Easy beer peanut brittle recipe – a soft candy and a hard candy version – make one or both.
- Go straight to the Recipe Card or
- Read on for relevant tips (1 min)
Our beer peanut brittle is so easy to make that you can whip it up in to time and without prior brittle making experience. You can go for a soft candy or hard candy version by following the same recipe and you can influence the overall flavor by altering the style of beer you use. The taste will not change dramatically, there is simply too much sugar involved in the process of making brittle, but the stronger and more unique the predominant flavor of the beer of your choice, the more you will notice a difference in the end results.
When tastefully presented in a plastic treat bag or box beer peanut brittle makes a great gift around the holidays or at any time really. Perhaps supplemented with a bottle of barrel aged ale or a six-pack of the recipients’ favorite brew.
You Will Need
As mentioned above, for either version the ingredients and quantities needed are exactly the same. If you do not have something handy, feel free to use the suggested substitute.
- Beer. Our favorite ingredient, see notes below for styles to consider. In the examples for this post we used a middle of the road stout (hard crack version) and a nutty brown ale (in the soft crack version).
- Sugar. Simply fine cane sugar.
- Maple syrup. While most recipes for brittle call for corn syrup using maple syrup results in far superior flavor. If you do not have any substitute with agave syrup or corn syrup.
- Coconut oil. Choose one with neutral flavor (not sweetened). If you do not have any on hand substitute with unsalted butter.
- Peanuts. You can use unsalted or salted, your choice. If you want to use different nuts such as pecans or cashews, they will work great too.
- Salt salt. A bit of kosher salt for the candy mixture and some to use as finishing salt (optional, but does accentuate the sweetness of the brittle).
- You will need a candy (or food) thermometer and a parchment paper lined sheet pan or silicone mat.
What Beer to Select
We recommend that you consider ales or lagers with pronounced malty character and lightly to moderately bittered (unless you are specifically trying to weave in hoppy bitterness). To that end all manner of amber ales or lagers, brown ales, German dark lagers such as bock, doppelbock and schwarzbier, porters and stouts.
Process & Soft Candy Vs Hard Candy Peanut Brittle
- Prep. Measure out your ingredients and prepare a parchment paper lined sheet pan or generously sized silicone mat onto which to pour the candy. Have a wooden spatula handy to spread it out so it dries thinner.
- Cook. In a pan over medium heat combine the beer, sugar, salt, maple syrup and coconut oil. Stir until the mixture begins to simmer. Use a candy or food thermometer to monitor the temperature so you will know when to pull the mixture away from the heat (see below for precise temps). Stir in the peanuts immediately after you pull out the mixture from the heat source.
- Cool down. As soon as you stir the peanuts into the candy pour the mixture over the prepared surface and gently spread it with a spatula to even it out. Sprinkle with kosher or other finishing salt if desired. Let cool down completely, then crack into pieces.
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- 1 cup beer (such as porter, stout or brown ale*)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup maple syrup**
- 1/3 cup coconut oil (neutral, not sweetened)***
- 1 cup peanuts (salted or unsalted)
- 1/4 tsp salt + more to sprinkle over cooked brittle layer before letting it cool down (optional)
- Combine the beer, sugar, maple syrup, salt and coconut oil in a pan. Over medium heat, stir well until the mixture begins to simmer.
- Keep stirring occasionally as you monitor the temperature with a food thermometer.
- In about 10-15 minutes the food thermometer will begin to register a more rapid increase in temperature. The pace of increase will continue to pick up.
- Be prepared to stir in the peanuts and swiftly remove from the stove as soon as your target temperature is registered. For soft crack candy remove from heat when sugar mixture reaches a temperature of 270°- 280° F. For hard crack candy wait until the sugar mixture reaches 300°- 310° F.
- Immediately stir in the peanuts and pour the brittle mixture over a parchment paper lined sheet pan or silicone mat and spread around with a wooden spoon to form an even layer. If desired sprinkle with some finishing salt.
- Let cool down completely before cracking into pieces.
*See post for more tips on beer.
**You can substitute with agave or corn syrup.
***You can substitute with unsalted butter.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 10 Serving Size: 1 grams
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 265Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 120mgCarbohydrates: 31gFiber: 1gSugar: 27gProtein: 4g