This easy and quick-to-make indulgent butterscotch sauce is perfect for drizzling over ice cream, cheesecake, pancakes, or your favorite dessert. If you feel intimidated by making butterscotch sauce, I assure you it’s easier than you think. Follow my simple directions, and you will never fail. Let’s get into it!
Where can I use butterscotch sauce?
Butterscotch sauce is a versatile addition to a variety of dishes. Here are a few ideas and recommendations:
- Decadent desserts: Use butterscotch sauce as a luscious topping for desserts like brownies, cheesecakes, or puddings. It adds a layer of sweetness and complexity that takes your favorite treats to the next level.
- Ice cream: generously drizzle warm butterscotch sauce over a scoop or two of your favorite flavor. The contrasting temperatures create a heavenly combination of creamy and warm indulgence.
- Cakes and Cupcakes: Infuse your baked goods with the delicious flavor of butterscotch. Drizzle it over cakes, cupcakes, or even use it as a filling between layers for a decadent surprise.
- Pancake and Waffle: Take your breakfast to a whole new level by pouring warm butterscotch sauce over pancakes or waffles. It’s a great alternative to syrup.
- Coffee or Hot Chocolate: Stir a spoonful of butterscotch sauce into your morning coffee or hot chocolate for a sweet and comforting twist. It’s a cozy treat that will warm you from the inside out.
- Fruit Dip: Create a sweet fondue experience by serving butterscotch sauce as a dip alongside fresh fruits like apples, strawberries, or pineapple. The combination of sweet sauce and juicy fruit is simply irresistible.
How to make butterscotch sauce: step by step
Note! For exact measurements and directions, see the recipe card below.
Step 1: In a saucepan or skillet, melt brown sugar over medium heat.
Step 2: Add butter.
Step 3: Add heavy cream.
Step 4: Cook for about a minute until smooth. The longer you cook it, the thicker it will become.
Step 5: Remove from heat. Add vanilla and salt. Whisk for 30-60 more seconds.
Step 6: Transfer to a jar or use right away.
- Melt the sugar first! Many recipes suggest melting the butter first and then adding the sugar. I find this method to be a bit challenging since the butter melts much faster than brown sugar, which very often causes the sugar and butter to separate.
- Let it cool for the right viscosity. As the sauce cools, it continues to thicken. It might seem too liquidy when still hot, but as it cools down, it will become thicker. So if you want thicker sauce or even a candy-like consistency, cook the butterscotch for a few more minutes.
Storage and reheating
Allow the butterscotch sauce to cool to room temperature before storing. Transfer the cooled butterscotch sauce to a glass or plastic container with a tight-fitting lid. Make sure the container is clean and dry.
Store the butterscotch sauce in the refrigerator for up to a month. It’s normal for the sauce to thicken slightly when chilled. Give it a good stir before using or reheating to restore its smooth consistency.
When reheating butterscotch sauce, use low to medium heat to avoid scorching or burning. A gentle heat ensures that the sauce warms evenly without compromising its texture. Stir constantly to prevent sticking or burning.
If using a microwave, transfer the sauce to a microwave-safe bowl. Heat in short increments (15-30 seconds) and stir well between each interval.
Remember to store any leftover reheated sauce promptly in the refrigerator. Proper storage and gentle reheating help maintain the quality and flavor of the butterscotch sauce.
What is the difference between butterscotch and caramel?
Butterscotch is made with brown sugar, imparting a deeper, more molasses-y flavor, while caramel is made by white granulated sugar, which results in a sweeter, more buttery flavor.
How long can you keep butterscotch sauce?
Homemade butterscotch sauce can be stored in the refrigerator for up to a month.
Why did my butterscotch sauce separate?
Sudden temperature changes can shock the sauce and cause the butterfat to separate from the other ingredients. Using very cold butter or milk can cause the sauce to shock and separate.
The butterscotch mixture needs to be stirred regularly to prevent the sugars from burning and the butter from separating. If you use a pan with a thin bottom, or have hot spots on your stove, the sauce can heat unevenly and cause separation.
Can you freeze butterscotch sauce?
Yes, you can freeze the butterscotch sauce for up to 3 months. Thawed butterscotch sauce may have a slightly grainy texture. To improve the texture, reheat the sauce over low heat and stir until smooth.
How long does butterscotch sauce last at room temperature?
If stored in an airtight container, butterscotch sauce can last for up to 2-3 days at room temperature. Storing butterscotch sauce uncovered or exposed to air will shorten its shelf life significantly. It’s best to consume it within 1-2 days in such conditions.
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Easy homemade butterscotch sauce
- 100 g Brown sugar 1/2 cup
- 56 g Butter, room temp. 1/4 cup
- 85 g Heavy cream (35% fat) 1/3 cup
- 1 tsp Vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp Salt
- Add the sugar to a saucepan and let it melt on medium heat, stirring occasionally using a silicon spatula, for about 15 minutes.
- Once the sugar is fully melted, add the butter and whisk until melted.
- Pour in the cream while whisking. Be careful, it will foam up. Stir for about a minute for sauce consistency. It should be smooth, with no lumps or separation. The longer you cook it the thicker it will get. Remember, it thickens more as it cools.
- When ready, remove from the stove, add the vanilla and salt, and continue whisking for 30-60 seconds, then transfer to a jar or use as needed.
- Keep it well-sealed at room temperature for a day, or once it’s completely cooked, you can keep it in the fridge for up to 2 months.