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Gourmet Hacks: 5 BEST Substitutes for Caramel Extract

Craving something sweet but missing caramel extract in your pantry? No problem.

Cooking and baking are all about creativity and making do with what you have.

In this guide, we’re going to show you some killer swaps for caramel extract that might just be sitting in your kitchen right now.

These alternatives will keep your desserts and sweet treats on point without a trip to the store.

Ready to learn some neat tricks to keep up your sleeve? Let’s get started.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Caramel Extract

If you’ve ever tried to bake something only to find out you don’t have caramel extract on hand, you know the feeling of frustration.

But don’t despair.

Here are five tasty and readily available substitutes that can take the place of caramel extract in a pinch.

1 – Caramel Syrup

Caramel syrup is a thick, sticky sweetener made from caramelized sugar.

It has a deep, rich flavor and a silky-smooth texture.

Caramel syrup is often used as a flavoring for desserts, coffee, and cocktails.

It can also be used as a spread or topping for pancakes, waffles, and ice cream.

Because of its strong flavor, caramel syrup can be used as to substitute for caramel extract in recipes.

When substituting, use half the amount of syrup as you would extract.

For example, if a recipe calls for one teaspoon of caramel extract, use 1/2 teaspoon of caramel syrup.

Caramel syrup can be found in the baking aisle of most supermarkets.

2 – Caramel Liqueur

Caramel liqueur has a deep, rich flavor that is perfect for adding a touch of sweetness to coffee or cocktails.

The thick, syrupy texture also makes it a great choice for drizzling over ice cream or desserts.

In addition, caramel liqueur can be used as to substitute for caramel extract in recipes.

For example, if a recipe calls for one teaspoon of caramel extract, you can use three teaspoons of caramel liqueur instead.

This substitution will give your dish a more intense flavor and a thicker consistency.

Whether you’re looking to add a little extra sweetness to your coffee or create a decadent dessert, caramel liqueur is a versatile ingredient that should be in your kitchen cabinet.

3 – Caramel Sauce

Caramel sauce is a sweet, sticky, and viscous condiment made from sugar, butter, and cream.

It ranges in color from pale gold to deep brown and has a rich, sweet flavor with hints of molasses, vanilla, and burned sugar.

Caramel sauce is often used as a topping for desserts like ice cream and pies or as a filling for chocolates and candies.

It can also be used to flavor coffee and other beverages.

Its rich flavor pairs well with both sweet and savory dishes.

Caramel sauce can be made at home or purchased at most grocery stores.

If you want to substitute caramel extract for the sauce, simply add a few drops to your desired recipe.

You can also use caramel ice cream topping or candy in place of the sauce.

4 – Vanilla Extract

Vanilla extract is a clear liquid made by steeping vanilla beans in alcohol.

It has an intense, rich flavor and aroma that is used to enhance sweet and savory dishes alike.

It is also a common ingredient in baked goods, as it helps to round out the flavor of sugar and flour.

Vanilla extract can be substituted for caramel extract in many recipes.

The two extracts have similar flavors, but the caramel extract will add a deeper, more complex flavor to the dish.

The best way to substitute one extract for the other is to start with half the amount of caramel extract called for in the recipe and then add more to taste.

With its deep flavor and versatile uses, vanilla extract is a pantry staple that no home cook should be without.

5 – Butter Extract

Butter extract is an ideal flavoring for baked goods and other recipes that call for a buttery taste.

It has a rich, creamy flavor that enhances the taste of cakes, cookies, and other desserts.

When used in baking, it gives the finished product a moist and tender texture.

Butter extract can also be used to add flavor to savory dishes such as sauces and soups.

In addition, it can be used as a substitute for caramel extract in recipes that call for a similar flavor profile.

When substituting butter extract for caramel extract, it is important to use half the amount of butter extract as there would be caramel extract.

This will help to ensure that the final dish is not too sweet.

The 5 Best Substitutes for Caramel Extract

No caramel extract on hand? Try these five substitutes to infuse your desserts and beverages with the rich, sweet flavor of caramel without compromising on taste.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Course Substitutes
Servings 1 Serving


  • Caramel Syrup
  • Caramel Liqueur
  • Caramel Sauce
  • Vanilla Extract
  • Butter Extract


  • Pick your favorite substitute from the list above.
  • Follow cooking directions for your selected substitute with the proper ratio of ingredients.
Keyword Substitutes for Caramel Extract
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