Grandma’s BEST recipe for Homemade caramel sauce is made with heavy cream, brown sugar, and plenty of butter! Smooth, rich and utterly irresistible caramel perfect for topping ice cream, dipping apples, brownies, and more!
This recipe for caramel sauce has been in my husband’s family for as long as I’ve known them. It’s an easy caramel sauce recipe that requires little effort and just a little patience. Every batch makes enough caramel sauce to last a while and it’s easy to store so there’s nothing but good things to rave on about when it comes to this caramel!
From Scratch Caramel sauce
This recipe is the real deal- heavy cream and butter give it a delicious flavor that’s irresistible. It’s not difficult to make and there’s no candy thermometer required. It’s perfect drizzled over ice cream, on top of cakes, cookies- you name it! This caramel sauce firms up when cool, so it’s also great for coating pretzels, apples, etc.
Homemade Caramel Sauce Ingredients
-Sugars: We need 2 cups of granulated sugar and 1 cup of packed brown sugar to get a good and sweet caramel sauce.
-Corn syrup: With 1 cup of corn syrup we can thicken and sweeten our caramel sauce even more.
-Evaporated milk: We need 1 cup of evaporated milk to help make this sauce smooth.
-Heavy cream: Adding in a pint of heavy whipping cream will make this sauce taste smooth and rich.
-Salted butter: We want a little salted butter to help make the sauce shine and give it an enhanced flavor. To do this we need 2 sticks (one cup) of salted butter.
-Vanilla: Using 1 1/4 teaspoons of vanilla extract will make the caramel sauce flavors really shine.
How to Make Homemade Caramel Sauce
In a large stockpot, combine all of the ingredients except for the vanilla extract over medium-high heat.
Stir the mixture occasionally until melted and combined.
Once the mixture begins to bubble, set a timer for 12 minutes.
After the 12 minutes are up, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.
Keep stored in glass jars in the fridge. Enjoy!
What Type of Vanilla Extract Should I Use?
A few years ago I tested 10 different vanilla extracts and found new favorites! I love using TOTONAC’s Mexican Vanilla for everyday use. It’s pure vanilla and contains no alcohol, which I like because I don’t like the taste of extracts made with alcohol. Each time I try another, I go back to Totonac’s quickly afterward; it’s so good! I also love using Nielsen Massey Vanilla Bean Paste. Again, this one has the best flavor by far!
THE BEST HOMEMADE CARAMEL SAUCE
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar packed
- 1 cup corn syrup
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 1 pint heavy whipping cream 2 cups
- 1 cup salted butter 2 sticks
- 1 ¼ teaspoons vanilla
- Combine everything except the vanilla in a large stock pot over medium-high heat. (My stove goes from 1-low to 9-high and I set mine at 6 for this recipe.)
- Stir occasionally until everything is melted and combined.
- Once mixture begins to bubble, set your timer for 12 minutes.
- After 12 minutes, remove from heat and stir in the vanilla.
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Does caramel harden in the fridge?
Yes, this caramel will become harder when it is stored in the fridge. If you want to serve it warm or drizzle it over something, you can warm it up in the microwave either in its container (if it’s microwave safe) or by scooping some out into a bowl and heating it up for a few seconds in that.
Why is my homemade caramel sauce grainy?
If you overcook your caramel it may become grainy from a process called sugar crystallization. Sugar is made up of little crystals and when the mixture gets too hot they become bigger and can result in a grainy texture.
What gives caramel its flavor?
Sugar is what gives caramel its color and its flavor. Cooking down the sugars causes them to turn brown and develop a deeper flavor. Adding in the cream and butter just helps to make the mixture even more enhanced in flavors and richer tasting.
More Caramel Recipes
- Spiced Caramel Apple Cider
- Caramel Apple Nachos
- Chocolate Caramel Turtle Pie
- The BEST Homemade Caramels
- Caramel Apple Poke Cake
- Crunchy Caramel Apple Pie
- Caramel Apple Bark
- Caramel Apple Bread
- Chocolate Caramel Peanut Butter Bars
- Salted Caramel Rice Krispie Squares
- Caramel Popcorn Cake
- Cinnamon Caramel Apple Dip
- Chocolate Caramel Apples
- Marshmallow Caramel Popcorn
- Caramel Snickerdoodle Cookies
You’re going to love this homemade caramel sauce recipe served up with apple slices, ice cream, brownies, and more! It’s so easy to make and versatile that you’ll even enjoy eating it with a spoon.
Do you stir while it’s bubbling, or leave it alone ?
I usually stir it a few times, but there’s certainly no need to stir constantly.
Jessica this sauce is almost what I’ve been dreaming for but i can’t keep it from getting hard so i can put it in my iced coffee. I’ve tried other caramel recipes they wouldn’t have the right taste for caramel iced coffee I’m looking for but this 1 does . it just can’t stay soft which is my next dilemma. I know you warned the readers this would happen but…can i do something?? I need my iced coffees everyday and i can’t afford DD everyday.
So glad you like it Cristina! OK, try making it again but use less corn syrup- use 3/4 cup instead of 1 cup. I actually just made this again trying to get a sauce that stays soft and that’s what worked for me. 🙂
Charles Smart says
Sounds great I think I’ll try it. No comment, but I have a question, been looking for a butterscotch sauce recipe do you have a good one?
Charles – I don’t have a butterscotch sauce recipe but that sounds delicious so I may have to start experimenting!
This caramel sauce is AMAZING! I didn’t have late use so I used u salt user and added 1/2 reason salt – next time I will use 1/4 teaspoon- is creamy, sweet and a lit.e salty. YUMMY!
This caramel sauce is AMAZING! I didn’t have salted butter so I used unsalted and added 1/2 teaspoon salt – next time I will use 1/4 teaspoon- this is creamy, sweet and a little salty. YUMMY!
So glad you were able to enjoy this!
Wow! This caramel sauce looks fantastic and I can think of so many things I want to pour this on.
OMG this was so good. So smooth and rich and creamy.