I don’t like hard candy and hate candy that sticks to my teeth so, despite my fondness for peanuts, I would never touch peanut brittle. All that changed when I found this totally delicious and addictive recipe for soft peanut brittle. It has the texture of the center of a Butterfinger candy bar…shards of intense peanut flavor that almost melt in your mouth. Despite being a person who doesn’t have much of a sweet tooth I simply can’t leave this delectable sweet alone.
This recipe is very quick and easy to make and the key to its success is using a good candy thermometer and having all the ingredients ready to add to the pan. Once the syrup reaches 275 degrees the rest of the ingredients are added quickly. If you are unsure about your thermometer test it in a small pan of boiling water. It should reach 212 degrees. If it doesn’t, pitch it and buy another one. As with most candy recipes reaching the right temperature is critical to success. Warmed peanut butter is folded into the syrup at the end of cooking and the mixture is quickly poured onto a buttered baking sheet. You will have about a minute to spread it with a spatula
When the brittle has cooled break it into chunks. It can’t be cut with a knife (it’s too brittle for that) so pierce it with the point of a sharp knife and it will make its own crack lines. The little pieces that break off are delicious sprinkled on ice cream so be sure to save them. Store candy in an airtight container.
I posted this recipe when I first started blogging in 2008 and I don’t think anybody read it back then. It’s so good that I wanted to post it again in time for Christmas. If you like peanuts but are wishy-washy about peanut brittle the way I was, I know you will love this recipe. It’s addictive. I bought the best peanuts at Costco and I recommend them for baking and snacking. They are extra large, roasted perfectly and very lightly salted. They are great in cookies too.
- 2 cups creamy peanut butter
- 1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1-1/2 cups light corn syrup
- ¼ cup water plus 2 teaspoons, divided
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 cups peanuts, raw or roasted
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Generously butter a large baking sheet. Set aside.
- In a double boiler over hot water heat peanut butter until melted. Meanwhile prepare syrup in a large saucepan by combining sugar, corn syrup and ¼ cup water. Cook over high heat to 275 degrees on a candy thermometer. Lower heat to medium, add butter and stir until melted. Add peanuts, cook, stirring for about 5 minutes until candy starts to turn brown and reaches 300 degrees.
- Remove from heat. Stir in baking soda that has been dissolved in remaining 2 teaspoons water. Add vanilla.
- Working quickly, fold in warm peanut butter, stirring gently. At once pour candy mixture onto prepared cookie sheet. Quickly spread as thin as possible. The key here is to work quickly.
- When candy is cold break into serving size pieces.