Salted Caramel Butter Bars

If you have been following my blog for a while, you should be pretty familiar with my obsessions.  Caramel is one of them.  Anything that is baked with gooey caramel becomes an instant favorite for me!
saltedcaramelbutterbarsSorry friends.  These are called salted caramel BUTTER bars for a reason.  They may not help the weight loss program at all.  And they are packed with butter.  But I promise they are worth every bite.  These are the bars that someone brings to a get together and you HAVE to get the recipe.  Or the tiny cookie square on a cookie exchange plate that is the best one!  A delicious butter shortbread crust with a gooey salted caramel center.  Simple yet amazing!  These are the perfect balance of salty and sweet and will always be a hit!

4.9 from 7 reviews
Salted Caramel Butter Bars
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
A delicious butter shortbread crust with gooey caramel in the inside!
Serves: 16
  • 2 cups butter, softened
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1½ cups powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 14 oz bag caramels, unwrapped or 11 oz unwrapped Caramel Bits work great
  • ⅓ cup whipping cream
  • ½ tsp vanilla
  • 1 Tbsp coarse sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Lightly spray with cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl cream together butter, sugar, and powdered sugar. Add vanilla and beat until combined. Mix in the flour and combine until it forms a soft dough.
  3. Press half of the dough in the bottom of a 9x13 dish and place the other half of the dough into the refrigerator. Bake in preheated oven for 15 minutes.
  4. Remove the pan from the oven and melt the caramels, heavy cream and ½ tsp vanilla in the microwave for 1 minute. Stir together until smooth. Pour evenly over the hot crust. Lightly sprinkle the coarse sea salt over the crust. I didn't end up using the entire T, just lightly sprinkle evenly on top. You don't want them too salty. 🙂
  5. Take the remaining dough out of the refrigerator and crumble over the top of the caramel. Return the pan to the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until filling is bubbly and the top is firm. Let them cool completely before cutting.
Recipe source Jo and Sue



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Alyssa Rivers

I am Alyssa and the blogger behind The Recipe Critic. I started my blog in June of 2012 as a place to share my passion for cooking. I love trying new things and testing them out with my family.

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  1. My daughter LOVES sea salt caramels, I bet she’d love these! They look delicious!

  2. I have made these and blogged about them, they are absolutely wonderful!

  3. Let me just wipe up my drool off my table! YUM!

  4. These look fantastic! I’ve been obsessed with salted caramel lately, so I definitely want to try these!

  5. looks very sweet and good..

  6. they look delish!

  7. Sound so good. Thank you.

  8. Oh my gosh. Are you being serious right now?!? I want these in my mouth STAT!

  9. Does anyone know if these bars keep well? Would love to make them for our cookie exchange but I’m afraid the salt may make them “weepy”

  10. Could I use whole milk instead of heavy cream?

  11. Bev Richardson says:

    Can these be frozen? Making them right now!

    • Roxanne Russomano says:

      Hi Bev, was wondering if you found out weather or not these can be frozen… having a picnic at the end of the month, and want to get a head start on some of the food.

  12. I would really like to make these but where I am living right now its almost impossible to find soft caramels. Do you have any suggestions? Could I use Herseys caramel sauce? If yes do I still need to mix in cream and vanilla? or I could make my own caramels but its seems time consuming to make them into squares and re-melt again! Trying to wrap my head around this. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

    • Why not make your own caramel for use in this recipe? You only need a thermometer. I guarantee the bars will be the tastier for it!!

  13. This recipe was very easy to follow and delicious. I didn’t have time to do a trial run before Thanksgiving so I cooked them the day of and they were a big hit.

    I can’t wait to try more of your recipes in the future. THANK YOU, Alyssa!

  14. Love! have made them many many times. My husband originally found this recipe on line and asked me to make it. OMG! It’s now an addiction and my go to recipe for parties.

  15. What font is that? That you used to write salted? I love it and is that your own handwriting for your name, Alyssa? So pretty. ( I have a font problem)

  16. Are these made with salted or unsalted butter? THANKS!!

  17. Do you use all purpose or self rising flour? Can’t wait to try these:)

  18. Took these to a dessert competition snd they came in first.

  19. Made these for Easter. They were VERY rich and very sweet, but a huge hit. People wanted to stop eating them, but couldn’t bring themselves to do it.
    I thought the whole tablespoon of vanilla was a typo so I used 1 tsp and it was absolutely fine. And I don’t care for store bought caramel sauce so I found a 3-ingredient foolproof caramel sauce on pinterest to do it myself and it was phenomenal. I’d say it was well worth the extra time to make the sauce, but it’s actually probably quicker, because I’m thinking it would take all night to unwrap 50 little caramel candies, and it won’t be enough filling in my opinion.
    So I will def make this again, same as I did the last time.

  20. Made these for a baby shower and they were a huge hit! A delight in both flavor and texture. We find them especially refreshing refrigerated. Because they are so rich, I cut them in 1″x1″ squares, which made for a pretty presentation but allowed the guests to go back for seconds. And thirds. And fourths……. Thank you!!!
    Oh, it wasn’t clear if the butter was salted or not, so I used two sticks of each. Perhaps you could do a quick edit on the recipe to clarify that point. Again, thank you!!!

  21. A friend of mine made these at work and they were so delicious! So I made these for thanksgiving tomorrow. They turned out great! Easy and delicious!!

  22. Kirstin Armstrong says:

    Hands down the BEST recipe ever! I double the caramel. Most requested from my family and friends. Have 6, yes 6 times since thanksgiving! I always have dough left over. Freezes well and makes shortbread like cookies! Double the caramel is key. Thank you so much for my new, and most loved recipe!

  23. Made these for an event and work, and WOW. They were delicious. Thank you!


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