Is Caramel Vegan?
Caramel is one of the sweetest syrup-based foods and a favorite in many desserts. But did you know that caramel can be made without dairy or eggs? There are several different types of vegan caramel recipes out there!
But the big question is: is caramel a vegan option? The answer to this question depends on how you define “vegan.” If you’re looking for an entirely plant-based diet, caramel isn’t an option. However, if you’re willing to eat animal products like milk and cheese, caramel is vegan.
The reason why caramel is considered vegan is that it doesn’t contain any dairy or egg ingredients. It’s also important to note that most vegan caramels use vegetable oil instead of butter. So while they may not have dairy or eggs, they still contain fat from oils.
So what about those who don’t want to eat any animal products? Then caramel is a great choice. And since it contains only natural sugars, it won’t spike your blood sugar levels. This makes caramel a perfect treat for diabetics.
But before we dive into some delicious vegan caramel recipes, let’s first look at the difference between vegan and vegetarian. This article will be your guide to caramel sauce.
What Is Caramel?
Caramel comes from the Latin word meaning cooked sugar. In other words, caramel is simply sugar that has been heated until it becomes sticky.
There are two main types of homemade caramel: liquid and complex. Liquid caramel is usually used as a topping for ice cream and frozen treats. Hard caramel is often used as a candy coating on chocolates and candies.
Moreover, there are three basic kinds of caramel: light, dark, and extra dark. Light caramel is the most minor processed type of caramel. Dark caramel is more heavily processed than creamy caramel. Extra dark caramel is even darker and more intensely flavored. There are also non-dairy caramel alternatives perfect for vegans (even non-vegan caramel lovers!)
What Are The Ingredients In Caramel?
Since caramel is made from sugar, the primary ingredient is sugar. Sugar is composed of glucose molecules. Glucose is a simple carbohydrate found naturally in fruits, vegetables, grains, honey, and maple syrup.
Other common ingredients include corn syrup, molasses, water, salt, vanilla extract, and food coloring. Some caramel recipes call for additional ingredients such as chocolate chips, nuts, coconut, marshmallows, and fruit pieces.
While caramel is typically associated with sweets, it can also be enjoyed in savory dishes. For example, caramelized onions are a classic side dish. They’re perfect when paired with roasted meats.
Here are the essential ingredients of caramel:
Heavy cream is an essential ingredient in making any forms of caramel include. It adds richness and thickness to the final product. You’ll need 1 cup of heavy cream per 2 cups of granulated sugar. The difference between caramel made with heavy cream and regular cream is negligible.
To make creme caramel, you will need melted butter to add flavor and moisture. Butter helps create a smooth texture. You’ll need four tablespoons of unsalted butter per 3/4 cup of granulated sugar. Be sure to melt the butter over medium heat.
Despite the brown color of dairy-based caramel, white sugar is the base ingredient. White sugar is pure cane sugar without any additives. It’s best to use unrefined sugar because refined sugar produces a grainy texture.
Adding salt to conventional caramel enhances its sweetness. You’ll need one teaspoon of kosher salt per 1 cup of granulated sugar (or half a teaspoon per tablespoon).
Ingredients Of Vegan Caramel Sauce
If you’re thinking of getting a classic caramel sauce recipe, this section is for you! We’ve compiled the ingredients list of vegan caramel ingredients that are easy to make and taste amazing. This is far by the best vegan version yet.
Full-fat Coconut Milk
Vegans like to substitute dairy products with full-fat coconut milk. This makes sense since coconut milk contains many nutrients and vitamins that dairy milk does not have. Full-fat coconut milk is rich in lauric acid, which is excellent for your immune system.
Tahini is a paste made from ground sesame seeds. It’s high in protein and calcium. Tahini is commonly used in Middle Eastern cuisine.
Dates And Coconut Sugar
Instead of using regular granulated sugar, try using dates and coconut sugar. Dates contain fiber and potassium, while coconut sugar has a milder flavor. Brown sugar will change the texture and result, so avoid using it for bloom caramel candies.
Coconut sugar is an excellent alternative to granulated sugar. It has a similar sweet taste but is much healthier. Coconut sugar is made by boiling down shredded coconut until all the moisture evaporates. Stop simmering if it already has a gooey consistency.
Last but not least, arrowroot starch is another healthy alternative to flour. Arrowroot starch is gluten-free and low on the glycemic index.
You can find arrowroot starch at most grocery stores or online. If you don’t see it there, you can order it through Amazon.
Now that you know the ingredients, here are the steps to make the traditional caramel sauce for a sweet treat to vegans.
1. Combine the heavy cream, butter, and salt in a large pot. Bring mixture to a boil over medium heat. Once the cream begins to bubble, reduce the heat to low.
2. Add the sugar slowly, stirring constantly. The sugar should dissolve completely before adding more. When the sugar dissolves, increase the heat to medium and continue cooking until the mixture reaches 240 degrees F.
3. Remove the pan from the stove and let it cool slightly. Pour into a blender and blend until smooth.
4. Transfer to a glass jar and refrigerate for up to two weeks.
To conclude, we hope you enjoyed our vegan caramel sauce recipe. We think it tastes great on ice cream, waffles, pancakes, French toast, and even cookies. Try making some homemade vegan caramel sauce today! The ingredients in caramel sauce recipe yields to about 2 cups of caramel sauce.
Hey'all I'm Amy, a born foodie and diagnosed with celiac disease 7 years ago. I refused to cave into tasteless, boring gulten free food and create my own!
On my blog you'll find info & cool facts along with recipes, all on gluten free foods!