If you love warm and spicy flavors, rich and creamy mouthfeel, plus easy few-ingredient one-dish recipes, this treat is for you. With only 3 ingredients, you can create either creamy caramel sauce — that you can also use as dip or frosting — or dreamy fudge balls. The choice is yours!
How to make and use this recipe
If you want a quick treat, go for the Keto Pumpkin Pie Caramel Sauce or Dip. If you have some more hours to use, go for the Keto Pumpkin Pie Spice fudge balls. Both are super simple – and super-delicious – but for the fudge balls, you have to let the mixture set for a few hours so that it gets stiff and you can shape it into balls.
In the primary photo in the beginning of this post, you’ll see this recipe as frosting for Keto Pumpkin Brownies. The brownie recipe is basically this one from my keto-vegan blog that I modified for my upcoming Finnish keto book. For example, I swapped peanut butter to almond butter. And to make enough frosting, I prepared a double batch of this recipe. I have to say these frosted brownies were beyond delicious! So autumnal and full of flavor!
You’ll see the sauce and dip versions of this recipe in the video (close to the recipe box). In the progress photos below, I’ll show the frosting and fudge ball variations. And to get even more variation to this already versatile recipe, I’ve included the Tips for Variations at the end of the post as usual.
But let’s talk more about the recipe itself. First of all, this treat is not very sweet. I’ve made it less sweet on purpose (well, it still is sweet!). For the whole batch, I’ve used just 1 tablespoon brown sugar substitute. If you want, go for a sweeter version, but well, why should you? Why not just get used to more natural, less sweet flavors than excessive, unnatural sweetness?
When you cook and reduce the cream mixture, it’s important to mix it all the time and observe that the cream doesn’t spill over. If it wants, it will climb up in the saucepan in less than a second! If that’s about to happen, remove the saucepan from the stove as quickly as you can, reduce the heat a bit, and make a new try. Using a large saucepan helps, too, as the cream has its limits, and it won’t climb up endlessly but stops rising at some point.
Be sure to reduce the mixture a bit too much rather than too little, especially if you are planning to make fudge balls. A good rule of thumb is to reduce the mixture to half (so, in this case, 1/2 cup = 120 ml). Actually, I have a rule for your other thumb as well: when you see the bottom of the saucepan clearly when you mix the sauce, it’s thick enough and ready to use.
So, let’s take a closer look at how to prepare this versatile treat:
Take 1 full cup (240 ml) heavy cream without food additives (such as carrageenan) and pour it into a medium or large saucepan.
Add 1 tablespoon Sukrin Gold or another erythritol-based brown sugar substitute. Swerve Brown will do, too.
Add 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice.
Give it a whisk.
All the time mixing, bring to a boil over high heat.
Continue cooking over high heat, extreme carefully, and observing the mixture all the time, so it doesn’t spill over. Whisk vigorously all the time when cooking. Naturally, you can use lower heat as well — it just takes longer, but it’s a much safer option, especially if you don’t feel too skilled.
Once the mixture is reduced to half — i.e., there is maximum 1/2 cup (120 ml) left — remove the saucepan from the heat.
Use as frosting, so pour over your favorite keto cake, brownies, etc. Let set in the fridge for a couple of hours.
For fudge balls, pour the hot mixture into a ceramic or glass dish. Let set in the fridge for a few hours, or preferably overnight.
Take about 2 teaspoons of the stiff mixture.
Shape it into balls. (You might have to clean your hands in between.)
Place the balls on a parchment paper-lined plate or cutting board. Store in the fridge.
How I came up with this 3-ingredient keto recipe
The fall is here, and it naturally calls for warm spices. This week, I decided to do something with pumpkin pie spice — my all-time favorite seasoning mix. I don’t know what is so fascinating in this seasoning mix, but whenever I smell it, I’m filled with warmth, joy, and happy memories. I didn’t grow up with pumpkin pie spice, so there are basically no memories related to pumpkin pie spice, though!
Since we don’t have pumpkin pie spice here in Finland, I got familiar with it some years ago when blogging and exploring especially American recipes. I immediately fell in love with this magical seasoning! It reminds a little of Finnish gingerbread seasoning mix, but has even warmer note.
I’ve ordered my pumpkin pie spices from the US, though I’ve also developed a recipe for the mix as well. But at least once a year, I order a full pound (450 g) of my favorite pumpkin pie spice.
But back to the recipe development. I took an old recipe of mine for a coconut manna based keto frosting that originates from the year 2013. I’ve actually never published the recipe here on my blog, as I can see now. The original recipe calls for a dash of beetroot juice for natural pink color. But for this updated pumpkin pie spice version, I decided to omit the beetroot juice and season the frosting with pumpkin pie spice. Since the beetroot juice was liquid, I decided to replace it with coconut milk to give it some liquid and to prevent the frosting become too thick.
I gathered the 4 ingredients — coconut manna, coconut milk, brown sugar substitute, and pumpkin pie spice — and combined them in a microwave-safe bowl and nuked for 30 seconds. When taking the bowl from the microwave, I saw that the coconut manna had melted nicely. My experiment looked promising!
I stirred the mixture to combine the ingredients when the magic happened: the liquid turned into a stiff dough in seconds! What on earth?
For a fraction of a second, I thought everything was ruined. But then I realized that the mixture might make perfect fat bombs. I grabbed a teaspoon of the mixture and rolled it into a ball. The mixture was pliable and easy to mold. It made perfect balls. Like this.
In addition to the looks, the taste was good, too (well, maybe with too much taste of coconut manna), but I wasn’t aiming at fat bombs; I was aiming at creamy and rich caramel sauce. Well, this fat bomb recipe was indeed one to develop further in the future, but as I was obsessed with the concept of keto caramel sauce with pumpkin pie spice, I wanted to continue developing it and save this fat bomb recipe for future purposes.
As this coconut manna based frosting recipe failed as a sauce, I decided to take my to-go recipe for a caramel sauce and tweak it. Actually, the recipe for that sauce you’ll find in my Low-Sugar, So Simple book, named as “3-Ingredient Sugar-Free Caramel Sauce” or something like that.
I decided to drop the butter and replace it with pumpkin pie spice for this new, seasoned version. The original recipe also calls for too much sweetener, in my opinion, so I decided to use just a minimum amount, 1 tablespoon Sukrin Gold — my all-time favorite brown sugar substitute. When the cream reduces to the half, the flavor concentrates, so does the sweetness. Therefore, you’ll easily end up with too sweet sauce if you use much sweetener.
Moreover, my purpose is to wean off people (including myself) from overtly sweet flavors, back to the natural sensing and tasting sweet flavors. That actually shows in our Ketokamu products as well, unlike current sugar-free treats, they won’t be terribly sweet.
After gathering all ingredients, so 1 cup (240 ml) heavy cream, 1 tablespoon Sukrin Gold, and 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, I prepared the pumpkin pie spice flavored keto caramel sauce by cooking all ingredients until just half was left.
After making the first taste test, I noticed that the sauce was incredibly delicious! Thick, rich, and creamy — not too sweet. Pumpkin pie spice lent a wonderful warm and spicy note. It was just perfect autumnal hot caramel sauce! Actually, as I had leftover cookies that I had prepared for my next book, I dipped those in the sauce (you can see that in the video). So, the sauce made a perfect keto caramel dip as well.
I stored the leftovers in the fridge in a plastic container. The next day, I took the container and noticed that the sauce had turned into a stiff mixture that was easy to shape into balls. “Keto Pumpkin Spice Fudge Balls,” I thought immediately. Boy, did they taste good!
What a versatile recipe this is! Here it is for you to enjoy:
- 1 cup = 240 ml heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon Sukrin Gold or other erythritol-based brown sugar substitute
- 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- Place all ingredients into a medium or large saucepan.
- Bring to a boil over high heat, all the time mixing.
- Continue cooking over high heat, extreme carefully and observing all the time so that the mixture doesn't spill over. Whisk vigorously all the time when cooking. Naturally, you can use lower heat as well — it just takes longer, but it's a much safer option, especially if you don't feel that skilled.
- Once the mixture is reduced into half — i.e., there is about 1/2 cup (120 ml) left — remove the saucepan from the heat. Be sure to reduce the sauce enough so that it becomes thick.
- Use immediately as hot caramel sauce or dip.
- For frosting: pour over your favorite keto cake, brownies, etc. Let set in the fridge for a couple of hours and serve.
- For fudge balls: pour the hot mixture into a ceramic or glass dish. Let set in the fridge for a few hours, or preferably overnight.
- When ready, take about 2 teaspoons of the stiff mixture and shape it into a ball. Place on a parchment paper-lined plate or cutting board. Repeat with the rest of the mixture. Store the fudge balls in the fridge
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Low Sugar, So Simple: 100 Delicious Low-Sugar, Low-Carb, Gluten-Free Recipes for Eating Clean and Living Healthy
Sukrin Gold - Natural Brown Sugar Alternative - No Calorie Sweetener for Keto, Low Carb and Diabetic Diets - 1.1 lb Bag (1 Pack)
Frontier Co-op Pumpkin Pie Spice, Certified Organic, Kosher, Non-irradiated | 1 lb. Bulk Bag
|Per serving if 12 servings in total
Tips for variations
If, for some reason, you don’t like pumpkin pie spice, feel free to omit it completely, or use another seasoning like Ceylon cinnamon and a pinch of cardamom or nutmeg. Apple pie spice and gingerbread spice are sure-fire hits, too.
I bet a chocolatey version would taste heavenly! Just think of the combination of cream, chocolate, and pumpkin pie spice! So far, I didn’t manage to try out the chocolate caramel pumpkin pie spice version, but my next batch of this sauce will certainly have 1 tablespoon dark cocoa powder added. C’mon, what could go wrong with chocolate? You guessed: nothing. Like the quote says: “Chocolate is the answer, who cares what the question is.”
Another fascinating variation would be to add 1 teaspoon instant coffee (with caffeine or without) to the recipe. Also, a dash of rum would take an adult version of this treat to the next level.
So, I got my manuscript for the second part of the Finnish keto-vegan book submitted on Monday. Yay!
With Ketokamu, we have done some more experiments with chocolate-coated keto treats. I’ve mentioned before that Foodin will manufacture those for us. I’ve developed the recipe for the chocolate. It’s not too sweet (like most of the keto and “sugar-free” chocolates are), but it still has lots of flavor. Anyway, I received the latest experiment via mail. After tasting these treats, I could finalize the recipes, and the mass production can soon begin. These treats will be in stores at the beginning of November. I have to admit that they taste soooo yummy!
This week, we visited the premises where we are going to organize our Ketokamu launch party next weekend. The location is the best for us, downtown in Tampere, where the majority of our core team lives (the majority means 2 persons!). The premises looked good, and I bet with appropriate decoration, they will look just stunning.
My selfie-taking skills need some improving, though.
Sausages Finland prepared 378 meatballs for the party from high-quality beef that we delivered to them. The cows have eaten species-specific food, so the meat is superb — and healthy, too.
It seems that my home is working as a storage place for all the Ketokamu stuff. We ordered 100 pieces of my Järkevä ketoruokavalio book, and I’m storing them here.
A few days ago, we got 500 pieces of brand new Ketokamu bags. Looks good!
Yep, I’m storing them here at home, too!
The weather was quite cold for a few days, and the trees got beautiful fall colors. However, now the temperature is like in the summer, about 86 °F (20 °C). I’ll be sure to enjoy it to the max!
On the weekend, we went to visit my parents with my son. He dug out my ancient old computers (including the legendary VIC-20 and a bit weird Amstrad CPC6128) from the storeroom and was happily exploring them.
Meet the most awkward joystick ever — I still remember how my palm was hurting each time I was using it!
And this is a real classic, too! Oh, memories…