This caramel coffee syrup has literally changed the way I drink coffee forever. I’m not the biggest fan of hot coffee, only of extremely rare occasions, I’m much more an iced coffee girl. In fact, I have iced coffee every morning, I find it’s way more refreshing than a hot drink, I don’t know why, that’s just my opinion. I am always experimenting with different recipes and could never find the right one. Some would come out tasting pretty good and then when put in the fridge the syrup would be hard as a rock in no time. Annoying. So, one day it dawned on me to try a simple syrup.. DUH! I can’t even believe I didn’t think of this sooner. I looked on pinterest and some online websites to see if anyone discovered this delicious concoction also, and I was saddened to see that I wasn’t as smart as I thought and that there were hundreds of different variations of simple syrup coffee syrups. Darn it!! Oh well, it is amazing anyway.
Whenever I go to Starbucks I always get a caramel iced coffee. I know, how boring? Or what some like to call, cream and sugar with a splash of coffee, ha ha. This syrup tastes EXACTLY like their caramel syrup! It has the exact same silky texture and flavor, it’s amazing that it can be re-created at home. Funny story: I used to work at Starbucks a few years back. It was the best job ever! It was so much fun creating all different types of drinks and of course the best part was getting to try them all for free! I still never got over my fear of espresso though. Lattes are do-able.. with half the amount of espresso (whimp). I just don’t know how people could just throw back one of those little espresso shots. I wanted to gag every time!
Being a retired barista, I can vouch that this syrup is exactly like the one you would get at your local Starbucks. Yeah, you can go there and buy the syrups from them, but it’s so much easier (and cheaper) to make it at home! It literally takes 5 minutes on the stove top and you can put it into your coffee right away. The syrup dissolves in your coffee whether cold or hot and you never get that gross coating at the bottom. It just has the most delicious flavor!! I make double batches because I go through it so quickly.
With this syrup, you can leave out the vanilla extract and change up the flavor to anything you want! Peppermint, raspberry, coconut, orange, etc. You can even add no flavor at all and just have liquid sugar instead of using granulated sugar in your coffee and having the gross sugar granules get sucked up your straw, only to leave you with a mouthful of sugar – yuck!
If I haven’t sold you on this delicious syrup yet, all I can say is, you are missing out! 🙂
Caramel Coffee Syrup
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup water
- 3 tbs vanilla extract
- In a small saucepan, heat sugar and water and whisk until all sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract. Pour into a syrup bottle or any container with a lid and store in refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.
So where does the actual caramel come into play here? All you’ve made is a simple syrup with the addition of some vanilla extract. It’s vanilla syrup. Nothing caramel about it. Now if you had cooked the syrup to around 350-360 degrees on a candy thermometer, removed from heat, added water back to it to get back to a syrup consistency at room temperature and added some vanilla to further enhance the flavor, then I’d say you might have something. What you describe though has nothing to do with caramel and if that’s what you’ve been adding to your coffee then it’s nothing more than vanilla coffee.
Thank you for your opinion Maya and I agree that it isn’t technically “caramel”, but the amount of vanilla extract makes it taste like a caramel syrup. If there was less vanilla extract, then it would taste like vanilla. I used to work at Starbucks and this syrup tastes (and looks) exactly like their caramel syrup and that is what I was going for.
Thank you for sharing this. I just made it and I can’t wait to try it in my coffee tomorrow! It was so simple! Way better than going through all the effort of caramelizing the sugar, and possibly burning it and making a mess. And it looks delicious!
Awesome!! Yes, it is much easier than all of that caramel nonsense! 😉 How did you like it?
Christina Peeler says
Theres actually a caramel extract . Can you use that to get more of the caramel flavor?
Yes I tried the syrup recipe and it was delicious and I also think that what Maya said was rude . Maybe she should take her candy thermometer and….quit bashing on a recipe she hasn’t even tried yet!!!
Thank you so much Michelle! <3
I totally agree with you. I make mine similarly, but use Watkin’s caramel extract, no vanilla. One time I ran out of Watkin’s caramel extract & used just plain vanilla extract – there was a definite difference (not nearly as good). If you truly want caramel flavor use caramel extract. You can get Watkin’s caramel extract for about $3.49 at jrwatkins.com. I order 2 at a time. My iced coffee would not be the same without it!
Wow! So good! I used this with cold brewed coffee (the only way to go with iced coffee) and it was amazing. Added a little cream and milk.
I came here looking for a caramel syrup recipe and find a vanilla syrup recipe instead. Go figure. In the world I live in, a vanilla syrup NEVER tastes like caramel. It doesn’t even make sense that ‘less vanilla extract, … would taste like vanilla’ but if you use MORE vanilla it will taste like caramel. Huh? Vanilla is vanilla … More vanilla just means MORE vanilla flavor. Ours is a family of vanilla lovers … I’ve made our own natural vanilla extract for over 20 years … it NEVER tastes like caramel! I guess you must use an artificial vanilla extract … or … it’s a fact that if you think something tastes a certain way, it will … regardless if it’s what you think it is or not. I’m sure this is yummy and delicious – but it’s not caramel and never will be.
Thank you to Jan for the idea of using caramel extract … that’s just the kind of inspiration I was looking for! I was curious if someone had figured a way to get the caramel flavor in a syrup without having to brown the sugar first (why I came here) and reading the suggestion for caramel extract was a ‘Duh!’ moment! Thanks again!