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Vegan Pecan Caramel Chews Mattie

Written by Mattie    
 
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Vegan Pecan Caramel Chews

These chewy Vegan Pecan Caramel Chews are reminiscent of those little caramels you used to get from trick or treating when you were little, except they're packed with pecans and dipped in chocolate! Be sure to use a candy thermometer with this vegan caramel recipe for best results. If you like your caramel extra soft or extra hard, adjust the caramelization temperature 10F (6 C) lower or 10F (6 C) higher respectively.

Find more Caramel recipes on Veganbaking.net

Vegan Pecan Caramel Chews Recipe

1 ½ cups + 2 Tablespoons sugar
1 ¾ cups Vegan Condensed Milk
¾ cup unrefined coconut oil
½ cup agave or corn syrup
¼ water
½ teaspoon salt

1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup pecans, chopped

½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

1) Begin making your vegan caramel mixture

Line an 8 x 8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper and set aside. In a heavy duty 2.5 quart saucepan add the sugar, condensed vegan milk, coconut oil, agave syrup or corn syrup, water and salt. Mix with your fingers being careful not to spash sugar on the sides of the saucepan. Turn heat to high, cover the mixture and bring it to a boil. Uncover and reduce heat to medium.

Find out more about the sugar caramelization temperature stages.

2) Prepare the ice water bath

Prepare an ice water bath by placing ice water in a large mixing bowl. Keep this pot of ice water close by. This will serve two purposes: It will give you somewhere to dunk your hand if it gets splashed with scalding hot caramel. The pot of caramel will also get dunked into it when the proper temperature is reached in order to stop the caramelization process.

3) Continue caramelizing up to the proper temperature

Initially, the mixture may want to boil over and the heat will have to be adjusted as the mixture reduces. Resist the temptation to crank the heat up unless the temperature stops rising. If you see smoke puffs then you're probably burning the bottom and the heat should be reduced. If you get lots of smoke, remove the pot from heat, turn on your kitchen fan and wait until the smoke stops before turning the heat back on low and slowly bringing it back up as necessary. It should take 20 to 40 minutes to get the mixture to 275F (135C). The time that it takes for the caramel to reach this temperature depends on factors like the size of your saucepan, what your saucepan is made out of and whether you're using a gas or electric range.

4) Stop the caramelization process and mix in final ingredients

Remove from the heat and carefully dip the pot into the large mixing bowl for about 10 seconds in order to stop the caramelization process. Place the pot on an unheated stove top and stir in the vanilla followed by the pecans. When stirring be extra careful to not scrape the bottom. Doing so will scrape bitter burned sugar pieces into your precious caramel.

5) Pour the caramel and allow it to set

Pour the caramel into the pan and allow it to cool completely at room temperature for at least 5 hours. When pouring the mixture remember to avoid scraping the bottom of the saucepan with a spoon or spatula. When it's cooled, remove it by lifting it out of the baking dish by the parchment paper. Slice it into 1 inch squares.

6) Melt your chocolate and dip the caramels

Melt the chocolate chips in a double boiler. Dip the bottom halves of the caramel into the chocolate and place them on a piece of parchment paper for them to cool. This recipe makes about 16 Vegan Pecan Caramel Chews.


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4.8  (5)
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These taste great, I love the flavor! But is 275 really the right temperature? Mine came out more like toffee than caramel (and I used a candy thermometer, to make sure I got the right temp). Shouldn't it be something more like 240?
md Reviewed by md April 13, 2014
Top 500 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (1)

Temperature question

These taste great, I love the flavor! But is 275 really the right temperature? Mine came out more like toffee than caramel (and I used a candy thermometer, to make sure I got the right temp). Shouldn't it be something more like 240?

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I've been vegan for years and have missed caramel dearly. I'm broke and in grad school, so decided to make vegan baked treats for holiday gifts this year. I stumbled upon this recipe and am SO glad I did. I've been dancing around the house all night, so pleased at how this recipe has turned out. I made the condensed milk in a crock pot last night--it took about 12 hours to reduce down properly--SO worth the wait. I had my parents (who aren't so keen on my dietary choices) try the finished product and they loved it too. Thank you so much for this recipe! It's going to become a staple in my kitchen!
Rating 
 
5.0
Reviewed by Kristin December 23, 2012

so worth the time and effort

I've been vegan for years and have missed caramel dearly. I'm broke and in grad school, so decided to make vegan baked treats for holiday gifts this year. I stumbled upon this recipe and am SO glad I did. I've been dancing around the house all night, so pleased at how this recipe has turned out. I made the condensed milk in a crock pot last night--it took about 12 hours to reduce down properly--SO worth the wait. I had my parents (who aren't so keen on my dietary choices) try the finished product and they loved it too. Thank you so much for this recipe! It's going to become a staple in my kitchen!

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I almost got lazy and didn't prepare a cold water bath--but thank God I did because the sugar boiled way over, onto the stovetop and nearly caught fire! Keep the cold water bath near the stove!!
Thanks Mattie for including this step--it saved the day.
One day I will attempt these again. On someone's else's stove.
Freeda Reviewed by Freeda June 26, 2012
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (8)

DON'T SKIP THE STEP WITH THE THE COLD WATER BATH!!

I almost got lazy and didn't prepare a cold water bath--but thank God I did because the sugar boiled way over, onto the stovetop and nearly caught fire! Keep the cold water bath near the stove!!
Thanks Mattie for including this step--it saved the day.
One day I will attempt these again. On someone's else's stove.

Was this review helpful to you? 
I almost got lazy and didn't prepare a cold water bath--but thank God I did because the sugar boiled way over, onto the stovetop and nearly caught fire! Keep the cold water bath near the stove!!
One day I will attempt these again. On someone's else's stove.
Freeda Reviewed by Freeda June 26, 2012
Top 10 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (8)

DON'T SKIP THE STEP WITH THE THE COLD WATER BATH!!

I almost got lazy and didn't prepare a cold water bath--but thank God I did because the sugar boiled way over, onto the stovetop and nearly caught fire! Keep the cold water bath near the stove!!
One day I will attempt these again. On someone's else's stove.

Was this review helpful to you? 
Hi,
I made these and they turned out DELICIOUS, except they were extremely painful for me to eat (I think it was the sweetness because my teeth were screaming). Do you have any suggestions on how to remedy this? I know their main ingredient IS sugar, but I still want to ask :) Thank you.
Rating 
 
4.0
Reviewed by Caitlyn February 16, 2012

Hi,
I made these and they turned out DELICIOUS, except they were extremely painful for me to eat (I think it was the sweetness because my teeth were screaming). Do you have any suggestions on how to remedy this? I know their main ingredient IS sugar, but I still want to ask :) Thank you.

Owner's reply

Hi Caitlyn, Unfortunately caramel is just mainly burnt sugar so it's going to hurt if you have sensitive teeth. Nowadays I make sure to keep it in the center of my mouth and keep it away from my molars. You've given me a great idea to work on reduced sugar caramel. I could probably figure out a way to reduce the sugar by using a hydrocolloid such as glucomannan, agar/locust bean gum or glutinous rice flour. I'll be sure to post it when I get it right. Thanks!

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Just finished making these and am really happy with how they turned out. In terms of reaching 275 I've found that a factor in how long it takes to reach that temp is the size of your pot - a shallower pot helps you get to that temp faster. We realized this after making it and tried it on our next recipe that involved caramelization and it definitely worked much better. In a 2 quart sauce pan it took much longer than 20 minutes.
Rating 
 
5.0
Reviewed by Gretchen December 11, 2011

Great!

Just finished making these and am really happy with how they turned out. In terms of reaching 275 I've found that a factor in how long it takes to reach that temp is the size of your pot - a shallower pot helps you get to that temp faster. We realized this after making it and tried it on our next recipe that involved caramelization and it definitely worked much better. In a 2 quart sauce pan it took much longer than 20 minutes.

Owner's reply

Thanks for your feedback Gretchen! I've updated the recipe to call for a 2.5 quart saucepan because that's what I used to develop this recipe. I then stated that the time it takes for you caramel to get to 275F depends on several factors including saucepan size, type and whether your range is gas or electric.

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i tried these...the caramel would not turn out. i could not get it up to proper temperature and the caramel was much too light in color and soft in consistency. i ended up having it on the stove for 30 minutes and no luck. most caramel recipes would recommend about 40 minutes. any reason why you suggest 20?
Reviewed by :/ November 11, 2011

i tried these...the caramel would not turn out. i could not get it up to proper temperature and the caramel was much too light in color and soft in consistency. i ended up having it on the stove for 30 minutes and no luck. most caramel recipes would recommend about 40 minutes. any reason why you suggest 20?

Owner's reply

Hello, Sorry this didn't work out for you! Without seeing your pot and stove, it's difficult to tell what took it so long. I've made this recipe many times and with my equipment I always get consistent results within 20 minutes. I'll update the recipe to be more specific in the type and size of pot used and any other information that could be useful for consistent results. Thanks for sharing!

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I made these last night, and they're perfect. I accidentally added the nuts and vanilla at the beginning, but they still turned out well. With more pecans added, these may work as pralines. Next time, I may try adding roasted and salted peanuts at the end, instead of pecans.
Rating 
 
5.0
Reviewed by trimom October 25, 2009

Delicious!

I made these last night, and they're perfect. I accidentally added the nuts and vanilla at the beginning, but they still turned out well. With more pecans added, these may work as pralines. Next time, I may try adding roasted and salted peanuts at the end, instead of pecans.

Was this review helpful to you? 
these are awesome!

so, a question on condensed soy milk.

i have this friend, right? and she's getting really tired of prepping condensed soy milk every time she makes caramel. so, where would you tell my friend to get it?
Rating 
 
5.0
sam Reviewed by sam April 09, 2009
Top 50 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (3)

caramelicious condensed soy milk

these are awesome!

so, a question on condensed soy milk.

i have this friend, right? and she's getting really tired of prepping condensed soy milk every time she makes caramel. so, where would you tell my friend to get it?

Was this review helpful to you?