Date caramel is a healthy naturally sweetened alternative to regular caramel sauce. It is made with a few simple ingredients and is ready in just 5 minutes! Satisfy your sweet tooth by using this delicious yet healthy spread on everything from breakfast to dessert. (This recipe is gluten-free, refined sugar-free, dairy-free, and vegan.)
Date caramel is lusciously smooth, creamy, and sweet. Add it to whatever you’d add traditional caramel to and I guarantee no one will notice the difference! Caramel made with dates is just as rich in flavor and texture but is also packed with nutrients.
Use this vegan date caramel sauce whenever a recipe calls for a typical sugar-filled caramel sauce. Medjool dates provide incredible nutrients and the perfect amount of sweetness!
Reasons This Date Caramel Recipe Works
- Simple! With only 4 ingredients and 5 minutes of prep work, this easy recipe is a breeze.
- Healthy! Enjoy caramel flavor without refined sugar and the added benefit of nutritional value. Dates are a superfood packed with antioxidants and nutrients.
- Versatile! Enjoy it as a dipping sauce, a topping, a natural sweetener, or by the spoonful all on its own!
Ingredients You’ll Need
- Dates: This vegan caramel sauce works best with medjool dates. (It’s often referred to as nature’s candy, and for good reason!) Remember to remove the pits before adding them to the blender.
- Non-dairy milk: This is slowly drizzled in (almond milk or coconut milk works best). Whichever dairy-free milk you choose, make sure it is unsweetened.
- Water: This ensures the date caramel isn’t too thick.
- Vanilla Extract: This enhances the overall flavor.
- Nut Butter: This is an optional ingredient. Use peanut butter or almond butter. It helps to contribute to the creamy texture. (Don’t worry– it won’t taste like peanut butter.)
How to Make Date Caramel
BLEND INGREDIENTS. Add all of the ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend on high until very smooth. (I recommend using a high-powered blender, like this one.) Slowly add the non-dairy milk until a uniform consistency is formed.
ADJUST. Then add peanut butter (optional) and water to create a smooth consistency. You can adjust the consistency and make it thinner by adding more non-dairy milk.
Tips To Nail the Recipe
- All dates don’t work for this particular recipe. If you want the caramel flavor, you need medjool dates. They are softer and sweeter than other varieties (like bahri, dayri, and deglet noor).
- If the dates are dry and tough, not sticky and soft to the touch, soak the dates in water for 10 minutes before blending. This is necessary in order to achieve the caramel consistency.
- You do not need to add peanut butter (or almond butter), but I find it helps to make the caramel creamier and gives it a buttery taste. (You can hardly taste the peanut butter in the sauce.)
- Adding more almond/coconut milk will thin out the sauce (1 tbsp at a time), so feel free to add more to reach your desired consistency.
Recipe Variations + Substitutions
- Nut-Free: Instead of nut butter, use seed butter. Also, use soy milk or oat milk.
- Date Salted Caramel: Add a pinch of sea salt for a salty, sweet contrast.
- No Blender: You can use a food processor instead.
How to Use Date Caramel
This date caramel sauce is one of my favorite snacks and can be used to make healthy treats.
- Fruit: Paired with sliced apples and pears, it is absolutely phenomenal. The first time I made it was as a dipping sauce on my holiday party charcuterie board.
- Desserts: I’ve also used it as a sweet layer for my Homemade Ice Cream Snickers Bars! Use it as frosting for cakes.
- Breakfast: Drizzling date caramel over a stack of pancakes or waffles are mouthwatering. Adding some to your favorite smoothie recipes would be a sweet way to start the day.
Store leftover date caramel sauce in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. For longer storage, pour individual servings into an ice cube tray for up to 1 month. Just defrost them overnight in the fridge.
Do dates taste like caramel?
Yes. Medjool dates have a caramel-like flavor that makes them perfect for this recipe.
What is the texture and taste of dates?
Dates are similar to raisins but they are larger and more chewy. There are a variety of dates and they range in color, texture, and sweetness. The medjool dates used to make date caramel have a rich caramel flavor with a hint of honey taste.
What are the benefits of dates fruit?
Dates are rich in fiber, which improves the digestive system and regulates blood sugar. This dried fruit is a natural sweetener and a nutritious replacement for white sugar.
I Hope You Enjoy This Vegan Date Caramel Sauce Recipe!
If you try the recipe, don’t forget to rate the recipe and let me know what you think in the comments. Leave a quick review & star rating ★ below! Take pictures, tag #goodfoodbaddie, and share them with me on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest! I love seeing my recipes come to life in your kitchen.
More Healthy Sauces and Dips Recipes To Try!
- Rich Cacao Icing | Paleo
- 3-Ingredient Orange Cranberry Sauce
- Hot Honey Recipe
- Edamame Hummus
- How to Make Cashew Cream Sauce
- Avocado Crema |Delicious 5-minute Recipe
- 14 Dates
- 1/2 cup non-dairy milk, slowly drizzled in (almond or coconut milk work best)
- 2 tbsp Water
- 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
- 2 tbsp Peanut Butter or Almond Butter (optional)
- Remove the pits from the dates. Add the dates to a bowl and pour hot water over the dates. Soak for ten minutes to soften, then drain.
- Add all of the ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend on high until very smooth. Slowly add the non-dairy until a uniform consistency is formed.
- Add peanut butter (optional) and water to create a smooth consistency. You can adjust the consistency and make thinner by adding more non-dairy milk