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Easy Step-by-Step Homemade Caramel

Using just a handful of pure ingredients, you can make the best tasting homemade caramel, ever! This caramel makes a great sauce over ice cream and is amazing when used in Salted Caramel Brownies. If you can stir, you can make this.
Prep Time3 mins
Cook Time10 mins
Total Time13 mins
Course: Dessert
Servings: 12 people
Calories: 148kcal
Author: Sally Humeniuk


  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into big chunks (thirds is fine)
  • ½ cup heavy whipping cream at room temperature
  • ½ to 1 ½ teaspoons sea salt depending on if you're making regular caramel or salted caramel


  • Pour the sugar into a medium saucepan and heat to medium-high. Using a rubber spatula, stir the sugar just occasionally, scraping the bottom of the pan. At first the sugar will be lumpy, but will soon melt and start turning brown. Don't stir too often, just enough to keep everything evenly cooking. After about 5 minutes, the sugar should be fully melted and become a rich amber color.
  • At this point, remove the pan from the heat and immediately add the butter. the mixture will start to bubble quite rapidly. That's just what you want.
  • Using your spatula or a whisk, stir the butter and sugar until they melt together almost completely. This can take 1-2 minutes.
  • Next, pour in the heavy whipping cream and sea salt. If you're making regular caramel, then add ½ teaspoon of salt and no more. If you're making a salted caramel version, add anywhere from 1 teaspoon to 1 ½ teaspoons depending on your liking.
  • Stir constantly now until the sauce is all mixed together and is smooth. Place back on the stove at medium-high heat again for about 20 seconds more. Remember to keep stirring.
  • Remove from heat and serve immediately for a hot option over ice cream or let cool at least 15 minutes for room temperature use.
  • Over several minutes, the caramel will become harder to stir. For a manageable sauce, just heat in microwave for 10-15 seconds and stir again.


  1. Servings shown on the recipe are for 12 3-tablespoon servings, approx.


Calories: 148kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 28mg | Sodium: 4mg | Potassium: 7mg | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 320IU | Calcium: 8mg