When we think of Halloween, we automatically think of costumes, scary creatures, pumpkins, and candy – and the latter usually has to do with kids trick-or-treating! Making candy is something we haven’t attempted to do before, so for this special October edition of Foodbuzz 24×24, we were selected to feature a post that revolves around the joys of children to help bring awareness to Save The Children’s Charity, on behalf of Frigidaire. With the Halloween spirit in the air, we thought it would be fun to make a batch of candy that is easy enough for kids to help make in the kitchen. We were actually inspired by the October issue of Every Day with Rachael Ray Magazine where she has DIY recipes of various candies that seemed simple enough to prepare. We ventured to make Peanut Butter Cups, Chocolate-Covered Coconut Bars, Goin’ Nuts Candy Bars, and White Chunky Chocolates. As you can see, the theme is chocolate! Needless to say, by the end of our candy-making extravaganza, we were smeared everywhere in bits of chocolate!
Luckily we had a lot of ingredients already on-hand for the 4 candy recipes. And of course, we couldn't have done it without the help of Rachael Ray! Love her!
I was most excited to do the Peanut Butter Cups because it's one of my favorite candies! Surprisingly it's not hard to make at all, nor do you need a lot of ingredients. The first step is to melt the chocolate. If you don't have a double boiler, you can do what we did - take a saucepan and boil it with water and then place a smaller saucepan with the chocolate to give it indirect heat, that way the chocolate doesn't heat up too fast which will ruin the consistency.
We used the 1.25-inch paper baking cups to coat the melted chocolate. The recipe calls to swirl it only about half-way up, but we wanted to fill the entire shell with chocolate. Refrigerate the cups with chocolate for about 5 minutes until it's set.
To make the peanut butter filling, all you have to do is mix together 4 tbsp unsalted butter, 3/4 cup natural peanut butter, and 1/2 cup honey. Fill the chocolate cups about 3/4 full with the peanut butter mixture and refrigerate for 15 minutes to set.
Finally, each peanut butter cup is topped with more melted chocolate to enclose and smooth out the surface. We added some Halloween-colored sprinkles on top to make it extra festive. Refrigerate this until chocolate hardens.
The final product is just as delicious as what you are used to eating! The paper baking cup peels off pretty easy. You can be creative and also add chunks of peanuts in the filling for added crunch! (Links to all candy recipes are located below the post).
The next candy recipe is Chocolate-Covered Coconut Bars, for those who love the coconut-chocolate combination! In a mixer, combine 2 1/2 cups shredded sweetened coconut, 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, 2 1/2 tbsp unsalted butter, and 1 tbsp corn syrup. Once it's mixed together, form the coconut mixture into compact bars, about 2 inches long. Refrigerate the mounds until it's hard; you want to be able to stab it with a fork without falling apart.
Again, melted chocolate is required for this recipe - about 12 ounces of chocolate. Dip the hardened coconut bars into the melted chocolate to coat evenly and transfer to a rack set over wax paper to let it cool. We went an extra step to drizzle white icing on top to give it that extra flair. Mmm!
See how easy it was to make these Chocolate-Covered Coconut Bars? The kids can help by forming the mounds with their hands and drizzling the icing on top. These bars do not have to look perfect!
Rachael Ray calls this recipe the "Goin' Nuts Candy Bars" because it's definitely nutty. You'll need 1 lb of roasted salted peanuts which needs to be coarsely chopped. Then in a microwavable bowl, melt 10 oz. of peanut butter chips with 1/2 cup corn syrup and 2 tbsp unsalted butter.
Once the peanut chips has melted, stir in 3/4 of the peanuts. When it's cool enough to handle, start shaping them into 2-inch logs.
The final step is to roll the outside of the candy with the remaining peanuts. Let this sit to harden.
These are fun and easy to prepare and can be individually wrapped in wax paper. If you don't want to coat the outside with more peanuts, you can also try other dry coatings like toasted coconut, Rice Krispies, or sprinkles.
The last candy recipe we made calls for white chocolate chips - White Chunky Chocolates. First, melt about 12 oz. of white chocolate chips, and immediately stir in your preferred dried fruit and nuts. We used a combination of cranberries, raisins, and walnuts.
The actual recipe calls for spooning the mixture into flexible ice cube trays so that when it's harden, you can pop them out and they will have an ice cube shape. Since we didn't have an ice tray on hand, we just freely formed the morsels using a small scoop. I think this makes it more fun when each white chocolate candy has its own unique and ghostly shape.
Make sure the candy is refrigerated for at least 30 minutes so it's hardened. Keep in mind that white chocolate is much more sweet than regular chocolate, so don't go overboard eating this!
We are so thankful for these easy-to-make DIY recipes from EveryDay with Rachael Ray Magazine. There are a lot of other candies that are much more complicated and time-consuming to make, such as truffles, salt water taffy, and Chinese dragon beard candy - all of which we plan to attempt to make one of these days! These 4 chocolate recipes were a lot of fun to make and great for this Halloween season. The kids will enjoy making and eating them, so get in the kitchen and have some fun making candy. Just remember to have a good dentist handy afterwards! *wink*
The following links with printable recipes are courtesy of Every Day with Rachael Ray – Official Website:
Peanut Butter Cups
Chocolate-Covered Coconut Bars
Goin’ Nuts Candy Bars
White Chunky Chocolates