There are few things that evoke the memory of childhood quite as well as a packaged candy bar. Something about ripping through that wrapper and letting the first chocolatey aromas waft toward you immediately conjures images of combing through Halloween candy, whacking pinatas, and sneaking just one more fun-sized bar at a slumber party when you’re supposed to be asleep. They’re fond memories, and they’ll grow even fonder when you realize that you can make many of those sweet treats from the comfort of your own kitchen! Maybe you sprinkle in a little sea salt to put an adult-palate spin on a classic, maybe you serve them for dessert at your next party, or maybe you just marvel at the fact that you can turn out store-quality snacks out of your own home. If only your younger self could see you now!
If your biggest complaint about a Snickers bar is that there’s never enough of it, get ready for your wildest dreams to come true, because this recipe makes an entire baking pan’s worth. The secret to its deliciousness is adding marshmallow fluff and peanut butter to a layer of nougat and peanuts before you pour over the buttery caramel and melted milk chocolate chips.
(Image: How Sweet Eats)
When you think of the perfection that is a Mounds bar or an Almond Joy, would it ever occur to you that it only had three ingredients? This homemade version does, so you forget about those pesky preservatives. All you need to delight in this treat is shredded coconut, sweetened condensed milk, and chocolate chips. Go with dark chocolate for the classic Mounds, or milk chocolate with a single almond perched on top for an Almond Joy.
There’s nothing quite like the invigorating sensation of biting into a York Peppermint Patty, that distinctive disc of creamy peppermint enrobed in dark chocolate. Replicate the tongue-tingling goodness at home with our recipe for the classic candy combining peppermint extract, heavy cream and confectioner’s sugar for the filling, all cloaked in dark chocolate. Take it to the next level by popping it in the freezer before enjoying.
(Image [at top]: Plated)
Fig Newtons can get a bad wrap, with more than a few kids turning their noses at the fruit-based cookie, but this is pastry and fig we’re talking about, so give it another try as an adult! The secret is adding a dash of orange zest to the pastry, and leaving the seeds in the dried black Mission figs you use for the filling. When combined with a dollop of applesauce to finish the mixture, you’ll be left with a paste that’s surprisingly refined in flavor and texture.
(Image: Serious Eats)
Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups
Wonder no more what makes Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups so addictive—your homemade version will cut down the list of ingredients to just four items: semisweet chocolate, peanut butter, confectioner’s sugar and unsalted butter. It’s ideal for the discerning chef with a sweet tooth who still wants to go organic. Reach for the all-natural versions of each ingredient for a dessert that you can stand behind even as your guests gobble it up!
If you were one of the Twinkie fans who panicked when Hostess announced that they’d no longer be selling their cream-filled sponge cakes, fear not, because now you can stash away a homemade supply! We’re not sure if it’s good news or bad news that the batch you whip up at home consists of ingredients fresh enough that they won’t last you until the next century.
Once again, you’re about to be blown away by the minimal amount of ingredients and effort required to turn out a fresh pan of Heath bars. Make a bunch of caramel, pour it into a baking sheet, sprinkle in almonds, and put it in the fridge to set. Once it’s solidified, pour over some melted chocolate—this recipe calls for dark, but the traditional candy uses milk)—and you’re on your way to a delicious homemade treat.
(Image: Have Fork Will Eat)
The bright red, twisted strands of cherry or strawberry licorice that are Twizzlers might seem difficult to make, but in actuality the prep time is a measly five minutes, and the cooking adds only another ten. The one thing you will need is a candy thermometer, to make sure the mixture doesn’t over- or under-cook. As a bonus, this recipe is gluten-free, so it’s great for sweets-lovers with dietary restrictions.
(Images: Gluten Free On A Shoestring)