(Paleo) Caramel Sauce

May 21, 2014

(Paleo) Caramel Sauce


It’s caramel time people.
I know it may sound a bit equivocal, here I am, presenting you with supposedly healthy recipes and talking about nutrition and then throwing in your face a recipe for caramel sauce.
But you see there’s caramel sauce made with loads of sugar, butter and heavy cream and then there’s caramel sauce made with coconut milk, honey and coconut oil. And it is, to put it mildly, amazeballs!
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not claiming that this Paleo version of caramel will make you healthier or increase your lifespan, but of one thing I’m sure: it will improve your mood dramatically.
Let’s say you feel like the biggest loser on the face of the earth, and want to hang your head in shame; you take a spoonful of this caramel sauce and Bibbidi-Bobbidi-Boo: rainbows, unicorns and puppies.
Seriously, it is a known fact that happiness is one of the biggest keys to longevity, and this Paleo caramel sauce is guaranteed to make you happier, and generally more amazing. Trust.
To be honest, it is probably healthier too. No refined sugars, no dairy, just coconut milk, coconut oil and honey (or maple syrup) some of the best ingredients Mother Nature has to offer.


(Paleo) Caramel Sauce


Another asset of this Paleo caramel is that it is a cinch to make.
Making “regular” caramel is finicky, it does need to be watched carefully as it goes from perfect to a burnt mess in the blink of an eye. It requires your undivided attention and actually a lot of practice before you can finally nail it.
This paleo caramel, instead, practically makes itself.
You just need to watch it towards the end of the cooking process; other than that, you can use the time saved to do something else.


(Paleo) Caramel Sauce


Like making some Mint Choc Chip Frozen Yogurt — which, btw, is just the perfect companion for this caramel sauce (trust me, I know!)
Or you can spend time with your kids, read a book, or - more likely - play 10 rounds of Candy Crush on your smartphone.
And if you’re feeling guilty about it (about the caramel, not Candy Crush), just remember that it’s all about finding balance. Enjoy your treats, but make sure they are treats and not everyday indulgences. Your body will thank you.


(Paleo) Caramel Sauce


One final note, I’ve labeled it as Paleo because that’s how I like to roll, but just for the record, it’s also vegan...just saying...

(Paleo) Caramel Sauce                                                                                      Print this recipe! 
Barely adapted and inspired from PaleOMG and Urban Poser

Making this caramel doesn’t require your full attention, just be careful towards the end to not let it burn. Other than that, this is probably the easiest caramel I’ve ever made.

Ingredients
Yields about 1 cup of caramel

1 can full-fat coconut milk (I used bpa-free Aroy-D)
½ cup / 6 oz / 170 gr raw organic honey or maple syrup (if using honey pick one with a mild taste)
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil (or ghee or butter)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract (I used Rodelle)

Directions

In a large saucepan with a thick bottom combine coconut milk, honey (or maple syrup) and salt.
Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Lower the heat to medium-low and let reduce for about 40 minutes, stirring every now and then.
Add coconut oil (or butter), vanilla and cook for further 5 minutes until it reaches a deep caramel color.
Don’t rush it. The process could be faster or slower, depending on how hot your burner is.
Stir every so often towards the end, to keep the bottom from burning too much. A little burning is okay but you need to stir it into the mixture (it will also give the caramel a darker flavor).
Remove from the heat, transfer to a bowl and let cool for about 5 minutes, then stir vigorously until smooth and glossy.
Use coconut caramel while still warm for best spreading results. Caramel sauce can be made ahead of time and reheated in a double boiler (or briefly in the microwave.)
You can also eat it by the spoonful, just be careful not to burn your tongue.

Nutrition facts

One tablespoon yields 88 calories, 6 grams of fat, 9 grams of carbs and 0.4 grams of protein.

47 comments :

  1. Okay Mike, now you're speaking my language! This looks delicious. And your pictures, gorgeous as always. If there was an award for best-styled food photography you'd certainly deserve it!!!

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  2. I think 'healthy' caramel always has a place in life! I know what you mean about traditional caramel, I seem to burn it more often than not, but now I make it with maple syrup and it's much easier! I'm definitely trying your version with honey, I think the flavor would be totally addictive!

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    1. The flavor is da bomb Kari, you should totally give it a try. I'm sure you'll love it!

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  3. This looks amazing, like really amazing. I'm drooling!

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  4. Ridiculous, Mike. This is amazing!!!!!!

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  5. Really looks good Mike, love caramel!

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  6. Haha, I love that this will make me 'more amazing'. I'm in desperate need of that! Really though, this looks insane! I'm envisioning a tablespoon of this in my smoothies making some sort of caramel deliciousness. :-)

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    1. For real Lauren, this caramel will make you more amazing. If that's even possible... ;)

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    1. You should Pam, it's that good and that healthy!

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  8. The pictures are amazing Mike and that caramel looks so good!

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  9. Mike, it's like we're brothers from another mother. You just have a healthier mother. We're both channeling some delicious caramel recently...although yours is homemade and that impresses the heck out of me! Your photography is to die for here, too!! You really should join Social Fabric...you've got the talent to knock posts outta the park.

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    1. David I don't want to be the one breaking down the news to you, but we are brothers.
      And I'm going to definitely check Social Fabric during this long weekend, and if I have doubts I'll come knocking at your door. Deal?

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  10. I agree with David your photos really are stellar, Mike!
    This sauce sounds fabulous - double thumbs up for it being healthy without any sugar!

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  11. Be still my beating heart! This recipe looks awesome!! Thanks for sharing!

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  12. This delicious caramel sauce is a must make. With just four ingredients you have the perfect topper for cookies, cakes, and crisps.

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    1. Do you eat caramel with crisps??? Sounds a bit weird but now I want to give it a try!

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  13. I want some of that!

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    1. You can have as much as you like Caroline!

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  14. Hi Mike, this caramel look like to die for kind.... fantastic. And your photography skill is superb. Keep up the good job.

    Regards.

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    1. Thanks Amelia, you're always super nice!

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  15. OH! Just OH!

    This looks like the perfect caramel recipe... all it needs is a little Fleur de sel and you're in caramel heaven!

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    1. Agreed, a little Fleur de Sel is a passport to caramel heaven.

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  16. This is definitely one of those recipes that make you want to lick your computer screen!

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  17. "it will improve your mood dramatically." <- This. Who cares about whether it's healthy or not in that moment?! That's just an added benefit.
    I've made the 'unhealthy' vegan version of caramel before and yes, it's a pain to make with the whole candy thermometer watching, stirring, yada yada. Sometimes healthy is the easier way to go, I guess. Now if only all I had to do was click my fingers and have it magically appear... What was that about rainbows and unicorns?!

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  18. Oh my gosh! I want to eat this on everything. It looks like "real" caramel! Ah! So cool!

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  19. These photos with this recipe is just like The Urban Poser's. Heh.

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    1. Unfortunately they're not as half as good as Jenni's...
      But then it's not like I hid it or something. I gave her full credit for the inspiration.
      Take a better look, just below the recipe title. Can you see it? Good.
      Okay now, you have a good one!

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  20. I'm gonna make this hoping that it works in coffee for a caramel latte :) I'm imagining it will!!

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  21. I made this with honey and butter as substitutes and it tasted amazing! Only problem was that it was very liquidy and not the typical caramel texture... should I let it sit for longer? It was very good but like I was drinking a liquid rather than a sauce.

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    1. You should let it simmer until it reaches the right consistency. Also, make sure to use full fat coconut milk, that's key!
      :)

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  22. I found a paleo chocolate and salted carmel chip cookie recipe somewhere online. You made a carmel sauce and used half of it as the base for the cookies (basically add almond flour and chocolate chips then bake) and the other half to drizzle on top. The caramel sauce was made by simply putting 1/3 c coconut oil, 1/3 c maple syrup, amd 1/3c almond butter and a dash of sea salt in a blender and giving it a good long whizz till it turns to amazing caramel sauce with a nice kick of protein. Yummy. Wish I could find that recipe again.

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  23. Hi there,
    I made this today & it's delicious! It took significantly longer than 40 minutes though. Perhaps my heat was too low, but we got there in the end. I used honey & butter.
    Please note I can't see where you say to add in the vanilla. I added it with the butter.

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  24. I also noticed you didn't say when to add the vanilla.

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  25. can i use coconut cream or that wont work.........

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  26. Mmm . . . yummola!!! I agree with the other commenters the images of this caramel is mouthwatering and I second wanting to lick the screen lol!!! Can't wait to give this a try and dip some apples into it. :)

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    1. I've tried it with apples already...it's - hands down - one of the best things ever!

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  27. This looks so good I'm considering doing it as a wedding favour o.o

    I'll have to check first though if it can keep a few weeks, maybe in the cellar. I hope I can leave it alone for that long :p

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