Sunflower Brittle with bonus Peanut Brittle recipe



Apologies for it being so long but I just have not had any good ideas for recipes and then my oven went out. Also, I don’t get paid for this I just do it for fun so forgive the long hiatus. This recipe is an adaptation of one I use every year from my Betty Crocker Cookbook. My aunt developed a nut allergy late in life and so I thought it unfair that she couldn’t have any peanut brittle so I fixed that. Usually I am rather loose in my directions but this is candy so you have to follow them closely or your candy will end up in the trash! Read the whole recipe then get everything you need set up before you start because you can’t stop in the middle of this. I made a batch of sunflower and a batch of peanut brittle in about an hour so it isn’t hard you just need to be prepared. I will give you a recipe that allows you to make either kind but remember it is not my recipe except for the sunflower kernel addition. I used roasted and salted sunflower kernels and roasted but unsalted peanuts. Most recipes call for unroasted peanuts but I think the roasted kind give a much better product. If you can find unsalted sunflower kernels those will work also I just could not find any. It took me about two large bags of them with some leftover. Also, if you don’t have a candy thermometer do yourself a favor and go buy one because it makes this so much easier.

You will need:

1 ½ teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon water

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 ½ cups of sugar

1 cup of water

1 cup of light corn syrup

3 tablespoons of butter

2 cups of sunflower kernels or 3 cups of peanuts


Heat your oven to 200° and then place a greased sheet pan in it to keep warm. Lay out something to set the hot sheet pan on when you pull it from the oven and something to put the hot pot on too. I use a couple of kitchen towels to protect the counter. In a small bowl mix together the baking soda, water, and vanilla. In a large pot, two quarts at least, mix the cup of water, sugar, and corn syrup together. Now before you get started heating up this mixture place your already measured butter and sunflower kernels or peanuts near the stove in easy reach. Also place a glass of ice water to test for your candy stage. Now you are ready! Over medium heat, stirring every now and then, bring your sugar mixture to 240° on the candy thermometer this might be labeled the soft ball stage on some thermometers. To check the candy drop a little in the ice water and if it forms a ball that you can still smush it is ready. My computer doesn’t like the word smush so I am typing it again! Ha! Now you can add in the butter and if you are doing peanuts add them in too. I wait to add the sunflower kernels until later because I worry that they might burn. This you have to stir continuously. Do not leave it for one second! It will burn and you will have wasted your time. The temp of your candy will drop slightly when you add the cold butter so it will take a little bit to get it back up. You need it to reach 300° this time which is the hard crack stage.  If you think it is ready drop some in the ice water and if you get thin threads you are done and can take it off the stove. Get your pan out of the oven and then quickly beat in, by hand with a spoon, the vanilla mixture. Your candy will bubble up. If you are doing the sunflower version this is when you add them in. Now comes the tough part. My recipe says to divide this between two pans but I have never gotten it that thin so I only use one pan. I pour it out and then press it down with a buttered plastic spatula I use on pancakes. Try different things until you find something that works to spread out the candy. If you want to try doing two pans go right ahead just remember to keep them heated. I warn you the sunflower is easier to spread than the peanut. Let it cool and then just break it up and store it. I put mine in tins and if I make it way ahead of the holidays I keep it in the freezer. Now because I love you and I am going to give you something most recipes never bother with. Clean up tips! As soon you get that brittle out of the pan and spread out put the pot, thermometer, and spoons into hot water and let it sit. All the candy will just wash right out! You are welcome, and Happy Holidays everybody!


One Comment Add yours

  1. Aunt Cindy in Texas says:

    Take it from the Aunt with the nut allergy, this is very , very good. It’s all I can do to stop myself from eating the whole batch at once.

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