Homemade Crockpot Caramel

I create a lot of savory dishes and was looking for a sweet treat to keep in the cupboard or to add to my arsenal of gift basket goodies.  I had seen a few videos on making your own caramel and decided to give it a try. The can of sweetened condensed milk cost $1.99 so the biggest expense for this project would be the mason jars which range from $5- $10 dollars/case depending upon where you shop.

Ingredients & Equipment

  • sweetened condensed milk
  • crock pot
  • mason jar (no larger than 1 pint)
  • hot water


  • Open one can of sweetened condensed milk and pour it into a clean & sanitized mason jar.
  • Wipe the rim of the jar clean from any excess milk and screw on the lid.
  • Place the jar in a crock pot and pour hot (not boiling) water into the pot until the jar is completely submerged.
    • Make sure that you use jar size that allows you to submerge it in water and still be able to cover the pot with its lid.  I used two 3.5 quart crock pots and only put one pint jar in each. Next time I’ll use my 7 quart oval shaped crock pot so I’ll be able to make a larger batch with enough room to space out the jars. THE JARS SHOULD NOT TOUCH EACH OTHER DURING THIS PROCESS.


  • Place the lid on the crock pot and cook on high for 8 hours.
  • Check the water level periodically to ensure that the jar is completely covered in water.  If the level drops simply add enough hot water to cover the top of the jar.
  • Turn the pot off after 8 hours, remove the jar and let cool overnight on a heat resistant surface.  Make sure you do not touch the jar with your bare hands as it is incredibly hot.
  • Press down on the top of the lid.  It should not have any give, which means it has a tight seal and can go straight into the cupboard after it has cooled completely.

I made two jars so I could open one to test the strength of the seal and the flavor of the caramel.

Seal: The seal was so tight I had to pry it open with a utensil.


Consistency: The consistency was not like a typical caramel sauce you will buy at the grocery store.  It was thick but not creamy. It’s more like a thick spread that would be great on toast or waffles.


Flavor: The flavor is certainly caramel but it’s delicate. I spread it on an apple slice and it was delicious!


This sweet threat will definitely be in my holiday gift baskets!



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