Mallory always felt food would play a huge part in her life and career. As part of a family that loved cooking and spending dinner together, she equated food with having a good time.
Get to know the members of the Land O’Lakes Co-op with a seasonal look at family life on the dairy farm.
View our story
Caramel recipe for buttery soft caramels that have been enjoyed for generations.
Butter 13x9-inch pan; set aside.
Combine all ingredients except vanilla in heavy 4-quart saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 15-20 minutes or until butter is melted and mixture comes to a boil.
Continue cooking, 25-30 minutes or until candy thermometer reaches 244°F or small amount of mixture dropped into ice water forms a firm ball.
Remove from heat; stir in vanilla. Pour into prepared pan. Cool completely.
Cut into 1 1/2x1-inch pieces; wrap candies in plastic food wrap. Store refrigerated.
Dietary Fiber: 0g
I have been making this recipe for 30 years and I always get the blue ribbon at the county fair. I add a pinch of salt and sometimes some toasted peanuts or sliced almonds. the temp is essential to get the right texture.
Do you use salted or unsalted butter?
I asked the question on how to "prepare" the pan. Sorry, I didn't see the instructions, but now do. I looked all over for them and didn't spot them until after posting. Thanks, Beverly PS I made the candy and it is the best ever!!!!
First candy my daughter made by herself and it was fabulous! Caramel was the perfect consistency and flavor was to die for!!!
Best caramels I have ever tasted and I'm sure my friends will love them too. I used glucose and a bit of golden syrup in replacement of light corn syrup and just turned out to be a wonderful soft chewy texture too. Thanks a tonne!
This is a fantastic recipe! I was preparing to make a desert bar that called for the popular store brand caramels. I love caramel but never liked the store brand. This is the first time I made my own caramels, although I am no stranger to boiling sugar for candy. I made the recipe exactly as stated and took the caramel up to 250 degrees with a calibrated digital thermometer. I am near sea level and it was a cool and humid day. The caramels turned out PERFECTLY! They had perfect texture, not too hard, not too soft, a very creamy consistency, very smooth and luscious! The taste was phenomenal! It reminded me of a Worther's Original hard candy but soft and chewy and more tasty! My wife and kids raved about both the caramels and the dessert bar I used them for. Typically when I search for a recipe to add to my master collection it takes several different recipes and several different attempts. Not so with this recipe! I found the perfect one on my first attempt! This will definitely go in the master collection and I will be making it for years to come! Thank you Aunt Emily!
This recipe is wonderful - everyone loves the caramels. Make great Christmas gifts for friends and neighbors. I bought some foil wrappers from Amazon that worked great. This recipe is definitely a keeper! I think it would also make a great caramel sauce for ice cream or other desserts if you didn't get it to the soft ball stage and just poured the cooled sauce in a jar.
Super easy, very tasty came out perfect. I had made another recipe a few months ago and they were too buttery, so for this one I tried 2 T less butter than called for.
It took almost an hour of cooking to get to the firm ball stage, but well worth the wait! I cut it into much smaller pieces so I think I go about a hundred candies. Very good; very rich.
Best caramels ever. Followed the directions exactly and the caramel was perfect. I dipped half in dark chocolate and topped with sea salt. This is my new go to recipe.
I cooked it too long. But I poured and scored it. Would have made great peanut brittle had I any peanuts. If I microwave the hard pieces for 12 seconds it is soft enough to eat. Flavor is great.
I must have done something wrong... I used a 4-qt. pan until the mixture booked over & had to transfer out to another pan to continue cooking. I got it to firm ball on a reliable candy thermometer and the caramels are hard. You can put them in your mouth for awhile and they'll soften before they are totally gone but these were a hard caramel. It took a full two hours to make these plus time for cooling and wrapping. The work was not worth the end result. :-( Candy can be tricky, so I'm not sure why this happened. I'm not a novice candy maker (not a pro, either) so I was surprised that they were so hard when labeled as "soft caramels." Maybe I'll try again...
What is the shelf life on this caramel?
Where have you been all my life!? This is THE best caramel recipe ever! I put nuts in 1/2 of it and those were the first to go at my granddaughters birthday. I have been making caramels for years, but was never really satisfied with them. This is the one! The quest is behind me, I'm sold. Thank you for this post and making my life a wee bit sweeter (pun intended;)
This recepie was very tasty and easy to make, but make sure to use a thermometer because you need to take the caramel out at exactly the right time! We added maple syrup for some extra taste but we couldn't taste it at all, but that's okay! So for those who enjoy a little maple syrup with their food, it won't really make a difference in caramel. We also used dark corn syrup to make it taste richer, but it didn't really make a difference either. It did make our caramel more expensive, though. Lastly, we used Dean's whipped cream instead of heavy whipping cream, because we didn't have any heavy whipping cream. This did not make the caramel any less caramel-y. Rejoice, those who scramble for ingredients at the last minute!
The flavor of these caramels is magnificent. To the poster who gave the recipe only one star because they were too hard, everything is about stopping the cooking when the desired temperature with the appropriate texture is reached. I wanted to use my batch as a component of candy bars with nougat and dipped in chocolate - so I wanted them to come out very, very soft. I put a shallow pan of ice water next to the burner where I was working and started testing once the candy hit soft ball stage. They hit the texture I wanted at 240, so I immediately pull them from the heat an put the bottom of the pot into the ice water for one second to "set" the temperature and stop cooking before I stir in the vanilla. To the poster who gave 5 stars but said slightly grainy - do not scrap your pot! Stir the vanilla quickly into the center an then pour. What is left in the pot you can scrap out onto a separate sheet or piece of buttered parchment and it becomes the cook's bonus snack. But trying to stir it all in when scraping can introduce sugar crystals which will produce graininess.
This is the first time I made caramels, and they were delicious. I took the recipe and poured it on parchment paper that I buttered, on the counter, and spread it out. Then I cut it in pieces and wrapped it around marshmallows.I had been given something like that for Christmas. OMG. My family went NUTS for them. Will make them again.
The first time I tried it, it didn't solidify, so after a night in the freezer I tried to reboil it in hopes it would firm up. I got a layer of molten butter on top of the remelted mixture, and once I removed it, it tasted much better, and solidified to a nice soft caramel. Very good tasting, but in the future I'll go with less butter
Made this recipe today. Very yummy. This was my first time making caramels, the texture was a little off, slightly grainy. When it comes to a boil should I reduce the heat slightly? Also the milk... all I had was 1%, should it be whole milk?I will try again, the flavor is great. Like I said, this was my first time making candy.
This tastes wonderful but...I doubled it and it never hardened. I boiled it for almost an hour. What did I do wrong? Double it? Not that big a problem...we will use it for ice cream!
Am I supposed to stir this constantly after it comes to a boil until it's done?
First time I've ever made caramels. Super easy, turned out great, everyone loves them!
This recipe was great! Could i drizzle this on popcorn, or is it too thick to do that?
loved this recipe!
I made this recipe 2 x's. The first time i only used a candy thermometer and the caramels came out hard and stuck to my teeth. The second time I dropped into water for the "firm" ball test. They came out softer but still sticky to the teeth. Throwing out two very expensive batches and won't attempt again i beleive these turn out like a firm chewy caramel, not a soft caramel.
Do you continue stirring occasionally throughout the 25-30 min you continue cooking?
This is the first time I have ever attempted to make caramels. I am proud to say this will not be my last! I loved the recipe! I was so frightened I would ruin the tasty treat. It is easy and delicious! Thank you Aunt Emily. My daughter is coming home from college for Christmas I can't wait to impress her with these delicious caramels!
This recipe was amazing. The caramels were so creamy. They were just as great as I expected, maybe even better. I highly suggest you use this recipe.
Best recipe for caramels I have ever used. Everyone in family and the neighbors request it often.
I made this recipe last night and they turned out wonderful. I did find out to be sure and watch the pan when it is getting close enough to start boiling. I left it briefly to do something else and upon return I find it boiling over the stove making a little mess. So you need to keep watch and turn down heat when the time comes. I do wish there was a precut wax paper you could buy to cut down on the time cutting the little squares to wrap them in as it is a bit time consuming. Well worth the effort though, very good recipe!
Can anyone suggest adjustments for using unsalted Land O Lakes butter, please? I am so glad to find this recipe as we just learned my husband should not eat chocolate or nuts, ingredients in most of homemade candy.
Should this be cooked covered or uncovered?
I made this to roll a pecan log into. After @ hours of cooling is was still not nearly set. I did cook it to 244 degrees. I will try to salvage it by adding a little water and cooking it again, but I have litlehope for this recipe and will not likely use it again.
would this caramel be good to use to make caramel popcorn?
Very disappointed with this recipe. I was expecting a soft buttery caramel and what I got did not have a caramel taste at all. It tasted like a mouthful of sugar and it was cooked long enough. I have decided it is much cheaper to buy caramels that are a little more expensive. They would not cost anymore than this recipe and a lot less time. Anyone who says this is a good recipe has never had a really good caramel.
are these easy to chew ( soft ) caramels ?
I used this recipe last year and loved it! So for this year I just made a few changes... I substituted peppermint extract for the vanilla, for my peppermint caramels topped with white chocolate. For another batch I substituted 1 cup freshly brewed dark roast coffee (of your choice) for 1 cup of milk, for my coffee caramels. Both recipes turned out fabulous!! Thank you landolakes for this amazing recipe!
I've got a great candy thermometer and I know it says to boil to 244 degrees.I'm in Denver though (elevation 5280). What do I cook my Carmel to?
How long does it take for it to cool down before being able to cut the caramel into pieces?? Thank you!
I would love to use this recipe to make chocolate caramels. If I added cocoa powder does anyone have a recommendation as to how much to use?
Can you dip these in chocolate?
Can I half this recipe?
I made this recipe last Christmas. We gave it out to people in tins as gifts. Everyone loved them. It makes a lot of caramels. I wrapped our in waxed paper I had cut down to wrap each one. We had plenty left for us to enjoy. I am making them again this year because everyone has been asking for them since the first time I made them.
The recipe was perfect. I believe using Lake O Lakes butter can make a difference. I also make pecan brittle. I ran out of Land O Lakes butter and used a store brand. The brittle still hardened however, there was an oil slick on top when I put it into a pan too cool. My friend experienced the same thing.
I have found when making caramel if too soft then put in a mason jar and use for on top of ice cream...best caramel sauce ever had. My daughter started finding ways to use the 'mistake' - ice cream, coffee (1 spoon no need for any sugar and awesome coffee), mixed into brownie mix, she loved my mistake.
As a tip to those who are having difficulty getting the recipe to turn out the way you like... I suggest that you calibrate your candy thermometer before trying the recipe again. Place it in water and bring it to a boil. Make sure your thermometer reads the correct temperature for bliming water at your altitude. In my experience, inexpensive candy thermometers (and even expensive ones) can be off significantly.Temperature is the key variable here. A few degrees one way or the other can make a big difference in the texture of your caramel.
I made these but with the cold water test and thought they were done. Too soft. Is there a way I can fix them to harden up? And maybe add fine walnuts while i'm at it? The taste is awesome even with deleting the vanilla. Love em'. Can ya help me out?
I bought a new candy thermometer and found I had boil for about 10-15 minutes and go to about 250 F before I got the right consistency. Set perfectly, very smooth and softer than store bought, topped with sea salt. Will make again
I want to make caramel covered marshmallows then dip the bottoms in dark chocolate. If I use this recipe would I need to cook it to 244 degrees or should I take it off the heat sooner?
I love this recipe but where it calls for milk and cream I use one can 14oz can of sweetened condensed milk it does not take as long for it to set up gets up to temp faster.my mom has a old cook book in the early 50s its the same recipe but it said if you are in a hurry use the sweetened can milk I live 8hours away from my mom she was not home and my kids wanted some so I found this recipe I new it was the same recipe because I made it so much so I made it with the caned milk you have to be fast temp goes up fast and I add cream cheese flavoring with the vanilla and dipped it in chocolate when it was cool enough to cut I put it in a heavy buttered glass pan come out easer
I should have used the cold water method for testing for doneness. Turned out my candy thermometer is not accurate. Turned out soft but very yummy!!! No more store bought caramel for me!!!
Flavor was great. Weird, though - it took almost 2 hours to boil it to an even softball state. Must have been a fluke.
I followed the instructions exactly and put it in the 13 x 9 dish to set, and it has turned into a solid rock. I couldn't cut into it at all.. could barely chip it with a knife... is there anything i can do to save it? Reheat and add something to soften it?
I love this recipe! These caramels are to die for if you are a caramel lover. I sprinkled some sea salt on half of the batch when I put it in the pan to cool. The only thing was mine took much longer about 20 minutes longer to reach 244 degrees.
I made this recipe yesterday and the texture is fabulous but the taste is not really caramel. It just takes like sugar, but not caramel. Are there any suggestions to fix this batch?
hi there- I've made caramels only oce before this and was actually surprised it worked! I made your recipe and everyone loves the caramels! I've been looking for a variation; I want to try a cream or raspberry swirl into the caramel for this Christmas, but I cant' find any recipes. Have you tried this kind of variations with your recipe?
Followed the recipe and it tastes great, but it is soup! Did not harden at all. Is there anyway to save it?
These are the best but I didn't refrigerate them are they still good to eat?
I substituted the corn syrup with honey instead. The caramel turned out very good but it was very oily.
Hello! I've never actually made caramels before, they are still cooling. I'm wondering, is it normal for the caramel to be slightly grainy before it sets?? If not, do you know what I did wrong? Its just not as smooth as I was expecting- so I'm afraid I messed something up, still tastes great though! :)
Can't get enough of these caramels!! Best EVER!
WONDERFUL! My family loved using this for making homemade twix bars with graham crackers and melted chocolate!! Wonderful and such a simple recipe!
Flavor is very good, however, after following directions to the letter, my caramel seems too hard! Can I reheat this and add something to it to make it softer???
This is the easiest caramel recipe I've ever used. I don't have a candy thermometer so I just used the cold water test. I had to cook the mixture longer than the recipe suggested, but they came out great! This recipe does make soft, melt-in-our-mouth caramels. If you refrigerate them they get pretty hard, but just hold them in your hand for a minute and they are soft again. I have TMJ, but I can eat these, and they are so yummy that I want to eat them!
Omg I just made a chocolate cake with my homemade vinilla frosting and sprinkled Aunt Emily Carmel on top and it came out delicious!!! Thank you!
The BEST caramel I've ever tasted...OK, I didn't consider myself much of a caramel fan, and I was just looking for a good caramel for my homemade candies. I was shocked at how good this is. I did use the left over sweet milk that was a by-product of my homemade butter from heavy whipping cream (the milk is sweet) and I used a little extra Madagascar bourbon vanilla extract.
This recipe was excellent! But I have a question:Do you have any pictures that go along with each step, or quick photo showing how dark the mixture should be before pouring into the prepared pan? I feel like my caramel candies didn't turn out the way that they were suppose to, but not sure. I'm still waiting for them to cool down.Thank you!
im in love...literally am making it for the 3rd time already...and a just discovered it about a week ago! so delicious and chewy!
I just made this recipe and now i'm waiting for it to cool. So far it's looking good and i'm LOVING it!!! I'm in a caramel phase, so this is perfect! I'm using a loaf pan (can't find my 13x9 pan) so the pieces will be either slices or blocks, but that doesn't phase me. Great recipe! Thank you!!!
will freezing butter then defrosting have any effect on the caramels.Also, I live in Alabama and am wondering if humidity will be a problem.
I made this recipe, it turned out great. My intention was to use it for turtles but the caramel didn't set to a hard enough stage unless refrigerated. The flavor is wonderful maybe altitude Carson City NV had something to do with it.
this Recipe is great. I used clarified butter and it still worked well. I assume it worked because you cook it over 212 degrees so the milk solids would have cooked out anyways. Really nice recipe.
Amazing. Family approved!
Finished product was soft and firm on tom, runny like ice cream topping underneath Stured the heck out of it and wouldn't firm up all the way
Perfect every time!
I have made this Rx 5 times and every time perfect. I think our best batch was when I did not have any other brown sugar excep dark. It gave a deeper color, but the Carmel burst with flavor. I use a non stick pan. I lightly butter parchment paper for my jelly roll pan, and I use water and my Pampered chef basting brush to keep sides of pan clean. I use Pampered Chef candy thermometer and cook on medium heat and I do not stir after mixture starts to boil. When mixture reaches 244 I remove from heat and stir in vanella. I will admit I do add more vanella, but I live the flavor it brings to the caramel.Now if I could just learn to cut the pieces all the same size.I really would love for some one to give me a "best ever" dark chocolate dipping Rx for theses caramels.
I just made this and it turned out perfectly! Not too runny, not too hard, and perfectly rich and buttery. I used it for homemade turtles and they are fantastic! Thank you for the top notch recipe!
I just made these. They are cooling and I'm going to sprinkle them with some sea salt crystals mostly because I used unsalted butter.I generally cook with unsalted but some salt helps sweets taste better. We live at about 6400 ft. I boiled some water and found that we boil water at about 199-200 degrees so I subtracted that amount from the temperature in the recipe to find our "altitude levels". Basically at our altitude the thermometer's soft ball number is our firm number or close to it. I use the thermometer and then use the dip a bit of mixture into cold water in my custard cups to verify. I also only had 2% milk so I added a little bit of the heavy cream to my milk to get it closer to the 4% of regular milk. One thing for novices, butter melts around 150 degrees so there is not an immediate rise from when it says butter melts to when it starts looking like molten lava which means it is getting closer to the temperatures we want to achieve. For others at higher altitudes, you can google boiling point of water at elevation and there is a calculator. If we are having normal barimetric pressures that should be useful. if it is snowing wet or raining then more adjustments may need to be made.
Made this recipe yesterday and they turned out excellent. I used some of them to make turtles with that also came out delicious.
I just made this recipe for a caramel brownie recipe. Wow, they are amazing! It made a lot, so I am able to wrap the remaining caramel for a treat! Great recipe, I really liked the tip about testing in water, it really helped me when making!
I was planning to make the Samoa girl scout cookies, but homemade, I was wondering if this caramel will work well for that? Thank yoou!
first time i made them, they were wonderful, the second and thrid attempt had dark sugar at the bottom of the pan at the end of play, i stirred occasionaly until boiling then not again until i added the vanilla, had the heat on a lower setting (third attempt) but it still went wrong. any ideas where i went wrong?
I made this recipe last night. Mine also didn't set all of the way but, i found a solution and salvaged it. it came out to an almost soft ball stage though i boiled it to 244. i let it set until all the way cooled but it was still mushy. My solution was i sprayed ice cube trays with cooking spray, melted some chocolate and put a teaspoonful in the bottom, i then rolled small balls and set them in the chocolate and topped with more chocolate. i popped them in the fridge for a quick set and voila, chocolate candies with a gooey caramel center! Trying another batch tomorrow night and hopefully it will turn out correct!
Caramel is out of this world delicious! Just be sure to use a bigger pot, it does expand while cooking! Everyone loved this!!!
I made this the other day and got a very hard, crunchy caramel. I used a candy thermometer and it might have gotten to 245 degrees, but otherwise I followed the recipe exactly. What should I do?
If you follow the directions correctly they turn out perfectly! I have made them 3x now with no problems. Two of my friends made them and had trouble. One stirred continuously while boiling and the other had her heat too high and they got hard. I found them to be perfect and very delicious!
I have not tried this recipe version. I have a question. I live at 7100 ft altitude. From other web pages, I've read that I need to decrease the final boiling temp 2 degrees for every 1000 ft. Do I need to change the sugar/honey/cream measurements? I tried to do this with a different recipe but the caramel came out semi hard. How can I allow for the altitude and still have the caramels come out soft and chewy?
These are wonderful caramels. I substituted 1/4 cup of Butter Rum coffee flavoring syrup for some of the corn syrup and they were divine. I also cooked them to about 237 degrees to make them a little softer. It worked great!
My candy thermometer is broken so I tried making this recipe with the method of dropping caramel in ice water to see if it was ready. I thought I had it right, but it's under cooked. Is it possible to recook it?
Great recipe and so easy! I left out the corn syrup, and substituted maple syrup- they turned out mapley delish! Thank you for sharing. :)
I don't know what I did wrong. First I did stir the mixture while boiling and after reading the comments, realize that I shouldn't have done it. It did reach 244 degrees but I am having problems cutting it. It is so soft and gooey as if I under cooked it. I had it in the refrigerator over night trying to get it to set but still not working. It taste delicious. Just hope I can figure out how to cut and wrap without it running.
how long does it take for them to cool before you can cut and wrap
I am considering using this recipe to make caramels for family. Please tell me as to if this is a good recipe and does it turn out similar to wearthers soft caramel. thx
This is my second time makes these BUTTERY DELICIOUS TREATS.... Thank you!
I am wondering if one should use salted or I salted butter? Thanks!
I would like to make caramels to pass out at my office. I have recently tasted flavored caramels (mocha, coffee, apple) and was wondering about the process of adding flavors? Do you think that would hurt the consistency of the caramel?
I have a question about the recipe. I have made caramels in the past and I had to stir them continuously during the second cooking period. This recipe doesn't mention any stiring during the second cooking time. Do you stir it during the 25-30 minute period?
I just made this for a friends birthday. Since i have had a few bad experiences with making caramels i decided this time to cook at a lower stove temperature and calibrate candy thermometer beforehand. It did take longer than the time stated in the recipe but as long as it comes out like it should it is not a problem. Candy thermometer accuracy seems to be the key for getting it right..so calibrating might be a good idea and be sure it does not touch the bottom of the pan. Thanks for a great recipe.
This did not work for me. I did not cook it to the firm stage but still ended up with something close to toffee. Debating if I will try it again.
I made this caramel recipe last night, and it was delicious. The cook time did take considerably longer than the recipe stated to reach the 242 degrees.It took approximately 30-35 minutes to bring to a boil and another 1 and a half hours longer to reach the required temperature. One only has to taste these caramels to know it was worth EVERY minute of it! Simply delicious melt in your mouth.I would suggest using parchment paper and spraying with no-stick cooking spray, as it seems easier to get the caramels off the parchment paper than wax paper. I learned this through trial and error.. more error.
What is the shelf life on these seeing as is they do contain milk
This recipe is PERFECT. We made it and the caramels turned out perfect and delicious. The cook time was longer than expected...took about 1:45 to get the temp to 240 degrees, then the last 3-4 degrees happened in a matter of 3-4 minutes. Not sure why the cooking time took so long, but our patience paid off. For a fun variation we greased one pan then lined crushed salted pretzels on the bottom, poured the caramel in, then lined the top with pretzels too. FYI, this recipe is good, but not great, for caramel apples because of the consistency. Enjoy!
Love this recipe! However, I wanted to share that there is a difference between whipping cream and heavy whipping cream and that difference is the fat content, with heavy having about 6% more fat. Same goes for the milk, depending on the type you use. When I realized this and increased to 1.5 C whipping cream and 1/2 C 2% milk my caramels have turned out perfect every time! They are amazing melt in your mouth soft caramels. Maybe this could help those that have been having problems with getting hard camels! This is now my favorite, easy go to recipe! Thank you so much for sharing!
What is the best way to cut this recipe into 1 inch squares? What do you use to cut with? Do you cut the caramel in the pan? I use a pizza cutter and lay the caramel on wax paper to cut. Please advise me on your method.
Do you think that I could use this recipe for a caramel apples? And maybe adding a littlemore cream to get the right consistency.
God Bless Auntie Emily! Perfect recipe and easy to follow! Many of my friends compared my caramels to what their mother's used to make. No higher compliment than that!
I need a carmel that i can mix with toasted coconut as a topping on a brownie. My problem the sore bought version is it doesn't stay soft. When it sets i can not cut it. Do you think this recipe will be a good one for this baking project?
My husband just LOVES chocolate, peanut and caramel candy bars... So, I figured I would try to make him some homemade ones using this recipe... We made the caramel together, exactly as explained, then, although I was timing it, as well as noticing it reducing as it boiled, I realized my candy thermometer did not seem to be going any higher than 225 degrees no matter how close I was getting timing wise... So, as a regular candy maker, I have learned to always have fall backs at the ready... I dropped it in ice water, & waalaa, perfect... I poured it in my waiting buttered glass pan, & let it cool completely... Rather than cut to size stated, I cut them into like 4 inch long by 1 inch logs, then I rolled them in cocktail peanuts that have sea salt... If you LOVE chocolate, peanut and caramel candy bars as much as my hubby, you MUST give it a shot !!! It yielded 24 candy bars, & my ingredients cost me $8.00... 24 store bought bars, at .85 each runs me $20.40, so I saved like $12.40 & the homemade version is so much better...
How disappointing to spend this much time and energy and have poor results. I did everything exactly as written and my "caramels" were hard as a rock! Great if you were attempting a hard candy result. Will absolutely not try again.
I am 13 years of age and I love this recipe! whenever i do it it turns out great only when i add in all the recipes like i did it last year and didnt put whipping cream in it so when i was done it was all hard but it was still yummy:) i just love this recipie you should try it out!!!
I made this recipe about 2 years ago and it was amazing!!!! I tried making it last year for Christmas, and had bad results which turned out to be a bad candy thermometer. I tried making them twice this year with a brand new, calibrated thermometer, and they turn out really hard every time! I cooked to exactly 244 (actually, 241 since I'm 1500 feet above sea level, so I adjust the temp down 3 degrees).Do I just need to experiment? Also, one of the other posters noticed the whipping cream used to be heavy whipping cream. Perhaps that's an issue? Which one is it supposed to be?
I regularly double the batch size - the key is to use an 8-quart stock pot so you have ample room to accommodate the increased volume of ingredients. The only downside is that it takes twice as long to wrap them all! This is a superb recipe that is enjoyed and regularly requested by everyone that has tried them. PS: Sprinkling them with sea-salt after letting them cool for a few minutes is definitely worth trying if you haven't already done so!
I have made several batches and am really pleased with the outcome. I plan to make about 10 more batches (making them for wedding favors). Have you ever doubled the recipe? I'd like to~ but don't want to mess it up.Thanks!
I just made these candies last night, they are fantastic. Followed the recipe and they are perfection! Cut and wrapped in wax paper and headed to our family Easter ! Must say i'm impressed thank you for a GREAT recipe.
I made this and i am cooling them. How long are we supposed to cool them, and where? They look great though.
I have made several batches and all were perfect. Thanks for the great recipe!
I love this recipe and the caramels are so delicious. I use this caramel in making turtles. The caramel is very creamy and has a nice consistency when you bite into the turtle, but I have noticed after a few days the caramel in the turtles looks very dry and doe not have the same pull stretch like it did on the first few days. Can anyone tell me what is going on? Thanks so much.
I use this recipe over and over and over again....so fail proof if you follow the instructions precisely!!!
I would like to use the caramel to make turtle candies. Do i need to go through the whole process of cooling or can I spoon the caramel right onto the cashews as soon as the caramel reaches the desired temperature and the vanilla is mixed in?
Excellent recipe really enjoyed those caramels. My first time making the caramels and turned out amazing. Whole family enjoys them now. :)
Delish but mine came out way sticky and super extra soft. They stuck to the pan and took a ton of patience to try cut and wrap them. And they stuck to the wrapping. Really bummed. Any suggestions?
I tried this last night and as a first timer was nervous it wouldn't turn out right but they are delicious! I only made a half batch and they turned out great 6 people have already enjoyed these.
I've never made caramels before but wanted to so I found this one and wow. A candy thermometer is very important. The only thing is that I hare to keep putting it in the refrigerantor while cutting it. It kept getting rather soft. Not to soft but it made it easier to cut cold.
I made this last night, cooked it to 142 - 143 degrees. I left it to cool over night and it seperated! Looks like creamy butter in top, and clear dark colored in bottom. Any idea what I did wrong? I make candies a lot and have never had this problem. Is that what happens when you undercook? Maybe my thermometer is off? Way off? The only thing is that I feel like it had been boiling for like a half hour.
I tried this recipe out, but I didn't have a candy thermometer. I did the ice water trick and it turned out great, so I thought my caramels were done. I ended up having caramel soup. So if you are to try this recipe or making carames in general, I suggest you use an actual candy thermometer. Yet the recipe does make the most delicious caramels in the world and I loved eating my caramel soup!
I love, love this recipe! Could I make just half of the recipe? It's so good, I want to eat the whole batch..
I was so nervous to make caramels b/c I have never made candy before. I followed the recipe and made sure not to stir after it started boiling and they turned out great. It took a long time to get to 244 degrees so just be patient. Thanks for the great recipe. This will be a Xmas tradition for me!
I'm having a bad caramel year. First too hard (discovered my thermometer was off by 20 degrees!) and this time I undercooked them. Can I re-heat the undercooked batch to get it to the proper temp?Thanks.
For those who said these turned out too hard - if you live at elevation you need to adjust the final temperature by subtracting one degree for every 500ft above sea level. - This makes a big difference!
I've never made caramels before, and this recipe turned out perfect! The only issue I've had is, as soon as my thermometer reads 240, the syrup starts to get brown spots, and I can't seem to stop this from happening. I've made about 6 batches so far, and every single one has worked just fine for me. I even cut some into little squares, and dipped them in chocolate and topped it with sea salt. Yum!
My caramels turned out really hard, is there any way to fix this? Can I put it in a double boiler melt it and add more cream? I wanted touse them for making turtles!
I really enjoyed this Recipe, I added a 1/2 A cup of Peanut Butter, it was Wonderful! Great Reicpe Thank-You! Happy Holidays. God Bless Everyone!
I tried these today. The instructions, I felt, were very clear. But after I allowed them to cool completely, they were so hard that I could not cut them. Any suggestions on what I did wrong? Do you pour the mixture in a metal or glass pan? Does that make a difference? I did continue to stir after the mixture began to boil. I know it must be me, as others had good luck with them. Any suggestions? Thank you.
I wish you had mentioned in the instructions not to scrape down the sides of the pan with the occatsional stir. I have a pan of grainy caramels that I had wanted to use as gifts....bummer
I first printed this receipe in 2008 why has the brown sugar been omitted and heavy whipping cream been changed see old recipe below?2 cups sugar1 cup firmly packed brown sugar1 cup LAND O LAKES® Butter1 cup milk1 cup LAND O LAKES™ Heavy Whipping Cream1 cup light corn syrup1 teaspoon vanilla
I am looking for a caramel candy that I can use in the center of a cookie recipe. I used Kraft Caramels, but although they were nice and soft when hot/warm, they hardened too much after a day of cooling. Those who have made these...do you think they will stay a little 'easier on the teeth' after I bake them in the center of a cookie?
can i substitute 2 cups of half n half in place of the milk and the whipping cream? i have made it exactly as the recipe calls for and it turned out wonderful. i was just wondering about the half n half substitution because i always have that on hand and don't always have the whipping cream because it is pricey.
i was just wondering, do they HAVE to be stored in the fridge?
We have made this recipe for over 15 years. It is the best. It started as something to help keep the kids busy a few days before Christmas and quickly became a tradition for gifts for teachers and friends. Everyone loves them.
I made this caramel and it came out PERFECT!! I am so pleased because I used another recipe and the caramel was kind of grainy but so delicious....I will be using this recipe from now on and like a few other reviewers here I used substituted an additional cup of whipping cream for the the milk and made an addition to one other ingredient to make it my own recipe. Absolutely delicious!!
This is a great recipie It takes practice and a good candy thermometer to have consistant results.Best caramels I have ever had. I did figure out a time saving trick. Instead of pouring the cooked mixture into a glass pan, place it in a Wilton silicone bite size brownie pan. It has 24 slots. I bought 2 and now all I have to do is place the liquid in each slot and then wait for it to set up. Then pop out the carmels on a cutting board and use a piazza cutting wheel to cut them in half. Works so well and then wrap and store.
This recipe worked perfect. The only change I made was 2 cups whipping cream, and no milk. They came out perfectly chewy. I also added some course sea salt to make it salted carmel!
I used this recipe to make caramel apples, and it turned out wonderfully! Thanks for sharing.
I also tried all cream and they are wonderful.....for Sharri....I think you forgot the second step...after they come to a boil, Continue cooking, until candy thermometer reaches 244°F. or small amount of mixture dropped into ice water forms a firm ball (about 25 to 30 minutes). This is the key step....and I cooked to 241 per other reviewer comments, and they were nice and soft....
These are the BEST!!! I read a few comments and made mine with 2 cups whipping cream and no milk. They turned out perfect!! Everyone at work loved them. I'm going to make them for Christmas gifts. Just don't make them when you are in a hurry. Take your time and do it right and they should turn out just fine. They are well worth the wait. Would love to hear how others cut and stored their carmels. Thanks, Diane
I'm confused as to how long to keep it on the burner, I brought it to a boil then took it off the heat and added the vanilla. I poured it into the pan and it stayed very liquidy - it never hardend. Did I not get it hot enough? Help!! thanks!
i made this recipe and i would rate it five stars for sure, it was easy for this beginner cook and it came out fantastic, thanks you
I thought of making caramels for christmas gifts so I tried this recipe as practice for upcoming holiday. I only had to make them once and they turned out awesome. Might even try dipping some in chocolate to see what happens.
I have made this recipe many times, love it!! I separate little plops of caramel onto parchment paper for the majority of the caramels. I wrap some of them in parchment paper & twist the ends to seal. It makes fantastic taffy apples! I used Honey Crisp apples & ice cream nut topping to coat & kind of pressed the nuts into the caramel. I waited till caramel had cooled & reheated a small amount in the microwave so apple wouldn't cook & get mushy.
This made absolutely delicious caramel candy. I think maybe I cooked it a little too long as it is a bit harder than I expected it would be. I used some to dip caramel apples and after hardening overnight, the coating is really to hard to bite through. The candies, however, are perfect and delicious. This is a very easy recipe although it does take some patience. It's too tasty to not try again. My husband who is not a big candy fan said it was the best caramel that he has ever tasted!
I made this recipe over ten times and I loved the flavor but it was not as soft as I wanted. I have experimented and finally feel I got it perfect. The most important thing is the temperature. A few degrees off makes a big difference. I found that cooking the caramel to just 241 degrees makes a softer and better candy. Also, I cut the butter into pieces and froze it before putting in the mix. I had read somewhere that this would make a difference and I think it did because this turned out absolutely PERFECT. One other thing I changed was I substitued the milk for heavy whipping cream...which meant 2 cups of whipping cream and no milk. These turned out exactly like the ones I have purchased for a dollar each in stores next to the cash register. I hope you try this because I know you'll be pleased.
Can I substitute 2 cups of half & half for the milk & cream?Also do you use light or dark brown sugar, and can I use turbinado or unrefined cane sugar? (I don't buy white sugar because of the bleaching process).
Been making caramels for years never had a problem but these didn't turn out followed the instructions , possible brown sugar made them get sugar crystals good flavor
so tasty! And not a sticky caramel. More of a melt-in-your-mouth kind. If anyone has heard of knutsens caramels, I would compare the two!
I am not sure what happened to my caramels. The next day they started to crystalize. I think I might try using ONLY granulated sugar and NO brown sugar. Not sure if I will try again.
AWESOME!! I make these every year around Christmas and everyone loves them.
Did anyone else notice that they needed to be cooked at a higher temp than 244? Mine were too soft.. maybe 250 next time? Help :(
I tried this recipe at Christmas for the first time. These are good, very creamy,soft,chewy caramels.They are a little time consuming as far as the cooking goes. Gave them to friends and family for Christmas. Everyone raved about them. Try them if you like your caramels soft and chewy !
These are the best caramels I have ever tasted. Although it takes awhile to make these wonderful treats, it's well worth the time. I made 30 lbs. of Aunt Emily's caramels last Christmas and the people I gave them to are still raving about them.
My husband and I have made these caramels over and over because our family members, friends and co-workers ask us for them over and over! They are easy to make and we double the recipe all the time. We have found that using non-stick aluminum wrap works well instead of buttering the pans. My husband likes this because there are less dishes to clean afterwards.
EASY! I have tried several caramel recipes and this one is the best mouth-feel. The right balance of chewiness and firmness. I added some sea-salt crystals to the top of the caramels immediately after I poured it into the 9x13 pan. Probably 1-2 tsp total. The crunch and bite of the salt contrasts beautifully with the sweetness of the caramel. You need the large crystals of the sea salt to do this - don't use regular salt !
I have made this recipe for years and everyone in my family LOVES it!!
The best caramels ever! They are soft and chewy, and the buttery flavor is wonderful!
I made these a few weeks ago and I'm am making them again for Christmas. They are turned out great and everyone that had one commented on how good they are.
I have made these for about 10 years now last year I did not get them made and my kids were not happy they have gone to get the heavy cream so I can make them for them. This is by far the best caramel recipe I have ever made and there have been a few.
very easy, good flavor, melts in your mouth, not at all chewy
Was awesome the first time, making it again, oh yay!
I made these today in no time. By far and away the best caramel candy recipe I've ever tried. I added black walnuts and oh my gosh they are divine!!! Just don't overcook or they become a little too chewy. What a great gift idea. I will be trying the chocolate caramels next.
I made these wonderful caramels in no time. SO easy and GOOD. Just don't overcook as they get too chewy.
I didn't have karo syrup - so replaced it with glucose. I also didn't have the thermometer- so attempted the ice water method. I think I needed to cook my mixture a wee bit longer- it came out very liquidey. I also think I will add less butter next time- perhaps it's because I didn't cook it long enough.. but my caramels were very greasy on top and bottom. They were not very chewy and actually reminded me a bit of fudge. I will try this recipe again and hope it turns out as good as everyone else says.
to those of you who made/make this successfully- what is the consistency of the mixture when poured into the greased pan? I've just made it and was surprised by how liquidey the mixture was. I'm waiting for it to cool now, however am not expecting great results. I didn't have karo syrup - so replaced it with glucose. I also didn't have the thermometer- so attempted the ice water method. I will let you know how it turned out.
Do I have to constantly stir it for the last 25-30 minutes? And do I keep the heat at medium or turn it down once the mixture boils?
Used unsalted butter, added a 1/4 tsp salt
They tasted extremly good
First time making caramel. Surprisingly easy, but long process. I've made them 2 Christmas' now. My kids love them.
Perfection! After trying several recipes prior, this one is the best by far! <3
Great recipe thanks, and it makes a good amount for the cake stall at the kid's school.
From the Test Kitchen...Thanks Mrs. Creative, for your question. Caramels can be made and wrapped a long time ahead. You can wrap them and freeze if you plan to keep the candy longer than 2 months until you need it. Do not mix candy types in one container and be sure to allow a couple of hours for thawing before eating. Up to two months wrap and refrigerate the caramels but if longer than that wrap and freeze the caramels.
I did this recipe and it's very good. Just before it reached the temperature, I poured some preparation into miniature cones. Excellent!!!
Does anyone know how long these will keep for once wrapped? If you can drop me a comment over at my blog I'd appreciate it - mrscreative.blogspot.com thanks in advance
AWESOME. This was great and very easy to make. I will be making this one again.
I made this last year for Christmas. Everyone loved it. I had never made caramel before and I couldn't believe how easy it was. Wonderful!
These are delicious! They've become a standard of my holiday "baking."
These are great!! This year I am going to dip homemade marshmallow in the carmel and then roll in pecans! Another great thing to do with is make homemade turtles. YUMMY!
I don't know what I did wrong, but mine did not turn out at all. It is more of a syrup, they never hardened so that I could cut them. Any words of wisdom would be great, my hubby really wanted carmels!
I just made these caramels for the 3rd year in a row. They are so delicious and so easy to make. If you do not typically make candies because it's intimidating, you can make these. Follow the directions and they come out perfect: soft, chewy, and buttery.
This is exactly what I have been looking for, so delicious. Exactly like the soft caramels you occasionally see sold at check out counters for 50 cents each. This was so simple to make, doesn't require a lot of fuss or a candy thermometer - the firm ball test works perfectly. The hardest part is wrapping them all! I used wax paper cut from the roll in about a 6" strip, then cut that with scissors into thirds. If you cut the caramel in long strips, you can chop the strip into pieces more easily and quickly. These make fantastic gifts because they are hard to find in stores and people just love them.
I was a little nervous about making these because the thermometer I have only goes up to 220 degrees. I have a neighbor who makes caramels as well so I just watched it carefully and waited until it looked like hers and it turned out great! I put the pan in the fridge after it was cooled and it was a lot easier to cut. These caramels are definitely going to be an addition to the goodies I make for Christmas gifts!
These were the first caramels I've made and they were absolutely delicious. I had to stop myself from 'sampling' the whole batch as I wrapped them for our church Christmas Bazaar! Thanks for such a perfect recipe!
Love this caramels!!! I have make these so many times I can't count. I usually dip them in chocolate for an added treat. These are great to package as gifts... I have doubled the recipe with no problems. Thes are soft, buttery and creamy...Just the best!!
Love it. I come back often to make it for the holidays. It was recommended by a friend.
I have made this candy several times. My family loves it. A couple times I did not cook the candy to a high enough temp. But I was able to fix it by cooking it again. This candy can be cooked to a soft or hard state.Great Recipe.
This have got to be the very best candy I have ever made!! I took some to work and gave away some in christmas baskets this year and was told by everyone to make more. I even had a few offers for people to buy them from me!!!!
Warning: make these caramels, but don't share. If you share they will want them all the time! Easy and very good.
I just made these and they are super good-I love the big ones-but could have cut them smaller to give away in my Christmas goodie baskets.
I have made this recipe for the holidays for the last 15 years. It was instantly a family favorite!When my daughter was in college I would make a tray of cookies and candies for her to share with her friends during the holidays. They have all graduated now, but they ask every year if I will make the caramels. I make sure that they each get a bag at Christmas time. I wrap the caramels individually in colored candy wrappers and put them in seasonally decorated bags. Then I tie the bags with pretty curly ribbons and add a personal note. It is an easy recipe to make and I always have to do some "taste testing" to make sure they have turned out!
Wow! These caramels are buttery and chewy. They would make a wonderful gift if they don't disappear first.
This is the only recipe I use for caramels! It is excellent! Each year I make 2 to 3 batches of caramels, wrap them in colorful candy wrappers and give caramels as gifts in the holidays.
I make homemade caramel a lot. I decided to give this recipe a try. It was fantastic. The flavor is really good and it's by far the easiest recipe I've used. I will make this recipe again.
I've never made caramel before because I thought it would be too difficult. Wow...this recipe is not only super easy, but delicious! It'll look great on my candy tray and I'll feel proud to say that I made them myself!
What a great recipe!!! These were a breeze to make!! Will probably make them a yearly tradition!! Buttery delicious!! The best part is that it really does make quite a bit so there's plenty for gift giving too!!
I've been looking for this recipe for a long time, this is the one!! chewy, buttery, soft caramels, like my grandma use to make in my native province of Quebec...can't believe I found it here, do not hesitate to make this scruptious candy, it is the recipe you are looking for I'm sure!!!
I have been making these for Christmas gifts for about 6 years, and they always work! It is really important to make sure your thermometer is accurate to have success.
This is my third year making these caramels. They always turn out so wonderful!
I made these carmels with my 5 and 7 year old daughters for Christmas. They loved helping and watching the carmel boil. The recipe is easy to follow and the carmels have a nice buttery flavor. Perfect for gift giving!
Easy recipe to follow. Easy to make as long as you watch your candy thermometer to make sure you hit the right temp. I love that it makes so much. Great for holiday gifts. I will make them again
I don't know what I did wrong but my caramels were so soft I couldn't work with them.
Very easy to make. Great buttery flavor. Good gift idea.
Email address will not be published
How Did This Recipe Work Out for You?
Please return to landolakes.com to rate and review this recipe.
Your comments and suggestions are appreciated by others.
This recipe was reprinted from landolakes.com. http://www.landolakes.com/recipe/2048
© 2015 Land O'Lakes, Inc.
Today marks a quarter of a century for me on this beautiful planet. Twenty-five years of learning, exploring, and stuffing my face with delicious eats. And I can’t think of a better way to celebrate than to spend a relaxing day in the kitchen.
Even though it seems like summer may have just started, let’s face it – school is just around the corner. Even if you don’t want to think about it (or, let’s be honest here, are secretly excited to have the kids back in school), it helps to plan ahead. More ...
The Simple Rewards® Club is your personal online resource for exclusive offers and information. It’s also our way of saying “thank you” for trusting Land O’Lakes and inviting us into your home. Membership is free, so sign up today.
We'll email instructions to the address you used to register.
We've sent a confirmation email to the address associated with your account. Check your email and follow the link within 3 hours in order to complete the password reset process.
If you are already a member, please sign in.
Look for an email soon with instructions to reset your password.
If you did not receive the email, please check your email junk folder (just in case) or contact us.
Hi, I'm Becky. I'm eager to share my best ideas and favorite recipes from my 20+ years in the Land O'Lakes Test Kitchen. I'm also excited to help with any questions you have about cooking and baking with Land O Lakes® products. Some of the questions and answers will be published in our newsletter, The Measuring Cup®. Please use the short form below to ask your questions, or share your tip or memory.
Your question has been submitted.
Your email has been sent. Thanks for sharing this Land O Lakes recipe!