Some dessert sauces, like chocolate sauce, are fairly easy to make on the stovetop. Some, like fruit sauces, are much more convenient to prepare in the slow cooker than on the stovetop. Others – we’re looking at you, dulce de leche – aren’t worth making from scratch in a pot on the stovetop, even with the advent of modern conveniences. Seriously, have you ever tried standing in front of the stove, stirring the sweet milk until it caramelizes? If not, then don’t. When you need a dessert sauce, this handy guide will help save you time and hassle. All you need is a slow cooker. Looks like it’s time for an ice cream party!
1. Basic chocolate sauce
While surely quite easy on the stovetop, why not do it in a slow cooker? The nice thing here is that it can be kept warm for fondue or hot fudge sundaes. This recipe from Frugal girls is your basic ganache, but it’s totally mess-free in the slow cooker. Serve as a dip with chopped fruit and cake squares or as a fondant topping for ice cream. This recipe is best made in a mini slow cooker.
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- ½ cup heavy whipping cream
directions: Add chocolate chips and slow cooker of heavy whipping cream and stir. Cover with a lid and cook for 1 hour.
Remove the lid and stir the contents very well until combined and creamy.
2. Raspberry sauce
Made with frozen raspberries and orange juice, this delicious Meal once a month can be done in any season. It’s as perfect on ice cream as it is on cheesecake, although we won’t tell anyone if you go with a spoon. For true decadence, drizzle it with a flourless chocolate cake. If you want a really creamy sauce that’s closer to a coulis than a compote, go through a blender and pass it through a sieve or grinder. As with chocolate sauce, it’s best done in a mini slow cooker, although you can increase the recipe and freeze any sauce you don’t use.
- 1½ pound of frozen strawberries
- ½ cup of orange juice
- ½ cup) sugar
- 1 teaspoon of cinnamon
directions: Pour all the ingredients into the slow cooker. Cook over low heat for 3 hours. Turn off the slow cooker, remove the lid and let stand 30 minutes. Mix and break the raspberries. Coldness.
3. Homemade Dulce de Leche
If you haven’t heard of the rant at first, we’ve had a few experiences with dulce de leche on the stovetop. Before the milk was totally reduced to a delicious creamy, thick and sweet sauce, hours had passed. It’s enough to deter anyone from doing the trick. Of course, you can boil a can of sweetened condensed milk, but you still have to watch the pot to make sure it hasn’t run out of water and the can has not exploded, and a lot of people are a little nervous about eating something that has been boiling in a canister for hours. The solution to this? Crazy for Crust recipe, which calls for sweetened condensed milk divided into heat-resistant mason jars and tossed into the slow cooker. You can leave and on your return you will have dulce de leche. It is a relief.
- 2 cans (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
- 3 jars (8 ounces) with rings and lids (or 4 jars of 6 ounces each)
- The water
directions: First, make sure the pots you choose will fit your slow cooker with 1 to 2 inches of water covering them. Divide the sweetened condensed milk between the jars. Close the jars with clean rings and lids. Place them in your slow cooker, making sure they don’t touch each other.
Fill the slow cooker with water to cover 1 to 2 inches above the top of the jars. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook over low heat for 10 hours.
When they are finished cooking, carefully remove the jars with tongs and place them on your kitchen counter to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, refrigerate until use.
4. Butterscotch sauce
This recipe by Chow was designed to be served with steamed pumpkin pudding, it is at home on ice cream, gingerbread, pumpkin pie or even a slice of steamed chocolate pudding. You can skip the scotch (or rum or brandy, whichever you prefer) and replace it with vanilla extract, but where’s the fun in that?
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
- ½ cup heavy cream or heavy whipping cream
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tablespoon of scotch, brandy or dark rum or 1 tablespoon of pure vanilla extract
directions: Combine butter, brown sugar, cream and salt in slow cooker. Cover and cook over low heat for 1 hour.
Add the scotch, whisking until well combined and heated through. Serve hot. You can keep the sauce warm for up to 1 hour before serving. If prepared ahead, store in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
5. Hot pecan praline sauce
Throw that sauce away CrockPot Recipe Exchange on ice cream, apple pie, pumpkin pie, cinnamon buns, cheesecake, fudge, or anything else you can think of. It is very simple and absolutely delicious. If you’re a northerner with more maple syrup in your cabinet than corn syrup, you can swap one for the other for a variation on the southern classic.
- 1 stick of unsalted butter, divided
- 1 to 1½ cups chopped pecans
- 1¾ cup dark brown sugar
- cup of flour
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1 can (5 ounces) evaporated milk
directions: Turn 2 quart slow cooker on high.
Place ¼ cup of butter at the bottom to melt. Once melted, add the pecans and toss to coat. Cook, just long enough to grill, 30 to 45 minutes, stirring twice. Remove pecans with a slotted spoon and place on a plate until ready to serve.
Add the remaining butter and let it melt. Add the brown sugar, flour and corn syrup. Whisk to incorporate well.
Cook over high heat until the sugar is completely dissolved, about 45 minutes to an hour. If the sugar does not dissolve completely, the sauce will have a grainy texture.
Turn to the hot setting and add the evaporated milk. Stir to incorporate. You should have a nice golden color of the sauce. Stir in toasted pecans and keep warm, stirring as needed.
6. Strawberry Rhubarb Sauce
This tangy-sweet combination shouldn’t be relegated to pie! It makes a wonderful ice cream, angel food and cheesecake filling. In this recipe from CrockPot Ladies, the sauce is spiced with cinnamon, ginger and orange zest. Make sure to avoid the white skin of the orange, which can make this sauce unpleasantly bitter. It can be made with frozen fruit, but it’s a divine way to process and store tons of fresh fruit in season.
- 6 cups diced rhubarb
- 1½ cup of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of orange zest
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 2 cups of strawberries, cut into wedges
- 1 cinnamon stick
directions: Add ingredients to slow cooker and mix well. Cook over low heat for 5 hours. Before serving, remove the cinnamon stick.