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Beer and Pretzel Caramels

Beer and pretzels are a natural combination—mix them with smooth caramel and you have an awesome candy. The guys will go wild over these crunchy, chunky chews. —Jenni Sharp, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Total Time
    Prep: 1 hour + cooling Cook: 50 min. + standing
  • Makes
    about 3 pounds (81 servings)

Ingredients

  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups miniature pretzels
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • CARAMELS:
  • 4 cups dark beer
  • 1 teaspoon plus 1 cup butter, divided
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 2/3 cup corn syrup
  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream, divided
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Directions

  • In a small bowl, combine sugar and salt; set aside. In a large bowl, combine the pretzels, oil and vanilla. Add sugar mixture; toss to coat. Transfer to a 15x10x1-in. foil-lined baking pan coated with cooking spray.
  • Bake at 350° for 18-22 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool completely. Coarsely chop pretzels; set aside.
  • In a large saucepan, bring beer to a boil; cook until reduced to 2/3 cup. Set aside to cool.
  • Meanwhile, line a 9-in. square pan with foil; grease the foil with 1 teaspoon butter and set aside.
  • In a Dutch oven, combine the sugar, corn syrup, 2/3 cup cream, water, salt and remaining butter. Cook and stir over medium heat until a candy thermometer reads 238°, about 20 minutes. In a small bowl, combine reduced beer and remaining cream; slowly stir into sugar mixture.
  • Using a pastry brush dipped in cold water, wash down the sides of the pan to eliminate sugar crystals. Cook, stirring constantly, until a candy thermometer reads 245° (firm-ball stage), about 30 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat. Pour into prepared pan (do not scrape saucepan); sprinkle with candied pretzels and kosher salt. Let stand until firm, about 5 hours or overnight. Using foil, lift candy out of pan. Discard foil; cut candy into 1-in. squares using a buttered knife. Wrap individually in waxed paper; twist ends.
Nutrition Facts
1 piece: 90 calories, 5g fat (3g saturated fat), 14mg cholesterol, 91mg sodium, 12g carbohydrate (9g sugars, 0 fiber), 0 protein.

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Reviews

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Average Rating:
  • Bcooks
    Jan 9, 2015

    I didn't care for the taste of these. I wouldn't take the time to make them again.

  • Derbie
    Oct 31, 2011

    This recipe turned out great! I made these for an Oktoberfest/Halloween potluck at work and everyone was impressed! I would make this again, although it seemed to take a bit longer to get up to temperature in both steps, I found.

  • LinzJanan
    Oct 28, 2011

    This recipe is amazing! I left out the pretzels, and it is one of the best caramels I have ever eaten! All of my co-workers agree!