Salted Mocha Caramels

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Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!

Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!

Whoa – we’re on day 4 of 12 of my treat marathon and its not even Thanksgiving yet! I’m not normally this prepared. Don’t let me fool you – I will be scrambling to make the rest of my holiday recipes over Thanksgiving weekend.

12 Days of Holiday Treats | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Oh salted mocha caramels. Where have you been all my life? Seriously, where? You have everything my tastebuds desire – coffee, chocolate, sugar, fat, and a touch of salt. I mean, what more could a girl ask for?

Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!

Yesterday I talked about how I’ve overcome my fear of boiling sugar. That being said, you might find a trend in this year’s holiday treats. Yup – more candy than cookie recipes. Don’t get me wrong, its hard to be the perfect trifecta of sugar + flour + butter, but I’m slowly learning that there are many gluten free delights that are just as good, if not better. Don’t worry, there will still be some cookie recipes. I’ve already posted one and a I have a couple more on the way. But this year’s Christmas box will be about 2/3 candy and 1/3 cookies. I wonder if my hypercritical younger sister will give me praise or condemnation for this dramatic change in holiday tradition. I’ll be sure to report back.

Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!

I have found that making your own homemade caramels are one of the best things a person can do. First, eating caramel that is super fresh will change your life. Second, creating perfect caramel without inflicting a major burn to you or the persons around you, as well as making caramel that is not under or overdone, should be considered a personal milestone in one’s life. Third, caramels of this quality are pretty freaking expensive. Don’t believe me? Just go to a place like Whole Foods this time of year and find some artisan caramels. You’ll have to decide whether you want to buy the caramel or feed your family dinner that night. And lastly, people are pretty darn impressed when they open up that little wax paper bundle, pop this treat into their mouth, and marvel at the fact that you actually made it. All by yourself. In your own kitchen. Impressive.

Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!

These are definitely different than regular caramels. They are darker. They are richer. They are more intense. I was about to throw in one of those “I like my caramels like I like my men” jokes but I’m guessing you were already anticipating that. Bottom line, if you make one naughty treat this year, it should be these. However, I will likely say that about everything I make this year because my blog contributes to my cooking narcissism.

Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!

Be sure to scroll past the recipe to feast your eyes on all the holiday treats I’ve made over the last couple of years!

This recipe uses pure vanilla extract. Did you know you can make your own homemade vanilla extract? It makes the perfect gift too. Watch how in the video below.

Salted Mocha Caramels
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Yields: 100 caramels
Ingredients
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon instant espresso or espresso powder (I used two Starbucks Via packets)
  • 4 ounces chopped bittersweet or dark chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 1-1/8 cups sugar
  • 5/8 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 teaspoon flaked salt (like Maldon's)
Instructions
  1. Line an 8" square pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Combine the cream, vanilla extract, and espresso powder in a medium-sized saucepan and heat while swirling until scalding. As soon as the mixture starts to bubble and appears to coat the bottom of the pan, you'll know its done. Remove from the heat, add the chopped chocolate and allow to sit for a minute to allow it to melt. Then, stir until it turns into a completely smooth mixture. Stir in the butter.
  3. Using a medium to large (at least 4 quart) pot, combine the sugar, corn syrup, and water in this large saucepan and stir to combine. Heat mixture over medium heat until the sugar melts and then increase heat to high to bring the mixture to a full boil. You may occasionally swirl the mixture but do not stir. You may also use a brush to run water down the sides of the pot to wash down any crystals - this will eventually evaporate.
  4. You want to cook the sugar just until it starts to change color and take on more of a caramel color and smell. You'll notice a reduction in the bubbles at this point too. Remove from heat.
  5. To make the caramel, pour the chocolate cream mixture into the sugar, stir to mix, and add your thermometer to the pot. Bring to a boil over high heat and whisk constantly until it reaches 245°F. The moment it reaches temperature, pour it into your prepared pan. Do not scrape out anything that has stuck to the pan as it may have been overcooked.
  6. Allow the caramel to sit for about 10 minutes before sprinkling with salt. If its too hot, the salt will sink in. Start with a small amount and if it sinks, wait a bit longer to add the rest.
  7. Allow to caramel to cool completely at room temperature. Transfer to a cutting board and cut into small pieces. Wrap them individually in wax paper. If you cut the pieces and don't wrap fast enough, they will stick together, so you may want to cut just a few rows at a time.
  8. Store wrapped caramels in an airtight container at room temperature (or you may freeze) until you're ready to share.

recipe adapted from Wanna Come With

To see all of 2014’s holiday treats, click the links below:

2014 Holiday Treats | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Five Minute Fudge | Holiday Sugar Cookies | Peppermint Candy Cane Cookies

Peppermint Chocolate Pie | Hazelnut Lemon Curd Thumbprints | Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows

Chewy Molasses Sugar Cookies | Easy Petite Palmiers | Triple Threat Peppermint Brownie Bites

Toasted Coconut Cookies | Walnut Spiced Rum Balls | Mexican Chocolate Truffles

To see all of 2015’s holiday treats, click the links below:

Holiday Recipes | Self Proclaimed Foodie

Easy Candy Cane Chocolate Truffles | Cherry Almond Thumbprints | Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge

Toasted Macadamia Nut Cookies | Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels | Chocolate Peppermint Swirl Cookies

Lynne’s Cream Wafers | Mini Pecan Pie Bites | Eggnog Poundcake

Christmas Tree Corn Flake Treats | Devil’s Food Crinkles | Chewy Brown Sugar Cookies

 

Soft and chewy old fashioned Salted Mocha Caramels made with rich chocolate and coffee powder are a tasty candy treat perfect for the holidays!
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25 of the Best Holiday Cookies and a $400 Cash Giveaway!

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Not only am I sharing 25 of the BEST Holiday Cookie recipes, but we’re giving away $400 cash to spend however you wish this holiday season!

Not only am I sharing 25 of the BEST Holiday Cookie recipes, but we're giving away $400 cash to spend however you wish this holiday season!

It’s the most WONDERFUL time… of the year!  Tell me you just sang that in your head just like I did while I was writing it. You did, didn’t you? I look forward to the holidays every single year. The enjoyment I get from my kids excitement. The smell of wonderful baked treats filling the house. The endless decorations and lights. The calming tradition of putting that fresh Oregon Noble Fir up in the living room and decorating it with the sentimental ornaments we’ve collected over the years. I love all of it. This will be my third year doing my 12 Days of Christmas series on my blog where I share twelve, YES 12 if you can believe it – holiday treats. If you’re curious about all the wonderful recipes I’ve made in the past, I’ll list some of them out here with links to the recipes, but I don’t want to post pictures because there are too many amazing recipes below. PLUS THE CASH!!! Read on for more details.  Okay, here are just some of my favorite holiday recipes, and have fun looking through all of my friends recipes below! Five Minute Fudge | Holiday Sugar Cookies | Peppermint Candy Cane Cookies | Peppermint Chocolate Pie | Hazelnut Lemon Curd Thumbprints | Homemade Peppermint Marshmallows | Chewy Molasses Sugar Cookies | Easy Petite Palmiers | Triple Threat Peppermint Brownie Bites | Toasted Coconut Cookies | Walnut Spiced Rum Balls | Mexican Chocolate Truffles

This holiday season I’m excited to be joining the Real Housemoms creative team in giving away $400 Black Friday Cash! We’re helping make one lucky reader’s holiday extra special with a little spending money. Be sure to scroll down to the bottom of this post to enter!

This holiday season I’m excited to be joining the Real Housemoms creative team in giving away $400 Black Friday Cash! We’re helping make one lucky reader’s holiday extra special with a little spending money. Be sure to scroll down to the bottom of this post to enter!

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Caramel Macchiato Cookies from Home.Made.Interest.

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Chocolate Crinkle Peppermint Blossoms from Real Housemoms

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Chocolate Frosted Christmas Cookies from Real Housemoms

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Chocolate Peppermint Cookies from Around My Family Table

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Chocolate Peppermint Crunch Cookies from Real Housemoms

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Christmas Crinkle Cool Whip Cookies from Bread Booze Bacon

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Christmas Mint Cookies from Cooking on the Front Burner

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Christmas Sugar Cookies from Liz on Call

EGGNOG BISCOTTI are a crunchy, sweet cookies with a hint of nutmeg drizzled with a simple eggnog glaze!

Eggnog Biscotti from Real Housemoms

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Loaded Christmas Cowboy Cookies from Flavor Mosaic

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Melt in Your Mouth Shortbread Cookies from The Endless Meal

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Mexican Hot Chocolate Shortbread from Bread Booze Bacon

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Molasses Sugar Cookies from Real Housemoms

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Monster Cookie Bars from Dinner at the Zoo

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No Bake Peanut Butter Cookie Treats from Pink Cake Plate

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Oreo Cake Ball Christmas Tree from The Cards We Drew

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Penguin Cookies from Delightful E Made

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Peppermint Candy Cane Cookies from Self Proclaimed Foodie

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Peppermint Oreo Truffles from It Is a Keeper

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Peppermint Twist Macarons from Savory Experiments

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Red Velvet Ooey Gooey Bars from A Night Owl

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Salted Caramel & Pecan Thumbprint Cookies from Real Housemoms

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Turtle Snickerdoodles from Garnish & Glaze

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Vanilla Chai Shortbread Cookies from Sugar & Soul

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White Chocolate Dipped Cherry Shortbread Cookies from Frugal Foodie Mama

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart

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This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert – a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

Who doesn’t love chocolate? Who doesn’t love peanut butter? Who doesn’t love caramel? Now, tell me who doesn’t love all of those things combined? December is a month that means a lot of things to a lot of families. One of the main things it means to me is holiday baking. Lots and lots of it!

chocolate-caramel-peanut-crunch-tart-skippy

I knew I wanted to make an impressive dessert to serve at Christmas dinner that had peanut butter in it because everyone in my family loves peanut butter. Baking with peanut butter brings me back to the days when I would make peanut butter cookies with my sisters as a kid. To me, it has become a key ingredient in our family tradition of holiday baking. I found this SKIPPY® Natural Peanut Butter and knew I wanted to use it in my dessert because A) SKIPPY® is the brand I grew up on and B) its a creamy peanut butter that you don’t have to stir which I think is ideal for baking and C) it has (and doesn’t have) everything you’d want to see in a peanut butter.  I encourage you to visit the SKIPPY® Peanut Butter website: www.peanutbutter.com (pretty cool url, right?) to see more recipes and get a coupon!

This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

This dessert has everything a chocolate-peanut-butter-caramel fan could want.

This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

This tart starts with a sugar cookie crust. Smack dab in the middle is a combination of homemade salted caramel sauce mixed with peanuts. You like the start of this already, I can tell.

This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

On top of that is a crunchy chocolate peanut butter fudge. That’s right. CRUNCHY. The crunch comes from a secret ingredient – Feuilletine Flakes. These delicacies are hard to find, but in today’s world they are just a click away online. Feuilletine Flakes are buttery, toasty-sweet shards that can be added to ganache, frostings and truffles for a super crunch. But, instead of ganache that’s made from chocolate and heavy cream, this one is made from chocolate, peanut butter, and honey.

This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

I can pretty much guarantee you’ve never had a dessert like this one. One of the many things that I realized as I set this dessert out on the table in front of my family was that I’d unknowingly created a family tradition that I wasn’t even aware of – every year for the holidays, I’ve made some kind of different dessert with peanut butter in it. I plan on continuing the tradition and hopefully my food loving kids will carry it forward with their families!

This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

The best place to buy Feuilletine Flakes is on Amazon:

This recipe uses pure vanilla extract. Did you know you can make your own homemade vanilla extract? It makes the perfect gift too. Watch how in the video below.
Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Yields: 1 tart
Ingredients
shell (sugar cookie dough):
  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
caramel layer:
  • salted caramel sauce
  • 1/2 cup peanuts
chocolate peanut butter fudge layer:
  • 16 ounces chocolate chips, melted
  • 1 cup SKIPPY® Natural Peanut Butter
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 8 ounces Feuilletine Flakes
Instructions
  1. To make the crust, follow the instructions to make my sugar cookie dough. Roll out sugar cookie dough 1/4 inch thick and place into a tart pan, pressing down into the corners. Use the rolling pin to roll over the edge and cut off any excess dough - this can be used to make sugar cookies.
  2. Blind-bake the crust by covering with parchment or aluminum foil and then weigh down with pie weights and cook in 400 degree oven for 14 minutes.
  3. Add peanuts to cooked shell and fill crust half way with caramel sauce. Bake for 12-15 minutes until you get a nice full bubbling caramel. Cool.
  4. To make chocolate peanut butter fudge layer, combine melted chocolate, peanut butter, honey, and salt in large bowl. Fold in Feuilletine Flakes and stir until combined. Add mixture to top of tart and press down with back of spoon to even out.
This Chocolate Caramel Peanut Crunch Tart has everything you could ever want in a dessert - a sugar cookie crust, a rich peanut caramel layer, and a crunchy chocolate peanut butter top.

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Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels

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These sweet & chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!

These sweet & chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!

Welcome to Day 7 of my 12 Days of Holiday Treats Series! That means that I’m well past half way done. What on earth will I share next?!?

12 Days of Holiday Treats | Self Proclaimed Foodie

I’ve been wanting to make chewy homemade caramels for my holiday cookie boxes for years now. As much as I love holiday cookies, the overwhelming amount of flour gets a little tiresome. I like to mix it up on occasion with a chocolate truffle or something like these unbelievably delicious caramels.

These sweet & chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!

Until this past year, I’ve been deathly afraid of boiling sugar. It all comes back to a tragic gingerbread house incident where I was making homemade gingerbread (yes – long before the days of those easy to make kits) and was gluing the pieces together with boiling melted sugar. Well, I’ll have you know that boiling sugar works fantastic as a glue because it instantly holds the gingerbread together… much like it instantly bonds to your flesh when you sister accidentally spills some on the back of your hand. Yeah. Well. I was finally able to overcome my fear when I made some salted caramel sauce this summer.

These sweet & chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!

The process is reasonably similar for these caramels in that you need to get it to a very specific temperature to yield the very best results. I don’t have a candy thermometer but I do use my digital meat thermometer. Works like a charm! I also keep my hands protected from the heat by wearing my silicone oven mitt while I stir. I did a few things to take these caramels to good to DAMM GOOD. First, instead of just melting the butter, I browned it first. Then, I used a heck of a lot of vanilla beans. This is a no brainer for me because I just pull them out of the gallon sized jar of homemade vanilla extract that I’ve had soaking in my closet for the past year. I’m a firm believer that everyone should always have at least 20 vanilla beans on hand. Finally, top your sweet caramel with the most delicious flaked sea salt and you have yourself an outstanding treat that makes a fantastic gift!

These sweet & chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!

This recipe uses vanilla beans. Did you know you can make your own homemade vanilla extract? It makes the perfect gift too. Watch how in the video below.
Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
These sweet & chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Yields: 4 dozen
Ingredients
  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 vanilla beans, split with seeds scraped (you'll use both)
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon flaked salt (I use Maldon)
Instructions
  1. Line a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with foil or parchment lined foil. Butter any sides of the dish that are not covered in the liner.
  2. Using a medium to large saucepan (I used an 8 quart because hot bubbling sugar scares me), begin to melt butter over medium high heat. Whisk continually as butter melts and bubbles, scraping any brown bits off the bottom of the pan. When butter has successfully browned, you will have a wonderful caramel nutty aroma. Remove from heat.
  3. Combine the water, sugar, vanilla beans with scraped seeds, condensed milk, corn syrup, and browned butter in the saucepan. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly with a heat-resistant rubber spatula. Continue stirring while cooking until the batch reaches 245ºF. You may need to use a heat protective glove over your hand while stirring.
  4. The instant the caramel reaches 245ºF, immediately pour into the prepared pan and remove the vanilla bean pods using a fork. If you do this too early, the caramel won't set. If you take the temperature above the setpoint, you risk having caramel that's hard as a rock as opposed to chewy.
  5. As soon as you've poured the caramel, sprinkle the salt flakes over the surface. Allow to cool completely to room temperature, at least 2 hours. Remove the sheet of caramels from the pan. Cut into the desired size pieces using a sharp chef's knife. For easy wrapping, caramels may be chilled before handling. Wrap in pieces of wax paper for individual treats. Store in airtight container at room temperature.
These sweet and chewy homemade Salted Vanilla Bean Caramels, made with the goodness of browned butter and lots of vanilla beans, are the perfect holiday gift!
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Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge

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This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

What? We’re at Day 3 of my 12 Days of Holiday Treats Series? Its not even December yet!

12 Days of Holiday Treats | Self Proclaimed Foodie

It shouldn’t surprise anyone that I’m jumping the gun on posting my holiday treats. For as long as I can remember, I’ve gotten my Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving. Black Friday shopping? Who cares. To me, Black Friday is all about filling the house with the wonderful aroma of a freshly cut Oregon Noble Fir, Christmas decorations, lights – lots and lots of lights, and enough treats to have to make me work twice as hard during the month of January to not have to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe that’s a couple sizes bigger.

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

I rarely stray from making my five minute fudge because its so darn easy and is one of my favorite naughty treats to indulge in, but this year I wanted some variety so I made this pecan fudge. Oh my word. It is soooooooo freakin’ good.

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

Recently, I’ve been going a little crazy with the browned butter. I’ve made everything from mashed potatoes to blueberry muffins to brownies using brown butter. I’m pretty confident that, going forward, any recipe that calls for melted butter will have me take that melted butter to the next level by browning it.

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

If you’ve never made brown butter yourself, it basically consists of cooking it past the melting stage until some of the milk solids start to turn a nutty brown. When done correctly, it adds a richness and downright delicious flavor to any recipe.

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

Fudge on the stove can frighten me if it has to be cooked to a “candy temperature” meaning a temperature above 212 F which is what water boils at. Fortunately, this is not one of those boil-the-sugar-and-prey-I-don’t-burn-myself kind of recipes. This one really is quite easy. You’ll love it!

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Yields: 64 pieces
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 3 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
  • 1 tablespoon bourbon
  • 1 cup raw pecan pieces
  • 64 candied pecan halves (about 1 cup)
Instructions
  1. Line an 8x8 inch square baking pan with foil or a foil/parchment liner. Grease any additional exposed sections of the pan with butter. Add sifted confectioners' sugar and bourbon to the bowl of your stand mixer.
  2. Begin by making brown butter. Add butter to a medium sized sauce pot and cook over medium high heat. Allow to melt and then bubble while frequently stirring to scrape any of the wonderful brown bits off the bottom of the pan. You know when you're done when you see little brown specs and it smells nutty like caramel. Do not overcook. Once done, turn off heat.
  3. Add brown sugar and evaporated milk to the browned butter. Cook mixture over medium heat about 2 minutes, stirring constantly, until sugar is dissolved. Then, heat to full rolling boil and stir 1 minute. Remove from heat. Immediately add to the stand mixer bowl with the powdered sugar.
  4. Using the paddle attachment, beat on low speed 1 minute to combine. Increase speed to medium and beat 6-10 minutes or until mixture begins to hold its shape and is warm to the touch. Quickly stir in the raw pecan pieces.
  5. Transfer fudge to prepared pan. Set candied pecan halves on top in rows so that once cut, each piece will have a pecan half on top.
  6. Allow to set. Mine set perfectly well in a cool house after about 4 hours. You can also refrigerate for 2 hours to help firm up, if needed.
  7. Lift the fudge out of the pan and cut into pieces. Store in airtight container.

This Easy Brown Butter Pecan Fudge is full of the flavors of candied pecans and buttery caramel. This easy to make candy is the perfect dessert treat.
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Caramel Apple Pie Shot

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A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you’ll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!

A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you'll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!

You all love my funny stories, right? Well, I’m not so sure they’re always funny, but I like to write about the story behind a recipe, what I was thinking when I made it, etc. I had been wanting to make this caramel apple pie shot for weeks now. Maybe even months. I have a bottle of Wild Roots Apple & Cinnamon Infused Vodka and I absolutely love making cocktails with it. This delicious shot literally took me 53 seconds to make, but for whatever reason I hadn’t found the right time to make it. Turns out, the one day I decide to make it was when there was hardly any daylight left, but the husband really really wanted it.

A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you'll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!

If you didn’t know, I take all of the shots for my blog with natural window light. I have flashes – three very nice ones to be exact – but they are for the sole purpose of photographing weddings. I just prefer the look and feel of natural window light for my food photos. Well, considering the dark grey Oregon dusk sky was out and getting darker by the minute, I did what I could to use any remaining window light and shot the photo above at ISO 3200, still severely underexposed.  I pulled the exposure up a good 3-4 stops in LR and tried to reduce the grain. Now it just looks moody and intentionally grainy, right?

A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you'll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!

How about the two shots above? Those were nearly all black before I pulled them out in LR. Photographing in next to no light is very stressful for me. I don’t like it one bit. Well, for my final shot that you see below, I finally got that darn flash out. Sure, it worked. It even gave my photos a different kind of look that I may or may not like. But for now, I think I’ll shoot to taking all of my photos during the day, which means that my weekends will be busy photographing food because by the time I get home from work, its pretty dark out this time of year. The good news is that this sweet shot is super delicious. There’s my story.
A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you'll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!

Caramel Apple Pie Shot
 
Prep time
Total time
 
A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you'll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!
Author:
Recipe type: cocktail, drink
Yields: 1 shot
Ingredients
  • 1 part apple vodka
  • 1 part apple cider
  • whipped cream
  • caramel sauce
Instructions
  1. Fill shot glasses with apple vodka and apple cider. Top with whipped cream and caramel sauce. Shoot 'em back and enjoy!

A Caramel Apple Pie Shot made with apple vodka is super easy to make and is so delicious, you'll be wishing this fall drink was served year round!
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Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding

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If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding.

If you’re looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you’ll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding.

If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

I had some of this delicious rice pudding in my refrigerator. I love this stuff. Have you ever had rice pudding? If not, you must hear what I have to say. I’m sure you’re probably thinking that rice is only meant as a side dish or with sushi. Not true. A good rice pudding is one of my favorite desserts. Its rich and creamy, and the rice gives it a great texture. If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

I wanted to take my rice pudding to the next level my mixing it with some great ingredients. My husband suggested dark chocolate and caramelized bananas. I quickly shot him down because his ideas are usually weird and not good. He loves to eat but he doesn’t create much in the kitchen. Now that I think about it, what he suggested sounds delicious and I will certainly make that my next dessert idea. I went with my sister’s recommendation which was to use soaked raisins and spices. I took it the extra mile by mixing in an easy caramel sauce with some pecans for added crunch. If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

Did you know raisins cooked in bourbon taste much better than raisins not cooked in bourbon? Go figure.
If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

It only takes a few minutes to prepare the raisins and the caramel sauce. Once they’re all cooled off, you’re ready to break out the pudding and make your parfait.If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

You can do this part however you like – layer it or mix it, use as much pudding/caramel/raisins as your heart desires. I decided to layer simply because I think it looks pretty and I want people to see what’s in there. I started off with a big scoop of rice pudding covered in cinnamon and nutmeg.If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

Then I covered it with a layer of raisins (after I tossed a few in my mouth).If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding.

Followed by another layer of pudding as well as caramel and pecans.If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

On to that, more pudding, cinnamon, nutmeg, and raisins.If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

Voila! The end result is a super rich and decadent dessert perfect for summer time. Heaven in a glass.If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

Don’t you just wanna grab that spoon and dive in? I did.If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding. 

Oh yes. This dessert was quite delicious, indeed!

If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding.

This recipe uses pure vanilla extract. Did you know you can make your own homemade vanilla extract? It makes the perfect gift too. Watch how in the video below.

Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
If you're looking for a rich and decadent dessert that is easy to make and perfect for summer, you'll love this Bourbon Raisin Caramel Pecan Rice Pudding.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Yields: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 3/4 cup raisins
  • 3 tablespoons bourbon whiskey
  • 1 cup Brown Sugar
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon Vanilla
  • Pinch Of Salt
  • 3/4 cup pecans
  • 22 ounce tub Kozy Shack Rice Pudding
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (ceylon recommended)
  • dash of freshly ground nutmeg
Instructions
To make the bourbon raisins:
  1. Combine the raisins and the bourbon in a small pot over medium heat. As soon as the bourbon starts to boil, reduce heat to low and cook until all/most of the moisture has evaporated.
  2. Remove from heat and cover pot with lid until raisins are completely cool.
To make the caramel sauce:
  1. Combine the brown sugar, heavy cream, butter, and vanilla in a medium sized pot. Stir to combine and bring to a rapid boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Continue to cook for about 5-10 minutes to develop the flavors. Refrigerate to cool. Caramel will thicken as it cools.
To make the parfait:
  1. Alternate layers of rice pudding covered with cinnamon and nutmeg with layers of caramel and pecans as well as the raisins. You can choose to stir the cinnamon, nutmeg, and raisins into the pudding as well. How much you use and how you do it is complete personal preference.
Notes
Note: you may have leftover ingredients depending on how much you use.

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Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests

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Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

Let me just start by saying how much my kids loved these little cookies. Unlike when I was a kid and we would make a pan of brownies, divide it equally among the four of us, and devour it in minutes, we try to limit the sweets our kids eat. Trust me, just one of these cookies with the sweetened coconut, ooey gooey salted caramel sauce, and divine little candy coated chocolate eggs is enough for a small child. That being said, until they were gone, my husband and I got daily notes and drawings asking if they could pretty please eat a birds nest.

Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

First I started with a coconut macaroon recipe that I really love. A lot of recipes out there call for sweetened condensed milk and I think that’s just gross and a bit overkill for a macaroon, so I don’t use it. Then I wasn’t quite sure how to best make the nest shape. I experimented a bit to save you the hassle and came to the conclusion that I liked to shape them into disks, bake until they partially set, and then use a spoon to shape a well in the middle and push the sides back in. It worked beautifully.

Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

After the cookies have cooled completely, you’ll want to fill those wells with salted caramel sauce. Oh boy, was this stuff worth it. You’ll definitely want to make it from scratch. I sort of missed when I was filling one of the cookies. Can you spot the ugly one below? That was because I was trying to fill the cookies while also taking a photo with a very long macro lens. My arms just aren’t long enough for such tasks!

Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

Then, you just plop those chocolate eggs right on top. It really doesn’t matter which brand you use. I definitely have my favorite, but they shall rename nameless because I tend to do sponsored posts from their competitor and I like to play nice.

Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

And there you have it: cute little delicious coconut caramel Easter egg nests.

Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Coconut Caramel Easter Egg Nests made with coconut macaroons, salted caramel sauce, and chocolate candy eggs are the cutest little Easter desserts ever.
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Yields: 12-16 cookies
Ingredients
  • 1 (14 ounce) package sweetened, flaked coconut
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 3 egg whites, room temperature
  • salted caramel sauce
  • chocolate candy eggs
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. In a large bowl, combine blend coconut, sugar, flour, baking powder, almond extract, and salt until combined.
  3. Beat egg whites in a bowl of stand mixer until soft peaks form. Fold coconut mixture into egg whites until just combined.
  4. Roll spoonfuls of coconut mixture between palms to golf ball size cookies and then flatten into a disk. Arrange on the prepared baking sheet.
  5. Bake cookies in the preheated oven for about 10 minutes, and then open the oven and use the back of a spoon to create a well in the cookie and reshape it into a nest. Continue cooking until coconut is slightly golden and toasted, about 5-10 more minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool, 30 minutes.
  6. Make some delicious salted caramel sauce (the recipe will make more than you need for these nests but there are lots of other things you can use it for).
  7. Fill each well with caramel sauce and fill with 3-4 candy coated chocolate eggs.

 

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Sinful Samoa Sundae

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My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, & Guinness chocolate sauce.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

Wow. This sundae was good. Let me say it again. This sundae was GOOO-OOOD.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

The idea stemmed from those Girls Scout cookies we all love to hate. We love them because they are oh so delicious and tease us by only being available once a year, which makes them taste all the better. We hate them because they are naughty. They were the inspiration for all of the ingredients in this beyond amazing sundae.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

You see, these cookies look pretty good on their own, right? But when you put them next to an empty glass, they leave you wanting. So I did what any foodie would do and went completely and justifiably overboard and created not one, not two, but three unique recipes to make this post. The final post is sort of a “cheater” post in the blog world because I really don’t need to give you a recipe on how to assemble a sundae. I did, however, feel it was my duty to show you how wonderful all of these components worked together.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

This impeccable sundae starts with a scoop of homemade toasted coconut ice cream. You must make it. Go all Coldstone on it and mix those crushed Samoas up in the ice cream.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

Next, you’re gonna want to make up some Guinness Chocolate sauce. When stout beer is cooked down with chocolate, the result is heavenly. Just do a google search for guinness + chocolate if you don’t believe me. Warm that sauce up just enough to be pourable but not to melt your ice cream too much. A little melting is desired.  This is a sinful sundae, afterall.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

Then, you need to make your own homemade salted caramel sauce. Its really easy to make, but it took me three attempts because the first time I was stupid and the second time I was so afraid of the boiling sugar that I didn’t let it caramelize enough. Learn from my mistakes. Read my post and you’ll make it perfectly the first time. And, if you don’t know what heaven tastes like, its THIS salted caramel sauce. If you want to know what heaven tastes like with a bit of Ecstasy, just make this sundae and your life will be complete.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

Top that sundae with another whole cookie just for fun, and your mind will be blown.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

I’ve tried to explain how good this is, but you’ll never know unless you make it yourself! Do it, and then bring me one.

My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Sinful Samoa Sundae
 
Prep time
Total time
 
My Sinful Samoa Sundae is the ultimate dessert using Girl Scout Samoa cookies, homemade coconut ice cream, salted caramel sauce, &Guinness chocolate sauce.
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Yields: 1 sundae
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Crush up Samoas (as many as you'd like) and mix in with coconut ice cream. Top with warm salted caramel sauce and Guinness chocolate sauce. Get a big old spoon and go to town.

 

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Salted Caramel Sauce

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This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

I was so excited to have finally made the perfect salted caramel sauce!  Is this hard to make? No. Was it hard for me to make? Yes, incredibly. This was actually my third, and final, attempt at making this sauce. I’ll tell you why, so you can learn from my mistakes and achieve perfection the very first time.

This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

First attempt: I had looked online at various recipes. They all called for granulated sugar. Well, most of the time granulated sugar is called for in baked goods, I substitute part or all with brown sugar. I thought “all these people think their caramel sauce is good, wait till they see mine made with brown sugar!”. It should be obvious at this point that I did not go to culinary school, otherwise I would have known better. No, I was never taught the valuable principles of cooking. Everything I have learned has been through trial and error. This first attempt, my friends, was one of those error moments. Brown sugar burns. Don’t use it to make caramel, or if you do and it works, please tell me what you did.

This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

Second attempt: Boiling sugar scares the hell out of me. This fear stems from the time when my little sister and I were gluing pieces of a homemade gingerbread house together. This was well before the days when you can buy a cute one in a kit. When we were kids, we tried to glue them together with frosting. The frosting was never strong enough for our huge pieces of gingerbread. Then one year we discovered that melted sugar would work better than a hot glue gun. It sure did, but I also found out that melted sugar accidentally dripped across the back of your hand burns like a son of a bitch and has to basically harden before it peels away from your damaged skin. So yeah, boiling sugar is the stuff nightmares are made of. That, combined with the fact that I was really afraid of burning the sugar like I did in the first batch, forced me to add the cream to the sugar prematurely and the result was more like a sweetened condensed milk than a caramel.

This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

Finally, I sought the advice of my friend and baker extraordinaire, Mindy (you know, my friend who won Chopped). She is somewhat of an expert on sweet sauces. She told me to take the boiling sugar past the point where you think its done. I took her advice, and when I poured the cream in this time around I thought “oh great, I burned this batch”. So not true. This batch turned out rich and delicious. The brown color of the final caramel sauce almost looked like milk chocolate. It tasted like something you’d get at See’s Candy. And when you add that flaked salt? Oh. My. God. Pure heaven. You can mix the salt in or sprinkle it on top. Do whatever floats your boat. Just know that this is amazing.

This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.

PS – my daughter did all the pouring in these photos. You can see her face in the spoon. Didn’t she do a phenomenal job??

Salted Caramel Sauce
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This Salted Caramel Sauce with rich, decadent, and complex flavors is the best caramel sauce I have ever eaten, perfectly complimented by the flaked salt.
Author:
Recipe type: dessert
Yields: 1.5 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup water - approximate amount
  • 1 cup heavy cream, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon salt (flake salt recommended, amount completely depends on taste)
Instructions
  1. You want to use a medium to large sauce pot because the mixture boils pretty high. I used a 3 quart sauce pan and it worked perfectly.
  2. Combine sugar, corn syrup, and water in pan. You want mixture to resemble wet sand. You can add more water if you wish, the process will just take longer because you basically cook the sugar until the water evaporates.
  3. Set the heat to medium to dissolve the sugar, then increase the heat to high to boil it. Do not stir, but you may give the pot a gentle swirl as it boils. Cook until melted sugar has turned a bit brown in color and smells like caramel corn, but do not allow it to burn. If you aren't sure because you're cooking with a dark pan, you can dip a white spatula in to see color, but just dip a little because the sugar will harden and won't drip off the spoon back into the pan. This may take 5-15 minutes.
  4. Once sugar is ready, very slowly pour in the heavy cream, whisking while you pour. Once all the cream has been added, cook for about a minute before removing from heat.
  5. This caramel sauce tastes amazing with salt, especially if you use flaked, but start slowly and add according to taste. You can also hold off on adding salt until you serve.
  6. Use on ice cream, brownies, cheesecake, in your coffee, on sliced apples, or just eat it plain!

 

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