Butterscotch caramel sauce



5 min


1 Cup

Butterscotch caramel sauce

Rich salted caramel.
Photo, John Cullen.

Pour this luxurious sauce over ice cream, or turn it into four irresistible desserts.


  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup 0.35 cream


  • Melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar. Bring to a gentle boil, whisking occasionally. Cook for 3 min. Stir in vanilla and salt until dissolved. Remove from heat and let stand 1 min. Whisk in cream until sauce is smooth.

Make-Ahead Tip

Sauce will keep well in an airtight container in the fridge for at least a week.

Nutrition (per serving)

  • Calories
  • 76,
  • Carbohydrates
  • 7 g,
  • Fat
  • 6 g,
  • Sodium
  • 54 mg.

Fall in love with one of our sweet variations:
Coffee Caramel: Add 1/2 tsp instant coffee granules in place of salt.
Spiced Caramel: Add 1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp nutmeg in place of salt.
Boozy Caramel: Omit salt. Stir in 1 tbsp rum or scotch just before serving.
Toffee Caramel: Stir in 1/4 cup toffee bits just before serving.

4 ways to serve it

Rustic Caramel-Apple Pie: Roll out each half of a 397-g pkg puff pastry into a 10-in. square. Place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Toss 2 peeled apples, sliced 1/4-in. thick, with 1 cup spiced caramel (above). Divide filling over pastry squares, leaving a 2-in. border. Fold border up over apples, overlapping slightly. Brush crust with milk. Bake at 400F until apples are tender and crust is golden, 25 to 30 min. Cover with foil if crust browns too quickly.

Rum-Caramel Pudding: Whisk 1 cup boozy caramel (above) with 1 egg yolk and 2 tbsp cornstarch in a medium bowl. Set aside. Bring 2 cups milk to a boil in a medium saucepan. Reduce heat to medium-low. Gradually whisk in caramel mixture. Cook, whisking constantly, until thickened, 2 min. Remove from heat. Serve warm or cold.

Salted-Caramel Ice Cream: Beat 1 1/2 cups 35% cream in a large bowl until soft peaks form, 2 to 3 min. Add 1 cup cooled rich salted-caramel sauce and beat until combined. Scrape into a 9 x 5-in. loaf pan. Cover surface with parchment paper. Freeze 4 to 5 hours. Let stand 15 min before serving.

Caramel Cookie Sandwich: Spread 1 tsp cooled coffee caramel (above) between 2 vanilla wafers.