Our Favorite Caramel Desserts

Photo: Bryan Gardner
01 of 25

Caramel Sauce


The easiest way to upgrade any dessert? Caramel of course! Drizzle this sauce over ice cream, dip fruit in it, or use it as a topping for these decadent Warm Chocolate Pudding Cakes. You can also dress it up with other flavors, such as bourbon and vanilla or lavender and fleur de sel.

02 of 25

Creme Caramel

Bryan Gardner

All you need is 15 minutes and five ingredients (sugar, milk, eggs, salt, and vanilla extract) to prep this popular custard dessert. If your guests are chocoholics, try our equally scrumptious Chocolate Creme Caramel.

03 of 25

Flourless Chocolate-Date Cake with Salted-Caramel Sauce

Marcus Nilsson

Turn humble chocolate-date cake into an haute showstopper by swathing it in a luxurious caramel sauce and finishing it with flaky sea salt and whipped cream.

04 of 25

Salted Caramel Apple Pie

Mike Krautter

Take apple pie a la mode to the next level -- with caramel! Sneak it into the apple filling and drizzle it on top of vanilla ice cream.

05 of 25

Chocolate-Caramel Sandwich Cookies


Whether you serve them at a dinner party or as a lunchbox treat, these bite-size chocolate cookies stuffed with rich caramel frosting will disappear in a flash.

06 of 25

Caramel-Coated Brie


Top a wheel of brie with a crackling layer of pecan-caramel brittle for the perfect balance of savory and sweet. It makes an impressive after-dinner cheese plate or easy appetizer.

07 of 25

Chocolate Caramel Pecan Tart

David Malosh

Gussy up caramel with chocolate, pour into flaky puff pastry, and sprinkle with toasted pecans and flaky sea salt. A spectacular make-ahead recipe, the tart can be stored in the fridge for up to a day.

08 of 25

Salted-Caramel Whoopie Pies

Will Anderson

These cinnamon-and-allspice whoopee pies are filled with a smooth caramel buttercream and rolled in a mixture of pink rock salt and sanding sugar for an irresistible blend of salty and sweet.

09 of 25

Banana-Caramel Ice Cream

Jonathan Lovekin

Super-ripe bananas and dellicious caramel go hand in hand in this delectable ice cream. It’s the perfect way to kick off summer!

10 of 25

Easy Caramel Apples


These glazed treats will make your guests swoon with nostalgia. They keep well at room temperature, so feel free to make them a couple days in advance.

11 of 25

Caramel Candies

Christopher Testani

Learn how to make these deliciously chewy confections step by step. We start with classic caramels before veering into uncharted flavor territory with five variations: sesame-ginger, orange-espresso, chocolate-coconut, maple-walnut, and mixed nut-and-thyme.

12 of 25

Peanut, Caramel, and Chocolate Tart


Has someone been reading our dream journal?! This tart takes everything we love about a Snickers bar and transforms it into an incredible over-the-top dessert.

13 of 25

Caramel Custards


It’s a good thing that these luscious desserts are served in individual ramekins. Otherwise, your guests would be fighting over them! Serve with a generous dollop of whipped cream.

14 of 25

Chocolate-Caramel Swiss Roll

Con Poulos

There’s more to this seemingly simple roll cake than meets the eye: the whipped cream filling is amped up with rich caramel, and the airy chocolate sponge cake is brushed with bourbon-chocolate syrup.

15 of 25

Oat-and-Pecan Caramel Sandwiches

Sang An

Elevate chewy oatmeal cookies with crunchy pecans and a creamy caramel filling. They make a lovely holiday gift but are delicious any time of year.

16 of 25

Ile Flottante with Caramel


Ile Flottante translates to “floating island,” which couldn’t be more apt. One taste of this light-as-air meringue topped with silky creme anglaise and sticky-sweet caramel, and you’ll know what we mean.

17 of 25

Chewy Caramel Popcorn and Pretzel Bars


These treats offset salty pretzels and popcorn with sweet caramel and mini marshmallows. They’ll keep for up to two days at room temperature, but we doubt they’ll last that long!

18 of 25

Caramel Apple Sundaes

Johnny Miller

Hollowed-out apples are an ingenious way to serve vanilla ice cream topped with caramel sauce and toasted walnuts. They'll surprise and delight both kids and adults.

19 of 25

Salted-Caramel Six-Layer Chocolate Cake

Salted-Caramel Six-Layer Chocolate Cake
Johnny Miller

This extravagant dessert is sure to satisfy any chocolate lover. A whopping six layers of chocolate cake are spread with caramel and covered in a blanket of chocolate frosting. The recipe can be made up to three days in advance.

20 of 25

Hazelnut-Caramel Bars


Team up caramel with the nut of your choice (we went with hazelnuts) and chocolate for this potluck-friendly dessert. It can be made up to two days in advance.

Looking for more sweets that travel well? Don’t miss The Best Potluck Desserts.

21 of 25

Turtle Brownies


Some people would call topping decadent chocolaty brownies with caramel and nuts gilding the lily. We aren’t those people.

22 of 25

Chocolate-Caramel Cookie Bars

holiday handbook 2011 cookie bar
Joseph De Leo

We won’t blame you for having seconds of these tasty bars. We’re addicted to the combo of dark chocolate, rich caramel, fleur de sel, and buttery shortbread crust, too.

23 of 25

Brown-Sugar Layer Cake with Caramel Buttercream Frosting

brown sugar cake
Francesco Lagnese

Martha made this adorable cake for her granddaughter’s first birthday. The game-changing ingredient? Caramel buttercream frosting -- it goes between the brown-sugar cake layers and envelopes the whole dessert. Top with marzipan animals for cute overload.

24 of 25

Caramel-Popcorn Hot-Fudge Sundaes

Johnny Miller

Give hot fudge sundaes a lip-smacking makeover; stir chunks of caramel into vanilla ice cream and top the whole concoction with caramel popcorn.

25 of 25

What To Do When Your Caramel Crystallizes

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