Easy and delicious caramel fudge candy that’s basically just cashew butter, coconut oil and maple syrup. Paleo, vegan, gluten-free and dairy-free.
It’s been way too hot to bake lately. When the kitchen’s 86 °F and we don’t have air conditioning, there’s no chance I’m baking. We’ve even been cooking on a small portable induction cooktop on our patio to avoid heating up the kitchen even more.
So when a sweets craving came upon me, I went with one of the quickest and easiest recipes I could think of. All you do to make these little caramel fudge candies is boil everything for 2 minutes, pour into molds and then pop into the freezer!
This vegan key lime pie or these paleo lemon bars would be excellent no-bake choices for when you’ve got a bit more time on your hands!
These little fudge candies are best refrigerated or frozen and then defrosted a bit. They’re not too hard out of the freezer but they don’t really melt in your mouth when they’re that cold.
I wasn’t really sure what to call them. They’re not fudge and they’re not exactly caramel, but something in-between. So… caramel fudge candy! Whatever they are, they’re SO good.
Store-bought cashew butter is so ridiculously expensive so I always make my own. Check out this post on how to make peanut butter and use roasted and salted cashews instead of peanuts.
And once you have your cashew butter, then you can also make this paleo lemon fudge, which is one of my very favorite recipes! It’s one of those recipes that hardly anyone looks at because it’s such a strange thing to be looking for. That makes me sad because it’s seriously so delicious and easy to make.
If you don’t use salted cashew butter, make sure to add salt after mixing everything together! It’s absolutely necessary to the deliciousness of this recipe. :) It gives the candy this salted caramel kind of thing.
And if you can have dairy and are looking for something a little more traditional, these homemade soft caramels look amazing!
Questions about this caramel fudge candy?
- What can I use instead of maple syrup? I’ve tried honey but it doesn’t really work. You don’t get the right caramel-like texture and the end results tastes strongly of honey.
Another thinner liquid sweetener might work but I haven’t tried it so I really can’t say for sure if it’d work.
- What can I use instead of cashew butter? I’ve made this with peanut butter (for a non-paleo version), almond butter and sunflower seed butter for a nut-free version.
If you use almond butter, it won’t taste caramel-like at all. But it’ll still be yummy (although I think some added cinnamon would be a good idea!).
- What can I use instead of coconut oil? Butter works for a non-paleo and non-vegan version. I’m not sure about ghee or any other fat.
- Can I use a different type of liner? I only recommend waxed or silicone liners because the candy will stick to plain paper ones (at least mine did!).
Caramel Fudge Candy
- Prep Time:
- Cook Time:
- Ready in:
- Yield: 12 candies
- 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) maple syrup (I don't recommend honey - see post!)
- 1/3 cup (85 grams) salted cashew butter or sunflower seed butter for nut-free (the kind with just cashews / seeds and salt)
- 1/4 cup (56 grams) coconut oil
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/8 - 1/4 teaspoon salt if your cashew butter is unsalted
- flaky sea salt to top off the candy
- Line a mini muffin pan with 12 waxed or silicone muffin liners.
- In a small saucepan, mix together the maple syrup, cashew butter and coconut oil over medium heat. Add salt, if using (starting off with 1/8 teaspoon and adding more, if needed). At first it might not appear to come together well but be patient.
- Stirring constantly, bring to a boil and while continuing to stir constantly, boil for about 2 minutes. It should have thickened a bit and become glossy. If it hasn't, boil for up to another minute. If you use a heavy bottom pan, you may need to boil it a little longer. Stir in the vanilla until well combined.
- Pour into the liners and place the pan in the freezer. If you don't have room in your freezer, refrigerate for a few hours until firm and then transfer the fudge pieces to a small container that does fit in your freezer.
- Freeze / chill until the tops are no longer runny, top with flaky sea salt and return to the freezer.
- Freeze for about 2-3 hours. The liners will be easy to remove once the fudge has thoroughly frozen. They'll stick if you try to remove them too early. Store in the freezer for up to 3 months or the refrigerator for 1 month. If storing in the freezer, defrost for about 10-20 minutes at room temperature.
40 comments on “Caramel Fudge Candy (paleo, vegan)” — Add one!
YUM! I just whipped these up. They haven’t had time to set just yet but I put them in some candy molds that we bought at Michaels a few months ago. My youngest and I ate the extra I had leftover and the salty/sweet mixture is divine…I licked the container clean LOL! Thank you! I don’t know if my son with all the food allergies likes them yet but I will let you know.
Erin, help! I made these yesterday and after a few hours took one out of the freezer but it wouldn’t come off the paper. So I left them alone overnight. This morning I went in and they’re still rather pliable and sticking to the paper. However, they taste phenomenal! What do you think happened??? The only thing I did different was I added a few drops of THM butter and caramel extract. I used the ‘If you care’ brand unbleached mini cupcake cups. Hope you can help as you always do ( thanks for that by the way!)
***mini cupcake liners not cups
Hello! Are those waxed or silicone liners? I specified waxed or silicone in the recipe because the candy sticks to regular paper liners. If they were in the freezer overnight and they’re still sticking, I don’t think there’s anything to do about it. :( Maybe move them to the fridge and see if that helps? (though I doubt it). I hope that they’re still edible! I bought a set of silicone mini liners just for this recipe because I love them so much and was frustrated with paper liners! I’m sorry I can’t be more helpful.
Hello, I assumed they were lined somehow and they looked like the ones in your video but I guess not. Ugh. I’ll have to disregard this batch because they simply will not release. Another thing though is the consistency straight out of the freezer is still rather soft. I’m wondering if there’s anything I did wrong in the making of the recipe although I boiled it for two minutes and followed your recipe to a T. Because you said you set them out for a few minutes straight from the freezer I’m assuming they are hard out of the freezer but mine are not. Let me reiterate that they taste AMAZING!
Well darn. I’m not sure what the issue could be! Was your cashew butter 100% cashews? Or was there added fat / sugar? That could be the problem. This is just the paleo version of this peanut butter fudge, which has tons of positive reviews but I think a few people also said that they had a sticking problem. I think it must be a difference in nut butters. I’m sorry I don’t have a more helpful answer for you! If you want to try again, I’d try boiling a bit longer and see if that helps.
I love how simple the ingredients are! These look amazing can’t wait to try them!
I hope you will!
I have made a similar fudge with almond butter. I bet the cashew butter makes it super creamy! Can’t wait to give it a try.
It really does! :)
My mom used to make fudge for us when I was little! I think I have to give this recipe a try – YUM!
I think you will, too! ;)
Oh my goodness, this looks melt-in-your-mouth tasty! I can’t wait to give it a go!
I hope you’ll enjoy them! :)
Easy, delicious, and paleo?? I’m so in!
Right?! So good! :)
Hi. Would this recipe work with coconut butter instead of cashew butter?
Hi! Sorry for just now answering. Was traveling all day yesterday! I don’t think coconut butter would work. It has a totally different consistency. Sorry about that!
I made these the other day and they were delicious. I added chopped up walnuts to the mixture as well as on top which added a nice crunchy taste!
The only thing I’d say is that the recipe makes for 12 pieces but I could just about get 9 out. I don’t know if my cupcake moulds were bigger than the one used here, but either way I’ll double the batch next time because the 9 barely lasted 3h! So delicious :)
Chopped walnuts sounds like a tasty addition! And yeah… I have an issue with this recipe, too. That being that I can’t prevent myself from eating the entire batch on the first day. :| They’re just too good! I keep running back to the freezer. Thanks so much for your feedback (and sorry for just now seeing it!).
Just made these and they are divine! Thinking about doing another batch using some peppermint flavoring…
I’m so happy you liked it. :) Peppermint flavoring sounds delicious. Thanks for your comment and sorry for my slow reply!
Thanks for your reply! The peppermint made them grainy, so I think sticking with the vanilla is better.
Interesting! I never would have thought that’d happen. Thanks for the tip!
Can’t wait to make these to have a stash on hand in the freezer!!
These look incredible! These are on my must-make list!
Caramel Fudge sounds amazing! Oh my word! I may have to try the peanut butter version!
My kids will love these fudges! They look so inviting!
This caramel fudge candy looks so delicious! I love that it’s gluten-free. I’m going to make this when my mom comes to visit next week!
Love how easy these are to make! They look dangerously addictive! Yum!
These look like the perfect dessert!
I am loving the idea of caramel fudge made with cashew butter! So tasty!
Shouldn’t ask, but how many calories per piece?
Haha. Unfortunately, it’s still just sugar and fat so it’s definitely not low-calorie! I don’t have the nutritional info but could use this recipe analyzer if you’d like for the nutritional profile. :)
Do these need to stay in the freezer?
Store in the freezer and then defrost 10-20 minutes or just refrigerate and enjoy immediately. :)
I am going to have to try these. I LOVE caramel. But I need some refined coconut oil since all I have here is unrefined and I do not like coconut flavored caramel! This looks like a great recipe! Thank you!
You’re welcome! I’d love to hear how it comes out. :) I used unrefined and they didn’t taste of coconut but I’m sure if you use refined, they’d taste even more caramel-like.
Can I use fiber yum with maple extract
Hi! I’ve never used that so I really have no idea. I googled it and am not sure if it’ll work in this recipe. Sorry about that!