I have a really good recipe for caramels, everyone raves about them, so I am thinking about selling them to the public. But the recipe I have only makes an 8 x 8 inch pan of caramels and they take a looong time to make. Does anyone know how to know if the recipe can be doubled, tripled or quadrupled short of actually having to do that.

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    Can you put the recipe in your question? If nothing else, there are people here that love experimentation.
    – Jolenealaska
    Dec 19, 2015 at 19:10
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    Before undertaking this as a profit-making endeavor, make sure you know the story of Lucy and Ethel with Aunt Martha's Salad Dressing. — Calculate the cost of all your raw ingredients, extra utensils you may need to buy, cooking fuel, packaging and distribution, and of course, something for your own labor; and then figure out how much you'll need to sell your caramels to break even. — Spoiler: Lucy and Ethel lost money, and had to make a commercial, encouraging people to cancel their orders: youtube.com/watch?v=8ybBEo6ZnF4
    – ElmerCat
    Dec 19, 2015 at 19:35
  • No I don't want to have the recipe in the question. It is a secret. Dec 20, 2015 at 20:33
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    I love Lucy and Ethel. I will have to see if I can find that episode on the web somewhere so I don't make the same mistakes. Lol Seriously tho' I am in the beginning stages of this thought process. If I can figure out if it can be quadrupled, I think that will make the best use of my time in the cooking process, then I can consult with our local business development council on starting a new business. Dec 20, 2015 at 20:40

1 Answer 1


The short answer is yes, but I would do it by weight and absolutely not by volume.

A lot depends on how many times you are scaling up your recipe. With high viscosity materials, mixing small amounts is trivial, but with large enough amounts, the geometry of your mixing vessel and the type of hook/blade/impeller all matter, and matter to the point the sometimes the recipe itself needed changing. It is all about mass transfer. The same with heat transfer during cooking, hot spots and uneven temperature distribution are common problems. Without knowing the specifics, it would not be possible to calculate what "large enough" is. Twice is probably fine. Quadruple the batch, you might want to look out for mixing and heating issues.

A bit off-topic, when it comes to the economics of making a recipe into a business, allowances for wastage, measurement inaccuracies, ingredient and product losses do pile up when scaled up. These are unnoticeable in a small batch in a home kitchen. Hygiene when scaled up becomes disproportionately effect and cost intensive too. Budgeting errors lurk everywhere even for very experienced finance minded people. Underestimating power consumption is also common.

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