After Teri Castrop’s youngest kid left for college, she set out to find a new job. Given her penchant for cooking (and her sweet tooth), Castrop funneled her energies into creating caramels. “I did a lot of research and plenty of test batches,” she says. Eventually, she discovered that “European recipes were the answer. I combined and tweaked a few and came to the recipe I use today,” she says. “It’s so rich and buttery.”
Now her company, Kansas City Caramels, is a little over a year old and has found sweet success—thanks, in part, to her new seasonal caramels. “I call my traditional flavor caramels ‘proper caramels’ because the Golden Syrup I use comes from England,” she says. “Then I found some of the caramel makers from France make flavored caramels. I started trying out a variety of flavors and they took off!” (Her Cold Brew Coffee caramels are one of her best sellers. “I make a cold brew from freshly ground Maps Coffee. They taste like coffee ice cream,” she adds.)
Her latest addition to the mix—and just in time for Father’s Day—are Castrop’s Cayenne Cinnamon Caramels. “The Cayenne Cinnamon caramels are becoming a fast favorite,” she says. “I’ve found they are a huge hit with the gentlemen. The men hear cayenne, and they are in. I love the progression of flavors as you eat them. First comes the cinnamon, then just when you are wondering where the heat is—it arrives!”
In addition to online, you’ll find Kansas City Caramels in the Made in KC stores, The Market at Meadowbrook, The Olive Tree, and Market Wagon. The six-piece original flavor is $6.00, 12-piece is $10.00. Flavored caramels come in a six-piece bag for $6.00.
And check out her wares on both Instagram and Facebook as well, but be advised, her candies are addictive. “People sometime tell me that I have ruined all other caramels for them,” she says with a laugh.