Salted Caramel Sauce

Luscious Salted Caramel Sauce to serve over desserts and fruit, or jar for edible gifts this fall. This caramel sauce recipe is so easy, you’ll make it again and again!

Caramel Sauce #caramel #ediblegifts #fall

There are some things worth buying pre-made, and some things worth making from scratch.

Salted Caramel Sauce is the latter.

Not only is it fast and easy to whip up, you have the ability to customize it to your liking…

You can make a lighter caramel sauce, or dark caramel sauce like mine. You can make salted caramel sauce really salty, or just a little salty. You can even adjust the thickness by adding more or less cream and butter.

Easy Salted Caramel Sauce #caramel #ediblegifts #fall

This is how I like my salted caramel sauce:

  • Thin enough to pour when warm
  • Darker and richer than store-bought caramel toppings
  • With a good bit of salt

When it cools, it firms into a creamy dreamy spread you could slather on bread or pound cake. Yet when it’s warm, drizzle it over fresh fall apples, ice cream, pancakes, or anything else that would benefit from a kiss of caramel.

Simple Salted Caramel Sauce #caramel #ediblegifts #fall

Best yet, you can produce jars and jars of it as edible gifts this season, on a very small budget. If you love delivering goodies to your friends and neighbors, imagine what jars of homemade salted caramel sauce with a ribbon on top might do.

I gave a few jars of this sauce to friends last week and you would have thought I had given them a brand-new car!

Salted Caramel Sauce #caramel #ediblegifts #fall

So throw away your copy of How to Win Friends and Influence People and invest in sugar and cream.

You are guaranteed be the most popular person on the block.

Caramel Sauce

Yield: 2 cups

Prep Time:2 minutes

Cook Time:10 minutes

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  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  1. Pour the water in a medium heavy-bottom sauce pot. Place over medium heat and add the sugar. Watch closely while the sugar dissolves and darken, 5-10 minutes.
  2. The moment the sugar darkens to your desired color (somewhere between golden-brown and medium brown) remove from the heat and whisk in the heavy cream. *Darker caramels are really flavorful, but don’t let the sugar get too dark, or you’ll have to start over.
  3. Once the cream is incorporated, stir in the butter, salt and vanilla until smooth. Serve warm, or jar and refrigerate until ready to use.
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41 comments on “Salted Caramel Sauce

  1. Pingback: An Apple a Day … |

  2. Kimberlyposted October 12, 2014 at 10:29 pm Reply

    I made this twice this weekend and it was very thin. Really good, but thin and light in color. While the sugar is dissolving in the pan in the water, should I just be leaving it or stirring? Also it gets difficult to see color as it lightly boils and makes an almost “foam” on top. Do I just need to wait longer and that will go away? Thank you! It was still amazing!!!!

    • Sommerposted October 14, 2014 at 8:44 am Reply

      Hi Kimberly,

      Are you whisking it before you add the cream? The reason I ask is mine NEVER foams prior to adding the cream. I’m wondering if you are whisking or stirring vigorously and that is creating the foam.

      I usually add the water and sugar, swirl once or twice, and let it darken to a medium-dark brown. Then when I add the butter and cream, I whisk while it boils up to incorporate. That lightens the color a tad, but it still stays a medium brown.

      Thickness all depends on the amount of cream and butter you add. If you want your sauce really thick, add a little less next time. Good Luck! :)

  3. Lisaposted October 4, 2014 at 11:14 am Reply

    I made this … but my first attempt the sugar did not brown so I left it on the stove longer and the sugar formed a hard mass… I started over and left it on the stove only 10min… it is light yellow in colour but tastes great. It is still warm so I am hoping it will thicken up. How can I get the sugar to brown ?

    • Sommerposted October 5, 2014 at 6:44 pm Reply

      Hi Lisa, Did you add the water to the pan with the sugar? That usually makes the biggest difference for me. I have tried caramelizing sugar without a little water and it always goes down hill.

  4. L Davenportposted October 2, 2014 at 11:38 pm Reply

    It seems runny at the end though, not nice and thick like in your picture – more like water. Do you cook it more after you add the cream?

    • Sommerposted October 3, 2014 at 5:34 am Reply

      Hi There! Has it had time to cool down a little? It will be runny right as it comes off the stove, but should thicken as it cools.

  5. Brenda Kieferposted October 1, 2014 at 2:53 pm Reply

    I think this would be great poured over a warm white or chocolate cake or popcorn.

  6. Morganposted September 30, 2014 at 8:17 pm Reply

    This looks amazing! After refrigerating, does the it warm up well again? How would you recommend reheating it?

  7. Amandaposted September 30, 2014 at 5:56 pm Reply

    I am loving everything about this! So delicious!

  8. Paulinaposted September 30, 2014 at 2:52 pm Reply

    Can’t wait to try this! What percentage is “heavy cream”? I can only find 10% and whipping cream. Thanks!

    • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:37 pm Reply

      Hi Paulina, “Heavy Cream” generally means 36% milk fat or higher. You could use whipping cream, but add just a little less.

  9. Rachelposted September 30, 2014 at 12:33 pm Reply

    I just made this and my kitchen smells wonderful!! And it was quite easy to make as well. One question: When I poured in the cream, the sugar crystallized into threads. So I put it back on the warm stove and stirred until it dissolved again. But did I do something wrong?

    • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:30 pm Reply

      Hi Rachel! The only thing I can think of is that you need to pour in the cream immediately after you turn the heat off, and whisk a little more vigorously. It sounds like the caramelized sugar cooled a little before you added the cream. Is that possible?

  10. Leighposted September 30, 2014 at 12:30 pm Reply

    An even easier way. Take a can of sweetened condensed milk (concentrated milk and sugar are the only ingredients). Place it unopened into a crock pot. Cover it with water and cook on low for 8 hours. Make sure it stays covered with water.
    That’s it, you have caramel sauce.

    • Marieposted September 30, 2014 at 1:54 pm Reply

      I keep seeing this ‘recipe’ for sticking the can in the crockpot, however note that neither Nestle (Carnation) or Bordon recommend cooking the sauce in the can.

      • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:34 pm

        Hi Marie, I boil cans of sweetened condensed milk for dulce de leche, but there is some risk involved. You HAVE to make sure the cans stay completely submerged in water the entire 3-4 hours of simmering, or they could explode. (Can you even imagine?!) I only do it when I’m going to be in the kitchen for an extended period of time and make sure to add hot water to the pot as needed, and keep at least an inch of water over the tops of the cans.

    • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:27 pm Reply

      Hi Leigh, I make Dulce de Leche the same way as you, but this salted caramel sauce recipe is not nearly as thick, and it has a fresher taste.

  11. Michelleposted September 30, 2014 at 12:24 pm Reply

    How long can this be stored for? Does it have to be refrigerated or is it shelf stable? This sounds delicious!

    • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:25 pm Reply

      Hi Michelle, you can keep it in the fridge for a long long time, but I wouldn’t try canning it. Hope that helps! :)

  12. darinaposted September 30, 2014 at 12:11 pm Reply

    Can this be made without dairy? Butter is ok, but cant do cream

    • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:23 pm Reply

      Hi Darina, You could try it with thick canned) coconut milk. I’ve heard of this method, however I’ve never tried it myself so I can’t vouch for the taste of texture.

  13. Halieposted September 30, 2014 at 11:49 am Reply

    How long will it keep one refrigerated?

    • Sommerposted September 30, 2014 at 7:22 pm Reply

      Hi Halie, I’ve left it in the fridge for a couple months at a time without any issues. :)

  14. carpet cleaners Wandsworthposted September 30, 2014 at 1:12 am Reply

    Sounds very interesting and so easy to make.

  15. Gabyposted September 29, 2014 at 6:57 pm Reply

    Caramel dipped apples is the best thing about fall! I need to make this now!

  16. Carol at Wild Goose Teaposted September 29, 2014 at 4:37 pm Reply

    I am so so glad salted caramel has become so popular—actually giving chocolate a run for its money. I love it.

  17. Amandaposted September 29, 2014 at 2:09 pm Reply

    Love this :) This on apples equals heaven! :)

  18. Meagan @ A Zesty Biteposted September 29, 2014 at 11:49 am Reply

    I tried to make a salted caramel sauce this past Friday but my patience led me to a light yellow color of sugar. No caramel I need to try again.

  19. Amyposted September 29, 2014 at 10:27 am Reply

    oooh I’ll have to give this is a shot! It looks so simple! Do you add in the butter when the pot is off the heat too?

    • Sommerposted September 29, 2014 at 12:02 pm Reply

      Hi Amy! Yes, take it off the heat and add the remaining ingredients. :)

  20. Christine at Cook the Storyposted September 29, 2014 at 9:14 am Reply

    This needs to be poured over everything in sight!

  21. Heather Christoposted September 29, 2014 at 8:35 am Reply

    caramel sauce is the best thing EVER!

  22. Brenda @ a farmgirl's dabblesposted September 29, 2014 at 8:08 am Reply

    Homemade caramel sauce is so worth the small amount of effort. Love this. What a great fall gift!

  23. Lauren @ Climbing Grier Mountainposted September 29, 2014 at 7:41 am Reply

    I love anything with caramel!! Can’t wait to try this sauce!

  24. Mariaposted September 29, 2014 at 7:06 am Reply

    My favorite!

  25. Jenny Flakeposted September 29, 2014 at 6:59 am Reply

    Looooove caramel sauce! So good!

  26. Aimee @ Simple Bitesposted September 29, 2014 at 6:41 am Reply

    I would love to receive a jar of this homemade deliciousness!

  27. Julie @ Running in a Skirtposted September 29, 2014 at 6:37 am Reply

    This looks so easy and good! The perfect sauce for fall!

  28. Julie @ Table for Twoposted September 29, 2014 at 6:34 am Reply

    Love homemade caramel sauces!! They’re the best :)

  29. Aggieposted September 29, 2014 at 6:33 am Reply

    Oh Sommer, I’m loving this! I have to make this, my daughter (and I) love salted caramel, and this would be such a great hostess or holiday gift to a foodie!