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Salted Caramel Cookie Cups

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Salty meets sweet in these crunchy pretzel cookie cups dipped in chocolate and filled with creamy caramel.


  • 2 cups of crushed pretzel rods
  • 1 tube of refrigerated sugar cookie dough
  • 6 ounces (1/2 bag) of Wilton Dark Candy Cocoa Melts
  • 32 Kraft caramels (unwrapped)
  • 1/2c. butter
  • 1 (14 oz.) can of sweetened condensed milk.


  • Using your hands, knead 1 cup of pretzel crumbs into cookie dough.
  • Form into 12 balls and place into a greased muffin tin.
  • Bake at 350 degrees for 16 minutes. Remove from oven and press centers into a cup using a mini-tart shaper or the end of a wooden spoon. Allow these to cool completely. When cool, gently run a knife around edges and remove from pan.
  • Melt candy melts in the microwave in 30 second increments until smooth.
  • Dip top edges of cup into melted chocolate and then into remaining crushed pretzels. Pipe any remaining chocolate into the bottom of each cup (save just a little bit to drizzle on the top!) Allow this to harden while you make your caramel.

  • To make caramel sauce: place unwrapped caramels, butter and sweetened condensed milk into a saucepan and heat until completely melted. Stir this constantly to prevent scorching. (about 6-8 minutes).

*note: this makes about twice as much caramel sauce as you will need. Β You can cut the ingredients in half, but then what to do with 1/2 of a can of condensed milk?!? Β I say make the full batch and use the leftovers on ice cream!Β 

  • Spoon caramel into hardened cups.
  • Drizzle with more melted chocolate if desired.
  • ENJOY!!! πŸ™‚

My thoughts: I made this dessert for my friend Dawn. I just love the salted caramel hot chocolate from Starbucks and we both thought that the saltiness of pretzels plus the sweetness of caramel would be perfect together. I forgot that I HATE eating pretzels with sweet things…can’t stand chocolate covered pretzels….so this dessert is not my favorite. If you like your pretzels covered in chocolate, this is the recipe for you though! I really hope you enjoy it πŸ™‚ r-

6-14-12: I love it when readers try a recipe and share their process (changes and all!)- here’sΒ Kitchen MischiefsΒ Β with her version of these cups using chocolate chip cookie dough—YUM!


About Ruthanne

Ruthanne is a scientist with a passion for baking and food photography. Using her kitchen as a lab, she loves experimenting with a variety of flavors and ingredients to create unique, fun and ultimately tasty delights! Thus she created EasyBaked, a website where sugar and chocolate overflow in fun and easy recipes. Her Motto: Money can’t buy happiness -- but it can buy marshmallows, and that’s nearly the same thing!

72 responses »

  1. Omg these look so good. I am going to dream about these. Thanks for linking to bacon time.

  2. Those salted cookie cups sound like a perfect mixture of salty and sweet. They look delicious! Thanks for coming by to share! Have a great weekend.

  3. I think I am one of the few females in the world who do not like the salty sweet combination, but my husband however loves it and saw me looking at these and said “oh, make those please!” Thanks for posting this!

    • Oh I hope you get to try it for him– I had my doubts about this recipe until I took them in to work and people went nuts over them– I think we are in the minority with the dislike of salty and sweet! Thanks for commenting!!! πŸ™‚

  4. I just have to make these now.

  5. did you use a regular muffin tin or mini muffin tin. these look amazing and i can’t wait to try them .

  6. These looked amazing! Turned out great, my only suggestion is to cut the caramel recipe in half (maybe a smaller can of evap milk?). We had a ton leftover, which isn’t really a complaint, b/c who can’t use caramel right? Also we ended up grinding some sea salt over the top, maybe our pretzels weren’t salty enough, but we really didn’t get much of the salt punch without the addition.

    • Yay! I’m glad they turned out– good point on the caramel- I used my extra on ice cream later that week (amazing!)….but you really can cut it in half, you just end up with 1/2 can of unused condensed milk. Sea salt sounds wonderful too! Thanks for the suggestions!!!

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  9. Will the caramel set or does it stay runny? I’m asking for transportation purposes. They look amazing! My fiance is all about salty/sweet so these will be a surprise for him!

    • The caramel isn’t runny, but it is soft. If they stay relatively upright they would transport well– I don’t think I’d attempt mailing them though….I love baking surprises for people πŸ™‚ Have fun!!!

      • Hi there,

        I was searching the net for a crushed pretzel type recipe for the holiday candy assortment I’m making and came across your cookie cups. I know this is years past since your blog on these but they seem to be exactly what I’m looking for, so I hope you’re able to respond. I’m so excited to take my first bite…I may just film it for you πŸ™‚

        Anyways, I, too, am also curious to know how the caramel sets up & about how soft would you say they get? If they’re too soft, (which I doubt they are) what could you reduce/add to make them slightly firmer?

        Okay, off to the kitchen I go. My grandchildren are spending a week with my husband and I and I want to get a couple things going before they arrive. Gabriel loves to make my great, great, great, grandmothers fudge; 5 simple ingredients, but ya need the arm of a lumberjack. I make just one batch of that & make the easy for gifts. But, sssshhh, don’t tell anybody πŸ™‚

        Thanks for this recipe. I know it will be sure to delight!

        Best of holiday greetings to you and yours,


        • Hi Kristi,

          The caramel is a very thick sauce consistency when it is warm (so you could spoon it over ice cream)- but at room temp it is firm enough to not run out of these cookie cups when you bite into them. It isn’t chewy or hard at all- just like a creamy caramel filling. I’m not sure how you would change the consistency- but I’m fairly certain you won’t want to. Thin it out and it will run all over when you bite into it- Thicken it and the whole caramel will pull out with the 1st bite (which I hate) lol.

          I just made my opera creams and they ALSO take the arm of a lumberjack- and a ton of time- but when they are finished I am sooooo happy I did them! πŸ™‚ Enjoy! Merry Christmas!

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  11. Just made these tonight, and love em! My question is what do you do with the excess caramel?! I had some ideas, and posted about them here:

    • Lol– you are the second person to ask that and so I added a note to the recipe. I use it on ice cream (oh. so. good.) Oh my, I loved your blow-by-blow on making these- especially the *eternity* that it takes to unwrap those caramels- yours turned out beautifully. It always makes me smile when someone makes one of my recipes- so thank you so much for sharing!!!

  12. Looks yummy. Not a pretzel fan but thinking of subbing with crushed Heath bar Thanks for the recipe.

    • Oh yum. I’m not a big pretzel fan either- I created this recipe for my friend Dawn who loves them- but heath bars….oh my. Might have to try that myself!!!

      • Another idea with what to do with all that caramel sauce…Double the cookie recipe. Maybe make a batch with the pretzels, another batch with Heath bars (my favorite) and maybe that would use up all that luscious caramel sauce. If not, I’m most definitely up for pouring it over ice cream. Heck, I can eat it with nothing else so there’s not a problem there at all!!! Yummm!! Going to the store now to get all the ingredients. THANK YOU!!!

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  14. OH MY GOODNESS. You have won my heart-you have awesome recipes. I am starting to follow you. Thanks so much!

  15. your recipes look delicious and I cant wait to try them all!!!! Cannot wait to start with these, I absolutely love caramel!!! Thanks so much for sharing your gift!

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  18. I made these and my family absolutely LOVED them! I got rave reviews all around. This recipe is definitely a keeper, Thanks! πŸ™‚

  19. A-MA-ZING! Just thought you’d like to know that I found your post on Pinterest and decided to try it (as it totally fulfills my cravings for sweet-salty!). It’s so amazing that I decided to share it with my friends on my blogue (in French). You should be proud to know that you have fans in QuΓ©bec, Canada! πŸ™‚

    • Oh I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe– and got a chance to share it with your friends and family on your blog! I am honored to have fans in Canada– its really nice to meet you- thanks for commenting!

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  22. Contemplating a turtle version with chopped pecans in lieu of the pretzels and adding sea salt to finish. Your thoughts?

  23. Made these and OH MY GEEZ they are amazing!! I even doubled the cookie part of the recipe and still had an over-abundance of caramel! Check out my blog- added pics of each step! Thought about dipping in almond slivers instead of pretzels at the end… might be good!!

    • Thanks for sharing the link– great step by step tutorial on this- and yes, it makes a TON of yummy caramel. Like you, I don’t see this as a problem. Caramel is never a problem πŸ˜‰

  24. Made these today – they are AWESOME! πŸ™‚

  25. HUGE HIT! Oh my goodness. I thought these looked really complicated at first but they were so easy and so delicious. They also look beautiful and super complicated to make so people will think you are this amazing baker! It’s a win/win!

    • Yay!!!! I’m so glad you enjoyed this recipe as much as I do! I’m getting ready to make a batch this weekend and I can’t wait- I haven’t made them in awhile and I miss them πŸ˜‰

  26. I tried this recipe but instead of caramel I used a Cherry-Chocolate kiss. I tried dipped in pretzel and dipped in Heath bar chips and I loved them both.

  27. How many cookies does this recipe make?

  28. Did anyone ever make these in mini muffin cups?

  29. I have made these twice so far. What a great recipe!! Here are some changes that I made the second time around that worked out really well for me:

    1. I made my own sugar cookie dough, and I omitted the pretzels mixed in with the dough. The first time I had the crushed pretzels in the dough, and I feel like it dried out and caused it to crack and fall apart.
    2. I used mini muffin cups, and I actually prefer the size. They shape much better and are a more edible portions.
    3. I baked the cookies at 350 for 12 minutes so that they dough would be a little more flexible.

    Love love love these!!!

    • Thank you SO much for sharing all of your tips–and thank you for making them in mini cups- I was trying to make time to do that since several people have asked- and you saved me some time:). I’m so glad to hear you are enjoying the recipe!!!! Thanks again!

  30. Has anyone used a different type of chocolate, like Ghiradelli or do you need to use this specific one in the recipe??

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  32. Wow, superb blog layout! How long have you been
    blogging for? you made blogging look easy.
    The overall look of your website is excellent, let alone the content!

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  35. This is the cutest little website! I can’t even begin to say how adorable all theses recipes are i want to try them all and if there as good as they look they’ll be delicious! Thanks for sharing

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  37. Made these a while ago and they were a huge hit too!

  38. I just came back to pull this recipe again for the umpteenth time. After making them for a few family weddings (cookie tables at weddings are a HUGE deal in Pittsburgh), I had recipe requests from countless guests. Among thousands of cookies, literally, they are always the first to go! A friend said he would get married just to give me an excuse to make these for him. I do use a mini muffin/tassie pan since they are so decadent, baked at 350 for 12′. I’ve also topped them with small molded chocolates instead of a drizzle to make them a little festive. Thanks for such an awesome recipe; my friends and family thank you too!

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