two jars strawberry caramel 820

Strawberry Caramel Sauce

To my mind, caramel sauce is truly one of life’s greatest edible pleasures. As a canner, it’s long been a great disappointment to me that there’s no way to safely preserve homemade caramel sauce so that it can be shelf staple and given as gifts.

All that changed when I discovered fruit-based caramel sauces. I first learned of this magical concoction from a piece on Gilt Taste (sadly, the piece is no longer available).

pouring strawberry puree

In that story, the author wrote about how one could start a batch of caramel sauce but then, instead of using cream to finish the sauce, you poured in a fruit puree. Absolutely genius.

The first time I tried it, I was completely sold. The flavor is amazing, it’s easy to make, and the ingredients are nearly identical to jam, so it is perfectly safe for canning.

strawberry caramel in jars

Since that first batch, I’ve made a number of different variations on the fruit caramel sauce. I have a recipe for pear caramel in my new cookbook, Preserving by the Pint, and I’ve also made a banana version to great success.

However, I keep coming back to the version that was featured in that original Gilt Taste piece. Strawberry caramel. It is amazing drizzled over ice cream and would make a fabulous topping on a slice of pound cake. With gorgeous strawberries coming into season, it’s impossible to resist!

single jar strawberry caramel

 

Strawberry Caramel Sauce
4.6 from 5 reviews
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Author:
Serves/Yield: Makes 2 half pints.
Ingredients
  • 1 pound strawberries
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • juice of 1 lemon
Instructions
  1. Prepare a boiling water bath canner and two half pint jars.
  2. Remove leaves and hulls from strawberries. Place the berries in a blender and puree until smooth. Set aside.
  3. Combine sugar with water in a small sauce pan. Place over medium-high heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes, until the sugar reaches 250°F and darkens to the color of a tarnished copper penny.
  4. Do not stir the cooking syrup, instead hold the handle of the pot and gently swirl it to move things around.
  5. Once the syrup has reached 250°F, remove the pot from the heat and stir in the strawberry puree and the lemon juice. It will bubble, spatter, and appear to seize up, so take care.
  6. Stir puree into the sugar until it is a smooth sauce and return the pot to the heat. Continue stirring and cooking, until the sauce reaches 218°F.
  7. Remove caramel from heat and funnel into prepared jars, leaving 1/2 inch headspace. Wipe rims, apply lids and rings and process in a boiling water bath canner for 10 minutes.

 

About Marisa

Marisa McClellan is a food writer, canning teacher, and dedicated small batch canner who lives in Center City Philadelphia. Find more of her jams, pickles and preserves (all cooked up in her 80-square-foot kitchen) at her blog, Food in Jars. Her first book, titled Food in Jars: Preserving in Small Batches Year-Round, is now available.

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Comments

  1. This looks absoloutly delicious! Adding strawberries instead of cream sounds genius. I cannot wait to try this over the weekend. Thank you!!

  2. Oh my – this looks divine! I have Marisa’s new book and have been flipping through it almost daily, plotting what to make once everything springs into season! this will definitely make the list! thanks!
    Julie’s last post: Salmon Burgers with Caper Mayo

  3. Caramel sauce is amazing on its own but STRAWBERRY caramel sauce?? Oh man! Sounds amazing!!
    Julie @ Table for Two’s last post: Ginger Soy Sesame Fish in a Pouch

  4. Ohhhhh wow!! Love the unique touch with the strawberries. Want this sauce on everything!

  5. Thank you Marisa! Strawberry season is in full swing in North Carolina so I have already made 4 batches of your strawberry vanilla jam and 2 batches of strawberry syrup. I will be making this caramel recipe tomorrow. I love your books! Write more!

  6. I need to make this and soon!

  7. Just give me a jar and a spoon! Yum!
    Kari@Loaves n Dishes’s last post: INDIAN CAULIFLOWER FRIED RICE

  8. Whoa! Thank you for bringing this back from the long-lost Gilt Taste archives (RIP) – it’s too good to miss out on!
    Casey@Good. Food. Stories.’s last post: Eating My Words: Franks and Beans To Take On the Road

  9. fruit based caramel sauces? so awesome! thank you for sharing!

    also…I can’t believe all the gilt taste articles are just GONE. I went to look for one the other day and was so sad they had pulled down all that great content. 10 points for copying and pasting favorites from the internet, eh?
    jane’s last post: Great Guacamole Tip

  10. I AM COMPLETELY INTRIGUED!!!!!! I never knew fruit based caramel existed. LIKE.EVER! I love love loveeeeeee this idea and can’t wait to give it a try! :)
    Samina | The Cupcake Confession’s last post: Brown Butter, Malt and Orange Oreo crepe Cake – Happy 1st Birthday TCC

  11. What the what?!? That sounds great!! I want this sauce on my ice cream, my cake, my toast… :-D
    Kate @ Diethood’s last post: Hibiscus Iced Tea Sparkler

  12. I have never seen anything like this before! Ingenious!
    Laura @ Laura’s Culinary Adventures’s last post: Brownies with Caramel Kisses and Caramel Frosting

  13. The recipe for the pear caramel in the book has you go to 350 for the sugar before adding in the purée–which temp is correct? Can’t wait to make this!

  14. I have several pounds of strawberries that I had planned on preserving. Think I’ll make a batch of this, as well. Thank you for the recipe!
    Lindy @ kozynook’s last post: Artichoke Spinach Pizza

  15. Can the recipe be multiplied? I’d love to give out as gifts, but would like to triple if possible?

  16. Any else make this yet? Tried twice. First time hit 250 deg and wasn’t even close to a tarnished color. Second I went by color and while a broader taste profile still no where near what I would consider caramel with fruit flavoring. Any suggestions or other experiences?

    Thanks

    • Came on here with the same question. I went up to about 260-265 and still no colour change, but didn’t want to go any further and risk messing up the thickness. It’s basically a very sweet strawberry sauce but not caramelly.

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