Simple Salted Caramels Recipe with Video

These salted caramels are soft, chewy and perfectly melt away in your mouth.

Our salted caramels recipe is easy-to-follow and has step-by-step photographs to make this extra easy. We’ve also shared lessons we’ve learned from making our own caramels at home.

Making Our Salted Caramels Recipe – Lessons We’ve Learned From Our Own Mistakes

One thing we love about cooking is that no matter the recipe or technique, with practice and a little sense, it can become easy. When we first began to make caramels, we admit, things did not always work out. In fact, some time ago, we published a salted caramel recipe on this very blog. It worked for us, but not for others. So, we went back to the drawing boards and did our best to learn more. That’s how we can confidently share the following lessons as well as this new (and improved) salted caramels recipe.
Simple Salted Caramels Recipe

Be Ready.

Before you begin making salted caramels make sure you you’ve read through the recipe a couple times and have all equipment ready and ingredients measured out. Candy making can go by quickly and if you’re not ready, things can go from good to bad fast.

Crystallization is Bad.

When making caramels, it is important to do everything you can to prevent crystallization, which can make your caramels grainy and ruin the texture.

Making Our Salted Caramels RecipeFor our recipe, when you’re adding the sugar to the pan, add it slowly and with control. It’s best not to allow the sugar to splash up the sides of the pan as this can cause crystallization. With that said, even when we make our caramels, we will sometimes see a few rogue sugar crystals on the sides of our pan.

For this reason, we include a little fail-safe in our recipe. Once you have brought the water, corn syrup and sugar to a boil, we ask that you cover the pan and leave it be for one minute. This traps steam and moisture in the pan and helps melt any sugar crystals that may have found their way up the sides of the pan.

Try not to stir sugar as it cooks. In our recipe, we ask that you stir to moisten sugar before bringing it to a boil. This is fine, but after that, there is no need to stir until you begin to add the butter and cream – even then, though, we only ask that you use the bottom of the candy thermometer to stir, not a spoon.

Use Heavy Cream.

In our recipe, we call for “heavy cream” or “heavy whipping cream.” If you check the back nutrition panel of cream cartons, you will notice that the percentage of butterfat can vary. For our caramels recipe we need cream that contains at least 36% butterfat. So, use either “heavy cream” or “heavy whipping cream” since they contain 36% or more. Do not use “whipping cream,” since that is only made up of 30%.

The Thermometer.

Don’t try this without a candy thermometer. The temperatures matter.

For our recipe, there are two temperatures to look out for:

Candy ThermometerFirst, we ask that you cook sugar, corn syrup and water until it reaches 320 degrees F (160 degrees C). According to the stages of candy making, this is past what is called the “hard-crack stage,” which means there is virtually no water left in the sugar syrup and if you were to drop a little of the molten sugar into cold water, it would become brittle and most likely crack when bent. The “hard crack stage” is when the sugar syrup is between 300 and 310 degrees F (149 and 154 degrees C). Since we are passing this stage, the sugar syrup will start to “caramelize” and you will actually notice that the syrup will begin to take on an amber color. It is important not to pass 320 degrees F (160 degrees C).

Second, after reaching 320 degrees F (160 degrees C), we ask that you add a butter and cream mixture to the sugar syrup. Then, you will cook that until 240 degrees F (115 degrees C). At this temperature the once the caramels have cooled completely, they will be soft and chewy. If you wanted a slightly harder caramel, you could bring the temperature closer to 245 degrees F (118 degrees C).

Salted Caramels Recipe Step

One more note about temperature and candy thermometers. Most candy thermometers will show an “immersion” line. From our experience, the majority of candy recipes will never be large enough of a batch to actually reach the immersion line. With that said, we have found success as long as the tip of the thermometer is fully immersed. Also, most candy thermometers have a guard to prevent the thermometer from touching the bottom of the pan, if yours does not have this guard, make sure the tip of the thermometer never touches the bottom of the pan as this will affect how accurate the thermometer reading will be.

Stick to the Recipe.

Don’t double or triple caramel recipes. Timing is essential when making caramel and doubling a recipe can affect cooking time, something that could affect your end results.

The Weather.

We know this seems a little odd, but weather can affect the your success when making candy. Cooking sugar to a certain temperature is all about achieving a specific ratio of sugar to moisture. So, if you can, make caramel on a cool dry day. If the air is humid, the caramel can actually reabsorb some moisture, which might negatively affect the texture and softness of your caramel.

Salted Caramesl Recipe

The Cleanup.

Salted Caramels RecipeCleaning the pot and candy thermometer after making caramels can be a little sticky. From our experience, we’ve found that if you add water to the pan then bring it to a boil, the caramel stuck to the sides of the pan will melt away.

You can also add the candy thermometer to the boiling water to remove sticky caramel from the bottom of it, too.

Simple Salted Caramels RecipeDid you like our Simple Salted Caramels Recipe? If so, we’re sure you’ll love these:

4.6 from 44 reviews
Simple Salted Caramels Recipe
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
These salted caramels are soft, chewy and perfectly melt away in your mouth.

Before starting to make our salted caramels recipe it is best to be sure you have all equipment ready and ingredients measured out. This caramels recipe has been inspired and adapted from Jacques Pépin's book, "Chez Jacques: Traditions and Rituals of a Cook."
Created By:
Yield: 35-40
You Will Need
  • 1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter (1 stick)
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy cream or heavy whipping cream (36-40% butterfat content)
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) light corn syrup
  • 1 cup (200 grams) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon course or flaked sea salt
  1. Lightly oil a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan then measure and cut a piece of parchment paper that will fit inside the pan and come up the sides by at least 1 inch. Next, lightly oil the parchment paper and place into the pan. Set the pan aside.Salted Caramels Recipe Step 1
  2. Cut butter into 8 pieces then combine with heavy cream in a small microwave-safe bowl. Heat in the microwave for 1 to 2 minutes until hot and butter has melted. Set aside, we will use this later.Salted Caramels Recipe Step 2
  3. In a small saucepan combine the water and corn syrup. Then, add the sugar, but try your best not to splatter the sugar up the sides of the pan. Now, use a spoon to gently stir the sugar into the water and corn syrup, just moistening the sugar.
  4. Heat over medium heat until the sugar has come to a boil. Then, cover with a lid for 1 minute. This adds steam/moisture to the pan, so any sugar that may have stuck to the sides of the pan melts and falls back into the boiling sugar.
  5. Remove lid then attach a candy thermometer to the side of the saucepan. Then, cook sugar for 5 to 10 minutes, until the sugar reaches a temperature of 320 degrees F (160 degrees C). At this temperature, the sugar will take on a light amber color around the edges of the pan.Salted Caramels Recipe Step 3
  6. The moment the sugar reaches 320 degrees F (160 degrees C), carefully pour about a sixth of the butter and cream mixture then stir, using the base of the candy thermometer to incorporate it. Repeat with the remaining cream and butter (adding a sixth of it at a time then stirring). The sugar will bubble violently as you add the butter and cream - so do this carefully and slowly to prevent the mixture from bubbling over the sides of the saucepan.
  7. By adding the cream and butter, the temperature will drop. Now, continue cooking for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the caramel reaches a temperature of 240 degrees F (115 degrees C). This will create a soft caramel, if you want slightly harder caramels, bring the temperature closer to 245 degrees F (118 degrees C).Salted Caramels Recipe Step 4
  8. The moment the caramel reaches your desired temperature, pour into the prepared loaf pan. Cool 20 to 30 minutes then scatter the salt over the caramel. Then, let the caramel cool 3 1/2 hours.
  9. Unmold the caramel. If the caramel is too soft to work with, place into the refrigerator 30 to 45 minutes to firm up. Then, use a large sharp knife to cut into your desired shape. We like to cut into 1-inch by 1/2-inch rectangles.Salted Caramels Recipe Step 5
  10. Wrap caramels in plastic wrap or waxed paper and enjoy immediately, or you can refrigerate or freeze for enjoying later.
Notes and Tips
Special Equipment: Small (1 quart) saucepan with lid (the heavier, the better) and a candy thermometer (we use a Taylor Candy and Deep Fry Thermometer)

Don't forget to watch our salted caramel recipe video.

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213 comments… Leave a Comment

  • Holly September 29, 2015, 7:46 pm

    These look so good and easy enough to make. I was wondering how well something like this would ship through the mail, though? Is it something that would need to have a priority put on it or should I not even try at all?

    • Joanne October 16, 2015, 12:49 pm

      I bet they would ship well. They don’t like heat — so if you’re shipping somewhere warm, I’d be worried about that.

  • Kimberly S September 24, 2015, 8:37 pm

    It came out beautiful…perfect and I live in VA with lots of humidity. I had to lessen the heat to get the temp to go down but it was such an easy thing to cook. I doubled the batch and it came out perfect though I admit I cooled it in the fridge so I could cut it sooner to send off with a family member but wow what a perfect recipe.

  • Joanna August 20, 2015, 10:11 am

    Will this recipe be good to dip rice krispy treats that are on a stick and then dip in chocolate?

    • Joanne October 16, 2015, 1:03 pm

      Hi Joanne, We’ve never tried it, but it might work — you’ll need to work fast, though.

  • DShort August 10, 2015, 1:51 am

    Hello! Looks like a lot of success with this recipe. I have a great caramel sauce that I make but I went looking for a firmer recipe for candies and came across this. All looks great except for the corn syrup. I do organic and non-GMO cooking/baking so I wonder if there is a way to leave out the corn syrup or a better substitute that is non-GMO?? Thank you.

    • Joanne August 10, 2015, 11:36 am

      Hi Liv, You should be able to use honey as well as Golden or rice syrup. We have not tried it yet, though. It is on our to-do list to experiment with our own recipe as well. Good Luck!

  • Juliet July 25, 2015, 9:01 pm


    So I am definitely caramel cursed. I have tried so many recipes. Yours looked the best, and had the least amount of ingredients, so for my 10th time trying I tried this recipe. Somehow I have a problem already when I am just waiting for it to get to the 360 point. I calibrated my thermometer like the link suggested, etc, but when my mix reaches 360 it is WAY darker than yours, and starts smelling of burnt sugar… so the first one I threw out. The second time it did the same thing but I followed through the rest of the recipe and each step of mine just looked WAYYYYY darker than yours. Your caramel is a light brown color, mine is pretty much dark brown… Do you know where I could be going wrong? I tried changing sizes of saucepan etc… Because its already failing in the early steps, should I get a new thermometer anyway? Sorry for the long post, you can just email me back if you dont want to post it… Thanks!

    • Joanne August 10, 2015, 1:45 pm

      It is possible your thermometer is to blame. Using a heavy-bottomed pan so the mixture heats evenly is best, too. Hope that helps a little!

    • Pat September 13, 2015, 10:01 pm

      Hi Juliet! The recipe calls for 320 not 360 so that might be your issue. Hope you nail the recipe Best luck Pat

  • Tina June 14, 2015, 11:37 pm


    I’m am new to making candy and have tried this recipe twice. The first time it was too soft and barely set, but the flavor wasn’t there. I realized from reading the other posts that my candy thermometer was off, so I fixed that. The second batch has the wonderful flavors, but I think I boiled it too long. My burner runs hot, so it only took 7 minutes to reach the first 320. I also cooled off my thermometer in between and after adding the cream mix, it took barely 5 minutes to reach the 240. I was afraid that the color wasn’t right so I let it boil another two minutes. The directions say 5-10 minutes for the 2nd half, so did I mess it up by not following the directions and is it possible to have a soft caramel in just 5 minutes on the second part? I know this sounds dumb (you can agree) but before I try it again, should I pour it into the pan even if it only took 4 minutes to reach 240? Love your blog! Thanks!

    • Joanne August 10, 2015, 11:52 am

      Hi Tina, the temperatures are what is most important when making caramels, not the timing. Once the mixture reaches the temperatures stated in the recipe you should be good.

  • Alan Anderson April 23, 2015, 3:52 pm

    How do YOU get the temp up to 320° I had to put my stove up to high to get there it said earlier to have it at med to boil did you have to turn up the heat as well?

    • Joanne April 24, 2015, 8:51 am

      Hi Alan, we have never found we needed to increase the temperature to reach 320F.

      • Laura June 6, 2015, 7:19 pm

        I also had difficulty getting to 320 on medium and medium-high heat. Do you use an electric stove?

        • Joanne August 10, 2015, 11:51 am

          Hi Laura, Our stove is electric.

          • Kimberly S September 24, 2015, 8:40 pm

            Mine is electric and came out perfect! I had to turn it down to get it to reach the lower temperature later on. It was so easy! The temperatures are the most important thing because that is where you get the candy at the hard crack stage then letting it cook to the soft crack stage. I don’t know why but it turned out very professional like.

  • Danny April 12, 2015, 11:45 am

    i added 1/2 cup of chocolate chips when it was ready and it pretty much turned into a tootsie roll! i also cooked it a few degrees hotter (before adding the chocolate)

  • Gary Miles April 7, 2015, 10:21 pm

    Hey Everyone,
    I make specialty cookies. I want to create a salted caramel glaze for the underside of my cookies. My challenge, to make the glaze soft enough, but too soft as to run during shipping. I tried last week and although the caramel glaze was tasty, it was hard and difficult to chew… no good.
    I want a soft, delicious caramel glaze, not a hard caramel glaze. Any suggestions?

  • Louise March 10, 2015, 9:56 am

    Can I substitute the corn syrup for golden syrup?

    • Joanne March 10, 2015, 4:08 pm

      Hi Louise, While we have not tried golden syrup ourselves, other commenters have had success with it in our recipe.

  • Melisa February 13, 2015, 6:52 pm

    Does the recipe call for brown sugar or white sugar? Thanks.

    • Adam March 2, 2015, 2:16 pm

      White sugar.

  • Erin February 13, 2015, 3:59 pm

    I made these yesterday for my husband for valentine’s day, and they are DIVINE!! (I had to quality-test a few myself :) One question – will these go bad or do they have a pretty long shelf life? Thanks!

    • Adam March 2, 2015, 2:16 pm

      They last a while when kept in the fridge — I think we have had them for over 2 weeks in ours before.

  • Sharon Boren February 9, 2015, 8:14 am

    Hi…this is a rather technical question. I appreciate how you answer and your expertise. I have been making caramel corn for years using a recipe similar to this. All your facts about temperature and chrystalization are applicable to what I do.
    My question relates to a funky taste the caramel takes on during cooking. It seems similar to rancid butter. It is very annoying and we throw out batches that have acquired the taste (many people can’t taste it but we know when it’s there)We have tried so many variables to troubleshoot the cause. But it is so unpredictable, one batch good and the next bad, and the next good. We are beside ourselves looking for consistency and wondered if you have ever experienced something similar. We have suspected ingredients, transfer, cleaning pot methods, and so many other potential causes. Now I’m just trying to find someone who may have an answer due to their experience. Can you help?

    • Joanne March 5, 2015, 10:38 am

      Hi Sharon, I’ve never really come across this, so I’m not sure I’ll be too much help!

    • Ashleigh July 4, 2015, 2:08 pm

      This could be over cooking sugar. If your caramel gets too dark it will turn bitter and gross. There is a fine line when cooking caramel, just here it’s under done |hereisgood| and here it is bad and needs to be thrown away, now what I mean? Caramel is very temperamental.

  • Heather February 8, 2015, 3:16 pm

    Can these be made with golden corn syrup?

    • Joanne March 5, 2015, 10:10 am

      Hi Heather, we actually have not tried this, but have read other caramel recipes where it works nicely. If you try it, we’d love to hear how it turns out.

  • Lee Torrence January 9, 2015, 9:09 pm

    I made these once and they were delicious. I made them today and they came out too soft. Is there any way to save the ingredients and cook it up to 240 again for 5-10 minutes with the hopes it will come out? Thanks so much for such an informative recipe!

  • Kathy December 28, 2014, 6:04 am

    I’ve doubled and tripled this recipe and have not had any problems. I’m not an expert but what works well for me it the “ice-water” or color tests. When the mixture turns a deep amber it’s done.

    I’ve commented in the past and I’m still more than pleased with this recipe.

    Again, thank you.

  • Marjie McCauley December 25, 2014, 11:42 pm

    I have tried so many different caramel recipes and when preparing to make Christmas candy. I ran on to your video
    and saw that you used heavy cream. So I copied the recipe and have made it three times this year because it’s such a big hit. Sooooo good! Thank you from My family!

  • Arianna December 19, 2014, 6:32 am

    This is a great recipe! I’m a European so I couldn’t find corn syrup anywhere!or any kind of sugar syrup! But I found out that it works pretty well with honey! It’s not the same, of course, but it still worked out great! First the caramel tasted a little to buttery and sweet (probably because of the honey) but once I coated with chocolate it tasted great! Congratulations on such a successful recipe;)

    (PS: anyone using honey might want to heat it a few degrees more at the end because i heated it to 119 and I got a very soft caramel. I’m not sure whether it’ll help to do it though, maybe it’s just the consistency of the honey that causes it.)

    All in all I give this 5 stars and recommend anyone who loves baking and making candy to try this recipe, it may seem hard, but all it needs is a little preparation;) (haha I felt like I was making muggle potions!)

    • Ashleigh July 4, 2015, 2:11 pm

      You can make delicious caramel without corn syrup or any syrup. I made some in pastry school, didn’t write down the recipe, and now I have to scour the internet to find something similar. The best thing I’ve found is a foodnetwork recipe. I haven’t tried it, but it looks promising. foodnetwork . com / recipes /butter -caramels- recipe. html (some forums won’t let you comment links, so just remove the spaces and you’ll be right at the recipe I’m about to try)

  • Rob December 12, 2014, 11:09 am

    Made this last night and purposely went hot on the second stage to 250 because I like my caramels on the hard side.. Just a warning, don’t push it to 250.. Once they cool they are hard enough to almost shatter.. They still taste great, but are more like a rothschild hard candy with a TINY bit of chew to it.. I’ll do it again at 240 today.. I’m trying to find the ideal hardness for some holiday treats.. Thanks for the recipe!

  • Mark Beales September 4, 2014, 8:41 am


    I tried this recipe for salted caramels last week and it was FANTASTIC!

    I have very little experience with making confectionary. I’ve made some ganache filled chocolates, some toffee, and 2 batches of white chocolate fudge (the first of which ended up in the bin), so I was prepared for a learning curve. No need to worry though, as this recipe was perfect.

    I was making these as a gift for my fathers birthday, and really only had one shot at it. Well, let’s just say I didn’t need to go out and buy a backup gift. I actually took it one step further and coated half of them in chocolate. Even better!

    All in all, a 5 star recipe. Thank you.


  • Gloria July 17, 2014, 1:25 pm

    Hey InspiredTaste! My hubby is always bringing me home heavy cream and asking for these! I’ve simplified the whole parchment paper mess with grease down to using a wilton silicone candy mold. if you chill/freeze after adding salt they pop right out!

  • James July 10, 2014, 1:41 pm

    I used this recipe with 35% cream salted butter and dark brown corn syrup, because that’s all I had at the time and it still worked perfectly. Thanks for this recipe, and the steps you took explaining is great. The detail and science is bang on and helped me to explain to my cooks why temperatures are so important when making candies. I also used a digital laser thermometer instead of the traditional candy thermometer and had no issues what so ever. So again thanks for the work you put into this.


  • Jameson Escobar July 2, 2014, 10:45 am

    It was amazing. Me and my family enjoy making it every week. It’s sooooo goooood!

  • Ashley June 25, 2014, 8:03 pm

    Thank you for the detailed instructions. I have been making this recipe for 2 years straight and it has never let me down.

  • Kim Wines June 25, 2014, 6:21 pm

    I made these this afternoon and they are perfect!!!! I added the scrapings of one real vanilla bean to my cream and butter mixture. So yummy! They turned out just as described – thanks for the recipe!

  • Karen June 21, 2014, 11:15 am

    I made the caramels for the first time using your recipe. They turned out perfect. I want to make them for my daughter’s bridal shower. My question is –can I make them 2 weeks ahead of the shower? If I wrap them in waxed paper, will they stay fresh. My first trial batch I wrapped in plastic wrap. Plastic wrap is not the answer. Also the salt crystals melted and the caramels did not look so pretty but it did not affect the taste. Any info for wrapping and storing them would be helpful.

    • Joanne August 8, 2014, 11:37 am

      The salt will melt into the caramels over time. You could definitely make these a week in advance, two weeks might be pushing it for such an occasion? Either way, keep them in the fridge and they will last much longer. We wrap ours in wax or parchment paper.

  • Kristin June 18, 2014, 11:23 am

    Hi~ Tried this today and my candy thermometer never reached 320… it was past ten minutes and only hovering around 250ish. It was already getting dark brown so I went ahead and added the butter then… they are currently cooling so I’m not sure the final result but why did that happen? Never got hot enough…

    • Joanne June 20, 2014, 12:02 pm

      Hi Kristin, That’s odd — our best suggestions are to make sure that your candy thermometer is calibrated and that you are using a heavy-bottomed pan. Sometimes thinner saucepans can cause the sugar mixture to heat unevenly, which could have caused your mixture to brown too much.

      To check your thermometer, take a look at this website (they give instructions for how to do it):

  • Allison June 13, 2014, 10:05 pm

    Just tried this recipe…caramel is currently cooling in the pan! Color looks awesome, and can’t wait to try a piece! I had a very easy time with this recipe. I had tried another recipe that called for adding all the ingredients (which there were quite a few more) at the beginning – they had tasted great, a little too buttery for my taste, but that recipe was a little too complicated. It did make a bigger batch, but I enjoyed cooking with this recipe much more.

    Thanks for sharing the recipe! Out of curiosity – would any variations be possible with this recipe?

    • Joanne June 20, 2014, 12:27 pm

      Hi Allison, We’ve experimenting with various flavors — you could add vanilla bean, a little espresso powder and even a tablespoon of cocoa powder to change things up a little. Just add any extra flavors to the cream/butter mixture. We’ve also dipped the final caramels into chocolate — here’s our recipe for that:

  • kenny June 11, 2014, 10:15 am

    I have made this recipe about 10 times now and is my 4 year old daughter’s favorite. Is buttery soft at room temp so I keep it cold till I cut it. Tried it with turkey bacon and it’s an amazing combination, maybe something different for an orderves plate.

  • Becki April 8, 2014, 9:56 pm

    AMAZING!!!! I adore salted caramels and this was the simplest recipe with a lot of experience behind it. I followed it pretty much exactly and my results were fantastic. I did however do a few things different: I heated the butter and whipping cream on the stove together on a low heat (I don’t own a microwave), I used a cheap meat thermometer (again, no supplies), and used salted butter. They still turned out great and all my friends were extremely happy when a brought a plate of these babies to class. Definitely great for a little side treat at a party or a yummy gift for some awesome friends.

    • Adam April 10, 2014, 2:52 pm

      So glad they turned out for you!

  • Kim April 4, 2014, 5:39 pm

    Yes we made it and it is super yummy!!!!!! Only thing different is that we coverd them with chocolate. :)

  • Adrienne April 4, 2014, 9:13 am

    I am going to try this recipe! This is a great presentation . I have been looking for a great, easy caramel recipe for some time. I am starting my own candy business and want to make these and cover in chocolate. Any suggestions? Thanks so much!

  • Woodrow March 17, 2014, 4:11 pm

    I’m wondering if instead of using a candy thermometer, can use a cooking thermometer or a professional-grade multimeter? These are high-accuracy, but are not as large as the candy thermometer, and would not be usable to stir.

    Would it affect the caramel/crystallization chance if I used a spoon instead of the candy thermometer to stir in the last stages of this recipe?

    • Joanne March 17, 2014, 4:27 pm

      Try a wooden spoon instead of the thermometer. The other thermometers should work fine, they just need to be accurate and read quickly.

      • Woodrow March 17, 2014, 10:57 pm

        Okay, thanks. Wooden spoons work better than metal ones?

        I’m hoping to make this tomorrow, looks like a great recipe.

        thanks for the fast reply :)

        • Joanne March 20, 2014, 11:29 am

          Hi Woodrow — it depends on who you ask. Wooden spoons don’t conduct heat as much as metal ones. The only issue is they are harder to clean and when you’re working with caramel, everything should be nice and clean. Here’s a short article from The Kitchn about metal vs. wooden spoons:

          Ultimately, it’s your choice, though. Both have negatives and positives (which is why we just use the thermometer).

  • Jenny March 8, 2014, 9:12 pm

    I want to do some caramel covered apples for an event and will be dipping the apples on-site. Do you have any idea if this recipe can be made ahead of time and then remelted in a crock pot in order to dip the apples and still have it solidify again to a creamy, chewy texture?

    Thank you so much!


    • Joanne March 17, 2014, 4:37 pm

      Hi Jenny, it should work, but we have not yet tried melting them ourselves.

  • Becha Peterson March 4, 2014, 4:03 pm

    Thank you for sharing your fabulous “Simple Salted Caramels Recipe with Video.” I truly enjoyed watching this instruction and followed through with it, step by step, while making my own candy. Your VDO is well made. Even your website is tastefully done. It is all visually enticing what you do here. Hurrah an a milliong thanks! I have never dreamed that one day in my life that I will be able to create this caramel candy in my own kitchen. Indeed, it has brought back memories of long forgotten dreams of my childhood! Honestly, I can’t help but share this recipe in Facebook and send it to my family and friends who are all food aficionados. THANK YOU!!!

  • marthe February 27, 2014, 2:46 am

    Hey folks,

    read all the comments but not sure if anyone is exactly the same issue… I made these twice and through they taste fantastic are still too soft in consistency. The first time I brought the final mixture to 240, second time to 245. Could this be a problem with my thermometer? The only other thing is that I am currently in Norway and corn syrup is not available. So I am using what they call just simply “light syrup” which i believe is made from beat root, rather than corn. I have made caramel in the past and my original recipe yielded exactly what i was after, but even that gave me too soft of a result so I’m looking for other recipes. Should I try to go to 250 today?

    • marthe February 27, 2014, 2:48 am

      to clarify — my original recipe USED to yield what i am going for, but with the alternative syrup and my norwegian bought thermometer (which is new), I am getting overly soft caramel candies.

    • Joanne February 27, 2014, 4:14 pm

      Hi there, You could try going to 250 if you’re in the mood to experiment :) Quick question, though, have checked your thermometers accuracy? We’d suggest doing that first before trying any more batches. Here’s a nice tutorial for how to do it

  • Aundrea February 19, 2014, 4:25 pm

    Thank you for posting this recipe. I just made these for the first time ever using your recipe and they turned out heavenly!!! I can’t believe they turned out so well on my first try. I wish I had come across your site sooner, Thanks again!

  • Caroline February 19, 2014, 6:49 am

    10 stars!!!!
    I have to give an update since I left a comment back in December. I made at least 30 batches for family, friends and teachers. I’m still reaping compliments!!! Many of my friends think I should go into business, lol! I don’t know HOW people can leave negative feedback when this is such a simple recipe! Following your instructions make it foolproof in my opinion! Even my 13 year old daughter made these perfectly! I also used them to make gourmet caramel apples……awesome!
    My brother is opening a bakery and I’m thinking about making 1/2 dozen flavors of caramel for him! I have shared your website with several of my friends now! Thank you for your expertise!

  • chris February 18, 2014, 1:04 pm

    These are great! I have made several times. The last few batches have been a little too sticky I think I might of stirred too much! I just re-read and going to try without stirring! Great directions and video…Thanks

  • Kelsey February 16, 2014, 7:14 pm

    This is a great recipe – especially with the video. I’m new to making caramel, actually new to baking all together! Had no trouble getting smooth, soft caramel. Thanks for sharing!

  • Michelle February 16, 2014, 1:51 pm

    If you are pressed for time and your candy pot and thermometer have cooled, fill pan with cold water and let sit while you admire your awesome caramels!!! Thanks so much for the additional instruction!

  • Louie Crook February 11, 2014, 7:07 pm

    I think your work and obvious love for what you do is wonderful. After reading some of the negative comments, I think the tech problems were with them, not your recipe. I am looking for a way to take these caramels and cover them in chocolate. I know I can just dip them, but I am trying to find a technique that will give me store bought quality, but with this superior taste. Check out our website -my daughter and wife- God Bless, Louie

  • Cheryl January 24, 2014, 11:51 pm

    what a disaster. Even though my candy thermometer was calibrated for boiling temps, apparently it’s not accurate over 250 and I tried and failed with a burned mess TWICE with this recipe. But I don’t hold that against the recipe itself. When I made it a 3rd time with a 2nd thermometer, I got a solid mass too hard to cut.
    Clearly there’s no wiggle room with temperatures for this recipe, and certainly it’s hard to find a thermometer that’s so precise. I’ve been making candy for about a decade so I feel like I can say pretty firmly that usually there is some leeway. This was a huge waste of time, and went directly into the garbage. Simple? no. “no fail techniques?” I’m going to have to go fish for a workable recipe.

    • Joanne January 30, 2014, 12:53 pm

      Hi Cheryl, Sorry the caramels didn’t work out for you. We’re not really sure what went wrong, here! Hope you find something that works for you in the future.

    • Kathy December 28, 2014, 6:00 am

      I’ve used this recipe for the third year in a row. The first time I over-cooked, but since then I have not had a problem. I’m not an expert and I gave up on the candy thermometer but have had good luck. I use the ice water method to judge when it’s done, I also use the color method. When the mixture is a deep amber, it’s done.

  • Mark January 19, 2014, 6:52 pm

    I’ve never cooked any cakes or pies, I’m pretty pedestrian when it comes to the kitchen, but when my neighbor gave me some salted caramels that she had made – I just had to try. So after looking at this recipe for a couple of weeks, and getting all the things I needed (I’ve never used corn syrup and thought parchment paper came from a Nicholas Cage movie) I finally gave it a shot.
    Your step by step instructions and video made it both easy and delicious. Thanks guys.

  • Lindsey January 19, 2014, 5:28 pm

    I followed directions provided in recipe. Was very careful to bring to correct temperatures, but caramels turned out very soft and beige in color. I don’t think 320 degrees is hot enough for the first temp. I read Krista’s comment about bringing first temp up to 350 degrees and used that as a guideline on my second attempt. Caramels were darker in color and had a better flavor. Thanks for the tip Krista!

  • Catherine January 16, 2014, 3:17 pm

    This came out beautifully! First time I’ve ever made caramel and it was perfect. Many thanks!

  • krista December 27, 2013, 9:16 pm

    I have had a few failed attempts at making caramels recently. I have successfully made caramel sauce, but I’m still figuring out caramels. A few things I have learned:

    1. On the first heat up, you should bring the temperature up to 350, not 320. If you only bring it to 320, the caramels will be very light in color and too sweet with no depth of flavor. Do NOT go over 350, though, or they will burn. It is a fine line. This heat up is where the flavor comes from, and 320 would just make a super sweet beige colored mess. If you don’t believe me, look at the color while it is cooking. Caramel is supposed to be a deep amber color, not the beige that 320 will give you. Your eyes are just as effective as your thermometer on this step.

    2. After adding butter/cream, on the second heat up, start stirring before it hits your desired final temperature. If you don’t, you may heat it unevenly and make a batch like I did that was mostly too soft to cut into candies that had a hard candy area settle to the bottom of the end product. Delicious, but not the caramels you are looking for. Pity I had to eat it with a spoon! Hah. This heat up is where you get your texture from, and you want it to heat evenly.

  • Nicole Posadas December 26, 2013, 1:03 pm

    I made 8 batches as Christmas gifts for co-workers and the raving has not stopped! I had to make a few more batches to meet all the demand! Thank you!

    I did double the recipe eventually and it was fine. I also took it up to 245 degrees because the batches at 240 degrees were too soft to wrap. My brother keeps telling people it’s an old family recipe and I won’t share! (though I do print a copy it the recipe for anyone asks.) Thank you!

  • Jonathan Clark December 25, 2013, 10:30 am

    Made these for my wife for Christmas. She loved them. Thanks for the great recipe!

  • Jennifer December 23, 2013, 3:07 pm

    So…I tried theses….They look great….and then I had a bite! So…tasted like I bit into a stick of butter….not sure where I went wrong here!

    • Joanne December 30, 2013, 1:05 pm

      We’re not sure, either. They should be sweet like caramel. Sorry they didn’t work out for you!

  • Steven December 22, 2013, 9:00 pm

    My daughter and I just used another recipe (from Mark Bittman’s book, How To Cook Everything) that called for mixing all of the ingredients (except the vanilla) at the beginning, prior to cooking on the stove. The result: very delicious caramel, but far too soft to cut. Is there anything that I can do at this point to firm them up, or am I just left with a delicious caramel-like sauce?



    • Joanne December 30, 2013, 12:25 pm

      HI Steven, It’s really hard for us to say since we have never tried that particular recipe. I’d just stick with it and enjoy the sauce.

  • Kelli Paffenroth December 22, 2013, 6:27 pm

    I made it the first time no problem but didn’t cook log enough and they were too soft. Then I tried again, doubled the recipe and it crystallized. :( decided to try again and not double it and still had crystallization. Ugh. Will keep trying!!!!

    • Joanne December 30, 2013, 12:26 pm

      Bummer! Make sure you don;t have any sugar crystals stuck to the sides of the pan while the caramels cook. They can cause crystallization, too. If you find some, use a wet pastry brush to knock them down into the caramel.

  • Kasey December 22, 2013, 10:09 am

    I made these last night – LOVE the step by step instructions and video. They came out really well except for one duh move by me that I’ll post here for the more novice candy makers attempting this recipe – I read “parchment paper” and without thinking about it consciously figured wax paper would do. Uh, no! I was able to peel it off the outer edges but the middle part is slow going. Still tasty though!

    • Joanne December 30, 2013, 1:12 pm

      Oh no! Well, now you know for next time 😉

    • Gloria July 17, 2014, 1:19 pm

      I use a silicone pan from wilton – available at AC moore – makes squares that are 1″ x 1″ square – then you can pop them out when cool…. no greasing or parchment needed.

  • Jonathan Clark December 21, 2013, 12:07 pm

    Have you ever used this recipe and put sea salt right into the caramels? I’d like to try it as a surprise for my wife and wondered about the best time to introduce the sea salt and how much to use. I used to buy them for from a small local shop but they’ve gone out of business and I can’t find them anywhere.

    • Joanne December 30, 2013, 12:30 pm

      Sure! You can add the salt to the cream mixture. It works really well.

  • Tyler & Bailey's Mom December 19, 2013, 9:31 pm

    I love you! These are AMAZING and so EASY! Your photos, tips and step-by-step instructions were soooo helpful (I have never attempted making candy before…always a lil intimidated)! I wanted to re-create a salted caramel we had at a cool place in Seattle called The Swinery, so I added some minced, cooked bacon before pouring into my loaf pan and then I sprinkled with some bourbon smoked salt after they cooled. Thanks for sharing a great recipe! :) Happy Holidays!

  • Sarah December 17, 2013, 11:23 pm

    Thank you so much for this simple and elegant caramel recipe! Made some this weekend as gifts and people seemed to love them. For the first batch I followed the recipe and it turned out fine. For the second batch I tried doubling the recipe and this worked for me. For the doubled recipe, I used a 3 quart saucepan and a 9″ x 13″ pan. I cooked it on a NuWave induction burner on medium to medium high heat for most of the process. Brought the final mixture’s temperature up to 245 degrees for slightly firmer caramels. Cooking times for the doubled batch were comparable to the single batch, just approximately 2-3 minutes longer at each stage.

    • Joanne December 18, 2013, 11:47 am

      Thanks for sharing your experiences Sarah.

  • Carolyn December 14, 2013, 9:19 pm

    I have never made candy before. I followed the recipe exactly and made 2 perfect batches. I will be mailing them along with holiday gifts, if my family and I can stop eating them. They are wonderful!

  • Carrie December 14, 2013, 4:56 pm

    Snowing heavily in the US northeast today. Dare I try them?

  • zellie December 13, 2013, 2:33 pm

    fir the salted carmels-you did not say what kind of oil you used to oil the pan and the paper

    • Joanne December 16, 2013, 12:44 pm

      We usually use olive oil, but you can use any lightly flavored or non-flavored oil.

  • Stacia December 11, 2013, 11:53 pm

    I made 3 batches of this recipe after watching the video at least 3 times and following written instructions, and the caramels had the right texture but not a very strong caramel flavor. Took the candy to a party and another caramel which had brown sugar in the recipe was much more flavorful and popular (this was a Christmas candy making party.) Overall, it looked and tasted bland.

    This recipe is easy to follow and the salt did help the flavor but I will continue to search for a better tasting recipe.

  • Michael December 11, 2013, 2:48 pm

    I’m planning on making these this weekend, but I was hoping to do a second batch with a little Baileys added in. Do you know what I should reduce to make it work?

    • Adam December 12, 2013, 3:02 pm

      Hi Michael, We really are not sure since we have never tried that. It all depends on how much Baileys you add — if it is a splash, you might get away with not reducing anything. If you try it, we’d love to hear how it worked out for you. Good luck!

  • Emily December 11, 2013, 12:37 am

    You are awesome! Recipe was perfect. Tips to boot! Taste is great. My favorite sweet is now a part of my cooking, and that is a treat. Thanks!

    • Adam December 11, 2013, 9:40 am

      Thanks so much! So glad the recipe was a hit.

  • Jess December 10, 2013, 4:39 pm

    Thank you much for this recipe! I am shocked that I was able to make caramel for the very first time without any trouble. I was wondering if you had any suggestions about how to add other flavors – chocolate, coffee… would you add them with cream? Thanks!

    • Joanne December 13, 2013, 10:12 am

      Yes, add extras to the cream mixture. So far, we have tried cocoa powder, vanilla extract and vanilla bean. All were delicious.

  • linda December 9, 2013, 9:39 pm

    a few questions. wanting to make caramel apple with this. will it work? planning to do some fancy stuff with grandkids this coming weekend for christmas. also how many apples will make and can you make ahead of time and remelt it for our apples?

    • Adam December 11, 2013, 9:53 am

      Hi Linda, we have never tried making caramel apples with this caramel recipe. We think it should be fine. If you do try it, we’d love to hear how it worked out.

  • lulu December 9, 2013, 1:48 pm

    hi!!, love the recipe, I just wonder if I can use this one for cover up apples….

    • Adam December 11, 2013, 9:52 am

      Hi Lulu, We have never tried using this for apples, but it should work. If you try it, we’d love to hear how it went.

  • Kathy Burns December 8, 2013, 9:08 pm

    Hi, I wanted to update you on my results because I felt the cooking temps were a bit too high. I stepped away from the kitchen for a few moments and burned the entire batch. I had not added the butter and cream so it wasn’t too bad. I mentioned that when making candy I don’t relay on thermometers and go by color and the water test. This time I had complete success. If using a thermometer, I would say it’s done when it says “soft ball”, unless you prefer a harder caramel. Thank you for the recipe, it’s a keeper.

    • Kathy Burns December 11, 2013, 3:29 am

      The recipe was a huge hit at work and I just made another batch. This time they came out even better. I do not rely on the candy thermometer for the most part and judge whether not the candy is done based on color and the”water test”.

      Candy making is definitely a science, chemistry. Weather makes a difference with most recipes, but I’d say it affects baking more than candy making.

      • Adam December 11, 2013, 9:40 am

        So glad they worked out for you Kathy.

  • Kathy Burns December 8, 2013, 8:03 pm

    I’m trying this recipe for the first time although I’ve made caramels many times. Although I use a candy thermometer, I believe you should add cooking times to your recipe, 320 degrees sounds high. I’ve not always depended on temperature, but relay on color and “soft ball” water test. My thermometer says 320 is “hard crack”. I live in a very dry climate and I’ve always believed humidity affects cooking and baking. wish me luck. :)

    • Joanne December 9, 2013, 12:04 pm

      Good luck Kathy! Hope everything turns out well for you! Relying on your on intuition is always important in cooking :)

  • EW December 8, 2013, 12:55 am

    I’ve made English Toffee several time and never come close to getting to 320 degrees F as indicated in this recipe. I tried it and the toffee came out so hard you couldn’t eat it. A waste of ingredients. I even checked my thermometer afterwards to confirm it was working correctly, it was. TOO HOT!

    • Joanne December 9, 2013, 12:11 pm

      You only want to bring the sugar syrup to 320 then add the cream and butter and cook to 240. 310 to 320 is technically the caramelization stage. Sorry things did not work out for you, the caramels should be quite soft when done, not hard.

  • Caroline December 2, 2013, 11:36 am

    My daughter and I made these caramels for this recipe: Chocolate caramel cheesecake bites at land o’ It worked really well and I was pleased I didn’t have to go buy caramels. The leftovers were wrapped in wax paper, but didn’t last long. They were so amazing! We decided they’ll be perfect for teacher gifts this year! Thank you for the video and step by step instructions.
    It really took away our fears of candy making!

  • Crystal November 28, 2013, 9:09 pm

    Would these caramels work well in a batch of brownies?

    • Joanne November 29, 2013, 11:10 am

      Yes, definitely!

  • Alison LoBasso November 27, 2013, 2:45 am

    I sooooo appreciated all the step by step instructions. The video was great and the tip for cleaning, Loved it! I just made my first batch and this will be my first attempt ever in making caramels so I am a bit excited <3 Thanks again. Can you guys make an amazing toffee like Almond Roca? I get so nervous with so many of the recipes in attempting this.

    Thanks so much – Alison

  • lottie November 26, 2013, 2:24 am

    These are pretty good, easy to make, they passed the kid test….. better than Werthers Originals.

  • Jennifer November 23, 2013, 1:41 pm

    Hi. I want to try making these caramels and I was wondering if regular butter other than unsalted butter would work since that’s all I have right now. Thanks :)

    • Adam November 25, 2013, 3:34 pm

      Yes, salted butter should work just fine.

  • Chung-Ah | Damn Delicious November 18, 2013, 11:40 pm

    Thanks for all the tips and tutorial – salted caramels is something I’ve been wanting to try for years!

  • Josh November 18, 2013, 11:04 pm

    Can i add pumpkin spice/pecans to this? What could i add to make it more christmas themed?

    • Joanne November 20, 2013, 8:59 am

      Hi Josh — Yes, you should be fine. We have added spices before (just add to the butter and cream mixture). Nuts should also work. We suggest you add them at the very end, just before pouring into the pan to cool.

  • Heidi November 15, 2013, 8:27 pm

    Any tips for making these at altitude? I live at about 6200 feet.

    • Joanne November 18, 2013, 11:26 am

      Hi Heidi, Since we’re not at a high altitude, it is hard for us to say. You will need to reduce the temperatures to accomodate. Maybe 12 to 13 degrees less? We did a little research and found this article that will hopefully help you out

      • Heidi November 21, 2013, 9:27 pm

        Thanks much!

  • Sherry November 10, 2013, 8:22 pm

    I’m by no means a great cook nor baker (but I LOVE to try!)…just wanted to preface this review with that information. :) Needless to say, I followed the directions exactly and they turned out absolutely delicious. I did not let it boil long enough at the 240 degrees though (after adding the cream mixer, it heated right up to 240 in no time at all, so I ended the cooking process there) so my caramels were definitely very soft. The hardened in the fridge but husband didn’t like them cold so we ate them soft and gooey. But the taste was TO DIE FOR!! So easy and so good, definitely making them again but cooking longer at 240. Thanks!!

    • Joanne November 11, 2013, 10:58 am

      Glad they worked out for you. Next time, try cooking at a slightly lower temperature — it should take 5 to 10 minutes for the caramel to hit 240.

  • Dave D. October 28, 2013, 2:20 pm

    I made these twice so far. The first time I messed up. Even though I read directions 3 times, I still messed up. If you boil for 1 min with lid on then add butter n cream mixture, continue heating until mixture turns amber then as soon as it starts darkening, remove and pour into pan, you’ll get TOFFEE!! (I found out the hard way)

    2nd time I made this I made sure not to mess up and they turned out perfect! I heated to 244 deg and got exactly the texture I wanted. I was afraid that 240 would give me too soft so I heated a little more. Glad my instinct was correct.

    I am thinking of adding vanilla during the last stage of cooking.

    • Joanne October 30, 2013, 9:47 am

      Hi Dave — so glad you eventually were able to make caramels you enjoyed :) If you want to add vanilla, just add it to the cream/butter mixture.

  • Stephanie September 15, 2013, 5:27 pm

    Hi Joanne,
    Tried the recipe twice and both times the liquid never got dark and bubbled uncontrollably spilling out of the pot. Where I live it’s impossible to find heavy cream so I created my own homemade heavy cream (3/4 cup milk and 1/3 cup butter, makes 1 cup therefore cutting it in half). Could my homemade cream be the problem? Will the recipe still work if I substitute it with whipping cream (35%)?
    Thanks in advance

    • Joanne September 16, 2013, 11:19 am

      Try whipping cream — it should work for you. Not sure why the caramel overflowed. We make ours in a 1-quart saucepan. It bubbles close to the top, but not over. You could try a slightly larger pot (just make sure the thermometer can read the mixture below). Hope that helps!

  • Jon September 8, 2013, 1:52 pm

    I think my candy thermometer might be reading high — I heated mine to 240, and they came out REALLY soft. So I tossed them back in the pot and cooked them at 245ish for a little while. Some of the butter separated (I think maybe I changed the temperature too fast?) but after skimming it off and adding the sea salt, I had some fantastic caramels.

    One question: no other recipe I could find involved raising the sugar to 320. Why do you do that? And why doesn’t that end up making the candy really hard? Is it heating the milk and cream that makes it hard, or what?

    • Joanne September 8, 2013, 3:12 pm

      The cream and butter add fat, helping them stay soft (and delicious). By heating to 320, the caramels will turn golden brown and “caramelize.” Sugar doesn’t actually caramelize until it hits around 300 degrees. Glad the caramels worked out for you.

  • Nile September 5, 2013, 7:20 pm

    These caramels are amazing. The are really good on their own, but the caramel makes really good turtles. Just lay four pecans in a cross shape then pour a heaping spoonful of the fresh caramel on each cluster then drizzle melted chocolate over them.

  • Bud Stockwell August 4, 2013, 2:30 pm

    Great job with your recipe and hints. I make lot of caramels and you nailed it. If anyone heeds your advice then they should nail it!

  • Andrew July 27, 2013, 9:51 pm

    What kind of oil do you use to oil the pan?

    • Joanne July 31, 2013, 12:26 pm

      Anything will little flavor will do — canola and vegetable work great. (Although, we’ve used olive oil before and it was fine).

  • Liv July 23, 2013, 5:29 pm

    What can I use instead of corn syrup in Australia??

    • Adam July 24, 2013, 12:24 pm

      Hi Liv, You should be able to use honey as well as Golden or rice syrup. We have not tried it yet, though. Here are two recipes that use something different to corn syrup: Salted Butter Caramels (a little harder than ours) and Honey Lavender Caramels

      It is on our to-do list to experiment with our own recipe as well. Good Luck!

      • lottie November 26, 2013, 2:00 pm

        Liv, corn syrup is available in Australia, health food stores, specialty food shops, David Jones food hall and I would also say The Essential Ingredient has it as well.

  • Lily July 11, 2013, 7:55 pm

    Is it ok to use dark corn syrup instead of light? We never have much use for corn syrup, so I don’t want to go out and buy another bottle. Thanks!

    • Joanne July 12, 2013, 9:59 am

      We have never tried using dark corn syrup. It should be okay, but the caramels will be darker so watch the thermometer closely and do not go by color while cooking.

  • Emily July 8, 2013, 6:00 pm

    Just made these and they turned out perfectly! Just a little softer than I would like but ill defanety be making them again. Next time I’m going to try bringing the temperature a little higher for harder candy but other than that, they’re delicious! Thank you for sharing such a great recipe :)

    • Emily July 8, 2013, 6:03 pm

      It also did rain this morning so that probably had something to do with the softness as well

  • Alexandria July 1, 2013, 7:29 pm

    I did every thing according to the instructions but they came out so light. When I put the cream and butter mixture in it only came down to 250! From 320! I was so confused. I even let the warm butter and cream mixtur set aside for about 15 minutes brfore starting the sugar so I knew it had cooled down a bit.
    Any help?

    • Adam July 6, 2013, 6:02 pm

      Hi Alexandria, So sorry things didn’t work out. It’s difficult for us to tell what went wrong however, our best guess it that your thermometer needs to be re-calibrated (ours has acted up and caused lots of issues in the past). The mixture should have dropped more than it did. This helpful link shows you how to calibrate candy thermometers:

      Hope that helps!

  • Paul June 17, 2013, 2:24 pm

    This is one of a few online recipes for caramel that really is caramel — caramelized sugar. Most of the recipes I’ve found online are actually Dulce de Leche, in which the protein in milk has been browned, not the sugar. Sugar begins caramelizing above 310 F, whereas the protein in milk begins browning at temperatures below 290 F. The recipes using Dulce de Leche in place of caramelized sugar never get hot enough to caramelize the sugar. Of course, Dulce de Leche is REALLY good — but I was looking for a recipe in which the sugar was caramelized. Thank you.

  • Isabella M April 20, 2013, 11:02 pm

    So I did this all the right ingridients, but when i was heating the sugar syrup and water it burned way before it was at 320 why did this happen????

    • Joanne April 22, 2013, 12:48 pm

      Hi Isabella, It’s hard to say, but pan size and the stove top temperature could be to blame. You want to use a small pan and keep the temperature around medium heat (even lower if you think your stove overcompensates with heat).

  • Sandra April 16, 2013, 4:13 am

    I was wondering if I sprinkle fleur de sel on the caramels before wrapping in cellophane twisting wrap, will the salt get absorbed and make the caramels turn grainy from the slight moisture in the salt. I find that Le Saunier De Camargue Fleur De Sel which is what I usually use to finish with is slightly moist whereas Maldon flakes seem to be drier and maybe I should use that product. I know that cellophane twist wrap keeps the caramels pretty airtight and don’t want the caramels to absorb the salt and get grainy/wet. Have you tried finishing salt on top and then wrapping in cellophane and how long can you keep them with a smooth silky texture? I need to make several hundred for a wedding and would like to make a couple weeks ahead.
    Thank you!

    • Joanne April 16, 2013, 12:30 pm

      Hi Sandra — These caramels never last long in our home. The longer the caramels sit, the higher possibility of them turning grainy. We suggest keeping the caramels wrapped in the fridge until you are ready to give them out and wouldn’t make them more than 10 days in advance.

  • Monica April 2, 2013, 3:21 pm

    Hi Joanne — This recipe sounds wonderful. I have a question regarding butter — do you have experience working with different brands of butter and if so, have you noticed any issues (especially regarding moisture content)? The reason I ask is that I’m going to attempt to make lactose-free caramels if possible — and this will probably require that I make my own butter. (I buy lactase enzyme drops and add them to cream with good results; am hoping I can use that cream to make butter.) However, I’ve never made butter before and remember reading that it’s important to remove the whey when making it — and I’m worried I won’t remove enough or the moisture content of the homemade butter might be higher than that of commercial butter. Do you think this might pose a problem when making caramels? Thanks.

    • Joanne April 3, 2013, 5:53 pm

      Hi Monica — We aren’t 100% sure — Though we think you should be okay. If you’re up to it, you should experiment. We’re more concerned with fat content than moisture content for the caramels — in fact, quite a bit of the moisture is cooked out.

      • Paul June 17, 2013, 2:34 pm

        Because the temperature of the candy is highly dependent upon the moisture content, any extra moisture would be boiled out in the effort to attain the proper temperature — it would just take longer.

        Commercial butter is 20% whey. If you’re really concerned about the moisture content of your homemade butter, then do this. Make the butter and reserve the whey. Then melt the butter. The melted butterfat will separate from the incorporated whey and float on top. Add or remove whey and/or butterfat until you get the correct volume and correct percentages 80/20.

  • Carole March 18, 2013, 8:19 pm

    It is a good recipe but my attempt turned out very hard and I couldn’t cut it. What did I do wrong?

    • Joanne March 19, 2013, 10:37 am

      Hi Carole — It is possible the temperature of the caramel was too high while cooking the sugar syrup with the cream and butter. The temperatures we stated in the recipe should make for a soft caramel — Maybe your candy thermometer is uncalibrated?

  • WWMC March 18, 2013, 6:21 pm

    I just made this recipe and it’s cooling on my counter! It looks amazing already, I can’t wait to try it! Thanks Joanne!

    • Adam March 18, 2013, 6:52 pm

      Waiting is the hard part :) You will have to let us know how they turned out.

  • diana March 17, 2013, 12:33 pm

    Thanks for the recipe, can you change corn syrup for something else?

  • rushgirl2112 February 22, 2013, 2:00 pm

    Thank you so much for posting this wonderful recipe! I’m a beginner at candymaking, and this was super easy for me.

    I’ve made several batches now, and the only problem I’ve had is with temperature in the first stage. My first batch of sugar syrup was burned by 310. I’ve tested my thermometer at boiling temps (spot on at 212), so I’m not sure if it’s an inaccuracy problem with my thermometer at higher temps or not, especially because the temps in the second stage are just right. 240 makes a soft caramel, 245 a little harder.

    Anyway, since then I watch the sugar syrup carefully and add the cream/butter when the syrup is a medium, golden amber color. This happens on my candy thermomter at around 295-300. Every batch I’ve made this way has turned out perfectly.

    Oh, and I also tried adding vanilla as suggested, and the results are simply heavenly. An absolute keeper recipe, and I’m still astounded at how very easy it is to do. Thank you!!

  • Stephanie February 21, 2013, 8:17 am

    Thank you for providing such a detailed and informative recipe! Your video is great. I followed your instructions exactly, including setting my stove temperature dial to the exact same position that you set it to in the video. In doing this, I found that I reached my temperatures at the same times you state they should be reached.

    The caramels were incredible. I put a little salt in my pan to start, with the water and sugar and corn syrup, and I skipped the salt on top of the caramel at the end. After the setting time, I cut them into squares, popped them in the freezer for 10 minutes, and then dipped/covered them in dark chocolate. Then I sprinkled just a touch of fancy pants salt on top of each one after the chocolate had barely set. The end result was pretty impressive. They looked like a $50 box of chocolate caramels, and tasted even better because they were so fresh! Even using organic ingredients, these cost under $5 to make, including the chocolate. What a fantastic gift idea! Thank you!

  • Louisa February 19, 2013, 10:01 pm

    Very tasty. My stomach is upset from eating too much. Surprisingly easy to make. Candy making scares most people, I think, but this recipe was very easy to fallow. I love how simple caramel is. You just have to be careful and prepared ahead of time. Thank you for the tasty recipe.

  • Muppet February 17, 2013, 11:23 pm

    This recipe is very good. It took a lot longer to get the sugar to 320 degrees and then took forever for it to get to 245 degrees after adding the butter mixture. I think it took me over about an hour to complete. I let them sit in the pan for 4 hours before cutting them and they were still a little soft. I’ll have to cook it a little higher than 245 degrees next time to get them a little harder.

  • Therese Given February 14, 2013, 4:58 pm

    I “googled” salted caramels recipe and found your recipe… so glad I did! You did such a thorough job of explaining everything. I already have a tried & true recipe I use but your video helped me with avoiding crystallization and the other important factors in the caramel making process. Pinning this so I can refer back. Thanks!

  • Melissa Farley January 27, 2013, 11:43 pm

    AWESOME recipe! Perfect consistency…we were very happy! We had to use waxed paper to line the pan because we ran out of parchment (oops) but were still able to get the caramel off fairly easily.

    One question…we did have a mildly burned taste even though we were absolutely accurate with our temperature readings, and we are wondering if this could be due to the high altitude here (4000ft). We were considering trying to lower the temperature after adding the cream and butter to 235 instead if 240 when pulling it off the stove. What do you think?

  • Laura January 25, 2013, 5:00 pm

    Superb. Sublime. Divine. Take your pick or all three, because these caramels are worth it.

    I made these once a few weeks ago and loved them. Today I tried another recipe from someone else and there is no comparison between this recipe and the other one. The caramels here are truly wonderful.

    Thank you for the beautiful and well-written recipe and video.

  • Terri January 3, 2013, 1:06 am

    Hello I wanted to know if I can double triple or quadruple this recipe and get same results? Thank you,

    A caramel fanatic :)

    • Joanne January 4, 2013, 10:01 am

      Hi Terri, We have not tried this– we like the smaller batch since it fits a small saucepan well. If you do try tripling the recipe, timing will be very different, but the temperatures you are required to reach will be the same. Also, be careful with the saucepan you choose. Remember that when you add the cream and butter the caramel will bubble violently and if the pan is too small, you risk the caramel overflowing. So the pan needs to be large enough to accommodate. With that said, it also needs to accommodate the candy thermometer.

      • Bria November 26, 2013, 5:26 pm

        I tried doubling the recipe and even though they tasted ok, the color is very light and they are very creamy. I made a second batch not doubling and they turned out a perfect amber color and the texture was great! I wouldn’t recommend doubling. Plus this recipe is so easy that they take no time to make!

  • Leah January 1, 2013, 5:01 pm

    Thank you for the recipe and the video. I tried to make caramels this weekend (using another recipe) and I think I burned the sugar solution because it turned dark and the temperature shot up to ~360 once I added the cream and butter, then dropped down to ~220 within a few seconds. The consistency of the caramels was lovely but the taste was awful – entirely bitter. I had to throw them out. I’m going to try again right now with your recipe. I am using unsalted butter and I’m wondering if I should add salt to the liquid at some point to compensate (assuming your recipe calls for salted butter). Also, what kind of oil do you use on the pan? Is it olive oil? Do you think that affects the taste? Thank you!

    • Adam January 7, 2013, 5:13 pm

      Yes, we used olive oil. We really have not noticed any flavor from it, however, you could certainly use something like a vegetable or canola oil that has no flavor.

      For the butter, we used unsalted butter. We have amended the recipe to make that more clear. Thanks!

  • alice eller December 31, 2012, 4:42 pm

    Your video was great, very imformative. I’m going to try this recipe. thanks very much !

  • Shara December 23, 2012, 2:59 pm

    These are the best ever! Recipe and instructions – amazingly easy to follow and bang on!

    I would like to add a litle vanila – how much and when would I add it? Thanks so much.

    • Joanne December 27, 2012, 1:06 pm

      Hi there! Add a teaspoon of vanilla extract to the melted butter and warm cream then follow the recipe as stated.

  • Laurie December 23, 2012, 1:56 pm

    I made these yesterday. I had never made caramel before and thanks to your detailed instructions, they came out perfectly. I’m bringing them to my boyfriend’s family along with some fudge and toffe.

    Thank you. I think I’m going to make a second batch to have on hand.

  • Heather December 23, 2012, 9:50 am

    Great recipe! Easy and delicious! I gave caramels to friends as gifts for Christmas and everyone raved about them.
    Thank you!!!

  • Jane Templeton December 22, 2012, 8:25 pm

    I have made many carmel reciepes and was looking for a small batch this year. I tried this one and it is wonderful. The tips are very helpful and I was finished in about 45 minutes. The result was one of the finest carmels I have ever made, I got compliments and requests for the rec. from everyone who tried it. Turns out I needed a bigger batch but I will keep this one and make it for many years. Thanks so much! Jane

  • Laurie December 22, 2012, 1:47 pm

    I just made this and it is setting. I timed it wrong in that I need to go out at about the 3 hour mark. Should I cut it before going out or will it be ok later tonight or tomorrow. Wasn’t sure if it was a set 3,5 ours or at least.

    Thanks. Looks get and thanks for the step by step instruction.

    • Adam December 22, 2012, 3:22 pm

      Hi Laurie, You can probably cut after 2 1/2 hours — just check to see if the caramels are too soft. If they are, place them into the fridge for 10 to 20 minutes then cut.

  • Katharine Sherwood December 21, 2012, 4:14 pm

    Thank you for the step by step. My first batch was a little to soft but the second was perfect. First time with candy and I’m pretty proud of myself.

  • Amanda Marie December 21, 2012, 6:28 am

    Thanks so much for going into such detail. I made these tonight and they are just what I wanted. Awesome!

  • amyq December 20, 2012, 4:29 pm

    I have followed your recipe and have a question. After raising the sugar mixture to 320 degrees and then adding the cream/butter. You recommend cooking until the temperature is at 240 or 245 degrees. however, my thermometer says the candy mixture is currently at 350 degrees. How do I cook this mixture to a lower temperature? Is the cream/butter mixture suppose to lower the temp below 240 in order for one to cook up to that temp?

    thanks for you help

    • Joanne December 20, 2012, 4:46 pm

      Hi there, Yes, as you add the cream and butter mixture the sugar temperature will drop below 240 degrees F. Then, it should take 5 to 10 minutes to get the temperature to 240 degrees.

      • Joy December 23, 2013, 1:31 pm

        This happened to me too. I followed the recipe exactly, but when I added the butter/cream mixture the temperature only dropped to 258. I pulled it off the stove immediately and didn’t cook it further. The residue that was left in the pan became pretty brittle, so I’m assuming I’ll end up with hard caramels instead of soft caramels, but it’s still setting up so I don’t know the ultimate result. For the next batch I’ll try putting the butter/cream mixture in the fridge as Emily suggests.
        The only other factor that might affect it is the weather–it’s raining outside. However, since I live in Seattle, short of only making caramels in August, I don’t think I can get around that.

        • Joanne December 30, 2013, 6:58 pm

          HI Joy, Sorry that happened to you. Caramel making can be trying at times. Weather is a possibility, but probably not the issue here. Emily’s suggestion is a good one. Also, make sure you cooking the sugar syrup over medium-low to medium heat. Hope the caramels eventually turned out :)

    • Mugsy January 24, 2013, 2:07 am

      This is exactly what happened to me. I had to take the pan off of the flame to get the temp to drop to 240. The caramels were lovely but a bit too soft, probably because the mixture didn’t cook long enough to ”
      reach 240″. Will try again!

      • Emily December 18, 2013, 9:56 pm

        To help bring the temperature down, I usually leave the butter cream mixture in the fridge while I’m cooking everything else and when I need it I take it out and use it as usual.

    • Gloria July 17, 2014, 1:17 pm

      I know this is an old thread – but the problem wasn’t the mixture being too hot – it was your thermometer….. i personally “shake down” the thermometer below 200 and then put it back in the pot so you can see the true temp.

  • Ally December 13, 2012, 11:19 pm

    Since I have a couple diabetic family members, would substituting sugar with blue agave sweetner work?

    • Adam December 17, 2012, 12:33 pm

      Hi Ally,
      We would love to be able to let you know of a substitution that would be more diabetic friendly but we have limited information on the subject. If you find a substitution that works please let us know.

  • JulieD December 13, 2012, 10:04 pm

    Great video!! I need to try these! :)

  • Karley December 10, 2012, 6:35 pm

    My carmels are turning out very light in color. I’m going to right at 320, is there something I am doing wrong?

    • Joanne December 11, 2012, 8:39 am

      When making these caramels, you will need to bring the mixture to two separate temperatures – First, bring to 320 degrees F. At 320 the sugar syrup should be almost clear with a light amber ring around the edge. Once you add the cream and butter you will then cook the caramel until 240 degrees F (another 5 – 10 minutes). This is when you will start to see the golden caramel color appear. When they are done, the caramels are a light golden brown and soft.

      • Marcia December 5, 2013, 8:22 pm

        Hi, The original recipe says to heat the mixture to 240˚ for a softer caramel or 245˚ for a slightly harder type. In this note Joanne says 260˚. Help! Which is it? My caramels were a bit too soft and a cooked it to 240˚. Should I have waited until the candy thermometer read 260˚? Thanks.

        • Joanne December 9, 2013, 12:12 pm

          Whoops, you are right. We made a mistake in our comment response. It should have read 240. Sorry about that!

  • Chris Dowsican December 8, 2012, 2:47 pm

    I make my own Salted Peanut Brittle from my Grandmother recipe and can’t wait to try these. I have found that if i put a glass or measuring cup of HOT water nexto to my cooking area and put my thermometer straight in it when i’m done with the first batch then when i’m ready to do the second batch my thermometer is clean and ready to go.

  • Matt December 5, 2012, 5:21 pm

    Hi, Joanne.

    I’ve just started making caramels based on a recipe I saw in the New York Times. Their recipe says heat to 245, and produced really soft caramels that were a bit too soft for my liking. Yours says to heat to 260 and will produce harder caramels.

    It seems like that implies that there’s a direct relationship between the target temperature and the resulting candy’s softness/hardness. Would you say that that’s correct?

    • Paul June 17, 2013, 2:51 pm


      Temperature and moisture content are directly related. The temperature increases as the water content decreases. Further, softness and water content are also directly related. As water content decreases, the end product becomes harder.

      Thus, as temperature increases, water content decreases, and hardness increases.

      • Paul June 17, 2013, 3:07 pm

        Essentially any candy recipe can be used to make multiple products.

        Stop cooking at a lower temperature and you’ll get a caramel syrup.

        Stop cooking at the suggested temperature and make caramels.

        Cook it a little longer and make taffy — although the high protein content will make it difficult to pull and a lot of the fat will separate out during the pulling process.

        Cook it even longer to make a hard candy.

  • Jirish February 4, 2012, 7:02 pm

    These look great and I really want to make them. Here’s my hesitation: I have half-and-half and no heavy cream. Will it work? Thanks in advance.

    • Joanne December 8, 2012, 1:41 pm

      Hi Jirish, We have never tried using half and half, however, we recommend using heavy cream for the best results.

      • Paul June 17, 2013, 2:46 pm

        Half-and-half will make an acceptable product — just not this one.

        Because half-and-half is half milk (by definition), it contains substantially more water and protein than does heavy cream. Thus, the fat content will be lower and the protein content will be higher.

        The increased protein will result in a tougher end product that will not dissolve as quickly in your mouth and will required more chewing.

        The excess water will boil out and will just increase the cooking time.

  • beti December 9, 2011, 11:18 pm

    I love making caramels, they are so easy and delicious!

  • JavelinWarrior December 9, 2011, 9:32 am

    This post is absolutely fetish-worthy and I’ve been inspired to include it in my Friday Food Fetish blog. If you have any objections, please let me know

  • Shil December 7, 2011, 9:26 pm

    That looks amazing.

  • Jennifer (Delicieux) December 6, 2011, 2:15 am

    Yum!!! Can you send me a batch, pretty please!!! I love salted caramel!!! In fact, love is not strong enough to denote how I feel about salted caramel!!

    I love your step by step instructions too. So helpful when dealing with things like caramel.

  • Rachel @ Bakerita December 5, 2011, 5:36 pm

    Wow, these look super delicious.
    Can’t wait to try this recipe…my last attempt at caramels turned out a little too hard for my liking, despite following the recipe exactly.

    • Joanne December 5, 2011, 6:37 pm

      Rachel – These are still on the harder side. Once you have them in your mouth, they soften up, but just so you know, they aren’t “soft.” Nevertheless, they are delicious! Let us know what you think :)

  • the wicked noodle December 5, 2011, 8:59 am

    Gorgeous as always! Would make such a great Christmas gift.

  • Anna December 5, 2011, 2:27 am

    I love butter in almost anything and everything…I am intrigued at how flavorful this will be after adding salt in the candy mixture. Wanna try this myself. How nice of you to share a sweet treat!


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