{Homemade Holiday Treats} Vanilla Caramels

Let the holiday baking begin!! What says the holidays are here more than all of those special homemade goodies? So today 50+ bloggers are posting their BEST holiday treat recipes! Get your Pinning button ready and be prepared for the cravings to start!

 Everyone has their favorite treats that they like to make every year during the holidays. One of our family favorites is vanilla caramels. When I was in middle school, I gave a demonstration speech on how to make vanilla caramels and since I passed out samples afterward, it was a huge success! These caramels are great because they only require a few ingredients and you can make them in the microwave.

Start with 2 cups of granulated sugar, 14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk, 1/2 lb butter and 1 cup of light corn syrup.

Put all of the ingredients into a very large, microwavable bowl. The bowl needs to be large enough for the mixture to boil up. When I was pregnant with Zack, I decided to try making caramels for Christmas. Unfortunately, I tried making them in a plastic bowl. I’m not sure what I was thinking but I blame it on my pregnant brain. As you can imagine, the bowl melted and I started crying. So, after calming me down, my husband surprised me by going to the store and buying me a large GLASS bowl for making caramels!

So, to make the caramels, microwave on high for 5 minutes and then stir. Next, microwave for 5 minutes at 50% power and then stir. Do this two more times so that when you are done the caramels have been in the microwave for 20 minutes total: 5 on high and 15 at 50%. The hardest part of the process is knowing when the caramels are done. My mom is the expert on this. They have to be a dark caramel color. The notes on the recipe say that the caramel should form a ball in cold water. My microwave must be one of the lower wattage one because I had to cook mine 10 minutes longer (5 minutes at 50%, stir and then 5 more minutes at 50%) and they ended up being a little too soft.

Remove from the microwave and add 1 tsp of vanilla.

Pour into a lightly buttered 9×13″ pan. Allow the caramels to cool. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight to completely cool.

Cut the caramels and wrap them in waxed paper. To make them a little more festive, tie pieces of baker’s twine around the ends. These are the.best.caramels.ever! Everyone who tastes them, loves them!

Vanilla Caramels
by The Gunny Sack
1/2 lb butter
14 oz sweetened condensed milk
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla
In a very, large microwave safe bowl, microwave butter, sweetened condensed milk, sugar and corn syrup on high for 5 minutes and then stir. Microwave at 50% power for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, or until caramels are a dark golden color and will form a ball in cold water. Remove from microwave and stir in vanilla. Pour caramels into a lightly buttered 9×13″ pan. Cool, cut and wrap in waxed paper.
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  1. says

    You have the most scrumptious cookie recipe! I’m hosting the ultimate holiday cookie recipe exchange extravaganza online at The Jenny Evolution and wanted to be sure to invite you. I hope you’ll link up and see if you’re highlighted later in the week :-)

    Jennifer @ The Jenny Evolution

    P.S. This series is sure to get a lot of attention as it’s going to be a week’s worth of cookies with FIVE different cookie round-us. So be sure to join!

  2. says

    My mom is the caramel maker in our family, but these look delicious. I just may have to try my hand this year. It must have taken you a while to come up with all those sweet treats…

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