How to Thicken Caramel Sauce [7 Easy Ways]

Fix watery caramel with our seven easy and effective ways to thicken caramel sauce. From cream to cornstarch, here are the best ways to make it thick and sticky.

how to thicken caramel sauce

Simmer on stove

Caramel sauce can take a quick turn in the wrong direction if the consistency is not right. If your caramel sauce is too thin, you can change the consistency by simmering the sauce on the stove for approximately 10 minutes, on low to medium heat. As you do this, it is vital to make sure that you constantly stir the sauce to stick to the bottom.  

By doing this, you evaporate the water that is in the sauce and thereby thickening it. This will also help to blend the ingredients. When the 10minutes is up, remove the pan from the stove and let the sauce cool down. 


  • It allows the sauce to thicken in a short space of time
  • It’s an easy method to adopt


  • You have to keep a close eye on it; otherwise, it can burn and leave that taste in the sauce. 

Use cream instead of milk

If you think that your caramel sauce may not thicken properly, you can substitute regular milk for cream. This is great, especially if you do not want to change the sauce’s ingredients or their amounts. Heavy whipping cream is naturally thicker than milk. As such, when you use it in your caramel sauce, it quickly thickens. 

The good thing about using whipped cream is that the cream has a similar taste to milk, so it will not change the sauce’s taste too much. Other thickening agents have the potential to do this. 



  • The cream has the same taste as milk.
  • You will not need to alter the amounts of the other ingredients in the sauce.
  • It’s easy to use
  • It quickly thickens the sauce


  • It becomes heavier than you intend as the cream thickens quickly and creates a denser sauce.

Use less milk

Another way to make sure that you get thicker caramel sauce when all is said and done is to use less milk to start with. The sauce becomes runny when there is an excess of liquid in it. Get it right the first time, and the thickening won’t be rocket science. When you reduce the milk, you also reduce the amount needed. 

Cut the amount of milk that you would typically use by half. For instance, if you were going to use two cups, reduce this amount and use only one cup. 


  • It helps thicken the sauce quickly
  • It’s cheaper as you use less milk


  • You would have to alter the recipe and know how to work with the new quantities and still get the same result. 

Add more sugar

Another way to make sure that you get thick caramel sauce from the onset would be to add more sugar to your recipe. As the sugar cooks, it melts and then thickens the sauce. However, adding sugar means that you are also adding to the sweetness. Therefore this is a method that you should go with if you need to do a lot of thickening. You can increase the recommended amount of sugar in the recipe by add 1/3 of the amount of sugar. 


  • It’s easy 
  • It thickens the sauce
  • It works for large amounts of sauce


  • Sugar burns easily, so be careful as you stir.


Cornstarch is a quick and easy way to make sure that your caramel sauce is properly thickened. One tablespoon of cornstarch and one tablespoon of water will be sufficient to thicken a cup of caramel sauce, which is about 240 ml. it is better to use cold water for this process. The colder, the better. 

To make the thickener, mix the water and cornstarch, and then pour it into the caramel sauce. It’s essential to make sure that you mix the cornstarch and water well and make sure that there are no lumps. Also, it is important to make sure that you keep the sauce on low heat, as it has a high propensity to burn. When you are done, let it cool down and watch the sauce thicken. 


  • It’s easy to use
  • You use very little
  • It thickens the sauce nicely.


  • You need to make sure the mixture of cornstarch is well mixed or risk having lumps. 


A common method often used to thicken sauces is flour. You will need to be careful, however, on how you use it. If you don’t cook it properly, it can cause a tummy ache. It is bland, and it quickly takes up the dish’s flavor, in this case, the sweetness of caramel sauce. Flour is a good thickener because chances are high you already have it in your pantry. 

It is very similar to cornstarch. You will need to mix the flour with water. The amount of water you will need is ¼ cup of cold water for every 1 cup of caramel sauce. Then mix two tablespoons of flour into the water. Make sure that it’s cold water. Mix well, and add this mixture to the caramel sauce. 


  • It’s easy to use
  • It thickens the sauce well. 


  • You have to mix the flour in well and make sure that it properly cooks.


You can also add Tapioca to your caramel sauce as a way to thicken it quickly and effectively. The great thing about using Tapioca is that you will not need to use it a lot. Just use a teaspoon of tapioca flour, and this will thicken the sauce. You can start by adding one teaspoon of the flour and mixing it in well. 

Make sure to whisk it in well and avoid any lumps. It behaves in a similar way to cornstarch and flour. As you whisk it in, make sure that it dissolves entirely.


  • It doesn’t alter the texture of the caramel sauce.
  • You need a lot.
  • You can keep adding Tapioca, as long as it hasn’t thickened to your liking.


  • It may alter the taste.