Simple Holiday Candy Recipes for Your Favorite Sweet Tooth

Whether it is for a party or a homemade stocking stuffer, holiday candies will bring out lots of smiles!

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Every family has their own Christmas traditions, and often that includes candy, with chocolate, peppermint, and peanut butter prevailing through most holiday candy recipes.  One holiday classic is rum balls, which is a Christmas tradition across much of Europe, including England, Denmark, Austria, Hungary, and Slovenia.  Since they are not cooked, the alcohol is not lost from the recipe, and gives this sweet a bit of a bite.  Try out these recipes at your holiday party or family gathering and start a new tradition today!

Rum Balls

  • 1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 2 1/2 cups crushed vanilla wafers
  • 1 cup chopped toasted walnuts

Directions: Sift 1 cup of the confectioners’ sugar into a large bowl, and add cocoa powder and allspice.  Stir in rum and corn syrup, then add the vanilla wafers and walnuts and continue to stir.  Refrigerate the entire bowl of mix for about 30 minutes so that it becomes slightly more firm.  Put the remaining 1/2 cup of confectioners’ sugar in a bowl.  After the mix has firmed up, scoop one tablespoon of the chocolate mixture and roll into a ball, then roll in the confectioners’ sugar.  Place the ball on a parchment-lined cookie sheet, and continue with the rest of the chocolate mix.  Cover the sheet with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Peppermint Candy

  • 1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk, divided
  • 1 cup white baking chips
  • 2 teaspoons peppermint extract
  • Green food coloring

Directions: Line an 8-inch square dish with waxed paper and butter the paper.  Melt chocolate chips with 3/4 cups condensed milk in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring occasionally. Spread half of the chocolate mixture into the dish, and chill for 5-10 minutes while letting the rest of the chocolate sit at room temperature.  In a separate saucepan, melt white baking chips and stir in the rest of the condensed milk until smooth.  Remove from heat and add the peppermint extract and a few drops of green food coloring.  Refrigerate until the mint mix is set, then spread over the chocolate layer in the square dish. Put the second half of the chocolate mixture on top of the mint layer, and refrigerate the dish until completely set.  Cut into 1 inch pieces.

Peanut Brittle

  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1 cup peanuts, shelled
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

Directions: Grease a large cookie sheet and set aside.  In a large saucepan, boil sugar, corn syrup, salt, and water over medium heat.  Stir and cook until the sugar is dissolved, then set a candy thermometer in place and continue cooking.  Stir often until the mix reaches 300 degrees Fahrenheit.  Remove the saucepan from heat and immediately stir in butter and baking soda.  Pour the mixture right on to the cookie sheet, and use two forks to lift and spread the peanut mixture to cover the cookie sheet.  Cool, and then break the candy into pieces.

Foolproof Fudge

  • 3 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • A dash of salt
  • Walnuts (optional)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Directions: Line an 8- or 9-inch square pan with foil, making sure to cut a piece of foil that will drape over the edges of the pan.  Melt chocolate chips in a large saucepan over low heat, and mix with condensed milk and salt.  Once well mixed, remove the saucepan from heat and add vanilla and nuts (if desired).  Spread the mix evenly into the prepared square pan.  Chill for at least two hours, then remove from the pan by lifting the edges of the foil, then cut the fudge into squares to serve.