Microwave Soft Caramels
Author: 
Serves: 48 Caramels
 
FOUR ingredients, SEVEN minutes and a microwave are all you need to make these too-good-to-be-true, soft, buttery, melt-in-your-mouth caramels!
Ingredients
  • ½ cup (4 ounces/ 114 grams) unsalted butter (do not use salted as it splatters)
  • 1 cup (7 ounces/ 200 grams) packed light brown sugar
  • ½ cup (5.6 ounces/ 160 grams) light corn syrup
  • ½ cup (5.6 ounces/160 grams) sweetened condensed milk
  • ⅛ teaspoon fine salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract (optional)
  • ½ teaspoon (more or less, according to taste) sea salt flakes, for sprinkling on top, optional
Instructions
  1. Lightly spray (or butter) an 8X8'" baking pan. Line the bottom of the pan with a sheet of parchment or wax paper with the ends hanging off the sides, then lightly spray or grease the sheet.
  2. In a medium, microwave-safe glass bowl, heat the butter in the microwave until melted; about 1 minute.
  3. To the bowl with the butter, stir in the brown sugar, corn syrup, sweetened condensed milk and ⅛ teaspoon of fine salt until very well combined and a homogenous mixture forms.
  4. Return the bowl to the microwave and cook the mixture on HIGH power for 6 to 8 minutes. Start with 6 minutes, stop, stir and check for doneness, then add additional cooking time in 30 second increments, if needed. The caramel should register on a candy thermometer, between 238F-242F (115C-117C) for a softer caramel (perfect for stuffing in cookies and other desserts that will be baked) or up to 245F/118C for a firmer, chewier caramel (perfect for wrapping into candies). I like to err on the softer side. For an accurate reading, stir the the mixture first, to distribute the temperature evenly, then measure. If its below that point, return to the microwave for 30 seconds more, measuring and adding more time as needed.
  5. If you don't have a candy thermometer, while the mixture is cooking, prepare a glass of iced water and keep nearby. To check for doneness, drop a small spoon of the caramel in the ice water. Allow it to cool for a few seconds, then remove it. It should form a soft pliable ball; not too soft or liquidy nor too hard and brittle. If it needs more time, return to the microwave and heat in 30 second increments. Mine was done at 7 minutes, but timing will vary depending on how much you make, the wattage of your microwave, and the size of your bowl.
  6. Using one mitts, carefully remove the bowl from the microwave. Stir in the vanilla extract, if using.
  7. Carefully pour the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Lightly sprinkle the top with sea salt, if using.
  8. Transfer the pan to the refrigerator and chill until set, at least 30 minutes.
  9. Using the parchment/wax paper overhang, pull out the slab of caramel from the pan and place on a cutting board. Using a sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut the caramel evenly into rectangular pieces. I cut the slab into 4 rows, then cut each row into 12 rectangles.
  10. Wrap each caramel piece individually in wax paper, twisting the ends to seal.
  11. Store in an airtight container at room temperature. Separate the layers with wax paper if you are not wrapping them individually.
Notes
* This recipe can be halved, pouring the caramel mixture into a 9X5" loaf pan. Keep in mind that the mixture will cook in about half the time. Start checking at 3½ minutes.

Recipe adapted with changes from Cooking Classy and Wonder How To.
Recipe by Cleobuttera at https://cleobuttera.com/candy-and-snacks/microwave-soft-caramels/