This is an easy, 3-ingredient Vegan Date Caramel Sauce. How can anything made so simply be good? Once you try it you’ll see this dairy-free caramel sauce is a delicious, creamy, refined sugar-free sauce perfect to drizzle over sliced bananas, dairy-free ice cream, popcorn, sliced apples, and so many other desserts!
Plant-based Sweet Tooth
I like sweets. There’s no doubt about it. But lately I’ve been looking for sweets that have a little healthier twist to them. Like this Vegan Date Caramel sauce. You can call it a sauce, or you can simply call it caramel. It works either way.
I’ll explain more later. For now, just now it’s totally plant-based, and oh-s0-delicious. If you’re into plant-based recipes, check out my Vegan Almost Raw Peanut Butter Cups or my Cashew Cream Stuffed Strawberries.
It’s not that I don’t enjoy a good slice of vegan cake. I do. Do you want proof? How about this Vegan Vanilla Wacky Cake I published recently. I’ve been making this cake on repeat since July! 🙂
But I’m just thinking on a day-to-day basis, it’s good to find something that satisfies that sweet tooth in a seriously healthy way. I mean, my thought is, if I’m going to spend the calories, why not make them count…nutritionally!
Then, save the cake for special occasions. You know, like Thursday nights, when Shawn has his tennis league and I’m watching an episode of Jane the Virgin all to myself!
Think about this…Vegan Vanilla Cake WITH Date Caramel Sauce? OMG!
Hey, we love this recipe so much we even made a video!
Non-Dairy Caramel Sauce
It’s easy to fall into the trap of thinking that all caramel sauce must be dairy-based. In fact, there are plenty of ways to make a non-dairy caramel sauce. For example, I use plant-based milk in my Vegan Caramel Dessert Bars. It works!
This recipe uses medjool dates, which have a sort of caramel flavor in and of themselves. You can simply combine dates with water or add a little bit of peanut butter to create even more caramel flavor.
Dates are a healthy alternative to refined sugars found in a more standard caramel sauce. For example dates boast the following nutritional benefits:
- Protein (yes, even dates have some protein!)
- …and more!
I l love experimenting with using dates in place of refined sugar in my recipes. In fact, as I continue to improve those recipes, I’ll be sharing them with you as well!
Because, as I said above, I have a sweet tooth. And the goal is to find ways to satisfy that sweet tooth while not detracting from (and possibly even adding to) the goal of living healthy as long as possible.
It’s called healthspan. Because what good is a long lifespan without being healthy?
Why You’ll Love Vegan Date Caramel
First, this recipe is just so easy. You just need to heat up those dates a little bit to make them nice and tender, but other than that, all you need is a food processor to make this recipe work.
I like easy recipes. That way I can make a batch on a Tuesday night…just because.
Also, this recipe is versatile. You can make it thicker and it’s almost like fudge. I like a nice, thick caramel sauce as you can see from the photos. You can add more water to make a thinner sauce. That can be nice served over ice cream, or even as the topping for a slice of cake (see note above)!
You can change up the flavors in this Vegan Date Caramel Sauce by using the following adaptions:
- I love adding a tablespoon (or two) of peanut butter (see the recipe)
- You could also add almond butter
- Make it chocolatey by adding some chopped chocolate chips
- I have been known to sprinkle crumbled corn flakes over the top – adding some crunchy, ice-cream-cone-like texture. It’s so good!
Do you love naturally sweetened desserts? Check out my Healthy Fruit Crisp recipe! It has a granola-type crust that’s so delicious! There’s also my Vegan Chocolate Chia Pudding which is perfect for a light weeknight dessert. You might also like my Vegan Date Balls! They’re like little energy bites, full of nutritious goodness in every bite! Of course my simple Vegan Banana Ice Cream is made with minimal, all-natural ingredients! And you can drizzle some of this caramel sauce over the top. Perfection!
We hope you love this Vegan Date Caramel Sauce as much as we do! You can follow me on Instagram and if you decide to make this recipe, snap a photo and share it with me using #namelymarly on Instagram or Snapchat (I’m @namelymarly). We love seeing your photos!
Vegan Date Caramel Sauce
- 1 cup Medjool dates pitted
- ½ cup water + additional
- 1 - 2 tablespoons peanut butter optional
- Place pitted dates and water in a small pot and bring to a simmer. Cook for 1 - 2 minutes. Turn the heat off and set aside.
- Dates should be soft at this point. Place them in a food processor with the water, add 1 tablespoon of peanut butter (optionaand pulse until smooth. Add more water, 1 tablespoon at a time until a desired consistency is reached.
- Take a taste. If you'd like more peanut butter flavor, add another tablespoon here and pulse to combine.
- Place in a lidded container and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
- Serve over vegan ice cream, oatmeal, bananas, you name it!
If you’re into date-sweetened desserts, then you’ll love these:
- Salty Chocolate Date Caramels by Heartbeet Kitchen
- Salted Raw Caramel Dip by Detoxinista
- Five-Minute Vegan Caramel by Blissful Basil
- Also, check out the Vegan Pumpkin Cheesecake with Caramel Sauce published right here!
Whatever vegan caramel sauce you’re drooling over, enjoy!