This Pretzel Caramel recipe from Mamma Jill’s Kitchen has totally turned our kitchen into a pretzel factory tonight! This giant pot of perfectly prepared caramel is so versatile we use it for nearly EVERY dessert that has caramel in it. (Check out our Homemade Samoa Cookies! http://tableforfifty.com/homemade-samoa-cookies/ We love to stir up a batch of this for the topping of this cookie, but you will either have to double the batch of cookies or get a spoon for the extra caramel, this is a BIG batch!)
A heavy, large pot is recommended for candy making. Be sure to only use a wooden spoon or a heat safe spatula for stirring candy. Candy experts everywhere know that a metal spoon will destroy heated sugar and you will have a sugary mess!
It is important to stir the ingredients off the bottom of the pot to avoid burning the caramel. Bring all the ingredients to a full boil. Once you have a full boil turn down the heat and continue stirring until it has reached the desired temperature.
In Grandma Whitings kitchen a candy thermometer is by passed using this water test. Keep a small dish of very cold water nearby. As your caramel begins to thicken and darken drip a bit into the cool water. It should form a slight mound in the water. Use your fingers to pick up the now cool caramel. If it “feels” just right for wrapping around a pretzel stick and it will hold its form, you are all set! This is what candy makers call a “firm ball stage”.
If you use a candy thermometer, you cant go wrong, but the water testing allows for a taste of this amazing caramel, so maybe you better try both!
- 1½ cups white corn syrup
- 1½ cups butter
- 1½ cups white sugar
- 1½ cups brown sugar
- 1 can of sweetened condensed milk.
- 30+ large pretzel rods
- Dipping Chocolate
- Nuts and sprinkles (optional)
- Combine all ingredients in a large, heavy pot.
- Stirring constantly, bring all ingredients to a full boil over high heat. Once you have a rolling boil turn down the heat to a low and simmer until it reaches firm ball stage , or 238 degrees.
- Let the pan cool slightly while you prepare a surface or cookie sheets with non stick parchment paper or wax paper. Dip large pretzel rods one at a time from about an inch and a half away from your fingers. Use a wooden spoon or heat safe spatula to lay a thick layer over the entire rod.
- Generously cover all pretzels. The mixture will thicken as it cools and the cooler caramel will be easier to apply, but you will need to work quickly. After the dipped pretzel caramel cools on the rods it will pool around the pretzel and look misshapen, but do not worry! Now you can pick up the rods and use your hands to reshape the caramel onto the rods so that it is more cylindrical.
- Warm heated chocolate and cover caramel with chocolate and sprinkles or nuts if desired.