a while ago i made vanilla bean caramel sauce and it was delicious, so when i saw this recipe for salted vanilla bean caramels i knew i had to try it. these caramels are also very good. i love the added salt too. it’s a nice balance with the sweetness of the caramel. plus they are buttery and creamy and amazingly chewy. yum!
making caramels is very similar to making caramel sauce. it’s fairly easy – just boiling some sugar and adding a bunch of cream and butter. but the one plus the sauce has over these caramels is that you don’t have to wrap caramel sauce. i am definitely not a good caramel wrapper. look at this. oh well.
but there is still good sweet caramel goodness inside the ugly wrappers and that’s what matters right?
these salted vanilla bean caramels start with cream, butter, vanilla, vanilla beans, and salt heated in a medium saucepan.
look at all those beautiful vanilla beans. they are going to add amazing flavor to the caramels.
next boil the sugar, corn syrup, and water mixture until it’s a light golden color. beware, this takes longer than you may think. mine got to a light golden color when the sugar reached about 330 degrees F.
the pour in the cream and vanilla mixture into the sugar. be careful it will bubble up. the temperature will also drop. continue cooking the caramel until the temperature gets back up to 248 degrees F.
pour the mixture into a buttered parchment lined baking pan and allow it to set for 30 minutes.
sprinkle on the kosher or sea salt and allow it to cool completely.
once the caramel is set, cut it up into 1 in squares and then wrap them up in wax paper.
Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 vanilla bean pod, split and scraped
- 1 1/4 teaspoon sea or kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 cup water
- Line bottom and sides of an 8-inch square baking pan with parchment paper, then lightly butter parchment.
- Bring cream, butter, vanilla, vanilla beans, pods, and salt to a boil in a small saucepan, then remove from heat and set aside.
- Boil sugar, corn syrup, and water in a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Boil, without stirring but gently swirling pan, until mixture is a light golden caramel.
- Remove pods and carefully stir cream mixture into the caramel (mixture will bubble up) and simmer, stirring frequently, until caramel registers 248 on thermometer.
- Pour into baking pan and cool 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle another pinch or two of salt over the top of the caramel for a nice salty crunch and let sit until completely cooled.
- Cut into 1-inch pieces (I used a buttered pizza cutter), and then wrap each piece in a 4-inch square of wax paper, twisting 2 ends or folding to close.
Printer Friendly Recipe: Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels