The Best Dairy Free Caramel Sauce

Dairy Free Caramel Sauce
Dairy Free Caramel Sauce

My food philosophy isn’t very strict. Always real food, lots of veggies, sometimes organic grains and the occasional treat I try to keep them Paleo friendly or at least dairy and gluten free (other than butter). Make this Dairy Free Caramel Sauce easily and basically hands off. Use it anywhere you would use storebought or traditional dairy caramel sauce.

What Are the Ingredients in Caramel Sauce

Caramel is made up of sugar and cream essentially. Traditional caramel is made using white sugar, cream, butter and salt. My dairy free version subs in coconut milk for cream and dairy free butter for butter.

Traditional Caramel Sauce vs. Dairy Free

Traditionally, caramel is made by simmering sugar with in a pan until it caramelizes. Once it turns amber, you add cream, butter and salt. (Here’s a great tutorial on traditional caramel.)

This dairy free version requires a different technique. Coconut sugar is already dark brown and would darken quickly if you tried to do it the traditional way. Instead, for this recipe, you simply bring coconut milk and coconut sugar to a boil and then simmer for about 45 minutes until it thickens up quite a bit. Add sea salt, vanilla and a little (optional) dairy free butter or coconut oil for richness.

Ways to Use Caramel Sauce

  • Dip organic apple slices in it
  • Drizzle it in your coffee
  • Swirl it into brownie batter before baking for turtle brownies
  • Serve in place of syrup on pancakes or waffles
  • Eat it off a spoon 🙂

Dairy Free Caramel Sauce


  • 1 1/2 cups full fat coconut milk

  • 1/2 cup coconut sugar

  • 1/4 tsp sea salt (or Pink Himalayan salt like I use)

  • 1 tsp vanilla

  • 1 tbsp dairy free butter or coconut oil, optional


  • In a large saucepan, bring coconut milk and sugar to a boil (it will boil over almost instantaneously so don’t walk away) then immediately lower heat* and simmer, stirring down sides occasionally, for 45 minutes until thickened.
  • Whisk in salt, vanilla and butter or coconut oil if using.
  • Store in fridge for up to a week. (If it lasts that long.)


  • *On electric stove you may have to move pan away from burner to keep it from boiling over while burner adjusts to lower heat.

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