Cook Time: At most 10 minutes
Yield: About 1 cup
With Fall in full swing, and the holidays fast approaching, nothing melts our hearts more than dreamy, homemade caramel sauce! Rich, creamy, buttery, caramel…add a pinch of salt and your taste buds will go into overload. It is the perfect compliment to your favorite dessert and beverage; and an absolute necessity for your holiday entertaining.
Follow along below as we share the steps of this easy recipe, along with clever ways to use it.
What is your favorite use for caramel? We would love to hear from you!
Here Are The Gooey Details
1 cup of brown sugar
6 Tablespoons (Tbsp.) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream or half and half, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon (tsp) sea salt (if want salted caramel, add up to 1 tsp. salt- Kosher salt is fine too)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (you could substitute your favorite liquor for an extra special adult treat…we won’t tell, but make sure to keep away from the kiddos).
There seems to be some debate out there in cyber world about making homemade caramel sauce, and whether or not to melt the sugar first with butter or add the butter at the end along with the rest of the ingredients. I have tried both ways with the end result being the same. Quoting my mother, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” (okay, she did not say ain’t, but you get the idea), so this is my version for a creamy, delectable caramel sauce/dip. It really is very easy, and only takes a few minutes.
The caramelization process happens quickly, so make sure all your ingredients are measured and in place before you begin. Start with a medium-sized stainless steel sauce pan (ceramic would work just fine too). Add the butter chunks to the pan, turn the heat on low, and gently stir the butter with a wooden spoon (you can use a whisk too) until it melts. Once the butter has melted, add the sugar and continue to stir until the sugar has melted. (Sugar will be HOT! Trust me, and learn from my mistakes, do not be tempted to taste the caramel at any time, until it has cooled! Many sites I researched suggest having a bowl of cold water on hand in case of flying molten sugar. Yikes! Do not be afraid, but be safe.) As you are stirring, scrape the sugar that forms on the side with the spoon or a rubber spatula and incorporate into the mix.