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Small Batch Caramelized Plums

Caramelized Plums - Two plums sautéed in butter and a touch of sugar. These softened plums are wonderful spooned over ice cream or pancakes. Ready in minutes and incredibly delicious!

a white bowl filled with softened plums in a sauce next to a aqua colored towel.

If you find yourself with one or two plums available, consider making a small batch of caramelized plums. These softened plums are a real treat and a lovely addition to a stack of pancakes or spooned over a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

This small batch plum recipe is similar to plum preserves or plum jam. It thickens naturally with no pectin needed.

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Caramelizing fruit is a great way to use up fruit that might be a tad bit overripe or even a tiny bit past its prime. It's amazing to see how just a little bit of butter and some sugar can transform the fruit into a glorious dessert.

What Does Caramelizing Mean?

Caramelizing happens when sugar is introduced to heat. When sugar is heated, compounds release and this alters the color and flavor of sugar. The most noticeable change is a browning of sugar.

When fruits and vegetables caramelize, the sugar that is naturally found in the fruit caramelizes the same way regular sugar does. The browning of the fruit is a result of the caramelization or heating of the natural sugars found.

Ingredients

See recipe box below for ingredient amounts and full recipe instructions.

the ingredients for caramelized plums on a brown table including 2 plums, sugar, and butter.

How To Make Caramelized Plums

  1. Melt butter in a small skillet.
  2. Add sugar and 1 teaspoon of water. Swirl the pan to dissolve the sugar and cook until the mixture becomes the color of golden caramel.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and add the sliced plums and cinnamon, if using. Cook for 5 minutes until the plums soften.
three photos showing how to make caramelized plums in a skillet.

Expert Tips

  • Use a non-stick pan, if possible. Caramelizing can get sticky and a non-stick pan works best when caramelizing fruit.
  • If the plums are not sweet, feel free to add a little more sugar. If the plums are already very sweet, you might want to reduce the amount of sugar you use.
  • Stir the fruit often and cook until the fruit has reached the softness you prefer.
  • You can actually caramelize just about any stone fruit. You might like to consider using peaches or apples.
a bowl of ice cream topped with caramelized plums with a sugar sauce spooned over the top.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use Other Fruit?

Yes, you can. You can sauté peaches, nectarines, pears, and even apples. Use them the same as you would plums.

How Should I Store Caramelized Plums?

Use the sautéed plums immediately or store in a covered jar in the refrigerator. They will keep for about 1 week.

What Is The Best Size Pan To Use For This Small Batch Recipe?

I use a 10-inch skillet in this recipe. For best results, use a pan of similar size.
For information on the cooking and baking dishes I use in our “recipes for one”, please visit our FAQ page.
For examples of the dishes used at One Dish Kitchen, please visit our Store page.

You might also like to try our bananas foster recipe which is similar to this caramelized plums recipe.

Ways To Use Sautéed Plums

In addition to spooning these delightful softened plums over pancakes or ice cream, consider enjoying them with warm biscuits or scones too. You might also like to use plums in these single serving and small batch recipes:

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a dessert bowl filled with vanilla ice cream and fruit.

Small Batch Caramelized Plums

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
Course: Breakfast/Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keywords: fruit, plums
Servings: 1 serving
Calories: 231kcal
Author: Joanie Zisk

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon water
  • 2 medium plums , sliced
  • teaspoon kosher salt
  • teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

Instructions

  • In a 10-inch non-stick skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the sugar and water. Swirl the pan to dissolve the sugar. Cook until the mixture bubbles and become a golden caramel color, 3 to 5 minutes.
  • Remove pan from the heat and add the plum slices to the pan, spreading them out in a single layer. Return the pan to the heat and top the plums with salt and cinnamon, if using. Cook, stirring occasionally until plums have softened, 3 to 5 minutes more.
  • Transfer to a jar and store in the refrigerator or use immediately.

Notes

Expert Tips
  • Use a non-stick pan, if possible. Caramelizing can get sticky and a non-stick pan works best when caramelizing fruit.
  • If the plums are not sweet, feel free to add a little more sugar. If the plums are already very sweet, you might want to reduce the amount of sugar you use.
  • Stir the fruit often and cook until the fruit has reached the softness you prefer.
  • You can actually caramelize just about any stone fruit. You might like to consider using peaches or apples.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 231kcal | Carbohydrates: 33g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 30mg | Sodium: 391mg | Potassium: 207mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 31g | Vitamin A: 805IU | Vitamin C: 13mg | Iron: 1mg

The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.

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