Store-bought candy can’t compare to irresistible, chewy nougat topped with a thick layer of caramel and covered in chocolate. For smaller bars, cut them in half before dipping.
- 2 teaspoons plus 1/2 cup butter, divided
- 2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup evaporated milk
- 1-1/4 cups milk chocolate chips
- 1 jar (7 ounces) marshmallow creme
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups packed brown sugar
- 1-1/4 cups corn syrup
- 1 cup butter, cubed
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
- 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 pounds milk chocolate candy coating, coarsely chopped
- Line a 13-in. x 9-in. pan with foil and grease the foil with 2 teaspoons butter; set aside.
- In a large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, melt remaining butter. Stir in sugar and evaporated milk. Bring to a boil; cook and stir 5 minutes longer. Remove from the heat; cool for 5 minutes. Stir in chocolate chips until melted. Stir in marshmallow creme and vanilla until smooth. Spread into prepared pan; set aside.
- In another large heavy saucepan, combine the brown sugar, corn syrup, butter and salt; bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook 4 minutes longer without stirring.
- Remove from the heat; gradually stir in condensed milk. Return to the heat. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook and stir until a candy thermometer reads 244° (firm-ball stage). Remove from the heat; stir in vanilla. Pour over chocolate mixture (do not scrape saucepan). Refrigerate until caramel is set, at least 2 hours.
- Using foil, lift candy out of pan. Gently peel off foil; cut into 3-1/4-in. x 1-in. bars. In a microwave, melt candy coating; stir until smooth. Dip bars in coating; allow excess to drip off. Place on a waxed paper-lined baking sheet; refrigerate until set. Store in an airtight container. Yield: 3 dozen.
Originally published as Chocolate-Caramel Candy Bars in Taste of Home Christmas Annual Annual 2010, p127
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