Peanut butter nougat layered overtop of caramel stuffed with salted peanuts. It's a peanut butter chocolate dreamland. If you are looking for more of this delicious combination, try these double stuffed peanut butter cups.
People have asked me, "Do you really post the actual recipes of items you sell?"
Yes. Yes I do. Why not? If people want to make it, they should! If they want to buy it, great. This candy business of mine is 100% a passion. I love sharing how to make candy, I love sharing candy I've made with people, it all truly fills me with joy.
If you've bought these from me, thank you. If you are going to make them, I hope you love them! Feel free to reach out if you have any questions.
This page has TWO recipes on it. One for the caramel and one for the nougat. If you are making these into candy bars, you'll need around 3 pounds of chocolate for dipping.
Make the caramel, layer it with peanut butter nougat.
- Make caramel. Let it cool at least 6 hours. It needs to cool for 24 hours before cutting the bars. I like to let it rest overnight because then I also get to rest and don't get overwhelmed from a long candy making process.
- Make nougat. Layer it directly on top of the caramel.
- The candy has to rest again before cutting to let the nougat grain. Minimum time: 12 hours. 24 hours is better.
- Cut bars. Mine are cut into 1" width x 3" length.
- Bottom bars.
- Fully dip in chocolate.
Let's talk temperature.
This caramel is cooked. to 240F. Yes, you need to use a candy thermometer. No, there is no exact time you can be given instead. When you are cooking, it will feel like going from 220F - 230F is taking forever. You might think your thermometer is broken. You might even go look for another thermometer to double check the temperature.
Just don't give up. 220F - 230F is where most of the water from the evaporated milk and cream is being driven off. After that, you're getting into controlling the caramel to end on a temperature that makes it the perfect texture for candy bars.
Be careful between 230F - 240F. It goes A LOT faster than the previous ten degrees, and you don't want to miss your end point.
What is graining?
Graining refers to if the nougat has crystallized or not. Some nougat recipes intentionally induce graining (sugar crystallization). This makes a short, tender texture. When you pull the candy bar apart, the nougat will have a clear break in it that doesn't leave long strings hanging when you separate the two sides.
Graining can be visualized by thinking about making iced tea. When you add sugar to hot tea, it dissolves. If you add A LOT of sugar, you'll end up with a super saturated tea. It might still dissolve, but once the tea cools you'll have sugar at the bottom of the glass. This concept is similar when graining nougat.
Powdered sugar is added to hot nougat. It dissolves, but once the nougat cools the sugar recrystallizes in very small particles that are literally trapped by the other ingredients.
What happens if you don't grain nougat? Sometimes I don't! The texture will be very soft, silky, and it will flow a lot. It is harder to cut and dip in chocolate because of the nougat not holding it's shape after cutting.
Why do I bottom the bars?
Bottom the bars makes it easier to fully dip them in chocolate because your dipping fork will slide off easier from a pre-bottomed piece. It also makes a thicker layer of chocolate on the bottom of the cookie, extending the shelf life by leaving none of it exposed to air.
- When you bottom a bar, pick it up in the middle with your thumb and pointer finger.
- Dip it in chocolate. Run it along a spatula to remove excess chocolate.
- Place on parchment paper.
- Once set up, trim chocolate that has pooled along sides to give a nice, clean line finish of the bar.
Equipment needed for peanut butter nougat caramel bars
- heavy duty thick bottomed pot. This one is my favorite.
- high heat spatula
- candy thermometer
- two identical 12 x 17" sheet pans. They sides should be around 1" high.
- parchment paper
- 5 qt. planetary mixer
Ingredients- peanut butter nougat
- Corn Syrup
- Egg Whites
- Peanut Butter
- Evaporated Milk
- Heavy Cream
- Corn Syrup
Ingredients - chocolate
When dipping items in chocolate, it's important to not use chocolate chips. Chocolate chips are made to hold their shape and the chocolate is very thick when melted. If you are not confident in tempering, I recommend using the Ghirardelli candy wafers. These are "melt and dip." Ghirardelli candy wafers can be found in the baking supply aisle. If you do want to use real chocolate and temper it, I recommend Barry Callebaut callets with a medium - high viscosity.
Cutting, Bottoming, and Dipping
- After the nougat has rested for minimum of 12 hours, cut bars into desired shape. I recommend 1" width x 3" length.
- Melt and temper chocolate. Bottom the bars by dipping just the bottom side into chocolate. Run it lightly along a spatula to remove excess chocolate. Place on parchment paper.
- After bottoming all the bars, use a sharp knife to run along the long sides of the bars. This cleans up the edges and makes sure bars are not too wide.
- Melt and temper additional chocolate. Fully dip bars. Place on parchment paper until firm. Do not refrigerate.
Bars can be stored in an airtight container or packaging for 3 months at normal room temperature. Alternatively, they can be frozen for 12 months.
Salted Peanut Caramel
- thick bottomed heavy duty pot see link above for recommended pot
- high heat spatula or wooden spoon
- 680 grams Evaporated Milk 2 , 12 ounce cans
- 280 grams heavy cream
- 200 grams unsalted butter
- 680 grams sugar
- 570 grams standard corn syrup
- 2 grams salt
- 300 grams cocktail peanuts
- Line your 12 x 17 " sheet pan with parchment paper, leaving 3" of overhang on each of the short sides. Set aside.
- In your heavy duty, thick bottomed pot, combine all ingredients except for cocktail peanuts.
- Over medium heat, stirring constantly, heat until butter has melted and sugar has dissolved. Continue heating and stirring over medium heat until liquid comes to a boil.
- Increase heat to medium high. Continue stirring the whole time. Do not stop stirring. It does not need to be vigorous, just constant.
- Cook until final temperature reaches 240F. Between 220F and 230F, you're going to wonder if the thermometer is broken. It isn't. Keep going. Be careful from 230F- 240F, this is where the temperature increases QUICKLY and you don't want to overshoot. Turn off heat. Pour caramel into prepared baking sheet.
- Cool uncovered for 30 minutes. Cover with an additional sheet of parchment so no caramel is showing. Allow caramel to set up for a minimum of 4 hours before layering it with nougat.
Peanut Butter Nougat
Egg White Meringue
- 60 grams egg whites (2 large eggs)
- 100 grams corn syrup
- 670 grams corn syrup
- 580 grams sugar
- 180 grams water
Flavors and Graining Sugars
- 3 grams vanilla bean paste vanilla extract can be used
- 400 grams creamy peanut butter
- 160 grams powdered sugar sifted
- 150 grams peanuts
- 16 ounces chocolate for dipping
- Sift powdered sugar, set aside.
- Heat peanut butter until fluid in microwave or over a water bath, set aside.
- In a 5 quart stand mixer, combine 100 grams of corn syrup, and egg whites.. Mix until combined but do not whip.
- Combine 580 grams of sugar, 670 grams of corn syrup, and 180 grams of water in a thick bottomed, heavy duty pot. Begin cooking over high heat.
- When sugar reaches 234F, begin whipping egg whites on high. Continue cooking syrup until temperature reaches 252F. Remove from heat.
Making the Nougat
- Slowly stream hot syrup into egg whites while whipping. Continue whipping for four more minutes after all syrup has been added.
- After 4 minutes, turn mixture to low.
- Add in powdered sugar, vanilla, and peanut butter and mix until combined.
- IF YOU ARE JUST MAKING NOUGAT:
- Spread on oiled parchment in a 9 x 13 sheet pan or baking dish. Top with peanuts if desired, pressing them with gentle pressure into the nougat. Cover when cooled slightly with parchment and let sit 12 hours or overnight.
- Cut into 1.5 " x 3 " rectangles. Dip in chocolate if desired.
- IF YOU ARE LAYERING FOR PB DREAM CARAMEL CANDY BARS:
- Layer nougat directly on top of the caramel. Spread into an even layer. Top with a sheet of oiled parchment paper. Cover and let sit 12 hours or overnight before cutting.