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Salted Caramel Bourbon Vanilla Sauce

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This simple dessert will WOW your guests! Salted Caramel Bourbon Vanilla Sauce is rich and creamy, with a hint of salt that brings out the rich caramel flavor and sweetness of the bourbon, an elegant sauce that comes together in a matter of minutes.

Small glass pitcher being filled with salted caramel bourbon sauce

You may use all light brown sugar, but I love the deeper flavor using both dark and light brown. Add the packed brown sugars  and cubed cold butter into a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan.

Pan filled with dark brown sugar and hunks of butter

Over medium-low heat, stir the sugars and butter until melted, it’ll start pretty grainy, but stir away and the sugars will begin to melt into the butter.

Stirring brown sugar and butter while melting with wooden spoon

Stir for about 7 minutes, stirring the whole time. It’ll get nice and thick, but it might still be a bit grainy.

As the butter and sugar melts it makes a thick wrinkly sauce.

Very slowly, add in your heavy cream while whisking/stirring steadily.

Pouring in heavy cream into sugar and butter caramel mixture

Next add your vanilla and bourbon*, whisking until it’s smooth. You gotta get one of these mini measuring cups!!

Pouring in bourbon to caramel sauce

Raise the heat to medium and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for 60 seconds, the mixture will get tiny bubbles and start to rise in the pan.

Caramel heating and bubbling at a boiling point

Remove from the heat and whisk in the salt.

Whisking in the salt for salted caramel sauce

If it gets clumpy just whisk it until it’s smooth again.

Wooden spoon with thick caramel on it/

Cool for 10 minutes in the pan, then pour into a jar for serving or storing.

small jar/pitcher of salted caramel bourbon sauce

Suggested Uses for Bourbon Vanilla Caramel Sauce 

  • Pour over ice cream
  • On any fruit pie or crisp
  • Use as a dip for apples and other fruits
  • In a Caramel Coffee
  • On this easy, ice cream cake
A small pitcher filled with vanilla caramel sauce

Look at that beautiful caramel; a rich, thick, golden sauce!


AMAZING! This heavenly Vanilla Bourbon Caramel Sauce recipe is creamy, a little bit salty, and is perfectly hinted with vanilla and bourbon. Make some as a hostess or neighbor gift or a simple sauce that will WOW your guests. #thefreshcooky #vanillabourbonsauce #caramel #hostessgift #neighborgift #holidaydessert #recipe #thanksgiving #christmas

If not using immediately, allow to cool to room temperature completely before refrigerating in a sealed jar, like a mason jar or clean and dry jelly jar.

Vanilla Bourbon Caramel sauce over ice cream in a pretty glass with spoon

To serve, if desired, warm up in microwave for 20-30 seconds.

*If making this for kids or those who are gluten free, replace the bourbon with vanilla extract.

If you enjoy this sauce, try these other rich and elegant recipes!

Salted Caramel Bourbon Vanilla Sauce makes a beautiful gift!

Print these tags for easy and simple food gifting!

Rich Sauces and Cakes

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Vanilla Bourbon Caramel Sauce | www.thefreshcooky.com

Vanilla Bourbon Caramel Sauce

Author: Kathleen | The Fresh Cooky
4.75 from 4 votes
Need a quick, elegant, simple dessert sauce to wow your guests? This Vanilla Bourbon Caramel sauce is rich and creamy, a little bit salty with a hint of bourbon.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Course Dessert Sauces
Cuisine American
Servings 1 cup
Calories 89 kcal


  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed (may use all light brown if desired)
  • 6 tablespoons regular or unsalted butter, cold, cubed
  • 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 Tablespoons bourbon*
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Place the brown sugars and butter into a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan. Melt sugar and butter over medium-low heat, cooking and stirring constantly, about 6-7 minutes until it gets nice and thick. It might be grainy, but that will change.
  • Very slowly, pour in your heavy cream while whisking to combine. Whisk in your vanilla and bourbon, whisk until smooth. Increase heat to medium-high, bringing the mixture to boil, tiny bubbles will break the surface. The caramel will bubble and rise, boil for 60 seconds without stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt.
  • Cool for about 10 minutes before serving. If waiting to serve, cool to room temperature before refrigerating. Caramel sauce may be reheated, by pouring desired amount into a microwave safe dish and heating for 20 seconds until warm. Store any leftovers in refrigerator, lasts 1-2 weeks.

✱ Kathleen's Tips

*If making for kids or someone who is gluten free, replace the bourbon with vanilla extract.


Serving: 1 Calories: 89 kcal Carbohydrates: 9 g Fat: 6 g Saturated Fat: 4 g Polyunsaturated Fat: 2 g Cholesterol: 16 mg Sodium: 110 mg Sugar: 9 g

Nutrition Disclaimer

The Fresh Cooky is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.

Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Kathleen Pope, The Fresh Cooky.

About Kathleen Pope

Recipe Innovator | Food Photographer | Food Writer

Hi, I’m Kathleen Pope. Here at The Fresh Cooky you will find easy, mostly from-scratch, trusted recipes for all occasions. From speedy dinners to tasty desserts, with easy step-by-step instructions. I am here to help teach you how to make mouthwatering recipes without spending hours in the kitchen. Read more about Kathleen here.

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