This recipe for microwave caramels is an impressive treat that’s ready in just minutes – top the caramels with a generous sprinkle of sea salt to really make them special!

Microwave Caramels Recipe | Homemade Caramels #caramel #candy #dessert #christmas #dinneratthezoo Microwave Caramels Recipe | Homemade Caramels #caramel #candy #dessert #christmas #dinneratthezoo

A basket of microwave caramels topped with sea salt.

I am so excited to share this recipe for sea salt microwave caramels with you today! I do not consider myself a candy maker by any means, but in a matter of minutes I was able to whip up these beautiful and delicious treats that look like they came straight from the candy store. All you need is a handful of simple ingredients and you too can have perfect caramels without having to use a candy thermometer or other complicated equipment!

Chocolate covered caramels topped with sea salt.

These microwave caramels are made with just 7 ingredients, most of which you likely have in the pantry. The ingredients go into a bowl and get microwaved for 6-7 minutes. Pour the resulting mixture into a greased pan and you’ve got caramels! I couldn’t believe how well this works!

Squares of microwave caramel.

How to make microwave caramels

There are a few tricks to ensure that your caramels come out perfectly. First, be sure to use a large bowl, as the caramel mixture will bubble vigorously in the microwave and you don’t want it to spill over. In addition, you’ll need to stir the mixture every 2 minutes during the cooking process. You’ll want to be sure to stir very thoroughly so that the caramels will end up smooth and shiny.

The cook time for this recipe is 6-7 minutes. If you cook your caramels for 6 minutes, they’ll be on the softer side, perfect for wrapping in waxed paper. The caramels pictured here were cooked for 7 minutes, they’re on the firmer side and can be served as is or coated in chocolate. While the caramels are delicious on their own, there’s a special ingredient that takes them over the top: coarse sea salt.

Squares of caramel topped with coarse salt.

I give my microwave caramels a generous sprinkling of Morton Coarse Sea Salt. This salt has larger crystals that add the perfect finishing touch to so many dishes. I like to add coarse Sea Salt to roasted vegetables, on top of a grilled steak, over avocado toast and on chocolate chip cookies. This salt really enhances the flavor of the caramels by providing a contrast to the sweetness, and I love the added texture from the coarse grains. There are many types of salt that serve different purposes in the kitchen; if you’re using standard table salt for all of your cooking then you’re missing out on some amazing culinary experiences!

The salt should be sprinkled over the caramels right after they’re poured in the pan so that the salt will adhere to the tops. If you’re planning to dip your caramels in chocolate, you can simply add the salt immediately after dipping the caramels. I like to do half plain, half dipped in chocolate so that there are options to please everyone.

Microwave caramels dipped in chocolate and finished with a sprinkle of sea salt.

These microwave sea salt caramels make the perfect holiday gift, and they’re a fun and festive addition to any dessert table. Salt is really such a crucial part of cooking, and using the right type of salt can really turn an ordinary dish into something extraordinary.

More holiday candy recipes

Microwave Caramels Video

4.97 from 28 votes

Microwave Caramels with Sea Salt

AuthorSara Welch
This recipe for microwave caramels is an impressive treat that's ready in just minutes - top the caramels with a generous sprinkle of sea salt to really make them special!
This recipe for microwave caramels is an impressive treat that's ready in just minutes - top the caramels with a generous sprinkle of sea salt to really make them special!
Prep Time2 minutes
Cook Time7 minutes
Total Time9 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Serves 16 caramels


  • 1/4 cup butter melted
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons Morton Coarse Sea Salt
  • optional: 1 cup of semisweet chocolate chips or dark candy melts, melted
  • cooking spray


  • Place the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, corn syrup, condensed milk and vanilla in a large microwave safe bowl.
  • Line an 8 or 9 inch loaf pan with parchment paper and coat the pan with cooking spray.
  • Microwave for 6-7 minutes, stirring thoroughly every 2 minutes. A 6 minute cook time will produce a softer caramel; 7 minutes will produce a firmer caramel.
  • Pour the caramel into the prepared pan. Sprinkle the coarse sea salt over the caramel. If you're planning to coat the caramels in chocolate, do not add the salt until later after the caramels have been dipped.
  • Let the caramel cool until firm. Carefully remove the slab of caramel from the pan and cut into 1 1/2 inch squares.
  • If desired, dip the caramels in melted chocolate. If you dip the caramels in chocolate, sprinkle the sea salt over the top before the chocolate has set.


Calories: 137kcal | Carbohydrates: 26g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 11mg | Sodium: 328mg | Sugar: 26g

This post is sponsored by Morton Salt. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Dinner at the Zoo possible!

This post was originally published on December 21, 2016 and was updated with new content on September 21, 2017.

Hello! I’m Sara!

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Recipe Rating


  1. my husband is a huge fan of caramels. Thank you for sharing your recipe. I love how quick and easy it is to make. Can’t wai t to make these for him. He’ll be delighted!

  2. 5 stars
    This microwave caramel looks really tasty. Perfect Christmas treat for kids. I am sure that my kids will love this caramel bars. I will try to make this recipe.

  3. I had no idea that caramels were so easy to put together! How soft and delicious they look! I am definitely going to be trying them soon.

  4. Oh my these caramels look so delicious and easy to make. I will have to get the ingredients I need to make this recipe on the weekend. I am sure they will be a big hit.

  5. 5 stars
    This recipe is MIND blowing! Like for real that is all it takes to make homemade caramels ? And in the microwave too?! I love it!!! I am adding extra seasalt to mine. Thank you so much for this!!

  6. 5 stars
    These look so gorgeous I think I am going to make them as gifts for a few of my favorite people. I can’t believe how easy the recipe is. They look delicious.

  7. 5 stars
    I must have these in my life as soon as possible! They look so good, and if I can make them at home, I’m doing it! Om nom nom.

  8. 5 stars
    I love the idea of the coarse sea salt added to the caramels to enhance the flavor. putting them in the microwave is a win win, for reducing time. It would pair well with apple slices.

  9. Those look amazing! If I knew it was this easy to make caramel and all I needed was a microwave I would’ve made this year’s ago. I love caramel.