Karol Ernest Wedel (born Karl Ernst Wedel, 1813 – 1902) was a German confectioner of the Wedel family, who settled in (then partitioned) Poland.
He was a member of the Evangelical-Augsburg Church in Poland.
Wedel came to Warsaw at the beginning of 1845 and began to work with Karol Grohnert, who was an owner of a confectionery store at 12 Piwna Street. The collaboration between them was a success and won them a large group of loyal customers.
Soon afterwards, around 1851, Wedel became financially independent and opened his own store at 12 Miodowa Street, and next door, a steam-powered factory making chocolate. His company, E.Wedel would grow into one of the leading confectionery companies in Poland. A year later, he introduced his widely popular "karmelki smietankowe" ("cream caramels"); the caramels' success was aided by an advertising campaign in "Kurier Warszawski" daily newspaper.
Another product made popular by Wedel was drinking chocolate. The store was selling over fifty cups a day. As the years passed, more products, under the brands, "Brilliant" and "Dessert", were introduced.
Wedel married Karolina Wisnowska (1819-1893), daughter of another famous Warsaw confectioner. In 1864, Wedel's son, Emil Albert Fredryk Wedel (1841-1919) returned from an apprenticeship tour of confectioneries in Germany, Switzerland, England, and France, and received a Ph.D. in chemistry (in particular food chemistry). On his return he joined the family business. In 1876, his father gave him the company as a wedding gift on the day of his marriage.