This Easy Caramel Sauce Recipe makes an easy and homemade dessert sauce in only 15 minutes!
This caramel sauce is so simple, decadent and just plain delicious that you will want to drizzle it on every single thing you make all year long! It’s especially amazing in the summertime with a slice of fresh peach pie and a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
I love my other caramel method from my real deal caramel cake recipe, that is my go to and I will never leave her side but it literally takes 1 to 2 hours to make.
This easy caramel sauce only takes 15 minutes. In fact, it is so easy that I didn’t even write a true recipe for it!
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Learn how to make this easy dessert sauce in just a couple easy steps!
- So many ways to use it. Add homemade caramel to sauce to all your favorite desserts and more!
- All you need are three-ingredients to make a batch.
Here’s what you need to make this easy recipe:
- Granulated sugar: Caramelized sugar is what gives the sauce its classic brown color.
- Heavy cream: Makes the sauce perfectly creamy.
- Vanilla extract: To give the sauce some warmth, natural sweetness, and more depth of flavor.
How to Make Caramel Sauce
Are you ready to make this caramel sauce recipe? Here is an overview of the steps involved.
- Coat the entire bottom of the pan with granulated sugar.
- Turn your heat to medium low and begin to watch the magic happen.
- The sugar will begin to dissolve as it melts down into a clear liquid. I begin to swirl it around a bit just to make sure the remaining sugar also melts.
- Cook the sugar until it turns golden brown.
- Add in about a half cup to three-quarter cup of heavy cream (depending on how big your pan is and how much sugar you added).
- Quickly whisk together the cream and sugar since the sugar has the tendency to turn into a sticky gooey mess.
- Continue to quickly whisk and allow the caramel to thicken up and become a wonderful rich and smooth sauce.
- Turn off the heat and add a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract to the sauce and allow to cool a bit.
How to Store
After the sauce has a chance to cool just a bit, transfer it to a jar or container with a tight fitting lid. Store it in the fridge for up to one week.
The sauce thickens as it sits and when refrigerated. Heat up the sauce in the microwave or on top of the stove to use it again. Also if you still have some left, you can add it to a Caramel Buttercream to make even more use of it.
How to Serve
There are so many different ways you can use it! Here are some of my favorites:
- The perfect pair for ice cream! Drizzle it over the top of a bowl of vanilla ice cream, butter cookie ice cream, cookies and cream ice cream, or any other favorite flavor. I personally like anything with peach and caramel so this Peach Pie Ice Cream is always a winner if you like bolder flavors boos.
- Serve it up with all your favorite pies and cobblers. I love it with this apple pie, apple cobbler, and peach dumplings.
- Use it as a caramel dipping sauce for apples, banana fritters, and snacks! You can even use it on a dessert board as a dip.
- Turn breakfast or brunch treats into a dream! Drizzle it over a stack of classic pancakes or buttermilk waffles.
Expert Tips and FAQs
- Be patient. While the recipe is easy it does take time to cook the sugar and for it to turn a golden brown color.
- Use a heavy-bottomed pan for more even cooking and to prevent burning.
- Main the temperature at low heat. This method of making caramel can easily burn so use caution and don’t think you can speed things up by increasing the temperature.
Yes it does. Since it contains dairy, it’s essential to keep it stored in the fridge.
Yes, you can! It will result in a darker color with richer, more molasses-like flavor.
More Dessert Recipes
- Apple Brown Betty
- Peach Crisp Recipe
- Grilled Pineapple Donut Sundaes
- New York Cheesecake
- Chocolate Ganache
- Apple Butter
- Vegan Caramel Sauce
*Did you make this recipe? Please give it a star rating and leave comments below!* Post a photo of how your version of the recipe came out on Instagram (using #grandbabycakes)!!
Easy Caramel Sauce Recipe (How to Make Caramel Sauce)
- 1-2 cups granulated sugar
- ½ – ¾ cup heavy cream
- 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
- Take a sauce pan and coat the entire bottom of it with granulated sugar.
- Next, turn your heat to medium low. The sugar will begin to dissolve as it melts down into a clear liquid.
- Then, swirl the liquid around a bit just to make sure the remaining sugar also melts.
- Once the sugar has completely melted down and turned a golden color, add in about a 1/2 to 3/4 cup of heavy cream (depending on how big your pan is and how much sugar you added) and quickly whisk together.
- Continue to quickly whisk and allow the caramel to thicken and become a wonderful rich and smooth sauce.
- Once smooth and thick, turn off heat and add a teaspoon of pure vanilla extract to the sauce and allow to cool.
This post was originally published July 2014. It has been updated with new images and content.