Salted Caramel Vodka Recipe

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Inspired by the popularity of salted caramel as a flavor, I started wondering what it would taste like if you infused vodka with chewy caramel candies and just a touch of salt.

Sure, you can buy salted caramel flavored vodka off the shelf, but I prefer infusions because they keep the essence of what you’re infusing them with. This is my Salted Caramel Vodka infusion.

Salted Caramel Vodka Infusion

Turns out this is a really easy infusion. For each bottle you are making, you will need:

  • 20 soft (chewy) caramel candies (approximately 150 grams)
  • 1 750 ml bottle of vodka
  • Pinch of salt

Salted Caramel Vodka in shot glass

Sometimes people ask where I got this glass. The set is no longer made, but you can buy them or very similar ones on eBay. Or this set on Amazon.

For the caramels, I used First Street, which is the brand for the huge bags of candy they sell at Smart N Final, and they had a very good flavor and texture.

For the vodka, I went with Three Olives because this recipe needs a vodka that’s smooth and drinkable on its own. For the salt, anything will do but I used sea salt from Trader Joe’s.

Bottle of vodka laying on caramel candies

I started by counting out my caramels:

Caramel candies in plastic wrappers

Then I unwrapped them and, looking at how narrow the neck of the vodka bottle is, I chopped each one in four. This also helps it infuse faster, because there’s more surface area for the vodka to touch.

Chopped caramel candies in bowl

Looking at them, I made a guess about how much of the vodka in the bottle they would displace, and poured myself a shot of vodka, which I enjoyed while I worked. It turned out this was exactly the right amount of vodka to pour out.

Caramel candies in bowl with glass of vodka

Then I stuffed the caramels into the bottle.

Putting chopped caramel candies into vodka bottle

Once they’re all in, they tend to clump at the bottom of the bottle.

Vodka bottle with caramel candies inside
Caramel candies stuck to bottom of vodka bottle

And now comes the shaking. Twist the lid on securely, and give it a really good thorough shaking to get started.

Over the next few days, you’ll want to shake it periodically a few times a day to keep the process going. After three or four days, it’ll look like this all the time, and shaking won’t make any difference:

Vodka turning caramel colored

You could stop here, but I wasn’t wild about the white frothy stuff at the top. I’m not sure what it is, probably an additive from the caramel candies, but I just wanted the whole thing to be perfectly uniform.

White gunk at top of caramel vodka infusion

So I strained it once through a coffee filter. Unlike the Skittles Vodka Infusion, I found it worked best if I poured a few ounces through a filter, then swap out a new filter for the next few ounces. Otherwise, the frothy stuff would clog up the filter and make it slow.

Pouring caramel vodka infusion through coffee filters

At this point, I cleaned the original vodka bottle. It actually took some Dawn to get out all the white gunk. Then I poured the strained infusion back into the clean bottle.

Then I added a pinch of salt – seriously, that’s part of an eighth of a teaspoon. Do not get too much! You can always add more later, or even add it to drinks individually. You can also rim the glasses with it.

Tiny spoonful of salt
Flask and bottle of salted caramel vodka

And there you go – the finished Salted Caramel Vodka. Since people always ask, you can order these gorgeous flasks from Amazon.

So how does it taste? Like caramel sunshine. It’s sweet, but not as much as I expected. You don’t taste the salt itself – it cuts the sweetness and enhances the flavor.

Mainly, you get this buttery caramelized sugar flavor that’s strong but not heavy. It’s lighter than, say, Baileys or Kahlua. The goal had been to create something that was sweet but sophisticated, and this surpassed my expectations.

Of course you can make it more or less sweet depending on the number of caramels you use.

It’s delicious straight:

Salted Caramel vodka in a shot glass

But it’s also great in cocktails. Be sure to try it in the Caramel Candy or William’s Caramel Appletini!

This Salted Caramel vodka infusion tastes better and has a richer texture than caramel-flavored vodka from the store. It's easy to make, and infuses in a few days. Perfect for caramel cocktails!
Yield: 1 batch

Salted Caramel Vodka Recipe

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 3 days
Total Time: 3 days 30 minutes

You can infuse caramel candies into vodka, and it's so much better and richer tasting than store bought caramel vodka

Ingredients

  • 20 soft (chewy) caramel candies
  • 1 750 ml bottle of vodka
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Cut the caramels into quarters (optional - makes them infuse faster)
  2. Pour out a shot of vodka from your bottle (so they won't make it spill over)
  3. Add the caramels into the bottle of vodka
  4. Shake it well several times a day to keep the caramels infusing

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