Learn how to make perfectly crispy peanut brittle with only 3 ingredients! Loaded with crunchy peanuts and an irresistible crispy bite, you’ll never buy the store-bought stuff again. No corn syrup is needed, though you’d never be able to tell!
My family loves it when I break out the peanut brittle. It’s one of our favorite foolproof holiday treats (like pumpkin brownies and pecan pie brownies) that’s perfect for family gatherings and parties.
This peanut brittle is crunchy, sweet, and has a satisfying buttery flavor. Plus, since there’s no corn syrup, I don’t have to feel guilty for sharing it with my family and friends.
Both kids and adults can’t get enough of this brittle. It’s always gone before I know it, so I usually make a double batch, just so I’m guaranteed to get a piece!
Table of Contents
Why this recipe works
- 3 ingredients. That’s right, just 3 ingredients are all you’ll need, and you likely have all of them on hand already.
- Healthier alternative. Like my peanut butter Rice Krispie Treats, this peanut brittle is free of corn syrup, though it’s still crunchy and sweet, so no one will even notice.
- Easy to make ahead. Peanut brittle is easy to make in advance and store until you need it, making it a convenient treat. It’s also a fabulous edible gift.
- Perfect texture and flavor. This recipe makes sweet and savory peanut brittle with a signature snap and the perfect amount of crunch.
What I love most about this recipe is how nostalgic it is. Like my 3-ingredient chocolate fudge, this peanut brittle is sure to bring back fond memories for everyone you share it with!
Like I mentioned earlier, this recipe calls for only three ingredients, including the star of the show: peanuts! Here is what you’ll need:
- Sugar. Either white, raw, or brown sugar will work. Just keep in mind brown sugar has a strong molasses flavor to it.
- Butter. I prefer unsalted butter, so it’s sweeter than salty. But of you like a little sweet and salty combination, use salted butter.
- Chopped peanuts. Opt for dry roasted peanuts.
- Salt. If you didn’t use salted peanuts or salted butter, add a touch of salt.
Find the printable recipe with measurements below.
How to make peanut brittle
Step 1- Prep work: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Step 2- Melt the sugar: Add sugar to a large saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Let the sugar melt while stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Continue doing this until it turns into a thick caramel syrup.
Step 3- Add butter and peanuts: Once the sugar has completely melted, add the butter and mix until fully incorporated and the candy reaches a hard crack stage. Stir in the peanuts.
Step 4- Shape the brittle: Transfer the brittle mixture onto the prepared baking sheet and spread it into an even thin layer using a rubber spatula.
Step 5- Refrigerate and serve: Store the brittle in the refrigerator for at least an hour to firm up. Then, break it apart into bite-sized pieces and enjoy!
Recipe tips and variations
- Use a candy thermometer. This is my #1 tip to prevent the sugar burning. Your sugar and butter mixture should be transferred to the baking sheet when it reaches 300F (most thermometers have an option for a ‘hard crack’).
- Don’t freeze until the brittle cools. Otherwise, it will get too firm and be hard to eat. Your patience will be rewarded!
- Don’t let the sugar boil. If the sugar boils before all the crystals have melted, the sugar will crystalize, and you’ll have to start over. Again, candy thermometer!!
- Make extra crunchy brittle. Add one teaspoon of baking soda at the end of the cooking process. It creates little air bubbles in the brittle, adding even more crunch to every bite.
- Add vanilla extract. One teaspoon should add the perfect amount of vanilla flavor if that’s what you’re looking for.
- Swap the peanuts. If you’re not a fan of peanuts or have an allergy, you can make this exact recipe with almonds, walnuts, pecans, cashews, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, or a combination of nuts.
- Make it vegan. Simply swap the butter for a vegan alternative.
To store: Peanut brittle should be stored at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 6-8 weeks. Refrigerating the brittle could cause it to soften.
To freeze: If you’re planning on freezing the brittle, don’t break it up into chunks, otherwise, the pieces will stick to each other. Instead, store it in large sheets with parchment paper in between. Stored in a freezer-safe container, it should be kept for up to 6 months. Allow it to thaw overnight in the fridge before eating.
Frequently asked questions
Your peanut brittle may not be crunchy if it wasn’t cooked for long enough to reach 300F. Having a candy thermometer can help ensure the brittle mixture reaches the right temperature to get that signature crack.
Baking soda creates small air bubbles in brittle, giving it a little extra crunchy texture.
If your peanut brittle is bitter, it could be because the sugar got burnt while cooking. If it reaches above 350F, it will likely have a burnt and bitter flavor.
More no bake dessert recipes
Peanut Brittle Recipe
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Add the sugar to a large saucepan or skillet over medium heat. Let the sugar melt, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Continue doing this until it turns into caramel syrup.
- Once the sugar has completely melted, add the butter and mix until fully incorporated. Stir through the peanuts.
- Transfer the peanut brittle mixture onto the lined sheet and spread out using a rubber spatula.
- Refrigerate it for at least an hour to firm up. Once firm, break it apart into bite sized pieces.
Recipe originally posted December 2019, but updated to include new information and new photos for your benefit.
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