Caramel Sauce!

I’ve been promising this recipe for some time, and last night I really got Mars wanting this! At long last, here is how to make caramel sauce at home:

1 cup (210 g) of sugar
6 Tbsp (85 g) butter
1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy whipping cream
1/4 (or less) of filtered water
**make sure you have everything measured out at the beginning as you will have no time to do this after you start.

First off about the ingredients:

1 cup of sugar: I use a raw sugar from Costco (look for a light green bag in the baking aisle). You can absolutely use normal white sugar… but if you can swing it (and find it!) the raw sugar does add just a smidge more flavor.

Butter: Don’t skimp here, use real butter. In fact, use really good butter. I use the Kirkland Brand (Costco) organic stick butter. Why? Because it is considered a European style butter with a smidge more fat that normal stick butter. That may sound like a bad idea… but the higher fat content makes it taste better and smoother. This also goes for chocolate chip cookies. While you could purchase a real Euro butter like Pulugra, Kerry Gold, etc… the Kirkland Organic tastes really good, and is generally very highly rated in blind taste tests.

Cream: I don’t know how readily available this is, but in NC, I can purchase something called light cream. We stumbled upon this when I needed to find coffee creamer that didn’t have the dreaded Cargeenan in it. Food Lion sells this Light Cream without thickeners, and it is surprisingly good. You can’t make whipped cream out of it… but it makes a decent caramel with about 1/2 the cream calories. I know its funny to consider calories when making caramel… but when you have a spoonful in your coffee everyday… it does add up. After you make your first batch with normal whipping cream, don’t be afraid to experiment with Light Cream if you can find it in your area.


So… I go through a lot of caramel in a month. It is typically the only sugar I have all day… so I don’t scrimp. As such, I make a triple batch… so don’t hesitate to double, triple, or more this recipe. Just be very aware of your pot size, as caramel foams at the end. As long as your ingredients were fresh, this should last about month in the fridge (that is, unless you eat it all first!).

Grab a pot of a size that will allow the caramel to expand to at least double its size. Next, the pot should be a good disperser of heat… so something heavy is recommended so as not to burn sugar on the bottom. I use enameled cast iron (Le Crusset), but any heavy pot will work. No worries about ruining the pan btw… its just sugar and melts away in hot water afterwards. Just don’t use non-stick as I have no experience with it and most generally suggest against it for some reason.

Add your sugar and enough of the water to make the sugar universally damp, like wet sand. This acts as an insulator so that you don’t burn sugar while the rest gets to temp. (The more water you add… the longer this takes while the water has to boil off, so ya, don’t over do it).
If any sugar is sticking to the sides, scrape it down and don’t pick up the silicon spatula again until the end.

Turn your burner on to a decent temp… like 7-8, but not full. Now comes the wait.

If you use a candy thermometer, clip it to the side and watch until it hits around 340 degrees. 350 degrees = burned sugar, but under 340 and it’s kinda flavorless. So do NOT get distracted after the sugar hits 300. It takes a while to get there… but once at 300, most of the water is gone and things go super fast.
If you have a laser thermo… use the probe instead, as the temp under the surface is noticeably higher.

You will notice a color change and a faint smell around 325… hold out! At 340 you should be reaching for your butter, for by the time you dump in your pats, it will be ready. Stir stir stir until all the butter is melted. Then take off the burner completely, count to three and pour your cream.

At this point, it will steam, boil, foam and freak out. Be careful as you stir, but stir furiously. It may glob up around the cold cream… but keep stirring as it will all loosen and blend together shortly.

Once it all looks awesome, let your sugary napalm sit in the pot for a bit… like 10-15 mins. Stir again to make sure it all still plays well and let sit another 10-15 mins before pouring it into a jar.

/Enjoy heaven.


Keep kids, pets and exposed parts well away from the caramel making process. It is molten sugar that hits nearly 350 degrees… napalm is the only good descriptor to instill the proper fear. Again, choose a pot that allows for the foamy expansion at the end… but if you mess up and it overflows, just back away.

edit: I should really highlight this point: While the sugar is melting and getting to temp, DO NOT STIR. This will create sugar chunks. If you are really concerned about a cool spot due to an iffy burner, do really slow drags, but avoid messing with it if at all possible.

Thanks for this Mir!

Carmel has to be one of my favorite things on the planet. A friend of mine showed me how to make it when were taking a course together on the island. She makes it all the time and her measurements were very… Well she just knew and didn’t really measure anything and didn’t use a thermometer. It had seemed easy enough and turned out perfect, but every time I tried to make it it turned out horrible.

I can’t wait to try this recipe. It sure beats trying to recreate a very haphazard process I witnessed nearly a year ago.

Also, Carmel in coffee? I never would have thought of that, but damn does it sound good. I’m going to have to try that. No way that stuff will last a month in my house. Not a chance.

grin thus the fact I triple the recipe haha.

I don’t add any cream to my coffee now, well, unless I want some Bailey’s. I always tended to use only one creamer in a cup of coffee when most use two, but the cream in the caramel does lighten coffee enough for 1 creamer’s worth. If you use a kitchen scale, I suggest the following recipe that I enjoy:

(We brew Sumatra French Roast which is pretty full bodied, so adjust ratio for lighter coffees)
(also, my mugs are a little bigger than standard, so if you don’t like it too sweet I would suggest going conservative at first with these measurements)

Mir’s coffee:
.30 oz of Truvia (stevia type sweetner, sugar is fine though, or more caramel!)
.50 oz of Bailey’s Irish Cream (opps, I poured .80 oz?.. wtf go for it weeee!)
1.20 oz homemade caramel (and then just drop the spoon in)

Now, you can just omit the truvia and add more caramel, I’m just trying to shave a few calories day to day and using the truvia saves about 60 calories or so (because its sweeter, otherwise you would need like .60 oz more caramel) and I honestly don’t notice the difference. Anything under 1.20oz caramel ( and thus more truvia) started to be noticed though. =)

And I’m glad I could give you a usable recipe, Ryla! This recipe has been the culmination of about 8-9 months of effort to make a great batch. When finally we nailed the last 3, I knew it was time to post it. =) This sauce is also amazing on any desert and if you’re super fancy and make whipped cream for dessert or coffee… it drizzles really well for presentation if you heat it just a smidgen.

/not responsible for suddenly tightening pants or sugar comas /grin

YAY! Printed and now I’m off to find a store that carries the goodies you listed. We don’t have a Costco anywhere close, that I know of…but I’m on a mission! :slight_smile: Thanks Mir!

I will be sure to pass this one on to my wife and she can let me know if I am to make up a batch (one handed cooking can be dangerous, don’t want to make a mistake while playing with napalm, fear is something I fully understand).

Success! Made a double batch with this recipe. Bought the candy thermometer and everything. Turned out fantastic! Thanks Mir :slight_smile:

(of course, I might not be saying thanks after a couple of months of gobbling up this yummy treat :wink: …)