Buttermilk Syrup – Barefeet in the Kitchen

Buttermilk Syrup is creamy, rich with brown sugar, buttermilk, and butter, and somewhat reminiscent of caramel. However, it isn’t nearly as sweet as a traditional caramel sauce and it’s pure breakfast heaven when poured over a stack of hot pancakes.

Buttermilk Syrup is a must for pancake or waffle breakfasts!

Homemade Syrup

While my cousin Hannah was visiting me in Phoenix several years ago, we tried out some new restaurants. One of the meals we enjoyed most involved waffles with buttermilk syrup.

I have a weakness for great homemade syrup and sauces, as evidenced by the popularity of my grandmother’s Waffle Sauce and this Brown Sugar Syrup. However, I’d never tasted a buttermilk syrup before that day.

As soon as we were home, I told Hannah we needed to figure out how to make Buttermilk Syrup. As you know, I’m a breakfast all day long kind of person and I will happily eat waffles, pancakes, and pretty much every other breakfast we make at any time of the day.

Buttermilk Syrup is a must for pancake breakfasts!

Buttermilk Syrup

You’ll need the following ingredients to make this recipe:

  • light brown sugar
  • buttermilk
  • butter
  • vanilla
  • baking soda

This combination of ingredients results in a sweet, rich, and slightly creamy syrup that is plate-licking good. The baking soda works to balance the acid in the buttermilk. I started with this recipe for buttermilk syrup and have tweaked it to come up with this version that we truly love.

I’ve made this syrup with plain milk and it isn’t quite the same. And we didn’t love it as much with white sugar either. The buttermilk without the baking soda results in a slightly tangy syrup that isn’t exactly what I was trying to create.

The syrup will foam and become quite thick and frothy the longer it simmers. If you prefer it without the foam, remove the pan from the heat as soon as it thickens before the syrup has a chance to foam.

Alternatively, you can make the syrup ahead of time and allow it to settle before serving. For what it’s worth, we like the foam and it doesn’t bother us a bit.

Homemade Buttermilk Syrup

Buttermilk Syrup Recipe

To make this syrup, start by combining the brown sugar and buttermilk in a medium-sized saucepan over high heat. Whisk or stir to combine and bring to a boil, stirring often.

Reduce heat to low or medium-low and simmer for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup has thickened.

Add the butter and stir to melt. Remove from the heat. Add the vanilla and baking soda. Whisk or stir well to combine. Let the syrup cool for at least 10 minutes before serving. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Try Buttermilk Syrup with these Banana Coconut Pecan Pancakes, Light Fluffy Whole Wheat Pancakes, Light Fluffy Gluten Free Pancakes, or these Mini German Pancakes.

Buttermilk Syrup is a must for your next brunch at home!

Pancake Toppings

If there’s a homemade syrup or sauce to try, I want to be first in line to try it. Do you have a recipe for a homemade syrup that I should try? Send it on over to me and I’ll put it on my list to try soon.

If you haven’t tried my grandmother’s waffle sauce, you need to put it on your list to try immediately after this one. Creamy, rich, Peanut Butter Syrup makes a fantastic topping for your favorite stack of homemade pancakes or waffles.

This Maple Cream Cheese Syrup that I originally made for a batch of carrot cake pancakes brings the best of a creamy sauce and maple syrup together.

Strawberry Compote tastes like happiness and sunshine in a jar. (That’s a thing, right? YES!) Not too sweet, with a hint of bright lemon, and filled with fresh summer berries, this is a huge hit every time I serve it. And this Churro Diplomat Cream would be divine on a stack of warm pancakes with a scoop of that strawberry compote on top.

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Servings: 12 (2 tablespoon) servings

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  • Combine the brown sugar and buttermilk in a medium-sized saucepan over high heat. Whisk or stir to combine and bring to a boil, stirring often.

  • Reduce heat to low or medium-low and simmer for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved and the syrup has thickened.

  • Add the butter and stir to melt. Remove from the heat. Add the vanilla and baking soda. Whisk or stir well to combine. Let cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

The syrup will foam and become quite thick and frothy the longer it simmers. If you prefer it without the foam, remove from the heat as soon as it thickens before it has a chance to foam or make it ahead of time and allow it to settle before serving. For what it’s worth, we like the foam and it doesn’t bother us a bit. 

Calories: 110kcal · Carbohydrates: 18g · Fat: 4g · Saturated Fat: 2g · Cholesterol: 11mg · Sodium: 140mg · Potassium: 37mg · Sugar: 18g · Vitamin A: 135IU · Calcium: 28mg · Iron: 0.1mg

originally published 7/17/18 – recipe notes and photos updated 1/17/24

Buttermilk Syrup is just what your pancakes need!

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