Generously spray an 8x5" loaf pan with cooking spray and line one way with parchment paper.
In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the coconut milk, coconut oil and salt. Set aside.
In a 3-quart saucepan, add the maple syrup, water, sucanat and erythritol. Do not stir. Add a candy thermometer to the saucepan, then place the pan over a stove set to medium-high heat.
Without stirring, let the mixture come to a boil. When it reaches 250 degrees Fahrenheit (it takes me ~7-8 minutes), remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the set aside coconut milk/oil mixture.
Return the pan to the heat and let it come to a boil again. When it reaches 266 degrees Fahrenheit (it takes me ~10 minutes), turn the stove off and remove from the heat.
Very carefully, add the vanilla extract. It will bubble up vigorously, so watch out!
Briefly stir in the cashews, then pour the caramel into the prepared pan. Let cool at room temperature for 3 hours.
Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
Transfer the caramel out of the pan and flip over onto the parchment-lined cookie sheet. Peel the parchment paper off the top of the caramel and refrigerate uncovered for 2 hours (or overnight).
Cut the caramels with a sharp knife (I cut them into 32 pieces -- 8 rows x 4 columns).
Wrap the caramels in parchment paper cut into 4" squares. Serve immediately, or store in a tightly sealed container in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
*I wouldn't recommend substituting the sweeteners used in the recipe. You may be able to use more sucanat instead of the erythritol, but I haven't tried it. All I know is that coconut sugar will not work in place of the sucanat (you will get caramel sauce... delicious, still, but it won't firm up)!Recipe adapted from the Homemade Chewy Caramels from the Naughty or Nice Cookbook