your hands on. The caramel may not be as rich, but I’m sure still delicious.
    Alternatively, you can send me a plane ticket to your home in paradise and I will gladly fly them over :)

    Good luck!
    Sarah B

  29. Anonymous

    this looks so delicious, thanks for the inspiration! I am living on a small island in the South Pacific, and cannot access Medjool dates here. Would you recommend substituting with dried dates or dried prunes?

  30. Sarah B

    Hi Work,

    Exactly right. But you can save the pod to flavour your maple syrup or agave nectar! Just put the empty scraped pod into the bottle and leave to infuse. Super luxurious!

    All the best, Sarah B

  31. Work

    Hi Sarah-
    I am planning to make this for an afternoon snack today. Do I just scrape the vanilla bean and discard the pod? (I don’t think I have ever used whole vanilla beans before!)
    Thanks-
    April

  32. Sophie

    Délicieux!

    And addictive!

    J’ai hâte de l’essayer sur des crêpes la fin de semaine prochaine…s’il en reste!

    Great recipe!

  33. Nimi

    This looked so good I made it pretty much right after reading this post. I love Love this, it tastes so decedent and unhealthy. I had to stop myself from eating all of it (I made a quarter recipe). Thanks for the great recipe, I’ve been eating more raw food and this is a great addition.

  34. Dita

    ha! Salted caramel is my (and my husband’s) favorite topping to go with our raw ice creams….hmmm!
    Is it just me or you post more and more raw recipes? I sure am happy about it! :)

  35. tescha

    this sounds yum!! unfortunately the only nut butter i can conveniently get here in hong kong is peanut butter.. would that work? i know not as healthy …

  36. Sarah B

    Hey bunny – you can try to use a blender, but because this is not a liquid, it may be difficult. You’ll have to scrape down the sides every few seconds. Try it!

    Axelina – you can buy organic nuts at any health food store. Some nicer grocery store like Irma sometimes sell them too :)

    All the best and thanks to everyone for the wonderful comments!

    Love, Sarah B

  37. Tracey

    I made this tonight and we enjoyed it with some slices of Granny Smith apples. Yummmmmmmmmmmm.
    It reminded me of sticky toffee pudding, NOT that I am any expert on that, but I had sticky toffee pudding ice cream one time and the carmely/brown sugary/date flavor was very pleasing.
    This dip reminds me of that. Only lovelier because I can eat it guilt free.
    Thank-you, I am really enjoy all your recipes. :)

  38. Allie

    I’ve currently been obsessed with raw deserts with caramelly date fillings & have been wanting to make a raw caramel sauce (I thought cashews might work nicely with the dates). Thank you! Did you mean to link the crust recipe? I would love to see what you used for the tart. :)

  39. Sasha

    i cannot wait to try this!

    i made a traditional version this summer(cough, unhealthy and full of sugar) and cannot wait to try your version instead.

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