This easy Homemade Caramel Sauce made with sweetened condensed milk is ooey-gooey, silky smooth and salty sweet. It’s perfect for drizzling over vanilla ice cream, serving as a dip for apples or even eating by the spoonful.
- Caramel Sauce With Sweetened Condensed Milk
- Easy Homemade Caramel Sauce Ingredients
- How to Make Caramel with Sweetened Condensed Milk
- Recipe Variations for Condensed Milk Caramel Sauce
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Storing and Freezing
- Caramel Sauce with Sweetened Condensed Milk Recipe
- More Of the Best Caramel Recipes
Caramel Sauce With Sweetened Condensed Milk
As long as you have this easy-to-follow recipe for delicious Homemade Caramel Sauce, you'll never even consider buying it from the jar again. Our recipe uses butter, white sugar, brown sugar, Karo syrup, sweetened condensed milk, and a touch of salt to make the most delicious amber-colored caramel sauce that is smooth as can be.
This recipe is also great for anyone who fears making caramel because you literally toss all of the ingredients into the pot at the same time and cook. As long as you constantly stir and use a thermometer, there’s no risk of burning your caramel or over or undercooking.
You can use this as a sauce for caramel apples, ice cream, pie, cheesecake or even just eat by the spoonful. If you want to give it as a gift, pour into small jars, seal, and attach a little tag or sticker. It's also great as a caramel dip for apples and so much more.
Easy Homemade Caramel Sauce Ingredients
- Butter - you can use unsalted or salted butter, depending on how “salted” you want your caramel to be.
- Sugar - regular granulated white sugar.
- Brown Sugar - we use light brown sugar for this recipe. You can use dark brown sugar, too, which will make a slightly darker caramel sauce.
- Karo Syrup - this is sometimes called corn syrup. It’s added in order to keep the sauce from getting grainy.
- Sweetened Condensed Milk - be sure you purchased sweetened condensed and not evaporated milk.
- Salt - sea salt or kosher salt works great.
How to Make Caramel with Sweetened Condensed Milk
- Melt ingredients together. In a heavy bottomed sauce pot over medium heat, add the butter, sugar, brown sugar, Karo syrup, sweetened condensed milk and salt. Cook over medium heat, stirring with a flat bottomed wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Be sure and scrape the bottom of the pan constantly until all of the sugar is dissolved and the butter is melted.
- Cook to 225 degrees F. Increase to high heat and cook the caramel mixture, stirring constantly, until it reaches 220 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
- Remove from heat and cool. Once it reaches 220 degrees, remove from the heat immediately to stop the cooking. Allow it to cool for at least 20 minutes before serving. Or, cool completely and then store.
- Store or serve. Pour the caramel into a serving dish, or a jar for storing. Serve with sliced apples, over ice cream or by the spoonful. Enjoy!
Recipe Variations for Condensed Milk Caramel Sauce
- Espresso Caramel Sauce: Add a shot of espresso or a teaspoon of instant coffee to the caramel sauce for a rich coffee flavor. This works well for desserts like ice cream or drizzled over brownies.
- Cinnamon Spice Caramel Sauce: Mix ground cinnamon or a cinnamon stick into the caramel sauce for a warm and aromatic touch. Ideal for drizzling over apple desserts or cinnamon rolls.
- Coconut Caramel Sauce: Stir in a few tablespoons of coconut milk or coconut cream to create a luscious coconut-infused caramel sauce.
- Chocolate Caramel Sauce: Add cocoa powder or melt chocolate into the caramel sauce for a decadent chocolate twist.
- Rum or Bourbon Caramel Sauce: Incorporate a splash of dark rum or bourbon to the caramel sauce for a boozy kick. Be cautious with the quantity, as the alcohol will cook off, leaving behind the flavor.
Frequently Asked Questions
Because of the butter and the sweetened condensed milk, this Homemade Caramel Sauce will thicken as it cools. In order to get it back to it’s silky smooth self, you can either microwave it for about 30 seconds at a time, stirring in between, or reheat gently in a sauce pot with a couple tablespoons of heavy cream.
Yes - in order to make sure the sugars caramelize correctly, you’ll need to use a candy thermometer. Cooking to the correct temperature also ensures that the appropriate amount of water evaporates and helps make sure that the caramel doesn’t burn.
Yup! Let it cool completely before transferring to freezer bags or an airtight container where it can be stored frozen for up to 3 months.
Storing and Freezing
- Refrigerator: store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 month.
- Freezer: store Homemade Caramel Sauce in freezer bags, or an airtight container, in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw in the fridge overnight.
- To reheat: add the Homemade Caramel Sauce into a saucepan, add a couple tablespoons of heavy cream and warm over medium heat. Stir and heat until the caramel is smooth and warmed through.
Caramel Sauce with Sweetened Condensed Milk Recipe
- 1 cup Butter
- 1 cup Sugar
- 1 cup Light Brown Sugar
- 1 cup Karo Syrup
- 1 14-oz can Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 1 teaspoon Salt
- In a heavy bottomed sauce pot over medium heat, add the butter, sugar, brown sugar, Karo syrup, sweetened condensed milk and salt.
- Cook over medium heat, stirring with a flat bottomed wooden spoon or a rubber spatula. Be sure and scrape the bottom of the pan constantly until all of the sugar is dissolved and the butter is melted.
- Increase to high heat and cook the caramel mixture, stirring constantly, about 3 minutes, or until it reaches 220 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
- Once it reaches 220 degrees, remove from the heat immediately to stop the cooking. Allow it to cool for at least 20 minutes before serving. Or, cool completely and then store.
- Pour the caramel into a serving dish, or a jar for storing. Serve with sliced apples, over ice cream or by the spoonful. Enjoy!
More Of the Best Caramel Recipes
- Caramel Pecan Pie
- Caramel Pecan Monkey Bread
- Homemade Caramel Popcorn
- Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Rods
- Cream Cheese Caramel Apple Dip
- Homemade Caramel Apples
- Caramel Candy
- Caramel Apple Nachos
- More Homemade Desserts
- More Homemade Sauces
More Sauces to try:
This recipe for Homemade Caramel Sauce is super simple and perfect for serving with apples, vanilla ice cream, cheesecake and more. It's ooey-gooey, silk smooth and salty sweet.