This past year I’ve been trying my hand at homemade sauces a lot more than I normally do. So of course I had to attempt to make some caramel sauce. You know for topping off all the yummy desserts I plan to bake with my littles. Baking wasn’t normally my thing. But as my kids get older and want to help more. I find myself baking up all kinds of things now.
So for this recipe you’ll definitely want to make sure you have the timing to keep a close eye on it. This is definitely not a sit and simmer type of deal. It will probably take a total of about 15 or maybe 20 minutes to complete.
Two big tips for this one is to not stir it and to not let it crystallize. So instead of stirring you’ll want to pick your own up and swirl it around to keep the mixture evenly mixed. And as it bubbles and you swirl it you will start to get some residue on the inside sides of your pan. You’ll want to make sure you push that down before it has time to crystallize and harden.
If you forget to do this. Don’t stress. As it hardens and it’s becomes dry and you’ll be able to pour the caramel out of your pan right over it. I let mine crystallize for the photos below so you can easily see what I’m talking about. You can also scrape it off and add a little more water too.
By stirring it you can also cause it to clump up and crystallize so swirling the pan and not stirring is a very important part so resist the urge to stir it.
And if I’m being completely honest I like caramel. But I was never one to drizzle caramel over my desserts. Just wasn’t that I craved or really thought about. But after making this I’m now reconsidering making it often and keeping it a staple for during hot cocoa months and ice cream months. Which both are all year long here.
So onto this delicious homemade caramel that is a keep on hand at all times worthy!
- 1 c sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 6 tbsp butter slides into pieces
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp salt (if using unsalted butter)
- Put the sugar and water to into a saucepan and stir a little so lays evenly mixed.
- Heat your pan over medium heat and cook until the sugar dissolves. It will turn clear and start to bubble. About 3 or 4 minutes.
- Do NOT stir! Let it bubble and swirl your pan occasionally. You’ll want to push down the sides of the pan as it bubbles to prevent it from crystallizing.
- The sugar will clump up so continue to swirl and cook until the mixture thickens. It will turn an amber color similar to honey. This will vary between 7-12 minutes so keep an eye on it so it doesn’t burn.
- Add the butter and whisk until it melts all the way. The mixture will start to boil rapidly so continue to whisk it.
- Remove the pan from the burner and pour in the whipped cream slowly while continuing to whisk until evenly mixed.
- Whisk in the salt and vanilla.
- Set aside and allow to cool in the pan for about 10 minutes.
- Pour into a glass jar with a lid and allow it to cool all the way. It will thicken as it cools.
- Serve over desserts or use in my salted caramel hot cocoa recipe.
- Store in the fridge for up to 3 weeks or in the freezer for up to 2 months.
- You will need to reheat it to use as it will become very thick when in the fridge. Either in the microwave or in a pan on the stove.
- Allow to completely thaw in the fridge if it was stored in the freezer
Below are the photos I mentioned above that will show you want it looks like when it starts to crystallize and what to look for. The first time I made this I didn’t know what I was looking for. So I wanted to make sure I got photos so you would know and be able to recognize it.
Evenly mixed and starting to warm up. Swirled a couple times to keep it evenly mixed as it warms. (DO NOT STIR!)
Starting to bubble and turned clear. Continue to swirl occasionally and resist the urge to stir it. You’ll also see some the crystallization to occur. I left it for you to see it and know what to look for.
It’s bubbling a lot more and starting to turn the amber color your looking for. Now you want to remove it from the heat before it burns.
You can really see the crystallization happing now. This is what you don’t want to happen. Refer to the tips at the beginning of this post on how to fix this if it happens.
This is after whisking in the butter that’s sliced and before adding any other ingredients. It will really start to bubble after you add in the butter and you’ll want to continuously whisk it.
Have you found yourself trying out more homemade recipes lately? Is so comment below and let me know one I should try or your favorite you’ve made so far. Brownie points if you say this one!
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Until next time, live a life you love.