Caramel is one of my favorite ways to indulge, especially in fall. Although I still look forward to pumpkin and apple everything, caramel is one of the unsung heroes of fall. Cooking sugar until it melts and browns leaves you with a silky, luxurious sauce that you can mold into candy or use as an ingredient in a number of tasty creations.
From popcorn to risotto, here are 12 desserts to get you excited about caramel this weekend.
Matzo provides a crispy base sturdy enough to hold brown sugar caramel, chocolate, and any topping of your choice. Try chopped nuts, crystallized ginger, or a simple sprinkle of sea salt.
Caramel does triple duty in this layered showstopper. Caramel is swirled into the cake batter, caramel buttercream frosting is spread between each layer, and a heavy drizzle of caramel sauce finishes the whole thing.
This is one application where pumpkin spice actually shines. It's stirred into brown sugar caramel and used to coat freshly popped popcorn. It's the perfect salty-sweet treat.
Caramel is a natural flavor for your morning cup of coffee, so why not use coffee in your caramel dessert? Here we keep it saucy; pour it on ice cream, pancakes, or waffles.
Soft, chewy, salty — these caramels are everything you want from the classic chewy caramel candy. Ginger and cinnamon pair to create a mild, warming flavor perfect for fall.
You may have had savory risotto at Italian restaurants, but here it slips to the sweet side. Its creamy, rich consistency is exactly what you want out of risotto, with a perfect al dente (or still slightly firm) bite to the rice.
The best part of an upside-down cake the sticky-sweet topping that pours out when it's flipped. Seasonal pears show off as the fruit, but you could easily use apples instead.
These brownies are the ultimate in caramel dessert. The brownies themselves are dense and fudgy, almost edging on underbaked. Marshmallow cream and caramel are swirled into the batter before it's baked, making the whole dish extra gooey and delicious.
Babka bread on its own is rich because it's made with eggs and butter. To make the special swirl, sugar, cinnamon, and pecans are stirred together and rolled up into the dough that's cut into the babka shape. As it bakes, the sugar melts and becomes the luscious caramel filling studded with pecans.
Making lollipops is actually easier than you might think. Once you melt the sugar and cornstarch to the correct temperature, you pour it over a wooden stick and let it cool until it hardens.
Just like your favorite candy bar, these cookies have a cookie layer, a peanut caramel layer, and a chocolate coating. The chewy caramel binds the cookie to the chocolate, while creating a variety of textures in every bite.
12. Caramel Apples
A list of caramel recipes in the fall would not be complete without a caramel apple. Keep them simple with only a caramel coating, or roll the coated apples in chopped nuts, candies, cookies, or sprinkles.