If you’ve ever wished there was a day just to celebrate caramel, your wish has been granted. The candy gods (or someone who just really loved caramel) made April 5th National Caramel Day in the U.S..
All about caramel
Lots of people love caramel, but they might not know what makes this treat so lovable. “Caramel” generally refers to cooked sugar, and you can “caramelize” things like fruits and nuts by coating them in sugar and heating them. For centuries candies have been made from cooked sugar and water, but then dairy came on the scene and changed the caramel game forever.
Popular since the mid-1800s, the kind of caramel most common in candies today is made from combining milk and fat with the heated sugar to create the rich, chewy form of caramel we know and love.
Now that you’ve learned a little about the history of caramel, how should you spend April 5th? Eating this delectable treat in as many forms as possible, of course! Candy Club is here to help you out with a list of caramel candies perfect for celebrating this sweet holiday.
1. Chocolatey Caramelcorn
What’s better than classic caramel corn? Caramel corn with chocolate! Sweet, salty, and crunchy in perfect proportion, a cup of Candy Club’s Chocolatey Caramelcorn will take your National Caramel Day to the next level and beyond. Chocolate caramel lovers, this is the treat for you.
2. Dark Chocolate Mini Mels
Here’s another one for those who just can’t get enough of the chocolate-caramel combo. Order a cup or two of Dark Chocolate Mini Mels and get ready to be ushered into chocolate-caramel heaven: mini bites of melt-in-your-mouth dark chocolate filled with decadent caramel centers. Everybody will want a piece of this caramel candy, but be warned – you might not want to share!
3. Nutty Caramel Clusters
Yep, that’s right. Chocolate, caramel, and peanuts – basically everything that makes American candy special. Candy Club’s Nutty Caramel Clusters bring together the smooth richness of milk chocolate with the saltiness and crunch of peanuts, sealed with a layer of sweet, chewy caramel you won’t be able to resist. Of course, caramel doesn’t need any help to shine – but a little variety packed into one decadent treat can’t hurt!
4. Hopjes Coffee Bits
If your go-to coffee order contains some kind of caramel (looking at you, Caramel Macchiato lovers), this is the caramel candy for you. These traditional Dutch hard candies taste just like a cup of freshly brewed coffee with a spoonful of rich caramel stirred in.
For those who like to celebrate by putting a twist on a classic, a cup of Hopjes Coffee Bits is the perfect way to celebrate National Caramel Day – especially when it’s time for that afternoon pick-me-up!
Bonus: Make your own caramel!
For those with a DIY spirit, National Caramel Day is the perfect day to try your hand at making your own caramel. Whether you’re a novice candy maker or an expert, it’s always fun to get a little messy in the kitchen – especially when the end result is sweet treats. Grab some sugar, a heavy bottomed pan, a candy thermometer, and a trusty caramel candy recipe and you’re ready to go.
This recipe from Insider provides a great overview of how to make three different types of caramel: caramel sauce, chewy caramel candies, and hard caramel candies. No matter your caramel preferences, you’ll find everything you need. To make National Caramel Day really worth your while, enlist the help of your kids and give them a sweet lesson in the science of sugar.
Tips for making your own caramel:
- Caramel can be made “dry” or “wet”. The wet method involves adding water to the sugar as it heats in the pan, but both methods have similar results. Refer to the Insider recipe for more information on each method.
- Chewy caramel candies require milk fat (typically heavy cream).
- In addition to sugar and heavy cream if making chewy candies, make sure to stock up on butter and salt.
- Grab some parchment paper if you’ll be making individual candies (as opposed to sauce).
- Caramel sauce is a versatile treat that can be used on anything from caramel popcorn and caramel apples to ice cream sundaes and baked goods.
- The trickiest part of making caramel candy is being precise with the temperature and avoiding uneven browning. This isn’t the kind of treat you can set on the stove and forget about. But with patience and careful attention, you can achieve the DIY caramel candies of your dreams!
Celebrate with Candy Club
No matter what holiday or occasion, Candy Club is here to help you make the day as sweet as can be. From major calendar events like Easter and Halloween to those personal special days you share with your friends and loved ones, our candy cups are meant to be passed around and enjoyed in good company. Check out our full selection and see if you don’t find your next favorite candy!