How to make homemade caramels – super soft buttery caramel recipe – holiday treats

How to make homemade caramels – super soft buttery caramel recipe – holiday treats


Hi, I’m Ashlee and today I’m making my buttery, soft homemade ooey gooey caramels. They’re seriously the most delicious thing ever. Don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss any of our other holiday goodies and let’s get started. If you’ve attempted to make caramel I’m sure you’ve heard some of these before. You have to use a candy thermometer, or I never use a candy thermometer, or never make it when it’s raining, or never make it when it’s going to rain, or this recipe is foolproof, or this recipe is foolproof. There’s a ton of information out there and it can be a little kind of scary. Personally, I use a candy thermometer. I also go by color and touch and I do the plop and I feel it and I’m going to show you all of that, but a candy thermometer is a great way to start and it’s a good guide. The thing is the candy thermometer says soft ball that you’re trying to achieve for caramel is at 240 degrees, but guess what? That’s not 240 degrees everywhere. That’s 240 degrees at sea level. Now I have brought this up before and I will bring it up again. You need to adjust your candy thermometer temperatures based on your elevation. So, I live really high up and I have to adjust by 21 degrees. So, instead of of trying to go to 235, 240 range I’m actually going to the 215 to 220 range. That’s a crazy difference. If I went all the way to 240, I would have rock hard candy. Nobody wants rock-hard caramels, unless you’re going for toffee and that’s a totally different recipe. It’s super simple to figure out what you need to adjust your candy thermometer by. All you have to do is boil some water stick the thermometer in there and then take note when the water comes to a rolling boil. Now water boils at sea level at 212 degrees, so if yours boils below that or above that, now you know your adjustment temperature whether you need to minus or add temperature to whatever candy recipe you’re making. First thing we’re going to do is add some butter and now some brown sugar, a lot of brown sugar and some salt and turn it on. We’re going to melt that until all of the granulated sugar and salt is dissolved. Once the butter is all melted, we’re going to add our corn syrup, and then finally some sweetened condensed milk, woo. Ooey gooey goodness. Look at that beautiful boil and bubbling away. As you can see on the thermometer we are getting close to the 220s, so I’m going to get out a little cup full of ice water to do our first test. So, to do the test, what you want to do is take some of your caramel and pour it in some ice water. Now if it immediately dissolves, you know it’s not ready yet. If it stays kind of thick, you can go in there and grab it and see if you can squish it. This is still super runny, so it’s not quite ready yet. All right it is nice and solid and we’re ready to pour it. So, first thing take it off the heat and now we want to add our vanilla and I bought a bunch of these water bottle ice trays and I actually use them for caramel. So, give it a quick nonstick spray. I just pour the caramel right into the mold and then I use my dough scraper to spread it out and then obviously scrape off any extra so that I’m left with these nice long tubes. Now we’re going to let them set. You spray your mold really good and then you stick them in the freezer for about 10 minutes. They’ll actually pop out really nicely. I cut them into thirds and then I take some wax paper that I cut into little squares like three inches or four inches and I roll them up twist the ends. Then you have a great neighbor gift. The recipe makes a ton. It’s perfect to give out as gift this time of year. This is one of those things I have that kids all help me roll them up and then they each take a small handful to their teachers or to our neighbors. It’s delicious. It’s fun, and I don’t know why I don’t make it more often. Anyway, my favorite part, open it up and look at this gooeyness. Now, some people prefer their caramels a little bit harder and that’s totally okay. The tips about the temperature and testing it are the same either way. Some caramels just tend to set a little bit harder. In the comments down below, let me know what your favorite holiday goodie is. I would love to hear if it’s something that I maker maybe something new I to try. Don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss anything and check out all of our other holiday recipes, homemade andes mints, homemade eggnog, sugar cookies. We run the gamut around here. Anyway, thanks for watching.

54 thoughts on “How to make homemade caramels – super soft buttery caramel recipe – holiday treats

  1. every recipe I have seen has white sugar in it. Yours once again is the best looking and sounding. I used your simple tips on my cheesecakes and they came out so perfect other than one of them didn't set up just right, but nonetheless they were a hit at Thanksgiving. Thanks for being here and sharing.

  2. I have never EVER thought about sea level when cooking 😳 we are over 45metres above sea level and just thought.. That's almost 150 feet! Wow. Amazes me. I only know how far above sea level we are due to the gps in the car. Thanks Ashlee Marie

  3. Omg you seriously just changed my life! I never knew the elevation about making caramels! I just moved from Ga to Idaho so I am guessing I will have to change it by a lot. Where did you get those amazing ice trays 😊😊😊😊😊😊😊😊😊😊. Talk about super perfect!

  4. made these for the people at the home and they all disappeared and they were begging for more. thanks for a great non super sweet version. 🙂

  5. You're my hero! My daughter and I made these yesterday and they are the BEST!!! Easy to make and I couldn't ask for anything more in a caramel. Awesome job and thanks!!

  6. I wanted you to eat one on camera so I could live vicariously through you and enjoy a soft caramel.

    I will be making this.

  7. Have you ever sprinkled with sea salt in order to make a salted caramel version? This looks wonderful. Trying this evening!

  8. Genuinely, why don't you have 1M subscribers?? You are amazing, you have a great sense of humor and all the tips you give are accurate!! I subscribed by the way, if you hadn't guessed already!!

  9. This is the same r cope I’ve used for 40 + years and they are addicting. If anyone is wondering how long they last, you’ll never know because,they get eaten up before you get a chance to test and see! I love ❤️💙💜 your idea of the ice cube trays and if I didn’t have this bubbling on my stovetop right now, I’d run out and buy these? thanks!

  10. LOVE this !! Thank you SO much for the clear reminder and instructions on adjusting temperature according to elevation. My first attempts at candy making (over 35 years ago..) was less than stellar.. no mention in the recipe about adjusting .. The realization that the temp was formulated for sea level was life changing.. my candy now turns out so awesome!! 🙂 Great video!! My favorites… Got to be the caramels.. with english toffee second by a nose… ; > But can't leave out divinity.. or seafoam .. or… or… yeah.. I'm like that !

  11. I cooked them a little longer thinking they would be more firm… they are super sticky… pretty firm from the freezer… but sticking to the wax paper and don’t hold a shape really. Is that how they are supposed to be? They taste awesome and definitely are ooey gooey!!!

  12. Anyone tried Lillie May caramels, from Marshaltown IA? My mother and I are trying to perfect the recipe and we would like to know if anyone here has been trying as well. These are the very soft and delightful caramels. I would say they are some of the best caramels in the world. Honest they are that good.

  13. great video thanks for sharing, if I may ask, what's the shelf life?
    I know something sweet like that would be gone in seconds after making but I'm curious.

  14. Can I ask a maybe dumb question? I've noticed most people don't stir while caramel boils to reach temperature. Also most recipes use heavy cream in place of condensed milk. Would you tell me about this?

  15. This is the same as my grandmother's recipe that I have been making for decades. These are incredibly good and well worth making. I find cutting and wrapping them to be extremely tedious so I love the ice tray tip.

  16. TIP: Temperature is key. A few degrees either way makes a big difference. They can come out way too soft, gooey and sticky or too hard and weld your teeth togeather. Until you figure out what exact temperature is best for you, you can always throw it back in the pot, melt it down and try again. Too soft – get it hotter, too hard – mix in a tablespoon of water and remove from the heat sooner.

  17. I need to buy a candy thermometer. I've been experimenting making my own candy bars and this caramel would be perfect for them. I've been using store bought caramel that I melt down for them, but it lacks the home made taste.

  18. So I just made this and used canabutter and omg this is my new favorite recipe!! So easy, quick and good! Liked and subscribed!

  19. can I use honey instead of corn syrup? Also, if I want a coffee flavor, when is a good time to add it the candy? Thank you for sharing

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