This easy Butterscotch Sauce recipe is rich and decadent. Skip the store-bought sauce and give this homemade sauce a try with only 5 ingredients.

Butterscotch sauce in a jar.
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This easy sauce recipe is so effortless that you will wonder why you didn’t make it sooner. It is actually very simple to make homemade butterscotch sauce. With only 5 ingredients, this yummy sauce comes together fast and it taste delicious.

We love this dessert sauce on ice cream, banana splits, Peach Bread Pudding and more. The ideas are endless for this yummy recipe.

You might also like to make Butterscotch Fudge, Butterscotch Cupcakes and Butterscotch brownies for more easy recipes.

What is butterscotch sauce made of?

Butterscotch sauce consists of butter, brown sugar, heavy whipping cream, salt and vanilla extract. This recipe is very simple and only requires 5 basic ingredients.

It all comes together for the best treat. This recipe makes it easy to enjoy a delicious homemade sauce at home. Store bought simply does not compare to this yummy butterscotch.


Ingredients for Butterscotch sauce- unsalted butter, dark brown sugar, salt, heavy whipping cream, vanilla.
  • Unsalted Butter 
  • Dark Brown Sugar, firmly packed 
  • Kosher Salt 
  • Heavy Whipping Cream 
  • Vanilla Extract 

Find the complete ingredient list and recipe card at the bottom.

How to make butterscotch sauce

Saucepan with butter and cream.

Step 1. Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat and melt.  Then whisk in the brown sugar and salt. Add the cream until it’s well blended.  

Saucepan with mixture combined and boiling.

Step 2. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook for 3-4 minutes stirring frequently until the mixture is smooth and not grainy.  Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.  Allow the sauce to thicken.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to store and reheat?

The sauce is ok at room temperature for a few hours but should be refrigerated for long term storage.

Refrigerate the leftover sauce in an airtight container and it should keep for up to 2-3 weeks.  It’s best to store in a glass jar or container.  We like to use a mason jar.

Rewarm in the microwave before enjoying the leftovers. We like to enjoy the sauce warm. Be careful that you do not allow it to boil when reheating or it can become grainy or separate.

The sauce will thicken as it sits. Simply reheat and it will thin out and be easy to pour on desserts.

What is the difference between butterscotch and caramel sauce?

Caramel is made with granulated sugar whereas butterscotch is made with brown sugar. Butterscotch vs caramel. They are both cooked sugar but of various kinds.

Also, caramel sauce does not always have butter but butterscotch always has butter.

You will need a candy thermometer when making caramel sauce and also there is concern for the mixture crystalizing and solidifying the caramel. Whereas, butterscotch does not require a thermometer.

It often boils down to preference. Do you prefer caramel with white sugar or butterscotch with brown sugar? Both are delicious.

Ice cream in a bowl with butterscotch sauce.

How to use butterscotch sauce?

  • Ice cream. We love butterscotch sauce on homemade vanilla ice cream.
  • Shortbread Cookies. Dip these cookies in the rich sauce for an amazing dessert.
  • Apple Pie. Drizzle a generous portion of butterscotch sauce before serving each slice of apple pie.
  • Perfect for dipping. Apple slices taste amazing dipped in this dessert sauce. It is a tasty dip for fruit. Try apples, strawberries, pineapple and more.
  • Brownies. Drizzle butterscotch all over brownies. You might also want to top it with ice cream too. It is a heavenly combination.
  • Peach Cobbler. The flavors of peach cobble rand butterscotch pair nicely. This combination is delicious.
  • Waffles. Take breakfast up a level and top waffles with butterscotch and whipped cream.
  • Coffee. Top coffee, iced coffee or Frappuccino’s with this sauce.

Tips for homemade butterscotch sauce

  • Dark Brown Sugar. While you can certainly use light brown sugar, dark brown has a deeper molasses flavor. This adds an element to the butterscotch sauce that is so delicious. Dark brown sugar also gives butterscotch its deep color that is so pretty.
  • Do not over boil. Make sure not to over boil. The sauce will continue to thicken as it sits so watch it closely as it boils for a few minutes. You do not want to overcook it or it will become chewy and hard to pour.
  • Overcooking. Be careful that you do not cook the mixture longer than what is directed.
Butterscotch sauce in a jar.

More homemade sauce recipes

Please do yourself a favor and make this homemade butterscotch sauce recipe today.

Homemade Butterscotch Recipe

4.80 from 10 votes
This easy Butterscotch Sauce recipe is rich and decadent. Skip the store bought sauce and give this homemade sauce a try with 5 ingredients.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 12
Cuisine American
Course Dessert
Calories 120


  • 4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • ¾ cup Dark Brown Sugar firmly packed
  • ½ teaspoons Kosher Salt
  • ½ cup Heavy Whipping Cream
  • 1 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
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  • Melt the butter in a saucepan over medium high heat.  Then whisk in the brown sugar, salt and heavy whipping cream until it’s well blended.
  • Bring the mixture to a boil.  Reduce the heat to a low boil and cook for 3-4 minutes stirring frequently until the mixture is smooth and not grainy.
  • Remove the saucepan from the heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
  • The sauce will thicken as it sits.  Then it’s ready to serve and enjoy!

Nutrition Facts

Calories 120kcal, Carbohydrates 14g, Protein 0.3g, Fat 7g, Saturated Fat 5g, Polyunsaturated Fat 0.3g, Monounsaturated Fat 2g, Trans Fat 0.2g, Cholesterol 21mg, Sodium 104mg, Potassium 29mg, Sugar 14g, Vitamin A 262IU, Vitamin C 0.1mg, Calcium 19mg, Iron 0.1mg

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About the Author

Hi, I’m Carrie. Welcome to Desserts on a Dime!

I’m on a mission to help you create delicious desserts on a budget and do not require a ton of time. Together, we are going to make something sweet that the entire family will love!

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