Can you make caramel with evaporated milk?

In this article, we will answer the question “Can you make caramel with evaporated milk?”, and how to make caramel from sweetened condensed milk?

Can you make caramel with evaporated milk?

Yes, you can make caramel with evaporated milk. Read on to find out how to make caramel with evaporated milk.

How to make caramel with evaporated milk?


  • ¾ cup unsalted butter (reduce the salt to ⅛ teaspoon if you are using salted butter)
  • 1 ½ cups light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup evaporated milk or heavy cream, or more, to thin the sauce

You can make slated caramel using the same recipe by making a few adjustments. Use sea salt to make the salted caramel. Use unsalted butter so you can adjust the salt as per your taste.


  1. Lightly coat the sides of a saucepan with some oil or non-stick spray. Cook butter, brown sugar, water, and salt in the saucepan until the butter melts. 
  1. Then bring the mixture to a rolling boil. Cook the mixture on low heat for about 5-8 minutes or until the sauce becomes golden brown and thickens.
  1. Stir the sauce while it thickens to promote even cooking and prevent burning the sauce especially from the sides.
  1. Remove the pan from the heat and let loose some of its heat. Then stir in some vanilla and evaporated milk until homogenous. Add more evaporated milk for a runny consistency.
  1. Refrigerate the caramel sauce in an air-tight container or jar for about 1-2 weeks.
  1. Nuke in the microwave for a few seconds or heat on the stovetop before use.
  1. Drizzle over ice cream, apple crisp, or use it to make caramel-filled chocolate cupcakes.

How to make caramel from sweetened condensed milk?


  • 1 14-oz. can (396 g) sweetened, condensed milk

Method 1: Making Dulce de Leche in the can 

Grab a can 

A can with a pull-tab lid cannot withstand the pressure that builds inside the can during heating. Therefore, always choose a can of condensed milk with a sealed lid and remove its label.

Prepare the water bath 

Pour room temperature water in the saucepan such that you can easily submerge the can in the saucepan. The level of the water should be 2 inches extra from above the can. This will promote even cooking, and prevent the can from potentially exploding.

Heat the can 

Lower the can in the water such that it is laying on one side. This is to cushion the bouncing during heating. Heat the water so that it starts to simmer. 

Then let it simmer on low heat for 2 hours(for a lighter dulce de leche) or 3 hours(for a thicker dulce de leche). 

Check the can after regular intervals and make sure the volume of water stays the same as the start. Flip the can twice or thrice to prevent burning.

Let the can cool

After 2-3 hours, remove the can from the hot water using tongs or a slotted spoon. Let the can rest on a wire rack to allow it to cool.

Method 2: Using a double broiler 

Prepare your double broiler 

Pour 2 inches or 5cm water in the bottom of a double broiler. Empty the can of the sweetened condensed milk into the top bowl of the double broiler. 

You can work with a makeshift double boiler by using a glass bowl that fits and forms a seal with a medium-sized saucepan. The bottom of the glass bowl should not touch the water in the saucepan. 

Heat the milk

Heat the milk for 1 to 1 ½ – 2 hours on a simmer with the lid closed. Use foil as a lid if you are working with a makeshift double broiler. Stir the milk occasionally while it cooks, to promote even cooking.

Remove from the heat

Turn off the heat and set aside the dulce de leche. Whisk it to dissolve any clumps and let it cool for about 20 minutes before use.

Method 3: Making Dulce de Leche in the oven 

Prepare the oven 

Preheat your oven to 425℉ or 218℃. 

Prepare the pie plate 

Empty a can of sweetened condensed milk in a nine-inch pie plate. Seal the plate using foil. Place the pie plate in a slightly larger pie plate or roasting pan. You can use any baking dish that works. Fill the baking dish halfway through with water.


Bake the milk for about one hour. After an hour, whisk the dulce de leche and check if it has achieved the desired color and texture. If you are not satisfied, bake for some more time. Make sure the baking dish is half-filled with water.

Other FAQs about Milk that you may be interested in.

Can you use coconut cream instead of coconut milk?

Can you use sweetened condensed milk instead of evaporated milk?

Can you use evaporated milk in place of milk?


In this article, we answered the question “Can you make caramel with evaporated milk?”, and how to make caramel from sweetened condensed milk?