Irresistibly creamy this chewy caramel recipe is the perfect homemade gift, everyone loves caramels! Easily made and wrapped ahead of time this candy recipe is the perfect treat for anyone in your life! Step-by-step photos help you make this delicious recipe!
I dare say it but caramel is up there with my love of chocolate and cheese. You can't beat sugar, butter, and cream, three of the most beautiful and heavily used ingredients in my kitchen.
I love to make chewy caramels for an easy dessert option that curves me from indulging in a whole slice of cheesecake or crumble. I also love to make chewy caramels for gift-giving, everyone I know loves a chewy caramel.
This recipe makes a ton of cute little squares, (81) 1-inch pieces to be exact. If that is too much caramel feel free to halve the recipe. I would pour the caramel into a 9X5 Inch Loaf pan to ensure you still get the right thickness of the caramels.
Let's get to the recipe.
What are the ingredients for chewy caramels?
You only need a few things to make this recipe, of course, it is made up of the best ingredients ever!!
- Sweetened Condensed Milk
- Light Brown Sugar
- Heavy Cream
- Light Corn Syrup
- Sea Salt
- Vanilla Bean Paste
How to Make Chewy Caramel?
If I can give you one piece of advice for making caramel it is to NOT WALK AWAY. Please just know that once you put the caramel on to cook you are going to spend the next twenty minutes over the stove, you cannot leave it. Walking away will almost certainly guarantee you accidentally burn the caramel.
Okay, I have a second piece of advice that is to use an instant-read thermometer, it just makes it so much easier to know for sure whether your caramel is cooked to the proper temperature. If the caramel is overcooked it may be too hard and break your teeth, or if it is undercooked it may not set up and you won't end up with that gorgeous chewy texture.
I use a Thermapen Mk4.
Also, if you are making this in an enamel lined pan don't use a metal whisk!
This really is an easy recipe to make though, you just need time and patience.
To start get your pan ready. Cut a piece of parchment paper large enough to fit a 9-inch square pan and up the sides of the pan. Crumble the parchment paper up into a ball then uncrumble it, this helps the parchment sit better in the pan. Use softened butter or a little oil to grease every inch of that parchment paper. Set the pan aside while you make the caramel recipe.
Dump all of the ingredients, minus the sea salt and vanilla bean paste, into a large heavy-bottomed pot. Stir it all together and cook over medium heat. You are going to spend the next 20 minutes whisking this all together until it cooks up to a gorgeous chewy caramel.
I would start checking the temperature at about 8 minutes in, everyone's stovetop is different and the size of pan you use can affect how quickly the caramel cooks.
You want the caramel to cook to a temperature between 236F/113C to 240F/115C degrees. I would start checking the caramel around 8 minutes, everyone's stove is different so you want to be able to estimate how much longer you have to go. You can see mine was pretty loose still.
The mixture will begin to thicken, just keep whisking constantly.
Use an instant-read thermometer to check the temperature , when you have reached it take off the stove immediately and add the salt and vanilla bean paste.
Whisk quickly then pour into the prepared pan. It is important to work quickly so the caramel doesn't cook more.
Use a metal spoon to help spread the caramel into an even layer then let it sit for one hour on a wire rack. After an hour place the caramel in the fridge for another 30 minutes to help it set up quicker.
How do you cut chewy caramels?
Once the caramel has set hold the parchment paper to life the caramels out of the dish.
Use a large knife to cut the caramel into 9 1-inch rows. Then I use a pair of kitchen scissors to cut the rows into squares, perfect for wrapping. I like to use these caramel wrappers to store my caramels. They are also perfect for gift giving.
To wrap a caramel place the square towards the middle-end of one side and wrap it together twisting the ends together. It will take a couple tries to get it down properly.
Store at room temperature for up to a week or store in the fridge for longer life.
Can you make chewy caramels ahead of time?
Totally, I often make these caramels up to a week before I plan on serving them. I store them in the fridge once they are wrapped.
Craving more caramel recipes?
★★★★★ Please let me know if you make this recipe by leaving a star rating and comment below!Print
- 14oz Sweetened Condensed Milk
- 200 grams ( 1 Cup) Light Brown Sugar
- 4oz (½ Cup) Heavy Cream
- 4oz (½ Cup) Light Corn Syrup
- 6oz ( 12 Tablespoons) Butter
- 2 Teaspoons Sea Salt
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Bean Paste
- Scrunch up a piece of parchment paper then place it inside a 9-inch square pan. Use a piece of butter to heavuly grease the parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large heavy bottom pan add the sweetened condensed milk, brown sugar, heavy cream, corn syrup, and unsalted butter.
- Cook the mixture over medium heat whisking constantly. You can not walk away from this or you will burn it. Cook the caramel until the mixture registers to 236F/113C to 240F/115C degrees*(see note). This will take about 15- 20 minutes of stirring. (If you use a wider pot it will take a shorter amount of time and a smaller pot will take longer to cook)
- Once cooked add the vanilla bean paste and sea salt and whisk to combine. Pour into prepared pan and let the chewy caramel set for 1 hour. Place in the fridge to set further for an additional 30 minutes.
- Use a a large knife to cut into 1 inch squares or logs. I use these caramel wrappers to store. Place the caramel in the center of one wrapper then roll to cover and twist the ends together, after you make one or two you will get better at wrapping them. If you prefer a saltier caramel then sprinkle sea salt on top of the caramel before rolling in the wrapper. Store in the fridge or freezer.
- Prep Time: 5
- Cook Time: 20
- Category: Dessert
- Method: Cook
- Cuisine: American
Keywords: chewy caramel, caramel recipe, candy recipe