Quick and easy caramel or butterscotch sauce hack made right in the microwave, with only 3 ingredients in 5 minutes. Perfect topping to drizzle over ice cream, coffee, apple pie, cinnamon rolls, or a quick dip for apples.
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Caramel Sauce vs Butterscotch Sauce
What is the difference between caramel and butterscotch sauce? It's the sugar. Most recipes use white sugar for traditional caramel sauce and for butterscotch brown sugar is used.
The technique with traditional caramel sauce is browning the white sugar for taste and color. This recipe is a timesaving hack, no stovetop, no fancy technique, or thermometers are required. It’s a super easy and kid friendly recipe the whole family will love.
Whether you want to call this microwavable dessert sauce hack caramel or butterscotch, it's up to you.
No need for store bought sauce because homemade with minimal ingredients is definitely better.
Butter – You can use unsalted or salted. I prefer to use unsalted, so I can put on flaky sea salt.
Heavy Cream – You can also use half and half. Heavy cream has a higher fat content which makes the sauce nice and thick.
Brown Sugar – I used dark brown sugar, I love the flavor and texture. Dark brown sugar has more molasses than light brown sugar. More molasses means a darker color and stronger flavor.
Step by Step Photos
1. Place butter into microwavable safe container.
2. Microwave butter for 45 seconds or until melted.
3. Add light or dark brown sugar to the melted butter and mix.
4. Add some of the heavy cream to the sugar butter mixture and mix.
5. Cover with a paper towel and place back into the microwave for 1-2 minutes.
6. Remove from the microwave and cool the mixture down with extra heavy cream. Mix well. Completely cool.
7. Pour the mixture into your storage container.
8. Place a lid on your storage container and refrigerate. Overnight is best.
9. After your caramel or butterscotch sauce has been refrigerated overnight. You will notice the next morning the color and texture changes, I suspect the butter and heavy cream are the reason. It's ready to serve.
FAQ & Tips
What kind of flavorings can I add to caramel sauce?
Adding vanilla extract, sea salt, or warm spices like cinnamon or nutmeg would enhance the flavor.
What kind of brown sugar can be used?
Dark brown sugar for a deep color and flavor or light brown sugar for a lighter color and mellow flavor.
What type of milk can be substituted?
For a thinner caramel or butterscotch sauce substitute half and half or whole milk for the heavy cream.
How to store caramel or butterscotch sauce?
Store in the refrigerator in a sealed container for up to two weeks. This sauce is pourable right out of the refrigerator.
How to reheat caramel or butterscotch sauce?
Place your caramel sauce in a microwavable container and microwave and mix every 15 seconds until warm to the desired temperature.
Easy Microwave Caramel or Butterscotch Sauce
- 4 Cup Measure Microwavable Glass Measuring Cup or Deep Bowl
- 1 Cup Dry Measuring Cup
- 1 Cup Wet Measuring Cup
- Metal Whisk
- Kitchen Mitts
- Kitchen Towel
- 16oz Mason Jar with plastic lid or storage container
- ½ Cup Butter Unsalted or Salted
- ¾ Cup Heavy Cream (½ Cup and ¼ Cup, Seperated)
- 1 Cup Dark Brown Sugar
- Microwave butter covered with kitchen towel in glass measuring cup or bowl. Melt for 45 seconds - 1 minute.
- Carefully remove hot glass measuring cup from microwave with kitchen mitts.
- Add brown sugar and mix well with whisk.
- Add ½ cup of heavy cream and mix well with whisk.
- Place back in microwave covered for 1 - 2 minutes.
- Carefully remove hot glass measuring cup from microwave with kitchen mitts
- Add ¼ cup of heavy cream and mix well with whisk
- Cool completely and pour into glass mason jar.
- Cover and chill in refrigerator overnight.
- Next day, remove and mix well. Keep stored and chilled in the refrigerator.
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