Homemade Cherry Almond Caramels

Earlier today I wrote about making candied cherries, and noted that you end up with quite a bit of leftover syrup. The thrifty Yankee in me just could not throw that syrup away. It was thick, almost like corn syrup, and had a nice cherry flavor. What to do…..what to do.

Syrup = corn syrup

Corn syrup = candy

Candy = caramels!

This recipe makes a big pan of caramels, but they seem to be disappearing quickly in my house. I bet they will in your house too.



  • Leftover syrup from 1 batch of candied cherries
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 (15 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • 3/4 cup chopped almonds
  • 1 drop red food coloring (optional)


Melt butter in a large saucepan. Add leftover syrup and milk. Cook and stir over medium heat until firm ball stage (245 degrees) using a candy thermometer to check temperature.

Remove from heat. Quickly stir in almond extract, chopped almonds and optional food coloring. Pour into a buttered 9 x 13 inch pan. Cool and cut into squares.

Note: This recipe should work just as well if you only make one pound of candied cherries (will have less syrup). Keep all other ingredient amounts the same, although you may want to reduce the chopped almonds to 1/2 cup.

You can use this same basic recipe with syrup leftover from any glaceed fruit. Some good combinations might be:

  • apricot syrup with almonds and vanilla extract
  • plum syrup with walnuts and orange flavoring
  • pineapple syrup with hazelnuts and rum flavoring

Can you think of any other combinations?

by Renee Pottle

Renee Pottle, a freelance writer and Home Economist, is fanatic about all things food. She blogs about canning and food preservation at SeedToPantry.com. Find her professional food writing info at PenandProvisions.com.

August 9, 2012

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