Caramel Frosting Recipe

I have always loved caramel frosting. I’ve just been too intimidated by actually having to make caramel to make it. This frosting solves the problem for all of us scared of candy thermometers and soft ball stages. If you can melt butter you can make this frosting.

In addition to being a wonderful finish to any cake, this frosting also works beautifully for decorating cookies. I’ve shared how to make some adorable Halloween treats, but feel free to let your imagination run wild!

Caramel Frosting Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup half and half (heavy cream would work great as well)
  • 1/2 tablespoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 cup powdered sugar

Directions

Step 1
This frosting is so easy I still can't believe it's really caramel. Check out the small line-up of ingredients.
Step 2
Drop your stick of butter into a saucepan over medium heat.
Step 3
Once the butter has melted, add in the brown sugar and half-n-half.
Step 4
Stir everything in to get it nice and incorporated. Now stir off and on for around 10 minutes or until the sugar has dissolved.
Step 5
Remove the pan from the heat, and stir in the vanilla. As soon as the vanilla hits the hot caramel prepare to swoon!
Step 6
This needs to cool before you beat in the sugar. I go right ahead and pour it into the bowl of my mixer. This way as I want to check the temperature I simply touch the side of the bowl to see if it is still warm to the touch.
Step 7
I plop some plastic wrap right on top of the caramel to prevent a skin from forming on the top, as it cools.
Step 8
Now for the part that is up to you.

Once the caramel has cooled, you want to beat in the powdered sugar. I add the sugar slowly, about a 1/2 c. at a time, until it reaches the consistency I'm after.
Step 9
For a thick frosting, you'll want to add more sugar. This is what it looks like after 2 1/2 c. of powdered sugar. This is the consistency I used for the filling of my Peanut Butter Sandwich Cookies.
Step 10
If you plan on trying to ice anything, I strongly recommend less sugar. Besides being easier to spread, this frosting will also hold on to more of the caramel flavor than the thicker frosting will.

For my Halloween Candy Corn Cookies, I used 1 1/2 c. powdered sugar. It may not look as lickable in a photo, but it is so much for manageable!
Step 11
An added bonus to this frosting is that the color is extremely easy to dye. I dyed it yellow and orange for some adorable peanut butter candy corn cookies since Halloween is near.

Begin by using some of the reserved flour from my Peanut Butter Cookie Recipe to coat a rolling mat and a rolling pin.
Step 12
Then place about half a recipe's worth of Peanut Butter Cookie dough on the mat and sprinkled with flour.
Step 13
Carefully roll out the dough (only flipping once) to around a 1/4 inch thickness. Cut into whatever shapes please you.
Step 14
Carefully lift the cookies off of the mat using a very delicate spatula. You will NEVER get these bad boys up trying to use your hands.
Step 15
Lay then a couple inches apart on a parchment lined baking sheet.
Step 16
Bake at 350 degrees for 8 minutes, and end up with these cuties!
Step 17
Divvy the loose caramel frosting into three bowls.
Step 18
Dye one yellow and one orange. I used gel food coloring because I didn't want to affect the texture or flavor of the frosting. Liquid food coloring has the potential to affect both, so look out.
Step 19
Now carefully frost your candy corn cookies as cute as you can! I gave it my all, but I'm pretty sure I got the yellow and the orange backwards.
Step 20
These are delicious!
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