It’s a question that has plagued people for years…is it pronounced “kar-mel” or “kar-ah-mel”? While it might seem like both options are correct, there is a specific way to pronounce this delicious candy. In fact, caramel & carmel have completely different meanings. In this post, we’ll help clear up the confusion between these two words and teach you the right was to pronounce caramel.
Learn The Difference Between Carmel & Caramel
Although many people think these two words are the same thing…they are NOT. To put things simply:
- Caramel = A light brown & chewy candy that many people love.
- Carmel = The name of different locations. There are areas of Isreal & California that go by this name.
In fact, these two words are also different parts of speech: caramel is a noun & carmel is a proper noun. By just adding an -a after the -r, the meaning of the word changes from a sweet food to a specific location in the world. If you just can’t get the spelling of these two words right, then try our Spell Checker to proofread your work!
Takeaway: Caramel is a noun that is a chewy candy. The word carmel is a proper noun that represents different locations in the world.
How To Use Caramel
Caramel is a noun that is a sweet treat enjoyed by candy-lovers everywhere. Science has shown that these are more addictive than many drugs…ok maybe that’s just me.
The correct pronunciation of caramel is with three syllables, “KARR-uh-mel” or “KARR-uh-muhl”. Both are slightly different but widely accepted as correct pronunciations.
Here are some examples of how to use caramel in a sentence:
- “Hey Mark! Can you please grab me some caramels from the store?”
- “Nothing better than having a nice caramel for dessert after dinner.”
- “My three favorite candies are Skittles, Starbursts, and caramels.”
How To Use Carmel
The word carmel is NOT a candy. One of the most common mistakes that people make is using this spelling to represent candy. In fact, carmel is a proper noun that represents different places.
- “Mount Carmel” – Northern Isreal
- Town named “Carmel” in California
- Carmel Mission – Spanish religious mission
This word has two syllables and is most commonly pronounced KARR-uh-mel. Here are some examples of using carmel correctly in a sentence. Remember, proper nouns should be capitalized!
- Carmel-by-the-sea is a town in California founded in 1902.
- The man climbed Mount Carmel in just 48 hours.
- Carmel-by-the-sea is best known for it’s stunning views and scenery.
Takeaway: Carmel is a proper noun that represents a mountain range in Isreal and a town in California.
Does Pronunciation Matter?
The pronunciation of your words can make a huge difference. Changing the way you pronounce a word can completely change the meaning of your message. This fact holds true for both American & British English.
Often times in a conversation we use the context of a specific sentence to determine what the person is saying. For example, think of the difference between there, their, and they’re!
This makes the pronunciation of caramel and other words even more important. By pronouncing caramel as “karr-mel” you are changing the meaning of the word!
However, the truth is different parts of the United states and regions of the world pronounce the same word differently. Local slang or descriptive language can influence how we write and pronounce words. And that’s OK! As long you know what you’re writing is not techincally considered grammatically correct.
How Caramel Is Made
It is widely accepted that caramel as we know it today was invented by the Lancaster Caramel Company. To put it simply, caramel is made by heating sweetened condensed milk & cooking sugar.
Professional candy companies have state-of-the-art cooking ovens to make their delicious candy. However, you can make your very own caramelized sugar with just a microwave!
Nothing better than soft caramels for dessert!
Tip: To make tasty rich caramels…cook them slowly until the sugar is heated to about 340 degrees Farenheight.
FAQs – Carmel vs Caramel
The word caramel is most commonly pronounced KARR-uh-mel or KARR-uh-mulh. Throughout the different regions of the US this word is often pronounced differently. Salted caramel candy and caramel apples are popular treats in the US.
The midwest is the region of the United States that primarily pronounces this candy with only two syllables. The majority of Americans pronounce this sweet treat as ker-uh-muhl.
Caramel-flavored candy is a favorite in Texas. They pronounce this noun as car-a-mel. Although it is still the English language, many people pronounce this candy differently throughout the United States.
Both KARR-uh-mel & KARR-uh-muhl are acceptable pronunciations. However, many people in Canada and North America ignore the middle -a and pronounce caramel as “carmel”. This is more descriptive grammar and can be considered as slang.
The candy is spelled “caramel” in American English. The word “carmel” is a proper noun that is the name of Mount Carmel in California amongst other things.
In the American South, we say “car-uh-mel.” The “a” is pronounced like the “a” in “father,” and the first syllable rhymes with “car.” Accents have a significant impact on how words are pronounced.
The correct spelling is caramel candy. This sugary brown candy is a delicious treat enjoyed by candy lovers around the world. Caramel apples are also a delicious treat enjoyed by many.
The Bottom Line
Confusing the words caramel and carmel is one the most common mistakes that people make. In fact, this mistake is so common that there are even parts of the United States that spell the candy as “carmel”. But now you know this is grammatically incorrect. After reading this article, candy lovers around the world can spell and pronounce this word correctly!