Our Best Caramel Recipes
When sugar and heat combine, the result is one of the most beloved sweets around: caramel. The sticky, sweet substance triumphs as a dip, sauce, glaze, or candy. And it's always a welcome way to amp up any number of favorite treats, be it a caramel-enhanced pie, cake, ice cream, or even a batch of coated popcorn. Whether you prefer your caramel with apples, sprinkled with sea salt, or paired with chocolate, we’ve got a caramel recipe that’s sure to make your mouth water.
Brown Butter-Caramel Blondies
These ooey-gooey blondies have pockets of delicious homemade caramel throughout. Short on time? Say no more. Just substitute a jarred salted-caramel sauce for the homemade version. For a sweet touch, top the blondies with extra caramel; microwave it for 15 seconds to make it easier to pour.
Oatmeal-Caramel Cream Pies
Overnight Caramel French Toast
This decadent French toast with caramel gets lightened but without losing the rich flavor everyone loves. And more good news: It can be made the night before and popped in the oven the next morning.
Caramelized Banana Split
Give your favorite ice cream treat a serious upgrade by caramelizing the bananas before building your sundae. Broiling the banana with brown sugar and a dash of cinnamon intensifies the fruit’s sweetness and adds a layer of rich depth to your dessert. This recipe is for a single split, but is easily multiplied to serve more.
Peanut Butter Caramel Corn
When it comes to great flavor, this popcorn really delivers. With just enough butter to create a great caramel coating and enough peanut butter to get that richness, this popcorn still stays on the light side. Snacking just got a whole lot tastier with this delicious batch of popcorn.
Caramel Apple Blondie Pie
Buttery rich layers of tender cake and caramelized apples add up to one sweet combo. The secret to the crisp, flaky crust? Baking in a cast-iron skillet on a lower oven rack.
Parsnip Spice Cake with Caramel Icing
One of the Omaha supper club's favorite recipes is a parsnip layer cake we published in 2003. We took a look at the recipe and decided to update it with less sugar and more whole grains. A few tweaks later, we had a moist, tender, tastier spice cake capped with an indulgent caramel-flavored cream cheese icing.
Chocolate-Caramel Bark with Quinoa
Using a dark (72% cacao) chocolate brings an intense, not-too-sweet, almost fruity flavor to this bark. If you prefer a sweeter chocolate, substitute bittersweet (60% cacao) chocolate.
Salted Caramel-Pecan Milk Shake
Oatmeal-Raisin Skillet Cookie with Miso-Caramel Sauce
This sweet-meets-salty oatmeal cookie is chewy in the middle with a crispy bottom and edges. In other words, it’s irresistible. The browned butter adds depth, and the salted caramel sauce has a little bit of tang thanks to the fermented miso. Substitute any dried fruit for the raisins, and serve with frozen yogurt, ice cream, or whipped cream. Keep any leftovers in the skillet and simply cover it.
Caramel-Stuffed Ginger Cookies
These spice cookies have ooey-gooey caramel centers and are best served warm, straight from the oven or reheated in the microwave.
Caramel Tart with Brandy Whipped Cream
Salted Caramel Apple Old-Fashioned
For a breezy autumn treat, look no further than this boozy caramel apple old-fashioned that is deliciously balanced while being both tart and sweet at the same time. For a fall party cocktail, look no further than this great drink, which uses the primary fruit of the season to both flavor and adorn the glass with plenty of autumnal richness. The salted rim plays well with the caramel flavors here and allows this drink to earn more of a grown-up flair rather than become overly sweet and dessert-like.
Salty Caramel Crunch Ice Cream
Creating the coolest scoops is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
Arkansas Black Apple Pie with Caramel Sauce
The heirloom apple that makes this apple pie so tasty hails from Benton County, Arkansas. What makes it so special? The fragrant, tart, and tasty apple ripens to a deep red while still on the tree, but it continues to ripen after it is picked and transforms to a nearly black hue. Keep an eye out for these beautiful apples for your Thanksgiving pie. The Arkansas Black Apple Pie just needs a drizzle of Caramel Sauce and a scoop of ice cream to make your night perfect.
Caramel Apple Cake
Instant Pot Salted Caramel-Pecan Cheesecake
Rich, creamy, and smooth, this cheesecake "bakes" surprisingly well right in the Instant Pot. Drizzle your remaining caramel sauce on top after the dessert cools to make this showstopping cake look as amazing as it tastes.
Salted Root Beer Caramel Cookie Float
Chocolate Cookie Cups with Caramel Filling
Holiday cookie baking can be impressive without being stressful. Make this easy cookie dough and store it in the fridge up to two days before you need to bake these fantastic filled cookies. What's great about this recipe is that you'll stand apart at the annual cookie exchange. Not only are your cookies a different shape, but they are filled with ooey-gooey caramel and topped with a crunchy pecan and a little sea salt for the perfect mix of sweet and salty.
Bread Pudding with Salted Caramel Sauce
Succulent Bread Pudding with Salted Caramel Sauce has a perfectly moist, creamy interior with a crisp outer crust. The layer of bourbon-splashed caramel sauce in the middle of the bread pudding is the secret to this velvety-rich interior. Learn more tips for making perfect bread pudding—no matter the recipe—in this helpful how-to guide.
Caramel-Walnut Snack Mix
Pack it up for a tailgate, package it for holiday gifting, or put it out for a party—this easy snack mix is the perfect all-purpose formula for salty-sweet crunch
White Chocolate and Bourbon Pecan Slab Pie with Caramel Sauce
It doesn't get much better than this decadent version of a Southern classic. White chocolate, bourbon, and caramel give this pecan pie a flavor much more dynamic than the original.
Chocolate Thumbprints with Caramel and Sea Salt
From Great Falls, Montana, Colette Tihista-Longin writes, "I found this cookie recipe in an old collection at a yard sale. The original recipe has a chocolate filling, but I adapted it to include caramel and sea salt several years ago. It's a hit every year at our cookie exchange." Despite the name for this style of cookie, the end of a wooden spoon makes a neater, deeper depression in the cookie than your thumb will.
Apple Fritters with Salted Caramel Sauce
Filled with a spiced apple compote, dipped in a vanilla glaze, and topped with a homemade caramel sauce, these over-the-top fritters take a bit of time to prepare but are well worth the wait.
Spiced Rum-Caramel Sauce
Parents, coworkers, and family friends will swoon over this “adult” caramel sauce spiked with rum and warm spices. It makes an excellent final touch to pound cake, vanilla ice cream, or bread pudding. To reheat, microwave the desired amount of caramel in a microwave-safe dish at HIGH 45 seconds, stirring every 15 seconds until pourable.
This easy, copycat version of your favorite coffee shop drink tastes just like the real thing!
Alfajores de Dulce de Leche (Caramel Sandwich Cookies)
Paula Austin made these flaky, caramel-filled Argentine sandwich cookies for her sister-in-law's wedding brunch; they drew rave reviews. Dulce de leche, a thick, rich caramel made with sweetened milk, is sold in Mexican markets and some well-stocked supermarkets. If it's unavailable, use a thick caramel sauce or ice cream topping.
Banana Caramel Pudding Cake
This cake is similar to a very decadent banana bread with the addition of rich caramel flavor. The texture is wonderfully moist- not quite cake, and not quite pudding. It's already done cooking when the center springs back to the touch. Serve while still warm with vanilla ice cream.
Apple-Pear Pie with Cookie Butter Caramel
If you’re looking to go next-level for you next holiday pie, this speculoos infused apple and pear pie is exactly what you’re looking for. Featuring finely ground speculoos cookies (we used Biscoff brand) in the crust, larger crumbles in the pecan streusel topping, and a decadent salted cookie butter caramel sauce both in the filling and drizzled over top, this fruit pie is anything but boring. While it may seem like a hassle, don’t skip giving your fruit the little pre-cook described in step 5. This method of par-cooking the slice apples and pears will help your fruit achieve a delightfully tender, but not-too-mushy texture through the baking process.
Apple-Spice Bundt Cake with Caramel Frosting
We updated an old-fashioned Southern cake with the warm spice of chai, an Indian tea. Praising the flavors of autumn, this Bundt cake can be served as a sweet brunch option to replace the usual coffee cake or as a perfect ending to a crisp fall day for dessert. Do not be afraid of the total time; the cake will be in the oven for an hour and will have to cool for two hours before adding the caramel frosting resulting in only about 30 minutes of active cooking. For the final touch and once the cake is completely cooled, drizzle with our Caramel Frosting.
Salted Caramel-Pecan Bars
This is a classic recipe updated with a sprinkle of kosher salt.
Chocolate Fudge Layer Cake with Caramel Buttercream
If you're looking for an easy, decadent, and oh-so-yummy chocolate fudge cake, this is the perfect recipe. The key to this layer cake’s lusciously messy look? A short spell in the freezer, which allows the ganache to set over the cake layers so that the buttercream can be spread on top of it. Make sure there is enough space in your freezer before you assemble the cake. This recipe comes in handy for birthdays, holidays, and the odd Wednesday pick-me-up.
Salted Caramel Gingerbread Poke Cake with Pumpkin Cream Cheese Frosting
The flavors of gingerbread, salted caramel filling, and pumpkin cream cheese frosting marry to become the ultimate fall and holiday poke cake. This cake is a great snack cake or dessert and it's pretty enough to serve to guests. One taste and you're sure to bring this cake to potlucks all season long.
Chocolate-Caramel Cone Ice Cream
Creating the coolest scoops is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
Butterscotch Pie with Whiskey Caramel Sauce
For a smooth cut, dip the knife's blade into a glass of hot water and then wipe clean before using.
Dark Chocolate Bundt Cake with Whiskey Caramel Sauce
Moist, dense, and foolproof, this cake by Naomi Robinson, the blogger behind Bakers Royale, includes a mix of cocoa and chocolate chips for fudgy flavor. You can vary the intensity by adjusting the amount of chocolate chips, but don't pass up the silky caramel sauce.
Caramel Apple French Toast Skillets
Say hello to apple season with the perfect breakfast or brunch option served up in miniature skillets! The warm and creamy brioche custard paired with baked apples and cinnamon makes for a marvelous flavor combination that is sure to delight everyone at the table. The cinnamon cream on top acts as a neutral cool topping to temper the sweetness of the dish. Comforting and homey, this french toast is also elegant with a spiral look that originates from the perfectly placed apples on top!
Salted Caramel Banana Pudding
Oatmeal Chocolate Chunk Skillet Cookie with Salted Caramel
Start with a delicious warm oatmeal chocolate chunk cookie base and take it over the top with fun toppings like caramel or chocolate syrup, sea salt, and vanilla ice cream.
Salted Caramel Ice Cream
It is hard to beat the sweet and salty flavor of this indulgent yet lightened ice cream.
Peach Bread Pudding with Bourbon Caramel
A spiked caramel sauce makes this bread pudding truly spectacular. Resist the urge to stir the caramel as it cooks, and watch it closely. Once it starts to brown, it can easily turn too dark and become bitter.
Caramel-Apple Dessert Tacos
These decadent dessert tacos are essentially like having your own, individual apple pie (but way easier to make and more fun to eat). Start with our endlessly customizable Dessert Taco Shells, fill them with a gooey-good caramel apple filling, then top them off with even more caramel goodness. We finished our tacos off with the Caramel Whipped Cream detailed below, but a scoop of your favorite vanilla ice cream wouldn't be a bad call either.
Sea Salt-Caramel Cake
While these tender cake layers taste divine, it’s the caramel frosting that really wows. It’s outrageously rich—and doesn’t require the use of a candy thermometer. Top the frosted cake with a sprinkle of flaky sea salt for a fancy finish.