Vegan Caramel Sauce

Ooey, gooey, sweet and delicious! This vegan caramel sauce is easy to make and perfect for dipping and drizzling to create all kinds of indulgent treats.

Close Up of Spoon Drizzling Vegan Caramel Sauce into a Jar with Strawberries and Pretzels in the Background

I worked in a few ice cream shops when I was growing up, and caramel sauce was a big time addiction of mine during those days.

I recently got hit with a craving and it occurred to me that vegan caramel sauce shouldn’t be all that difficult to make. Good news: it wasn’t!

Let me show you how!

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What You’ll Need

Hand Dipping a Mini Pretzel in a Jar of Vegan Caram
  • Sugar. Caramel is made with white sugar (as opposed to it’s relative, butterscotch, which is made with brown). Use organic to keep the recipe vegan!
  • Water.
  • Coconut cream. Look for this in cans, near where coconut milk is sold. If you can’t find it, just buy a can of coconut milk and chill it for a day or so — it will separate into coconut cream (the solid part) and coconut water.
  • Vegan butter. This is normally sold near the regular butter at the supermarket. Look for brands like Earth Balance or Miyoko’s.
  • Vanilla extract.
  • Salt.

How to Make Vegan Caramel Sauce

The following is a detailed photo tutorial on how to make this dish. Scroll down if you’d prefer to skip right to the recipe!

  • Whisk your water and sugar together in a small saucepan.
  • Now place the saucepan over medium heat. Don’t stir! Bring the mixture to a simmer.
  • Let the mixture simmer for a bit, until it turns amber in color. This should take about 10 to 12 minutes. If it’s taking longer than that, you might need to turn the heat up a smidge. Continue to avoid stirring during this whole process.
  • Now stir in the coconut cream. Continue simmering the mixture for 2 minutes. At this point you can stir as much as you like!

Tip: The sugar mixture will continue to darken until you add the coconut cream. Let it simmer longer for a more intensely flavored caramel (mine shown in the pictures was quite robust). But don’t let it simmer too long or your caramel will be bitter.

Collage Showing First 4 Steps for Making Vegan Caramel Sauce: Mix Sugar and Water, Simmer, Mixture Turns Amber, and Add Coconut Cream
  • Now take the pot off of heat.
  • Whisk in the butter, vanilla and salt.
Collage Showing Last Two Steps for Making Vegan Caramel Sauce: Simmer, and Whisk in Butter, Vanilla and Salt
  • Let your caramel cool in the pot for a bit, then when it’s warm, transfer it one or more sealable containers and chill. It will thicken in the fridge.

Tip: For salted vegan caramel sauce, add some extra salt to taste after your caramel has had a chance to cool a bit.

Jar of Vegan Caramel Sauce Surrounded By Strawberries, Pretzels and Spoon

Shelf-Life & Storage

Your caramel sauce should keep in a sealed container in the fridge for at least 2 weeks.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this vegan caramel gluten-free?

It is!

How is caramel sauce served?

Try drizzling it over ice cream, cakes or pies, or dipping fruit, pretzels (my favorite), or chocolate chip cookies.

Why is my caramel sauce bitter?

You probably let it get a little too dark before adding your coconut cream. This process happens fast! Have the coconut cream ready to go and stir it in before the mixture goes from amber to brown.

More Vegan Dessert Sauces & Spreads

Hand Dipping a Strawberry in a Jar of Vegan Caramel Sauce

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Close Up of Spoon Drizzling Vegan Caramel Sauce into a Jar with Strawberries and Pretzels in the Background

Print

Vegan Caramel Sauce

Ooey, gooey, sweet and delicious! This vegan caramel sauce is easy to make and perfect for dipping and drizzling to create all kinds of indulgent treats.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword dairy-free caramel, vegan dessert sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 10
Calories 149kcal
Author Alissa Saenz

Ingredients

  • 1 cup organic granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup water
  • ½ cup coconut cream
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt, plus more to taste

Instructions

  • Whisk the sugar and water together in a small saucepan.
  • Place the saucepan over medium heat and bring the mixture to a simmer without stirring.
  • Let the mixture continue to simmer for about 10 to 12 minutes, until it turns amber in color. Do not stir it during this time.
  • Stir in the coconut cream, and let the mixture continue simmering for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Remove the pot from heat and stir in the butter, vanilla, and salt.
  • Let the mixture cool a bit in the pot. When it’s just warm, transfer it to a sealable container and place it in the fridge to chill. It will continue to thicken.

Notes

Makes about ⅔ cup.

Nutrition

Serving: 1tablespoon | Calories: 149kcal | Carbohydrates: 27.9g | Protein: 0.2g | Fat: 4.6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 88mg | Sugar: 27.7g | Calcium: 1mg

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