Fondue is the ultimate interactive dish that is equal parts delicious and entertaining. Serve up this warm and creamy salted caramel fondue for dessert with friends on a chilly night.
Two years ago my husband gave me a beautiful Swiss-made fondue pot as an anniversary gift. It’s now one of my most loved possessions because it sparked a full-blown obsession with all things fondue. My first foray involved bubbling up Emmental, Gruyere and a bit of white wine which was delicious to eat and entertaining to share. Soon after, dessert fondues became a regular after-dinner event, although we didn’t always have company to entertain.
Salted caramel is one of my all-time favorite fondues. It’s easy to bubble up on the stove-top and tastes good on everything! I like using a small cast iron pot to serve it in (ceramic is also a good choice) but f you don’t have a fondue pot, don’t distress! Use the saucepan you cooked it in, and present it to guests on a tray with a heat-proof trivet in the center. All that’s left to do is dip!
Speaking of dipping… Perhaps my favorite part of prepping a fondue party is gathering all kinds of bites and nibbles to dunk. Assorted fruit is always a good idea, but my ultimate favorite for caramel fondue is frozen cheesecake cut into squares. The combination of cold creamy cheesecake and hot salted caramel in one bite is so satisfying!
If you’ve ever made homemade caramel on the stove top, then you’ll recognize the steps in this recipe. The two are similar, but caramel fondue has more butter. Butter = better? Yes! Especially for salted caramel fondue! Its flavor is unequaled.
And now I’ll share my one trick for a pretty presentation: drizzle the caramel sauce with a spoonful of heavy cream and lightly swirl with a fork. This makes a gorgeous pattern on top and gives the caramel an extra creamy note. I do this every single time I make it!
Find this recipe and more on Go Bold With Butter!, the recipe site of the American Butter Institute in association with America’s Dairy Farmers.
Salted Caramel Fondue
- fondue pot
- 1 cup 200g granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 2/3 cups plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream at room temperature, divided
- 1/2 cup 1 stick salted butter, cubed
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
- Flake salt for finishing optional
- Assorted foods for dipping: frozen cheesecake squares berries, grapes, pound cake, brownies, etc.
- Combine sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Cook over medium heat until the sugar is completely dissolved. Use a wet pastry brush to remove any sugar crystals that form at the edge of sugar water during cooking. Increase heat to medium-high and cook without stirring until mixture turns medium amber. Immediately remove pan from heat and pour 2 2/3 cups of heavy cream into the sugar mixture. The cream will bubble up and steam with this addition, so be careful! Whisk until smooth sauce forms. If lumps occur, place the caramel over medium heat and stir until the lumps dissolve. Add butter and stir until melted. Whisk in the vanilla extract and fine grain sea salt.
- Pour the caramel sauce into a medium microwave-safe bowl or into a fondue pot with an active burner. Just before serving, drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons heavy cream on top of the caramel and swirl using the tines of a fork. Gently sprinkle a pinch of flake sea salt on the surface of the fondue. Arrange fruit and cake pieces around the pot for dipping. If using a fondue pot with a burner, regulate the heat to keep the fondue warm, not hot. If using a bowl, re-heat caramel as needed in the microwave at 30 second increments.