Bourbon-Spiked Caramel Is The Best Way To Booze Up Ice Cream

Ice cream is great on its own, but it is even better with the addition of a garnish or two. There are many popular toppings to choose from — everything from sprinkles and gummy bears to marshmallows and maraschino cherries — but if you don't have the sweet tooth you did as a kid, you may be looking for something a bit more sophisticated. For those seeking a complex dessert experience, we recommend topping your ice cream with bourbon caramel for a balanced, boozy bite.

Bourbon caramel sauce is similar in flavor and texture to the classic caramel sauce you know and love, just with a splash of bourbon added in during its cooking process. The introduction of this beloved spirit complements the caramel by bringing in its own toffee-like notes, while also tempering its sweetness with hints of nuttiness, woodiness, spice, and bitterness. This not only elevates the ice cream by creating a more layered and nuanced flavor profile but also prevents those with more savory-oriented palates from being overwhelmed by the sugary nature of the ice cream and the caramel.

How to make bourbon caramel

Many stores sell bourbon caramel these days, especially in the fall and winter seasons, since the flavor pairing suits many warm and cozy dishes served during that time of year. But if you cannot find it at your local grocery, you can easily make the sauce yourself. Start with your favorite traditional caramel sauce recipe. When the caramel has finished coming together, add ina few tablespoons of your bourbon of choice. By adding it in at the end of the process, the sauce will likely retain some amount of alcohol rather than cooking off entirely.

Once your bourbon caramel is finished, be sure to store the sauce correctly to ensure it retains its quality for as long as possible. For best results, keep your caramel sauce in an airtight container in the refrigerator. There, it will last for up to three weeks before it begins to decline in quality. When you are ready to use some of the caramel to top your ice cream, you can easily soften it by popping it in the microwave for just a few seconds.