Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

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This caramel sauce recipe is so simple, you’ll never want store-bought again! There are only 5 all-natural ingredients that all go into the pot at once and then you whisk until it’s thickened to your liking. How easy is that?! You’ll learn how to make caramel sauce in no time!

I’ve been disappointed many times looking for caramel that didn’t have high fructose corn syrup, or artificial colors and flavors, or other ingredients I couldn’t pronounce. It’s crazy! This caramel recipe is not just easy, but it tastes amazing. Nothing beats homemade caramel sauce!

Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

I learned how to make caramel sauce from Pioneer Woman years ago and have been making this salted version ever since! The little bit of salt in this recipe balances the flavors perfectly so don’t skip it! There’s a reason why salted caramel is “a thing.”

Caramel Sauce Ingredients:

1 cup (200 grams) light brown sugar, packed
4 Tbsp unsalted butter*
1 tsp sea salt, or to taste
1/2 cup half and half (or use equal parts heavy cream and milk)
1 Tbsp real vanilla extract

*If using salted butter, cut the salt to 1/2 tsp or add it to taste.

Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

To make the Easiest Salted Caramel Sauce:

1. Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and simmer over low heat, whisking constantly or until thickened and no longer watery (6-9 minutes). Keep in mind it thickens more as it cools.

Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

P.S. That’s homemade vanilla extract you see up there. You only need to ingredients for it – so easy! It also makes for a great homemade gift! 

Can I Make Caramel Sauce Ahead?

Homemade caramel sauce can easily be made ahead and we love keeping a jar in the refrigerator. Caramel sauce is great served warm, at room temperature or chilled with refrigeration. Refrigerate in an airtight container up to 2 weeks. You can warm it slightly to make it more drizzle-able.

Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

P.S. Be careful with the sampling – It’s easy to get carried away!

What Causes Caramel Sauce to be Grainy?

Sugar crystallization can cause a grainy caramel sauce giving your caramel sauce a rough consistency. To prevent this, use a pastry brush moistened with water to brush down the sides of your saucepan if any sugar is present on the sides of the pan. Also, avoid any ingredient substitutions.

To Fix a Grainy Caramel Sauce:

To fix a caramel that separates or a grainy caramel sauce, you want to add a little water (1 to 2 Tbsp), bring it to a boil, and re-dissolve the crystalized sugar. Once it’s smooth again, remove it from heat.

⬇Print-Friendly Caramel Sauce Recipe:

Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Easy Caramel Sauce Recipe

4.95 from 368 votes
Author: Natasha of NatashasKitchen.com
Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com
Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe.
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 8 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes

Ingredients 

Servings: 16 Tbsp (makes 1 cup caramel sauce)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 4 Tbsp unsalted butter, *
  • 1 tsp sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 cup half and half, or use equal parts heavy cream and milk
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Combine all ingredients in a small/medium saucepan and simmer over low heat, whisking constantly or until thickened and no longer watery (6-9 min). Keep in mind it thickens more as it cools. Serve warm, at room temperature or chilled. Refrigerate in an airtight container up to 2 weeks. You can re-warm it slightly to make it more drizzle-able.

Notes

*If using salted butter, reduce salt to 1/2 tsp or add it to taste.

Nutrition Per Serving

89kcal Calories13g Carbs3g Fat2g Saturated Fat10mg Cholesterol152mg Sodium28mg Potassium13g Sugar115IU Vitamin A0.1mg Vitamin C20mg Calcium0.1mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Easy Caramel Sauce Recipe
Amount per Serving
Calories
89
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
3
g
5
%
Saturated Fat
 
2
g
13
%
Cholesterol
 
10
mg
3
%
Sodium
 
152
mg
7
%
Potassium
 
28
mg
1
%
Carbohydrates
 
13
g
4
%
Sugar
 
13
g
14
%
Vitamin A
 
115
IU
2
%
Vitamin C
 
0.1
mg
0
%
Calcium
 
20
mg
2
%
Iron
 
0.1
mg
1
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Condiments, Sauce
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Caramel Sauce
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $
Calories: 89

If you make this recipe, I’d love to see pics of your creations on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter! Hashtag them #natashaskitchen

Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

We love this homemade caramel sauce over our pumpkin cheesecake, vanilla ice cream, over baked apples, and the mini cheesecakes I will post later this week, and everything we can possibly put caramel over ;).

Homemade caramel sauce is so simple, you'll never want store-bought caramel sauce again! Easy 1-step, 5-ingredient salted caramel sauce recipe. | natashaskitchen.com

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

Read more posts by Natasha

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Aida
    January 28, 2018

    Where has this recipe been all my life? Thanks for sharing this Natasha. xoxo

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      January 29, 2018

      My pleasure Aida! I’m glad you love it!

      Reply

  • Retha
    January 24, 2018

    Hi Natasha,
    I made this recipe yesterday and the results is Fantastic! I put it on top of my chocoflan and all my friends said they love it! Thanks a lot for sharing your recipe.
    PS: I made caramel sauce twice with different recipe from other famous blog/website, but the results are disaster.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      January 24, 2018

      Hello Retha! I’m glad to hear the recipe is such a success! Thanks for sharing your wonderful review!

      Reply

  • Victoria
    December 11, 2017

    Hi there,

    It looks delicious. How long does it keep in the fridge if I give it as a gift

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      December 12, 2017

      Hi Victoria, you can refrigerate in an airtight container up to 2 weeks.I have a note about that closer to the top of the post.

      Reply

  • Lana
    December 1, 2017

    If I use regular salt instead of sea salt and vanilla extract instead of real vanilla extract will anything change?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      December 1, 2017

      Hi Lana, those substitutions will still work. Add the salt to taste since table salt is smaller crystals than sea salt so 1 tsp of table salt will taste saltier than 1 tsp sea salt.

      Reply

      • Lana
        December 3, 2017

        I followed the recipe but my caramel sauce didn’t thikened but overcooked.

        Reply

        • Natasha
          natashaskitchen
          December 3, 2017

          Hi Lana, I haven’t had that happen but I am always happy to help troubleshoot. Did you measure the ingredients as stated in the recipe, measuring dry ingredients in dry ingredient cups and wet in liquid measuring cups? Also, when brown sugar is “packed,” it should keep the form of the measuring cup when you empty the measuring cup as shown in the image. If it is not packed, it will take longer to form. Also, it may be that the heat was on too high – it should be cooked over low heat. I hope that helps! 🙂

          Reply

          • Lana
            December 4, 2017

            Yes I did. What if the brown sugar was in the container, does it work?

          • Natasha
            natashaskitchen
            December 4, 2017

            Hi Lana, I’m not sure what you mean by the container.

          • Stefanie
            October 12, 2019

            Hey, I’m making this at my in laws for thanksgiving to go with that cheesecake, they only have old fashioned brown sugar which I would assume is dark brown sugar ‘cause it’s definitely not light. It would have more molasses in it…would this still work to use in this caramel sauce ?

          • Natashas Kitchen
            October 12, 2019

            Hi Stefanie, I have always made this with brown sugar. I haven’t tried it with dark brown, I’m assuming that should work but can’t advise.

  • Julie
    November 20, 2017

    Hi Natasha,
    Will this set up enough for homemade turtles?
    Thanks,
    Julie
    p.s. I’ve purchased all the items to make/gift your homemade vanilla!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 20, 2017

      Hi Julie, this caramel sauce may be a little thin for homemade turtles – it won’t fully harden and dry like caramel candies would. I think it might work if you cooked it longer but I still think it would be sticky to the touch.

      Reply

  • Isla
    November 17, 2017

    we made this for my birthday cake it was SO delicious and got to the perfect thickness. Thank a lot

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 17, 2017

      You’re welcome Isla! I’m glad you love the recipe! Thanks for sharing your great review!

      Reply

  • Richard Cutt
    November 15, 2017

    Natasha – how would I make the caramel sauce thicker? it is great but sometimes I would like it thicker. Thanks

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 15, 2017

      Hi Richard, to make it thicker, cook the sauce longer. As more of the liquid evaporates, it will thicken 🙂

      Reply

      • Richard Cutt
        November 15, 2017

        Natasha – thank you so much

        Reply

        • Natasha's Kitchen
          November 16, 2017

          You’re welcome Richard!

          Reply

  • Anastasia
    November 11, 2017

    For how long can I leave the caramel sauce at the room temperature?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 11, 2017

      Hi Anastasia, I would refrigerate after a day at room temperature. The sooner you refrigerate, the longer it will last. 🙂

      Reply

  • Morgan Dresvyannikov
    November 5, 2017

    I made this today to go on top of the miniature cheesecakes! I had a good feeling about the recipe, so I made a double batch of the caramel and I’m SO glad — it was absolutely delicious! I am even going to give a jar to my mom for part of her birthday present this week! I will never buy caramel from the store again! The whole family at dinner this evening loved it!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      November 6, 2017

      I’m so glad to hear how much everyone loves the recipe! Thanks for sharing your excellent review Morgan!

      Reply

  • Therapist
    November 2, 2017

    Will this work well for Carmelo’s apples? Does it set up enough for that purpose?

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      November 3, 2017

      It would work as a dip but it won’t form up around the apple.

      Reply

  • Galya from PDX
    October 19, 2017

    I never even thought of googling how to make a homemade caramel sauce. I made it yesterday and I will never never never buy it in the store again. Even the most natural ones in the store have an odd taste, but this one is the recipe of all recipes. In addition, these simple ingredients are staples in each household. As always, good job Natasha. I don’t follow many cooking blogs, but I like the fact that you reference where you got the recipe originally.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 19, 2017

      Thanks Galya! I’m so glad to hear how much you enjoy the recipe! Thanks for sharing your great review with other readers!

      Reply

  • Tammy
    October 19, 2017

    Hi Natasha,
    This looks awesome! Can’t wait to try it especially with your pumpkin cheesecake. Thanks so much!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 19, 2017

      Hello Tammy! It’s my pleasure, I hope you love the recipe! Please let me know what you think!

      Reply

  • Julia
    October 19, 2017

    Amazing! I could never have any store bought caramel sauce since most of them have high fructose corn syrup and I am allergic! And the sugar free versions taste awful… I resigned myself to not having any until now. Just made this last night and can’t get enough of it. My husband loved it too

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 19, 2017

      That’s great! I’m glad to hear you both enjoy the recipe! Thanks for sharing your fantastic review Julia!

      Reply

  • Luba
    October 19, 2017

    made the recipe and it’s amazing! thank you so much Natasha the taste reminds me of russian caramels. i’ve been trying to limit myself on how much of this i eat:)

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 19, 2017

      You’re welcome Luba! I’m glad to hear that! Thanks for sharing your fantastic review!

      Reply

  • Alena
    October 18, 2017

    How awesome! Will need to try soon. I’ve made caramel sauce using a different recipe before, and I like to add it to coffee with milk. The result tastes better than the Starbucks coffee I’ve tried! I’m sure this one would add an amazing flavor to coffee as well.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 18, 2017

      Mmmm that sounds amazing! Wishing I had some leftover from my last recipe to try it on my coffee tomorrow morning. Good thing it’s super easy to make! 😉

      Reply

  • Diana
    October 18, 2017

    Wow! Definitely going to try! I’d really like to see your take on platsindi, with feta or pumpkin.

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 18, 2017

      Hi Diana, I have never heard of those! Is there a great recipe online you could recommend?

      Reply

  • 2pots2cook
    October 17, 2017

    Dear Natasha, thank you for this multi functional ingredient. Festive days are getting closer and no one can skip using this one ! Enjoy the day !

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 18, 2017

      Thank you so much! Yes I agree – this one is a perfect topping for so many Autumn and holiday desserts! I hope you love it 🙂

      Reply

  • Precious @ Precious Core
    October 17, 2017

    This looks so easy. I’m a little obsessed with homemade caramel sauce. Thanks for sharing, Natasha!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 17, 2017

      My pleasure! I hope you love it!

      Reply

  • Katy B.
    October 17, 2017

    Gurl! This is amazing! Yay to home cooking! Thank you Natasha.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      October 17, 2017

      You’re welcome Katy! I’m glad you love it! Thanks for sharing 🙂

      Reply

  • Jenny from jennyisbaking.com
    October 17, 2017

    I like the fact that you use brown sugar (so far I have never made caramel sauce with brown sugar successfully) and that all ingredients are combined at once. Sounds perfect. Will report back once I try it!

    Reply

    • Natasha
      natashaskitchen
      October 17, 2017

      Hi Jenny, thank you! The color and flavor is wonderful and this recipe is so easy. I hope you love it! 🙂

      Reply

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