This Caramel Syrup Recipe for coffee is absolutely delicious. An easy, simple syrup it's made quickly and has the very best caramel flavor. Perfect for coffee, hot chocolate, mix drinks, cocktails, mocktails, boba and more. It is made by heating sugar and brown sugar with added vanilla. This results in a silky smooth mouthfeel and the delicious flavor of caramel which is sweet with notes of toffee, vanilla and butter.
This is popular year round, but is even more popular in the wintertime. Popular from Starbucks, McDonald's (McCafe), Dunkin Donuts, or Torani and Da Vinci from the grocery store.
This was inspired by my Peppermint Syrup, Brown Sugar Syrup, and Vanilla Syrup. It goes great with our Oat Milk Hot Chocolate, Pink Beetroot Latte, Oat Milk Smoothie and our Protein Packed Pancakes (see pancake variation below for a thick syrup)
Why I Love This Recipe
My kids are little hot chocolate fiends in the wintertime and love using flavor syrups in carbonated water in the summer time (Italian sodas). They love using the caramel syrup to do those things and I love that I can make this syrup at home and I know exactly what's in it and it's so inexpensive! They also like to use it on pancakes to switch up the flavor from regular maple.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Quick and Easy- this recipe is so quick and so easy to make! Made with only 3 ingredients and in about 6 minutes, you'll love it.
- Simple - it uses simple pantry staples for the ingredients and you won't need to worry about chemicals here!
- Makes a great gift- place in a cute container of some kind and give it to your colleague, neighbor or friend. It's original, beautiful and useful.
- Gluten Free/ Allergy Friendly/ Vegan - Naturally Top 8 and gluten free and vegan, it's perfect for your gluten free friend (or yourself) and those with common allergies.
- Kid Friendly - it's easy to make and kids can help under supervision. They also love using it in their drinks!
- Versatile - it's so versatile (see below in "Ways To Use") and can be used for many different things.
- Inexpensive - this costs about 25 cents to make, maybe less which is so much less than buying!
All in all, it's great to make at home! It is very inexpensive to make and can be made in less time than it takes to drive to your local Starbucks.
- water - regular tap water, filtered water or bottled water work fine
- sugar - granulated white sugar
- brown sugar- I used light brown, but you can use dark brown for a richer taste
- vanilla - pure vanilla will work best in this recipe, as the vanilla is a highlighted flavor
See recipe card for quantities.
1. Heat a small saucepan over medium heat. Pour in the water.
2. Add the white sugar.
3. Then the brown sugar. Stir until brown sugar and white sugar dissolve, then stop stirring.
4. Bring to a boil, and boil for one minute (still no stirring!). Remove from heat and let stand about 1 minute, then stir in the vanilla. Allow to cool to room temperature before storing in the refrigerator.
Hint: make sure not to stir it once the sugar is dissolved. It is okay if you do, it will just likely crystalize more quickly.
- Muscavado - for a deeper, richer flavor use muscavado sugar instead of brown sugar
- Dark Brown Sugar - this will also give it a richer, deeper flavor. Substitute for brown sugar.
- Turbinado - if using turbinado sugar, substitute 1:1 for the brown sugar, then 1:1 for half of the white sugar. Sugar crystals will take longer to dissolve.
- Demerara - make with demerara sugar, by substituting 1:1 for the brown sugar and 1:1 for part or all of the white sugar.
- Vanilla - we HIGHLY recommend using pure vanilla in this, since it is a flavor highlight, but imitation vanilla may be used in a pinch.
- Salted Caramel Syrup - add ⅛ teaspoon or more to taste of salt at the same time as adding the sugar. May add at the end a the same time as vanilla to achieve desired saltiness.
- Buttered - add 2 Tablespoons butter at the same time as the sugars and water for a buttery caramel taste.
- Sugar Free - use your favorite sugar substitute at the ratios indicated on the package for a sugar free caramel syrup.
- Thick - double the sugars and make as directed- perfect for pancakes and desserts when made this way.
- Pancake, waffle and french toast - we actually recommend making a completely different syrup. In a saucepan combine ½ cup corn syrup, ½ cup brown sugar and ½ cup heavy whipping cream. Heat until it starts to steam, then remove and stir in ½ teaspoon vanilla. It's the best in the world.
Ways to Use
- coffee - have this with your favorite hot or iced coffee drink- lattes, cappuccinos and more
- boba - boba is so fun and this syrup works perfectly in boba. If you want a thicker syrup for boba, check out our "thick" variation below.
- cocktails and mocktails - use it in your favorite mix drinks
- hot chocolate - caramel hot chocolate? yes please! Put this on a hot cocoa bar during the winter for entertaining.
- teas - use it with Sweet Tea, Iced Tea, herbal tea and more.
- Italian sodas - caramel Italian cream soda is one of our favorites!
- soda- add it to your favorite cola or other soda to liven it up.
- pancakes, waffles and french toast -add it to your pancakes. To make it thicker for pancakes, double both sugars and make as directed.
- small saucepan
- syrup container, optional
Allow to cool to room temperature without disturbing, then transfer to a container or jar. Place in the refrigerator for up to 1 month. After 1 month, it may start to crystallize a bit.
Allow it to cool undisturbed before transferring to the fridge. Disruption or moving it immediately to the refrigerator could cause it to crystallize sooner.
Place granulated sugar, brown sugar and water in a saucepan. Stir until the sugars are dissolved, then stop stirring. Bring to a boil and boil for one minute then remove from heat. Allow to cool for a minute or 2 then stir in the vanilla and allow to cool.
Caramel syrup is made of water, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla. For a more buttery flavor, you can also add a little butter.
sugar, water, natural flavor, citric acid, potassium sorbate.
Looking for other recipes like this? Try these:
These are my favorite dishes to serve with [this recipe]:
- ¾ cup water
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspooon vanilla
- Heat water, granulated sugar and brown sugar in a saucepan over medium/ medium high heat. Stir until the sugar has dissolved, then no longer.
- Bring water and sugars to a boil and boil for one minute. Remove from heat (still no stirring). Allow to cool 1-2 minutes, then stir in the vanilla. Allow to cool to room temperature then transfer to a jar or other container and store in the refrigerator.
- Allow to cool completely at room temperature then transfer to a container and store in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.
- To make thicker for pancakes and desserts, double the sugars and make as directed.
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
I can’t wait to make this tomorrow, I’ve been searching all over for a brown sugar syrup with NO luck! You are a genius! Lol Thank you