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Old Bay Caramel Sauce

April 18, 2019 by Nicole Collins

Guys, I’ve been the definition of slacker this week.

Well, not really. I’m not slacking on purpose. I’ve been EXTREMELY busy in all aspects of life with a thousand and one things happening. So, by the time I find myself with one little free second, I just don’t have the energy to sit down and type up my blog homework. But, I do have a TON of great recipes tested and ready to go. I just need to type them up.

Please forgive me!

You know that saying “the Lord works in mysterious ways”? Sometimes, it’s incredible how true that really is. It doesn’t have to be a grand gesture to see the markings of the Lord’s work. That’s for sure. It’s much more fun to find him in the places where you’d never look for him.

I’m in this leadership group at church, and we kick off every meeting with God Sightings. 2 weeks ago, God was all over the place in my life, holding up his hands, and telling me to slow the heck down.

At first, I thought I was having an extreme case of inconvenience. I was REALLY sick which counted me out from testing recipes thanks to my MIA sense of taste. My laptop charger stopped working out of nowhere, and I had about 20% life on my laptop…meaning I couldn’t do any writing or editing. I was registered for a 5k that I had to skip, because out of nowhere my bad knee swelled up like an unbearably painful grapefruit. But, when I stopped and looked at the writing on the wall, I realized the Lord saw how exhausted I was and set me up with a weekend where I couldn’t do anything but relax.

God is good!

But, now I’ve rejoined the land of the living. And, I’m still playing catch up from that much needed weekend of rest.

Even though my body was on time out, my brain was not! So, I had a bunch of recipe ideas locked and loaded that I started testing the second my taste buds came back to life. And, today’s recipe is the first of many that came out of my downtime.

Today, we’re making Old Bay Caramel Sauce!

First of all, you’re probably thinking “weird”. Then, I bet you’re next thought is “that couldn’t be any more Maryland”. If that’s where your mind is right now, you’re not wrong. BUT, what you should be thinking is “that sounds amazing!” And then, you’d have hit the nail on the head.

This caramel sauce recipe is equivalent to a basic salted caramel sauce. We’re going to start with a simple mix of butter, brown sugar, and heavy cream. I like making caramel with brown sugar instead of white sugar for a couple of reasons: 1. It’s a time saver, since you don’t have to wait for the sugar to caramelize first and 2. I think it has a little bit of a richer flavor. We bring the butter, sugar, and heavy cream to a boil, let it go for 6 mins, remove it from the heat, add some vanilla and Old Bay, and we’re done!

Now the Old Bay replaces the traditional salt in a salted caramel. But, the interesting thing about Old Bay is that when you use it in a conservative quantity, it takes on a really pleasant flavor that you know is different but can’t quite identify. That’s what’s happening in this sauce. It’s got a little more oomph than a traditional salted caramel, but you would not know Old Bay was the secret ingredient if I hadn’t told you. It’s still got that creamy sweetness that you want from a caramel. And, that helps to balance out some of the aggressive, spicy flavors that Old Bay is known for by mellowing it out and almost giving it a nutty quality.

This caramel sauce is great with everything…apples, cookies, ice cream, straight from the jar. And, it’ll keep just fine in the fridge for 2-3 weeks! You’ll just need to reheat it in the microwave after it’s been refrigerated, because this butter based sauce solidifies in the cold. It’s a small price to pay for heaven in a jar, honestly!

Alright guys, I’m going to work really hard to get back on track with the posting. I’m sorry I left you hanging, but thanks for sticking with me!

Enjoy, and let’s eat!


Old Bay Caramel Sauce

Serves: about 1 cup Print


  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed

  • ½ stick (4 tbsp) unsalted butter

  • ½ cup heavy cream

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning


  1. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, add butter and brown sugar. Whisk occasionally until butter has melted and fully combined with brown sugar.

  2. Add heavy cream, and whisk constantly until cream has fully incorporated into the brown sugar mix, about 1 minute. Bring to a boil, and boil 6-7 minutes untouched.

  3. Remove from heat, and whisk in vanilla and Old Bay. Allow to cool slightly for about 20 mins before serving. Store leftovers in the fridge for 2-3 weeks.

Recipe notes:

*From the fridge, microwave the caramel in 20-30 second intervals until you reach your desired consistency. The caramel with solidify in the fridge.

*The caramel will be thin when you first take it off the stove top, but it will thicken as it cools.

*This tastes great on ice cream, apples, cake, cookies, or even straight from the jar with a spoon!

*I recommend storing this caramel in a glass jar. That way it can easily go back and forth from the fridge to the microwave. However, most jars have metal lids, and those can't go in the microwave!

*The Old Bay is nice and mild in this recipe. You can't even tell it's there. But, if you want it a little spicier, feel free to add a teaspoon more!

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