Salted Caramel Sauce
Homemade salted caramel sauce is one of the best sauces to have on hand in a big batch as it is such a versatile flavor and can be added to many different things in baking. Read on for a list of our favorite ways to use salted caramel sauce!
If you have been following us on Instagram for some time- you likely know my slight obsession with salted caramel. In fact- I mastered caramel early on in my baking endeavors because I loved the complexity of flavor, the aromatic smell when the sugar slightly burns.
I made an entire business off of selling our salted caramel candies for weddings, events, gifts, holidays (hint: we still offer these tasty treats!) because they were frequently requested.
So here is the thing about caramel sauce- it honestly intimidates most people. The fear of burning, not knowing when its done. I had the same fear too and it took me several burnt batches before I came across a fool proof recipe that anyone can recreate- without fear!
Before I jump into the recipe, I think its worth noting that there are two main methods to make caramel:
The Dry Method: this is when sugar is cooked directly on the stove until it begins to brown and caramelize. Followed by adding butter, cream, and vanilla
The Wet Method: this is when sugar + water is cooked directly on the stove until it begins to brown and caramelize. Followed by adding butter, cream, and vanilla
There are pro’s and cons to both and I find them to create a really strong depth of caramel flavor but run a higher chance of crystallization (which quickly turns a smooth caramel sauce to a gritty one).
This recipe is similar to the wet method but actually calls for adding the sugar and rest of the ingredients all at once and boiling until it reaches a certain temp or smell. I actually never temp this caramel sauce- I rely on my sight and smell to tell me when its done.
Ways to use caramel sauce:
- Drizzle into a cup of coffee
- Add to Homemade Ice Cream!
- Drizzle between cake layers or on top
- On top of warm chocolate chunk banana bread
- Salted caramel frosting pairs well with dark chocolate cake!
- Drizzle on brownies
Lets get to making caramel!
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 1/2 tablespoons light corn syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 tablespoon vanilla
- Combine sugars, butter, corn syrup, salt and half of the cream in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil (about 5 minutes). Whisk a few times, once the sugar has dissolved.
- Continue cooking until the color turns deep, dark tan. Will be bubbling and visibly becomes thicker or when a candy thermometer reaches 250 degrees. (about 5-8 minutes after boiling starts). I rely on my nose and eyes to determine when the caramel is done. When it just starts to smell slightly burnt and is a deep dark brown- its done!
- Take off the heat and add the remaining cream and vanilla. It will bubble and splatter- be careful during this step! Whisk vigorously until combined and smooth.
- Immediately pour sauce into a heatproof bowl or jar to store. Let sit at room temp to cool before placing in the refrigerator. Reheat to use.