Christmas Candy Recipes: Ginger Spiced Caramel Sauce Recipe

by Pamela

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The end of last week and into the weekend was spent making some decadent sauces for holiday gift giving and pure, unadulterated sugar indulgence.  I’ll let you decide what you want to do with these.

I keep getting bombarded with the Dean & Deluca ‘confections & sweets’ pages.  After perusing page after page of expensive candies and sauces my cravings and food blogging obsessiveness kicked in.  I just can’t fathom spending $14 on an 8 ounce jar of Spicy Ginger Caramel Sauce. (Unless, of course, I can dab it behind my ears and know that it will act as a seductive scent causing men everywhere to fall at my knees and offer me anything my heart desires for all of eternity.  And  then I’ll bottle it, have a highly photoshopped advertisement shot – where I pose seductively, and let the money pour in as millions everywhere buy my magical concoction.)  And why should I, since I already make caramels…it’s pretty much the same process to make homemade caramel sauce.

Since I prefer caramel sauce, to chocolate sauce, drizzled on my ice cream, making a homemade caramel sauce recipe wasn’t much of a decision for me.  But I really liked the idea of a spicy ginger kick to the sauce to make it even more versatile.  You could definitely use this homemade caramel sauce as a decadent ice cream topping, but why stop there?  Turn an ordinary piece of store bought pound cake or a simple sponge cake into a decadent treat by pooling this spicy ginger sauce underneath it and top with some freshly whipped cream.  Or add some of this caramel sauce recipe into your favorite bread pudding recipe for a new twist on an old favorite.  A bowl of the warmed caramel sauce served with sliced pears and apples makes for a delicious dish to bring to a holiday party.  Stir this caramel sauce into your favorite cup of tea and let the spicy ginger flavor help to warm you.  Or you can just sit yourself down with a spoon and dig in.

Spiced-Ginger-Caramel-SauceAnd on a bit more of a serious note.  I was recently asked the question: Corn syrup vs high fructose corn syrup, what’s the difference?  You may have noticed that several of my, and others, candy recipes call for the ingredient corn syrup or light corn syrup (for the record, the ‘light’ part only refers to the color and not the calories).  So I thought that more of you may also have that same concern and that I would answer the question here.

High fructose corn syrup is created by converting some of corn syrup’s glucose into fructose.  Chemically, it’s very similar to sucrose: 50% glucose and 50% fructose.  Corn syrup (which is what I use in candy making) is almost completely glucose.  It’s made by extracting and breaking down the starch, in corn, into glucose molecules.  In a nutshell the corn syrup vs high fructose corn syrup boils down to this (pun intended): high fructose corn syrup is a much sweeter version of corn syrup made that way by an additional process that introduces fructose to the already sweet mix.  (Fructose has been shown to cause problems in some people.)

Relationship Advice

I thought today’s relationship advice would be better represented by a Venn Diagram.  If you don’t know what in the hell I’m talking about, just take a look.  I’m pretty sure this simple picture will return a myriad of bad memories from school.  I’m a total geek, so I love diagrams like this.  I think the diagram is pretty self-explanatory, but in a nutshell, it shows that there are 3 types of guys…and by ‘getting it,’ I mean everything that’s involved in a relationship.

Venn diagram for men


Ginger Spiced Caramel Sauce Recipe

Makes approximately 3 cups


  • 1 Tablespoon Ground Ginger
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Allspice
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Nutmeg
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • Pinch of Kosher Salt
  • 1 Cup Heavy Cream
  • 1 1/2 Cup Sugar
  • 5 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • 1/4 Cup Corn Syrup
  • 1/4 Cup Water


In a small saucepan, over medium heat, add the cream and first 6 ingredients.

Whisk all ingredients until they are thoroughly combined in the cream, with no lumps.  Continue to whisk and bring the cream mixture up to a simmer.  Simmer for 2 minutes then remove from heat.

In a medium to large saucepan Add the sugar, butter, corn syrup and water.

Bring mixture to a boil and melt the sugar.  While the sugar is melting, keep stirring the mixture.

Once it’s boiling, reduce the heat to medium high and cover the pan.  Leave the pan covered for 3 – 5 minutes.  (It’s ok to lift the lid at 3 minutes to check on the mixture.)  You want the color to be a nice  golden caramel color.

Once you’ve got that color, add the cream mixture (everything is going to boil up – don’t panic).

Keep stirring everything for another 3 minutes.

Remove from heat and pour into a heat proof glass container (like a large measuring cup) until it cools.

Then pour into jars for giving…or keeping for yourself.


Welcome to My Man's Belly! Leave me a comment and let me know what you think about the site or if there's a recipe you'd like to see here. Have a great day.


Stephanie Davis November 8, 2012 at 10:53 am

How do you store this before giving it away should you tell them to refrigerate it and such?

Pamela November 11, 2012 at 5:53 am

Hi Stephanie,

I store it in the fridge until it’s time to pack it up and give it away. I usually tuck a little note in the bag that tells them to refrigerate
It and remove the lid before re-heating it for a few seconds, on medium high heat for a few seconds. FYI…if you just toss the opened jar into the nuke machine, on high, for a minute, the jar will break, due to the extreme temperature difference and you’ll have a sticky mess. ENJOY!

Katherine November 18, 2011 at 10:55 am


This recipe sounds delicious! Any idea how long it keeps and how it should be stored?

Pamela November 18, 2011 at 1:32 pm

Hi Katherine,

Keep this stored in the refrigerator in an airtight jar. I keep it in a small canning jar. This keeps fine for a month.

Note: keeping it in the refrigerator hardens it, so you’ll need to let it come to room temperature for serving. Don’t just put the cold jar into the microwave because the jar will break (I’ve done it myself). You could also warm it by putting the open jar in a small saucepan with water and heat until melted.

I have another caramel sauce recipe coming soon that stays pourable even when kept in the refrigerator, so you don’t have to re-heat (melt) it.

Lana December 14, 2010 at 10:52 pm

Pam, I am a chocolate sauce girl, but this recipe sounds great. I love the “packaging” with the spoon and a ramekin. I love giving food gifts for the holidays and this is such a cute idea.
I still cannot believe that my husband talked to you at Greg’s party and I just managed to say “Hello!” on the sidewalk! But, he really liked you (I already do, via your blog).
Looking forward to the January meet-up:)

Design Wine and Dine December 14, 2010 at 5:58 pm

Another great holiday hostess gift! Interesting facts regarding high fructose and corn syrup too – good to know!


fooddreamer December 14, 2010 at 3:04 pm

This is such an incredible recipe, I already stumbled it. And I am going to buzz it! Yum!

Joy December 14, 2010 at 11:49 am

That is a great recipe. I love the add of ginger to the sauce.

Heather December 14, 2010 at 10:48 am

Love the Venn diagram and this recipe. 🙂

TiffKey December 14, 2010 at 9:52 am

Mmmm…. I want this right now over a slice of sweet potato pie!

RJ Flamingo December 14, 2010 at 8:31 am

I’ve been putting ginger into nearly everything lately, and this sounds so completely right up my alley!

Belinda @zomppa December 13, 2010 at 8:06 pm

I could find so many uses for this. The diagram is so funny.

Jason Phelps December 13, 2010 at 7:52 pm

I believe you may have scientifically proved the problems of the modern man in a way like no other!

And the sauce does sound great. Any use other than eating with say ice cream might be illegal in some places…


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