This old-fashioned Peanut Brittle recipe is light and airy, super buttery and chock full of crunchy peanuts. It’s a simple homemade candy that everyone loves and takes just a few minutes to make.
Old Fashioned Peanut Brittle Recipe
If you’re looking for an easy Old Fashioned Peanut Brittle recipe that tastes just like Grandma used to make, you’re in the right place. This crisp and buttery candy is light, airy and won’t stick to your teeth.
Even if you consider yourself an inexperienced cook, we promise you’ll be able to follow this foolproof recipe and make yummy homemade candy in no time. It’s great to have around to add to cookie plates, give away as gifts or just nibble on around the house.
Homemade Peanut Brittle Ingredients
- Sugar - you’ll need white granulated sugar for this recipe.
- Corn Syrup - this helps make sure the sugar syrup doesn’t crystallize as it cooks, making it grainy.
- Water - this is added to the sugar mixture to help ensure that it cooks evenly.
- Peanuts - I like to use raw peanuts, but salted peanuts and roasted peanuts would also work great.
- Butter - it’s a good idea to cut your butter into pieces so that it will melt quickly in the hot syrup.
- Baking Soda - this creates miniscule bubbles in the brittle, helping to give it it’s characteristic texture.
- Vanilla Extract - pure vanilla extract tastes best.
How to Make Peanut Brittle
- Cook the sugar syrup. In a large saucepan over medium heat, add the sugar, corn syrup and water. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar is dissolved.
- Add the peanuts. Add the peanuts and stir frequently until the temperature reaches 300 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
- Stir in the rest. Remove from heat and stir in baking soda, butter, salt and vanilla. Stir just until combined.
- Pour mixture onto the prepared baking sheet. Immediately pour the mixture as evenly as possible onto a large buttered baking sheet (or a baking sheet covered in parchment paper). Do not spread.
- Cool completely. Let the mixture cool to room temperature (at least 30 minutes) then break into 2" pieces using your fingers.
- Serve. Serve immediately or store in a cool place in a covered container. Enjoy!
Recipe Variations for Peanut Brittle
For something a little different, feel free to try one of these recipe variations for Peanut Brittle below.
- Spicy Peanut Brittle: Add a fiery kick to your peanut brittle by incorporating chili powder or cayenne pepper into the recipe.
- Chocolate Peanut Brittle: Elevate your peanut brittle by dipping it in rich, melted chocolate. After the brittle has cooled and hardened, dip one end or drizzle chocolate on top for a delightful fusion of sweet and nutty flavors. You can even sprinkle crushed peanuts or sea salt on the chocolate for added texture and taste.
- Salted Caramel Peanut Brittle: Take your peanut brittle to the next level by adding a layer of salted caramel. Make a quick caramel sauce and pour it over the brittle just before it cools completely.
- Coconut Peanut Brittle: For a tropical twist, stir shredded coconut into your peanut brittle mixture. The coconut adds a subtle sweetness and a pleasant chewiness to the crunchy brittle.
- Espresso Peanut Brittle: Coffee lovers will adore this variation. Add finely ground espresso or coffee beans to your peanut brittle mixture.
- Almond and Cashew Brittle: For a departure from the traditional peanut brittle, use a combination of almonds and cashews. The rich flavors and different textures of these nuts add depth and variety to your brittle.
- Nut-Free Brittle: If you have allergies or simply prefer a nut-free option, try making brittle with seeds like pumpkin or sunflower seeds. The seeds offer a crunchy, wholesome alternative that's equally enjoyable.
Frequently Asked Questions
You’ll want to store your brittle inside an airtight container in a cool, dark place. Room temperature is preferred over the fridge because there is less chance for moisture to get to it.
If you don’t add baking soda to your Peanut Brittle, you’ll have a hard time eating it. The baking soda creates thousands of tiny little bubbles in the mixture making the finished texture light and airy.
If you don’t have a candy thermometer, the next best thing is a meat thermometer. Don’t have that either? Try dipping a spoon into a small amount of mixture then plunging it into very cold water. If the brittle threads, it’s ready.
The stickiness in sugar candies means there is too much water present. Either you didn’t cook the sugar mixture all the way to 300 degrees F or you introduced it to the refrigerator where water forms more readily.
Storing Peanut Brittle
Store your Peanut Brittle in an airtight container at room temperature, in a cool dark place. If stored properly, it should last for up to 2 weeks.
Old Fashioned Peanut Brittle Recipe
- 3 cups Sugar
- 1 ¼ cups Light Corn Syrup
- ½ cup Water
- 2 cups Peanuts raw
- ½ cup Butter
- ½ teaspoon Salt
- 1 teaspoon Baking Soda
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, add the sugar, corn syrup and water. Cook until the sugar is dissolved, stirring as needed.
- Add the peanuts and stir frequently until the temperature reaches 300 degrees F on a candy thermometer.
- Remove from heat and add the butter, salt, baking soda and vanilla. Stir just until combined then immediately pour as evenly as possible onto a large buttered baking sheet. Do not spread.
- Let the mixture cool to room temperature (at least 30 minutes) then break into 2" pieces using your fingers.
- Serve immediately or store in a cool place in a covered container. Enjoy!
More of the Best Homemade Candy Recipes
- Animal Cookie Fudge
- Reese's Peanut Butter Fudge
- Rolo Pretzel Reindeer Candy
- Divinity Candy Recipe
- Pretzel Toffee
- Easy Homemade Chocolate Fudge
- Homemade Caramels
- Nutella Balls
- More Christmas Candy Recipes
- More Dessert Recipes
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This is the best Peanut Brittle recipe that tastes just like Grandma used to make. It's light and airy, super buttery and chock full of peanuts.