Fifteen Spatulas

Peanut Brittle

Pictured is a stack of peanut brittle

Did you know that apparently Europeans don’t like peanut butter very much?

If you’re wondering how that’s even possible, I’m totally with you.

My friend Elena shared this article on Facebook, “Bad News for U.S. Farmers: Europeans Still Think Peanut Butter Is Nasty” and I just couldn’t believe it. I LOVE all things peanuts. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches…peanut butter cups…peanut butter pie…peanut butter cookies…and heck, even peanuts in my stir fry…I probably eat my body weight’s worth of peanut every year. Half of that being the peanuts in all the peanut brittle I eat during the holidays.

The holiday fudge…the Christmas cookies…they’re good…but my absolute favorite holiday treat has got to be peanut brittle.

Pictured is a tub of roasted salted peanuts for a peanut brittle recipe

Aside from being totally addictive and delicious, peanut brittle is awesome because it’s the ultimate edible giftable Christmas present. Pack it up in those cute metal tins and mail it off to someone you love…and better yet, you won’t have to pay for the outrageous overnight shipping, because that brittle will keep well for a couple weeks (if stored properly).

And as if you need another reason to make this peanut brittle, if you’re scared of cooked sugar and caramels, peanut brittle is the most forgiving of them all. I don’t have a candy thermometer (I use an instant read thermometer) and there have been times when I have accidentally let the peanut brittle cook past 300 degrees F, and it has always turned out perfectly (a lot of brittle recipes don’t even provide a temperature for this reason. Once it’s golden brown, it’s good to go, and there’s plenty of wiggle room). So BAM! There’s reason number three why you should try making some peanut brittle this year.

Start with sugar, corn syrup, and water in a heavy bottomed saucepan. It’s going to look all undistributed, but make sure you don’t stir it together:

Pictured is a pot filled with the beginnings of a sugar mixture for peanut brittle.

It will eventually dissolve and become a homogenous mixture. First it will look like a bubbling pot of clear syrup:

This is what the middle stage of peanut brittle looks like. The sugar has dissolved and is bubbling away.

But eventually it will turn amber, and that’s when you mix in butter, baking soda, and peanuts. Spread the mixture out onto a sheet pan to cool:

Spread the homemade peanut brittle all over a sheet pan for it to cool.

Once it has cooled, break the brittle into shards, and eat! Store in an airtight container.

I recommend you watch the video if you want a better idea of what everything should look like, so check it out:

Peanut Brittle

Yield: 1 half sheet pan of brittle

Peanut Brittle

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp vegetable oil, or cooking spray for greasing the pan
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 2 cups salted dry roasted peanuts

Directions:

  1. Grease a half sheet pan with 2 tsp vegetable oil or cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Place the sugar in a heavy bottomed saucepan, and shake it back and forth so the pile of sugar flattens out. Add the corn syrup and water, but don't stir it together. Place the pan on the stovetop over medium heat and watch as the sugar goes through several stages (over the next 15-20 minutes). First the sugar will dissolve, then it will turn into a clear sugar syrup and bubble like crazy, then the sugar syrup will eventually take on a clearish golden brown amber color, and cook to 300 degrees F (after the sugar syrup has taken on this golden brown color is when I check that it has reached 300, but if you have a clip-on thermometer then you can leave it in the whole time).
  3. After the mixture has reached 300 degrees F, add the butter, baking soda, and peanuts, and stir it all together. Pour the mixture onto the greased baking sheet and spread it with a spatula to your desired thinness. Let the brittle cool completely, then break it into pieces. Store the brittle in an airtight container once it has cooled (otherwise your brittle will absorb moisture from the air and get sticky). The brittle should last a couple weeks if stored in a cool, dry place.
http://www.fifteenspatulas.com/peanut-brittle/

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Comments

  1. Anna @ Crunchy Creamy Sweet posted on December 13, 2012 at 12:38 pm (#)

    Totally with you on the peanut butter. How can you not like it?? Anyhow, we love peanut brittle and you just reminded me I need to make some soon! PS: Love your orange kitchen! PPS: PicMonkey rocks!! :)

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 2:50 pm

      Thanks Anna! It is certainly very colorful haha, smaller than my last one, but I do like living in CT!

  2. barbara posted on December 13, 2012 at 12:44 pm (#)

    I make our brittle in the M/W and it is done in 10 minutes and wonderful. Try using Planyer’s five alarm chili peanuts and this goes over the top. Everyone loves it. I enjoy your site and have cooked some of your dishes.

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 2:45 pm

      Ooo the chili peanuts sound wonderful! Thanks Barbara.

  3. DNL posted on December 13, 2012 at 1:37 pm (#)

    You can at least find it in stores on occasion now – in tiny containers next to gallons of Nutella. I’ve introduced some of them to cranberry sauce and BBQ ribs. They love both. Oh they hate root beer too – that’s one I don’t get…especially because they like Chino which is so gross…!

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 2:47 pm

      Interesting, have never heard of Chino. I love root beer too =)

      • DNL replied on December 14th, 2012 at 3:35 pm

        I may have spelled it wrong but it has this really bitter taste. It’s in a lot of drinks here but that one is a particular brand.

  4. penny olsen posted on December 13, 2012 at 2:12 pm (#)

    I just watched the video. Wow, you make it look really simple and easy. My husband LOVES peanut brittle as do I. I thought it was made with raw peanuts though. I will be making this for sure.

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      Awesome Penny! Peanut brittle is very forgiving, and I think pretty easy to make (or at least, way easier than most caramel type things). I think using roasted peanuts has more flavor, but you could probably do raw too.

  5. Ilona posted on December 13, 2012 at 3:25 pm (#)

    We Dutch like peanut butter :) Unfortunately for the U.S. farmers we live in a tiny country. We eat our peanut butter sandwich with chocolate sprinkles, mmmm!
    Love the recipe! Question: can I replace the corn syrup? It is hard to get here.

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 8:48 pm

      LOL. You’re funny =) So, I know you can make peanut brittle without corn syrup however I haven’t tested it personally. I would suggest googling a sugar only peanut brittle.

      • Saskia replied on December 15th, 2012 at 10:59 am

        LOL i just wanted to respont that i’m from holland and we love peanutbutter here!!! Every child here grows up whit it. To Ilona you can find cornsyrup in de Marokaanse/Turkse supermarkten :-)

  6. Suzie posted on December 13, 2012 at 3:33 pm (#)

    My one friend said you HAD to have raw peanuts, so I am so glad I see now that is not true. I’m bookmarking this to make for the holidays…thanks so much!!

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 8:45 pm

      Interesting. I have always used roasted nuts (which, I try to use roasted nuts for mostly everything since there’s more flavor). Happy holidays!

      • Suzie replied on December 13th, 2012 at 9:34 pm

        That’s why I’m so glad I seen this post! I love the roasted nuts too. Happy holidays to you to Joanne!! xoxo

  7. Averie @ Averie Cooks posted on December 13, 2012 at 3:36 pm (#)

    I love Peanut Butter!!!! It’s my total THING! and I love peanut brittle and all these nuts and all this goodness…mmm. I need to bust out a candy thermometer and get to work!

  8. Aimee @ ShugarySweets posted on December 13, 2012 at 7:27 pm (#)

    Oh yes please! This looks quite delish.

  9. Myrtle posted on December 13, 2012 at 8:42 pm (#)

    When I lived in Rome, we couldn’t find peanut butter anywhere. We finally found one tiny tub, but the peanut butter was all grainy and icky. But then again, Europeans have Nutella, and why eat peanut butter when you’ve got Nutella? JK, I love peanut butter. I make peanut butter pie all the time…my sister says that I’ll die young of heart attack, but I don’t care. ;) Anyway, the point of the matter is that peanut butter is good, and Europeans can be weird. I’ve tried this Swiss drink called Rivella….it’s the weirdest thing ever. It’s made out of carbonated milk whey. I’ve only tried the soy version, though, too afraid to try to actual milk whey kind. :)

    I’ll definitely have to try this, it looks delicious!

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 8:50 pm

      LOL! See, I do like nutella, but it’s crazy sweet! Which is funny because generally Americans are regarded as having big sweet tooth problems LOL. That Rivella sounds vile!

      • Myrtle replied on December 15th, 2012 at 1:38 am

        It’s weird, Rivella is widely popular in Switzerland, but like I’ve said, I’ve only tried the soy version. That actually didn’t taste too bad, it sort of tasted like how lemon baby wipes smell.

  10. Courtney montgomery posted on December 13, 2012 at 8:46 pm (#)

    I will be making this for the holidays i was wondering could i double the batch or just make two seperate batches? I have a whole family of nut-a-holics.lol

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 13th, 2012 at 8:54 pm

      Hi Courtney, rule of thumb with candy recipes is that you don’t double them. I know, it sucks haha. I would recommend doing separate batches.

      • Courtney montgomery replied on December 13th, 2012 at 9:51 pm

        Haha thanks i am glad you have to make two batches one to give &one to keep.;-)

      • Andy replied on January 4th, 2013 at 11:24 am

        I use the little spanish peanuts, they taste better roasted to me. I use 4 cups of peanuts instead of 2 cups, i like more peanuts in mine. I grease my large pizza pan with butter but you can use a cookie sheet pan. I use a tablespoon of baking soda, makes it foam up more. I also add 1 tsp. of vanilla and1 tbs of butter just before i add the baking soda. I use a 12 frying pan with a heavy bottom to it. I use any combination of 3 cups of sugar and or light karo syrup and bring it to a boil on medium heat and then i stir in the peanuts and continue stiring until it turns a golden color, then stir in the baking soda, vanilla and butter, then pour it into the pizza pan. Make sure the pan is on some coasters because it will burn the table top. Make sure the pan you use to cook this in has high enough sides to hold the 4 cups of peanuts and mixture, or use a deep pot.

  11. Sheila Roberts posted on December 13, 2012 at 9:21 pm (#)

    I just have to say I LOVE your site and you do a really WONDERFUL job with every single post. Thank you so much for sharing your expertise and your love of peanuts!

  12. Joy posted on December 14, 2012 at 2:26 am (#)

    The candy looks wonderful.

  13. Dorothy @ Crazy for Crust posted on December 14, 2012 at 9:28 am (#)

    How is that even possible? That they don’t like peanut butter? OMG. I love peanut brittle!!

  14. Anita at Hungry Couple posted on December 14, 2012 at 8:56 pm (#)

    I did know that only Americans really care for peanut butter. It’s pretty interesting if you think about it. Sort of a multi-million person social experiment. But I am American and I love (actually love is too mild a word) peanut butter! I usually just prefer to eat it straight from the jar with a big spoon but I’ll take my peanuts any other way you’re serving them, too. :)

  15. Glory/ Glorious Treats posted on December 15, 2012 at 9:50 pm (#)

    Followed a pinterest pin to this post, and so glad to have discovered your site! This peanut brittle looks delicious, it’s long been on my list of recipes to try, and this just might push me to get a batch or two made before Christmas!

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 16th, 2012 at 1:11 pm

      Awesome, welcome to Fifteen Spatulas! I know about the long list of recipes to try…I have one of those too and there’s like 100 things on it at all times haha. Happy holidays!

  16. Georgia @ The Comfort of Cooking posted on December 16, 2012 at 10:48 am (#)

    Your peanut brittle looks delicious, Joanna! It’s my mom’s favorite holiday treat and I know she would love a batch of this. Thanks for sharing!

  17. Marlieke posted on December 16, 2012 at 5:26 pm (#)

    Well I’, from the Netherlands (which is very European) and we do have peanut butter here.
    But I will admit, we don’t throw it in everything. But I’m trying to change that over here. ;)

  18. Sarah | Shine Food posted on December 18, 2012 at 12:58 pm (#)

    The snow in the picture made my day! :)

  19. StephanieB posted on December 23, 2012 at 2:21 pm (#)

    HI there! I have always loved peanu tbutter and so has my son. But now we are both sensitive to peanuts and it has been an adjustment! I love that other nuts can be made into a nut butter, but it isn’t quite the same. I’m making cashew almond brittle today. I can’t do walnuts, pecans or hazel nuts either! Arrgh! Your blog is beautiful and I’m loving all the love you put in your posts!

  20. Bill posted on November 5, 2013 at 8:47 pm (#)

    I haven’t had peanut brittle in years and your post reminded me of how much I love it. I think I’ve always been afraid to make it because I always heard that it was very tricky. Looks like it’s pretty foolproof. Great video and awesome post! Thanks for sharing!

    • Joanne Ozug replied on November 6th, 2013 at 1:36 pm

      Hi Bill, that’s great! You should definitely try making your own, it’s great homemade. Happy holidays!

  21. CC posted on November 5, 2013 at 11:17 pm (#)

    We live in eastern Europe and most people we talk to/share peanut butter with LIKE it. However, it is expensive for them (small jar of about 300 gr. is $5) depend on where they find it (only a couple brands to choose and they are NOT American brands and don’t taste as good; don’t have as much sugar ;). Good news is they have it here now; I have been living here off and on since 1997. In 1997 coca cola was just getting introduced. I think Europe wants to keep out as many imports from the u.s. As they can. Even Nike, Starbucks and Nestlé have their own operating plants here in EU. So if it’s a U.S. Brand and they create a EU subsidiary (provide jobs and pay taxes), they are good. Sorry if I was too long, just a little peanut butter/EU info for ya. LOVE your recipes (carry over my own PB ;)

    • Joanne Ozug replied on November 6th, 2013 at 1:35 pm

      Very cool information you have shared here! Thanks =)

  22. Ginette posted on December 7, 2013 at 8:01 pm (#)

    I am waiting and waiting for temp to reach 300 on the peanut brittle. Why would it take sooooo long? Please help!

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 7th, 2013 at 8:57 pm

      Hi Ginette, I see you’ve discovered the joys of cooked sugar! That’s the thing about caramel and things like peanut brittle…it takes seemingly forever for it to get hot, but if you walk away for two seconds it burns. It takes a while unfortunately!

  23. Ginette posted on December 7, 2013 at 9:05 pm (#)

    Thanks for your speedy reply Joanne. Your recipe says 20 minutes so i waited plus an extra 20. I figured my thermometer might be broken …. is it possible it’s not? how long should I wait for next time? Sorry to bug…… but I really would like to get this right…..you make it look so easy.

    • Joanne Ozug replied on December 7th, 2013 at 9:09 pm

      No problem Ginette, I’m eager to help. What kind of stove do you have, gas or electric? The trouble with recipe times is that different stoves have different levels of heat. I have made recipes on my brother’s gas stove that takes half the amount of time as my electric stove. The time is there as a guideline, but that’s why the thermometer is essential, so you can heat it to the proper temperature. Next time you may bump the heat up a few notches (don’t go above medium high), which should shorten the time, just make sure to keep an eye on it so the candy doesn’t scorch. Hope that helps!

  24. Vicky posted on February 6, 2014 at 10:02 am (#)

    Which brand peanut butter do you use? if its okay to ask?im not very keen on peanut butter amongs the ones ive tried so i want to know o.o

    • Joanne Ozug replied on February 7th, 2014 at 5:21 pm

      Hi Vicky, I use several, but in this post I used natural peanut butter (no hydrogenated oils or anything) by Smucker’s. I’ve found one that I like more, which is Skippy’s natural peanut butter that has a consistency nearly identical to ones with the hydrogenated oil, but theirs doesn’t have it. Good luck!

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