Homemade Valentine Candy is a great way to remember those you love.
Valentine’s Day is a great opportunity to share your appreciation and love. Traditionally, I make sugar cookies for family and friends. This year I wanted to try something different and make Valentine Candy. I came across this recipe I had saved from Taste of Home Magazine back in 2014. It combines the tastes of sweet caramel and chocolate with salty pecans and pretzels. The recipe makes 72-bite size Valentine candy pieces so there is plenty to share with all the valentines on your list. It takes about 45 minutes to put it together plus cooling time. And because my husband has dietary issues, I adapted the recipe to be gluten-free.
Caramel Pretzel Bites Valentine Candy
2 teaspoons butter, softened
4 cups pretzel sticks (I purchased the gluten free versions at Sprouts Market. They also sell them at Trader Joe’s).
2-1/2 cups pecans pieces, toasted
2-1/4 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter, cubed
1 cup corn syrup
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 package (11-1/2 oz. milk chocolate chips
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon shortening
1/3 cup white baking chips
- Line a 13×9 inch pan with foil. Grease foil with 2 teaspoons butter. Spread pretzels and pecans on bottom of prepared pan.
- In a large, heavy saucepan, combine brown sugar, cubed butter, corn syrup, milk and salt. Cook and stir over medium heat until a candy thermometer reads 240 degrees.
- Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Pour over pretzel mixture.
- In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and 1 tablespoon shortening. Stir until smooth. Spread over caramel layer.
- In a microwave, melt baking chips and remaining shortening. Stir until smooth. Drizzle over top. Let Valentine candy stand until set. (I let it stand overnight)
- Using foil, lift the candy out of pan and remove foil. Using a buttered knife, cut Valentine candy into bite size pieces.