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Extending The Shelf Life of Dipped Caramels


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Thank you! The original recipe from better homes and gardens cookbook was:


16 oz. Brown sugar

12 oz. Corn syrup 

16 oz. Butter (salted)

14 oz. Sweetened condensed milk

1 tsp. Vanilla 

just cook it all together until you get to the firmness you want.

Tastes great!

To try to increase shelf life, I switched to Wybauw’s recipe:


1000 g sucrose 

800 g cream

500 g glucose (corn syrup)

250 g butter

vanilla (1 tsp)

I caramelise the sugar and corn syrup until golden, then add heated cream. Cook to 235 f, add butter, cook to 246, take off heat, and add vanilla.



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You are making two entirely different caramels. The first is a maillard caramel where you caramelize the dairy protein. The second is a caramelized sugar caramel. Totally different flavor. Add the fact you are using brown sugar, which is basically molasses and white sugar. Also, I’m guessing Karo syrup rather than glucose?
A few things to look at: what is your altitude? Do you have a reliable thermometer? When you cut them, are you manhandling them and having to reshape them? 
Salted butter is not the problem. 

Ruth Kendrick

Artisan Chocolates and Toffees

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Hi, thank you for responding. I prefer the flavor of the maillard caramels, but can’t get away from the crystallization. My thermometer tests accurately with the boiling water test, and I’m about 1100 ft above sea level, so I adjust my cooked temperature about 2 degrees. The firmness is great. They cut easily, and hold their shape well. I would love to be able to throw everything in a pot, and cook it, and be able to use brown sugar. I really like the flavor, but I will do what it takes to make it work. I really appreciate your insight.

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  • 10 months later...

Adding my 2 cents on crystalizing caramels. 


For a few years I've been using Grewlings Chocolate and Confections at Home caramels recipe with sweetened condensed milk.  Love the flavor but they would only go a max of a few weeks before they would start to crystallize.


Also have Grewlings Chocolate and Confections (not at home version) that has three different caramels recipes, with evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk and fresh dairy milk.  I purchased some glucose to use in place of corn syrup that I've used before.  I tried both the evap. milk and sweetened condensed milk versions. 


I dipped them in milk chocolate then kept a few stored away to check over time. 


At three and four weeks the evap. milk ones looked fine, while the sweetened condensed milk version had begun to crystallize by week 3.  Now at 2 months out the sweetened condensed version is completely crystallized and the evap. milk version is starting to crystallize. 


Not sure why this is so.  But while I prefer the flavor of the sweetened condensed milk version, planning on making the evap. milk version my go to.  (maybe I'll try the fresh dairy milk version sometime.)

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On 5/13/2021 at 1:17 PM, cc.canuck said:

Follow up question: have you ever made the chocolate variation of his caramels? The idea of putting the chocolate in at the start frightens me.

I have also made the chocolate version.  Love them!

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