Caramel Sauce

Thick & decadent homemade Caramel Sauce is rich, smooth, and perfectly indulgent. It’s easy to make and ready in minutes!

Easy Caramel Sauce is perfect for topping your favorite desserts. Add in a jar of Strawberry Sauce, Hot Fudge Sauce, and White Fudge Sauce to create a decadent ice cream sundae bar!

Spoon full of homemade caramel sauce from a glass mason jar.

homemade caramel sauce

Camel Sauce vs Caramel Syrup: Caramel syrup is mainly made from sugar and water. It’s thinner and slightly bitter.  Whereas caramel sauce includes dairy, which gives it a richer flavor and thicker texture. 

This easy caramel sauce is just as delicious as it looks. It’s creamy, and better than any store bought version you’ll find. It’s perfect for pairing with Homemade Vanilla Ice Cream or many other decadent desserts.

While making your own Caramel Sauce may seem daunting, it’s actually very easy! No special equipment required. Just follow these simple steps and get dipping or pouring in no time!

Caramel sauce ingredients measured and displayed on a counter.

HOW TO MAKE CARAMEL SAUCE

MIX. Combine sugar, corn syrup and water in a small pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.

COOK. Continue boiling for 10-14 minutes or until the liquid is an amber color.

BLEND + SERVE. Remove from heat and add in heavy cream, butter and vanilla and stir until blended in.

using caramel sauce

From cakes to caramel apples, caramel sauce can be used to enhance several different types of foods. Here are a few of our recipes that would taste great with this sauce:

Melted butter mixture with additional ingredients for caramel sauce in a bowl.

Recipe tips

  • Crystallization. If sugar crystals form after adding the cream, add a tablespoon of water and stir the mixture continuously over the heat until all of the sugar crystals are dissolved. Add more water if needed, but be careful not to add too much. That you cause a thin texture.
  • Candy thermometer can be used, but isn’t a must. The sauce is done when it thickens, turns to a deep amber color and takes on a sweet and nutty aroma. If you have a candy thermometer, the sauce should be between 320 to 350ºF. Do not go over or the sauce will burn.  
  • Use a wooden spoon to stir the sauce. Avoid stirring too fast as that can cause the sauce to harden.
  • Heavy cream substitute. Use other dairy based ingredients instead of heavy cream such as half and half or evaporated milk. 
  • Make Salted Caramel Sauce by adding ¼-½ teaspoon of salt in Step 1. 

How to thicken

Getting the right texture is key for this sauce.

  • If you feel that the sauce is too thin try letting it cool first before adding any other ingredients. As the sauce cools it should automatically thicken.
  • Another way to thicken sauce is to simmer longer allowing more liquid to evaporate.
  • Or add 1-2 tablespoons more of corn syrup.
Mixing ingredients for easy caramel sauce in a bowl.

SToring info

STORE caramel sauce in an airtight container, I like to use a mason jar. Keep sauce in the refrigerator for 2-3 week or FREEZE for up to 3 months. 

Sauce that has been poured onto desserts can keep at room temperature for up to 3 days. 

Reheat. When reheating caramel sauce you don’t want to expose it to direct heat, such as in a saucepan on the stove.

  • Stovetop: Pour the sauce in a heat safe bowl and set it over a pot of simmering water. Stir until it’s warm throughout.
  • Microwave: Heat in short intervals, stirring in between, but be careful that you don’t overheat it.
Easy homemade caramel sauce stored in a glass mason jar.

For more dessert recipes, check out:

Caramel Sauce Recipe

5 from 1 vote
Thick & decadent homemade Caramel Sauce is rich, smooth, and perfectly indulgent. It's easy to make and ready in minutes!
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 17 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 131 kcal
Author Lil’ Luna

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons corn syrup Karo
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter salted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Instructions
 

  • Combine sugar, corn syrup and water in a small pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.
  • Continue boiling for 10-14 minutes or until the liquid is an amber color.
  • Remove from heat and add in heavy cream, butter and vanilla and stir until blended in.

NOTE:

  • If you begin to develop crystalization in your caramel mixture after adding the cream, you can add a few tablespoons of water and stir the mixture continuously over the heat until all of the crystals are dissolved.

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About Kristyn

My name is Kristyn and I’m the mom of SIX stinkin’ cute kids and the wife to my smokin’ hot hubby, Lo. My mom’s maiden name is Luna, and I’m one of the many crafty “Lil’ Lunas” in the fam. On this site I like to share all things creative - from recipes to home decor to gifts and home decor ideas. Welcome!

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