This vegan peanut butter caramel sauce is made with 3 ingredients. It’s healthy, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and contains no dates. Simply combine creamy peanut butter, maple syrup, and coconut oil to make this easy treat. Enjoy it as a dip with apples or as a topping for desserts, like ice cream sundaes and brownies!

overhead image of a spoon scooping vegan peanut butter caramel out of a glass jar

Silky smooth, perfectly sweet, and vanilla-infused… what more could you ask for when it comes to caramel?! This healthy caramel sauce is guaranteed to impress. With just three ingredients, you’ll be surprised by how similar it tastes to real caramel.

When I declare this caramel as quick and easy, there is no exaggeration. The steps are as simple as follows: combine the ingredients in a bowl and mix together. Boom. That’s it!

No cream, no corn syrup, and no milk are needed. Just pair your favorite peanut butter with coconut oil and maple syrup. You can add a dash of vanilla extract and pinch of salt to further enhance the flavor. These two ingredients are optional, but I strongly recommend them. They create a truly drool-worthy treat.

This peanut butter caramel recipe is:

  • Vegan, dairy-free, and soy-free
  • Made with no refined sugar
  • Easy to make and ready in 5 minutes
  • Customizable and versatile
  • Freezer-friendly
  • Enjoyed as a dip, sauce, syrup, or spread!
a spoon scooping healthy vegan peanut butter caramel sauce out of a glass weck jar

What is vegan caramel sauce made of?

Unlike traditional caramel, this recipe is made without cream, dairy, and sugar. We’ll use the following wholesome ingredients instead:

  • Peanut butter: Any type of peanut butter can be used, but I find the creamy natural varieties to work best. Peanut butter is a nutritious base for this caramel because it is rich in vitamins and minerals. In particular, it contains healthy fats and vitamin E.
  • Maple syrup: Naturally sweeten this homemade caramel with maple syrup. If you are following a low sugar diet, use sugar-free maple syrup instead.
  • Coconut oil: Coconut oil helps to thin the caramel and gives it a silky smooth consistency. Use the refined or unrefined variety. If you do not want any coconut flavor, refined coconut oil is the choice for you.
  • Vanilla: Infuse it with warm vanilla flavor by adding a dash of pure vanilla extract.
  • Salt: A pinch of salt balances the sweetness. For a salted caramel dip, you can add extra.
white bowls filled with peanut butter, coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and a teaspoon of salt

How to make healthy caramel

For the full ingredients list and step-by-step instructions, scroll down to view the recipe card below.

Melt the coconut oil

First, make sure you are using melted coconut oil. If your coconut oil is solid at room temperature (most brands are), microwave it for 30 seconds. Then, measure 1/3 cup and proceed with the recipe.

Mix the 3 ingredients

Next, combine all ingredients in a bowl. This includes peanut butter, maple syrup, and coconut oil. If you choose to include vanilla extract and salt, add those in as well.

Whisk the ingredients until the mixture is perfectly smooth and super creamy. It will start out runny like water, but keep on whisking! As air becomes incorporated, it will begin to thicken. This should take about 2 minutes.

How to store it

Transfer the peanut butter caramel sauce to an airtight jar or container. Serve immediately or store in the refrigerator for later use. It will keep for 1 week.

How to reheat it

Peanut butter and coconut oil harden in cool temperatures. Therefore, when this vegan caramel is stored in the refrigerator, it will solidify. To reheat it, cook in the microwave for 20 seconds (or until smooth and runny again).

Is this caramel freezer-friendly?

Yes! You can store this vegan caramel inside an airtight container in the freezer. Let it dethaw for approximately 20 minutes before enjoying.

Ways to use caramel sauce

Use it as a dip, spread, or sauce for desserts and everyday recipes.

  • Dip it: pair it with apples, pretzels, bananas, and graham crackers
  • Spread it: add to layered desserts, like No-Bake Vegan Millionaire Shortbread Bars
  • Pour it: on top of ice cream sundaes, pancakes, waffles, and brownies
  • Stuff it: use as a filling for stuffed cupcakes, cookie sandwiches, and cakes
  • Mix it: stir a spoonful into oatmeal, yogurt, smoothie bowls, and cookie dough
healthy caramel dip in a white bowl with a spoon surrounded by apple slices

Recipe variations

How to make it keto

For a keto caramel sauce, be sure to use sugar-free maple syrup. Also, keep in mind most almond butters are slightly lower in carbs. You can swap almond butter for peanut butter, if needed.

How to make it nut free

For a nut free option, replace the peanut butter with sunflower seed butter. You can also use sweetened tahini (sesame seed butter).

Customizable flavors

  • Cinnamon: add a pinch for a warmer, subtly-spiced flavor
  • Cocoa or cacao: a tablespoon will turn it into chocolate caramel
  • Maca powder: a dash of maca powder will create a richer caramel flavor
  • Chopped nuts: stir crushed peanuts into the mixture for crunchy texture
a spoon drizzling vegan peanut butter caramel sauce into a glass weck jar

More vegan desserts with peanut butter

More dessert recipes with caramel

If you try this Vegan Peanut Butter Caramel (3 Ingredients), please let me know your thoughts by leaving a rating and comment below! Ready for more? Subscribe to my newsletter or follow along on Instagram and YouTube!

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overhead image of a spoon scooping vegan peanut butter caramel out of a glass jar

Vegan Peanut Butter Caramel (3 Ingredients!)

  • Author: Kaylie Grace
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 minutes
  • Yield: 2 cups 1x
  • Category: Dessert, Snack
  • Method: Mix
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Vegan peanut butter caramel sauce is made with 3 ingredients! It’s healthy, dairy-free, refined sugar-free, and contains no dates. Combine peanut butter, maple syrup, and coconut oil to create this quick and easy homemade caramel. Use it as a dip with apples or topping for desserts, like ice cream sundaes and brownies!


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract, optional
  • 1/4 tsp salt, optional

Instructions

  1. Combine peanut butter, maple syrup, melted coconut oil, vanilla extract, and salt in a bowl.
  2. Whisk ingredients together until smooth and creamy. It will start out runny like water, but keep on whisking! As air becomes incorporated, it will begin to thicken. This should take about 2 minutes.
  3. Transfer to an airtight jar or container. Use as a dip, sauce, spread, or enjoy with dessert recipes. Store in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Notes

  • Make sure you use melted coconut oil. To melt coconut oil, microwave it for 30 seconds. Measure 1/3 cup and proceed with the recipe.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 2 tbsp
  • Calories: 165
  • Sugar: 7g
  • Fat: 12g
  • Carbohydrates: 9.5g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 4g

Keywords: peanut butter caramel, healthy caramel

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