Holiday from the Heart: Candy Making

photo courtesy of xSugar333

photo courtesy of xSugar333

Ever since I can remember, homemade candy has been a part of our Christmas. My mom use to do all of the candy making until she taught me how to do it when I was 12. I have carried on this tradition since then. There are some recipes that I traditionally make every year and then I usually throw in some new ones too. Besides making the candy for ourselves, I always put together gift trays for neighbors, friends and family. It is a big hit and really it doesn’t cost alot of money if you start shopping for ingredients now. I live on the opposite side of the country from my family now and I have to say the miss their little trays of homemade candy!




photo from All Recipes

photo from All Recipes



Here are my favorite things to make:

Microwave Peanut Brittle: This is very easy to make in the microwave. Just watch for burning if you have a high power microwave. You do not have to use a candy thermometer for this recipe but, it should be 300 degrees when done. You can check for proper temperature by placing a small amount of the mixture into very cold water. If it separates into hard threads, its done!

Fudge: Now there are a gazillion recipes for fudge. This is one thing I am still learning how to master. I do find that the recipes calling for marshmallow creme are the best.

English Toffee: This is a family recipe that we have used for years. I don’t even know where it came from.

Prepare cookie sheet by lining it with foil. Add 3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts and 1 finely shopped Hershey chocolate bar.

2 cups sugar
2 cups butter
2 Tablespoons Corn Syrup
6 Tablespoons Water
Combine all the above ingredients in a heavy duty stock pot. Boil until your candy thermometer reaches 290 degrees. You need to stir constantly to prevent burning. I find using a long wooden spoon works the best as you will get hot!

When the mixture reaches 290 degrees you will pour it on your prepared cookie sheet. Let cool until it cracks easily apart.

Peanut Butter Balls: These are my husbands favorite! They are super easy to make too.

I usually takes me a few evenings to do all of my candy making and baking. I then package the goodies up and place them on holiday plates, in tins or baskets. I then give them as gifts. After Christmas sales are the perfect time to stock-up on next years baskets and plates. I bought mine for this year last December at a fraction of the price!


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  1. says

    I always forget candy! I’ve made almost everything imaginable–however, peanut brittle is not on that list. Maybe I should make some for our holiday baskets. 🙂

  2. says

    These are great and just beautiful, too! I am so grateful for this toffee recipe that is naturally gluten free–I’ll be making it for sure. 🙂 I’ve made the microwave peanut brittle and also cashew brittle and both were very good. Made for well-received gifts, too. I defer on the fudge to mom’s original Hershey fudge recipe (not soft, but hard and sugary), but I do make peanut butter balls occasionally. I love to receive all these as well.

    Thanks so much,


  1. […] One experiment for me today was making a substitute for corn syrup. Yep, I am out of corn syrup and cannot get to the store. I found a recipe for Light Corn Syrup Substitute and I gave it a whirl. It is much cheaper than buying corn syrup and some say healthier too (if you can say that sugar is healthier!). Anyways, the recipe worked out fine for my English Toffee. […]

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