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caramel in a clear jar with a spoon scooping it.
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4.95 from 20 votes

Pumpkin Caramel Sauce

This homemade pumpkin caramel sauce is one of the best caramels ever! Simply adding canned pumpkin puree and pumpkin pie spice to homemade caramel adds an unparalleled depth of flavor that will be perfect for ice cream or on top of pie this fall!
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time15 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 110kcal
Author: Dorothy Kern
Cost: $5

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (200g) granulated sugar
  • 4 tablespoons (57g) unsalted butter sliced into tablespoons
  • cup (158ml) heavy whipping cream
  • cup (81g) pumpkin puree not pumpkin pie mix
  • ½ teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt (or up to 1 teaspoon if you want a “salted” pumpkin caramel)

Instructions

  • Note: making caramel is something that needs your undivided attention. Make sure you have all your ingredients gathered before starting and that you are not distracted. Leaving the caramel alone at any point can cause it to burn. Read the entire recipe before continuing.
  • Place sugar in a heavy-bottomed medium sauce pot. Make sure the sides of the pot come up a little bit (that it’s not a shallow pan) because it will boil up when you add the cream later.
  • Place the pan over medium-low heat. Cook stirring often, but being careful not to spread the sugar up the sides of the pan too much. The sugar will become a little bit liquidy, form clumps, then finally melt into a light amber liquid. Keep stirring until the liquid is amber in color. This will take about 7-12 minutes, depending on your pot and the heat of your stove. DO NOT LEAVE THE SUGAR ALONE, it will burn fast.
  • Once the liquid turns amber and all the sugar crystals have melted, add the butter and stir until it’s melted. Add half of the heavy whipping cream, stir, then add the rest. It will bubble up as you add it to the mixture. Turn off the heat and then stir in the pumpkin, spice, vanilla, and salt, if using. Stir until smooth. You may need to whisk it to get out all the clumps.
  • Pour the caramel carefully into a jar and let cool to room temperature. Cover and store in the refrigerator. When ready to use, remove the lid and heat in 30 second increments until the caramel is melted and smooth and the desired consistency (about 60-90 seconds for the just-made texture). Will keep for 2 weeks in the refrigerator.

Notes

  • Store in the refrigerator; heat to thin.
  • Be careful not to let the sugar hit the sides of the pan too much during cooking. If it gets too high on the side of the pan, use a wet pastry to wipe the sides down. Any crystalized sugar on the sides of the pan can cause crystalized caramel.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 110kcal | Carbohydrates: 13g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 5mg | Potassium: 18mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 13g | Vitamin A: 1028IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 1mg