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3 Ingredient Vegan Caramel Sauce (nut + coconut free!)

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3 simple ingredients to make a delicious vegan caramel sauce! A delicious snack to satisfy your sweet tooth and top all your favorite desserts.

This sauce is easier than traditional caramel sauce and is made without nuts, dairy, coconut, or any of the top 14 allergens. Plus, it’s made in one small saucepan in only 10 minutes! 

Free from: wheat/gluten, peanut, tree nut, coconut, corn, soy, egg, dairy, casein, sesame, sulfites, lupin, fish, shellfish, crustaceans, mollusks, mustard 

pouring caramel into glass jars with a big drip falling in the photo

To make it extra special, you can sprinkle in some sea salt to elevate this sauce to a whole new level. 

This would taste amazing drizzled over Apple Pie, poured on top of Pumpkin Chai Ice Cream, or inside SunButter Cups! This caramel sauce is also just good to dunk fruits in for a sweet snack. 

I know you are going to love this recipe!


This caramel sauce is awesome because it only requires 3 ingredients! Okay, 4 ingredients if you include salt. I love this recipe because it uses natural sugar, no brown sugar or even coconut sugar required. All the sweetness comes from maple syrup.

ingredients for caramel sauce  in small glass bowls on a wood table

Sunflower seed butter is the base for this recipe. I love to use it as it’s one of the most allergy friendly seed-butters around! However, if you don’t like it, and can use a different nut or seed butter (peanut butter, almond butter or, soy nut butter would also be delicious in this) feel free to do so. This recipe is one of my favorites because of how adaptable it is. 

Maple syrup is next. This provides the sweetness. Make sure that you are using a maple syrup that doesn’t use allergens in the manufacturing process. I personally like this one from Anderson’s as they state their allergy policy on their website. 

Side note: You need to use maple syrup in this recipe. I haven’t made it with table or pancake syrup so I can’t say if it would work or not. 

Vanilla Extract – Used at the end for a touch of flavor. 

Salt  Okay, this is pretty important. Salt and caramel go together so well. I love and highly recommend that you use flakey sea salt in this caramel to give it a huge depth of flavor. This one is my favorite!


Begin by combining the sunflower seed butter (or seed/nut butter of choice) with the maple syrup in a small pot. Whisk them together and place over low-medium heat on the stove. 

Continuing to mix, bring the sauce to a first boil. 

Tip! First boil means that there is a big bubble in the middle of the pot, not many small bubbles along the sides. It is a term invented for making custards and puddings but works well for how hot we want to get this sauce. 

a pair of caucasian hands are shown adding salt to a silver pot of caramel sauce

After the first boil has been reached, turn the stove to a low heat and continue to cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. If you cook this sauce for one minute it will result in a thinner sauce. Cooking it for two minutes means a thicker sauce. It really depends on how you plan on using your sauce when finished to determine how long to cook it for! 

When time is up, remove the pot from the stove and add the vanilla extract and give it a good stir. I like to use a whisk but a wooden spoon would give you a little more strength in your stirring. It might bubble up on you when you add the vanilla but don’t panic! Just keep stirring it together. 

Let rest on the countertop for a few minutes before using. The longer it rests the thicker the sauce will become.

To make salted caramel, add the sea salt after adding the vanilla.

Caramel Sauce FAQ

How can I make thicker caramel?

To make this caramel sauce thicker, make sure you let it cook for a good 2 minutes after the first boil. If you want it even thicker, say for making caramel candy, let it continue to cook until the consistency you are looking for is almost achieved.

Remember, this sauce will continue to thicker after cooking as it cools! I like to cook it for 2 minutes to get the best pourable consistency.

Can I double the recipe? 

Yes! This recipe will easily double or triple for loads of caramel sauce! 

Do I need a candy thermometer? 

Nope! No thermometer is required for this recipe. That’s because we aren’t using vegan butter and white sugar to make our caramel. This recipe is more forgiving than traditional caramel sauce so we don’t need to be as precise. 

How do you fix broken caramel? 

If you cooked the caramel too long and it is too thick, place it back on the stove over a gentle heat with a few spoonfuls more of maple syrup. Let it warm and continue to stir while it thins out. If it is too thin, place back on a gentle heat and let cook a minute more. 

vanilla ice cream in a small glass bowl with caramel sauce being poured on top

How to Store

After cooking, allow this caramel to cool almost room temperature. This caramel sauce can keep in the fridge in a well sealed container for up to 2 weeks. I don’t recommend freezing this recipe. To reheat, simple place the caramel in a heat-proof bowl in the microwave for a few seconds. You can also reheat on the stove in a small pot over a lower heat until it is warm.

Allergy variations

The sauce as written is free from most of the major allergens. However, if you want to adapt it more to suit your needs or your tastes, you can easily do so. 

Simply swap the sunflower seed butter for any nut/seed butter of your choosing. Peanut butter or soy butter would work beautifully!

More recipes to love

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easy dairy free caramel sauce being poured into a small glass jar with a yellow towel behind it

3 Ingredient Magic Caramel Sauce (nut + dairy free)

3 simple ingredients form a magic caramel sauce that is nut free and dairy free! Top 8 allergy friendly, this sauce tastes just like caramel but with no sugar.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 10 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: Baked Goods
Diet: Gluten Free, Vegan
Keyword: allergy friendly, coconut free, dairy free, dessert, easy, egg free, gluten free, holiday, nightshade free, nut free, sesame free, soy free, tomato free, vegan, wheat free
Yield: 12 tablespoons


  • whisk
  • small sauce pot
  • measuring cups


  • 1/4 cup Sun Butter, smooth
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • pinch sea salt (optional)


  • In a small sauce pan over medium flame, whisk together the sunbutter and maple syrup.
  • Let come to a first boil. Cook for 1-2 minutes while stirring constantly. The longer you cook, the thicker the final sauce will be.
  • After cooking, remove from heat and add vanilla and sea salt if using. Mix well and let cool before using.
  • Will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks when stored in a covered container.


Free from: wheat/gluten, peanut, tree nut, coconut, corn, soy, egg, dairy, casein, sesame, sulfites, lupin, fish, shellfish, crustaceans, mollusks, mustard
Don’t have or don’t enjoy sunbutter? Feel free to swap out for a similar nut/seed butter of your choice and cook as directed! 

The nutritional information on this website is only an estimate and is provided for convenience and as a courtesy only. The accuracy of the nutritional information for any recipe on this site is not guaranteed.

Love this recipe?Mention @livingbeyondallergies or tag #livingbeyondallergies!

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