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chocolate-covered salted peanut caramel cups

A while back, I was invited to do a hands-on candy-making class in Salt Lake City. As usual, I arrived way-too-early, because I’m like that (to make sure I’m ready), and when the doors opened, in walked in all the participants.

Shortly after I demonstrated a few things we were going to make, everyone got to work and I started mingling with the participants. I walked around making sure everyone was okay and most of the women seemed to have a pretty good handle on things. In fact, they had a great handle on things, and were wielding their candy thermometers and dipping forks like pros. When I expressed my amazement at what a great job everyone was doing, one woman spoke up; “We’re Mormons, David, of course we’re good at making candy…we’re don’t have any other vices!”

chocolate-covered cups

It was pretty hilarious—that is, until things started going wrong.

All my carefully-written recipes were coming out a bit screwy; syrups weren’t thickening right and oven temperatures weren’t corresponding with what I’d tested (and re-tested) at home. Then someone told me what they all assumed was obvious: “We’re at high-altitude up here in Salt Lake City, y’know.”

In the end, all went well and we had a great time. And me and the Mormon women spent the rest of the day sucking on lollipops together and dreaming of sipping a good cup of coffee. Actually, I don’t know what they were dreaming of. But that much-needed cup of coffee was certainly on my list. (I think things have changed since then.)

chocolate-covered salted peanut caramel cups

So when I was rifling through my refrigerator, perhaps with good intentions of purging it of all the odds-and-ends jammed in the back. I found a little container of salted peanut caramel leftover from when I made Peanut Butter Cookies. I took a taste, and it was still excellent, so decided to use it up once and for all. Lord (or whoever the Mormons worship) knows what else is back there, and I hope to get around to the rest of those anonymous containers sometime soon.

chocolate-covered salted peanut caramel cups

I melted down some dark chocolate, spooned some into little baking cups, and once the chocolate set, filled them with a dab of the filling, then sealed their fate with more chocolate and a few grains of flaky salt.

chocolate-covered salted peanut caramel cups

Whether you’re an experienced candy-maker, or not, this is one of the simplest things you can make. There’s no need for thermometers, pastry bags, or any fancy equipment. And there’s no need to pray for success since it’s pretty much ensured. Whether here on the ground, or 4723 feet above sea level.

Chocolate-Covered Salted Peanut Caramel Cups

This recipe is adaptable to any relatively thick caramel filling. Dulce de leche would work, and some folks fill these with peanut butter. (See links, below.) Don’t melt down chocolate chips, which are formulated to hold their shape when heated, and you’ll find the chocolate too sludgy to work with. Depending on the size of the cups, and how generous you are, you may get a few more, or a few less, than indicated.
Course Dessert
  • 12 ounces (340g) bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
  • 1/2 cup (125g), salted peanut caramel
  • Fleur de sel, or another flaky sea salt
  • In a clean, dry bowl set over simmering water (or in a microwave), melt the chocolate until smooth.
  • Put a dab of the chocolate about the size of a shelled hazelnut in the bottom of a small paper baking cup.
  • Use a small spoon, or a brush, to move the chocolate around and coat the bottom and sides with an even layer of chocolate. Chill the cups to firm up the chocolate.
  • Once firm, in each cup, put a bit of the salted peanut filling, enough so that it will reach about 2/3rds of the way to the top of the cup. (Don’t have to stress to much about exact amounts; it’s candy and it supposed to be fun to make.)
  • Depending on how soft the filling is, rap the sheet of cups on a folded kitchen towel to level the tops. If the filling is too thick, use a spoon to smooth out the filling.
  • Add enough chocolate to cover the filling, and once again, rap the sheet on the countertop to level to tops and enclose the filling.
  • 7. Sprinkle with flaky sea salt, such as fleur de sel.
  • Chill until firm.


Store the cups in the refrigerator until about thirty minutes before ready to serve. They’ll keep for about two weeks in the refrigerator. They can also be frozen.
Note: Left at room temperature for a few hours or more, the chocolate can “bloom.” To avoid that, you may wish to temper the chocolate, which isn’t necessary if you store them in the refrigerator and take them out shortly before serving.
Variation: Use milk chocolate instead of the bittersweet or semisweet chocolate.

Related Recipes

Triple Chocolate Scotcheroos

Homemade Peanut Butter Cups (Baking Bites)

Peanut Butter Cookies with Salted Butter Caramel

Crispy Peanut Butter Cups (Café Johnsonia)

Candied Peanuts

Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch)

Peanut Butter Cups (Have Cake Will Travel)

Peanut Butter Cups (Culinary in the Country)

Altoid Brownies

White Chocolate Rice Krispy Treats



    • Spycandy

    These look amazing! I have to try making these

    • The Scootabaker

    I have to say, the only candy I’ve ever made was buckeyes. Good and all, but man, think of all the possibilities with this recipe. Maybe I could switch it up and make peanut butter cups? Nah, I like what you got going on here! I have to say, I’d be lazy if I didn’t at least try to make these. Only 3 friggin’ ingredients!
    Oh, and I have to tell you I just got an ice cream maker and totally plan on making some absinthe ice cream! Hello!


    • Kamran Siddiqi

    I really hope that mormon lady didn’t say: “We’re Mormons, David, of course we’re good at making candy…we’re don’t have any other vices!”

    Anyway great recipe. I can’t wait to try it.

    • Whitney

    I really wish I had a handful of these right now. YUM.

    BTW. I started The Sweet Life in Paris last night and have already laughed out loud 4 times. It is incredibly well written and I just wanted to let you know that you did a really great job.

    Thanks! Am glad I gave you a good chuckle : ) -dl

    • meleyna

    As always David, you brought a chuckle to my morning. These look fantastic. I suppose I could make them for my ungrateful peanut butter chocolate loving boyfriend, but why? After his underappreciate birthday cake, I’m keeping these all to myself. (When they’re all gone and I’m all hips, he’ll have no one to blame but himself.)

    • Jen

    OUCH! i hit my head on the monitor when I tried to move in to take a bite!! that looks amazing!! and it even looks easy enough for ME to do!!

    • Edd

    Boy these look good adding these straight to my list

    • Miriam/The winter guest

    This is so easy I can’t believe it, I definitely must try it some time!

    • Joana

    OMG!!!! This is totally my kind of recipe! Delicious and super easy!!!
    Thank you!
    I’ll try it… right now! :-)

    • Sarah

    Wowza, those look decadent. Like a childhood candy all grown up. I just can’t make candy in the summer. It’s too humid and hot here for such a rich treat. I’ll give them a go this Fall. Do you think adding a layer (a small dollup) of peanut butter after the chocolate sets would be OK? Then add the salted peanut caramel… Maybe that would be WAY too much?

    I’m making a mixed Persian Lime Sherbet for a dinner party tomorrow night. Furst time, any suggestions?

    • Nikki Soppelsa

    I click on the salted peanut caramel link…and there are THOSE cookies staring me in the face once again! 50 cookies you say and 25 cups?
    As a solo spirit who wants (& will) to make both…once again, I AM afraid.

    Books on how Paris women (& cats) stay slim all around me and I still don’t get it! …maybe this is why scarves are wrapped and wrapped around one’s neck not matter the season.

    btw, I like the less tidy version pic’d on these cups…a more homemade look, plus one gets a glimpse of what is inside.

    • nicole

    These look … divine. And I must thank you for consistently posting recipes for things that are do-able for the less experienced among us but that are still decadent, delicious, and beautiful. Much appreciated! Merci, merci :)

    • Susan

    Oh, these look so good. I make a caramel sauce that is similar to the one in this recipe but calls for a combination of butter and heavy cream. It has the same combined amount as the total amount of heavy cream in the caramel of the cookie recipe. I can scoop my sauce. and spread it, but it has to be heated to pour it. Would that work in this candy or would the butter in the caramel make the peanuts hard to combine because of the oils?

    • Katie

    What a funny post :)

    They look amazing, I must give them a try!!

    Katie xox

    • Tone Victoria

    What a fantastic post!

    And haha, despite not being a Christian, as well as Mormons being few and far between here, I do recognise the thing about devoted Christians having a sweet tooth.

    I have no idea what such things are like in other countries, but in Norway, whether you work for the state or for a company, whether you are a member of some kind of organisation or not, the thing is, at some point, you will inevitably be invited to a seminar in a remote hotel, with everything included. And in the afternoon, after dinner (which often takes place at 4 or 5 in Norway), there will be cake. And not just SOME cake. Hell, no. There will be a LARGE table packed with cake (none of which will be particularly nice, but this doesn’t really matter). Such is life in remote Norwegian hotels.

    And finally I am getting to the point :P Hotel owners repeatedly complain about Christian/religious organisations, as they usually eat about twice as much cake as any other workplace/organisation.

    (Which is of course, in my opinion, partially due to these congregations’/organisations’ alcohol ban.)

    I still don’t know what things are like elsewhere, but in Norway, Christianity is really linked with cake. And in particular with the kinds of cake that are called ‘cake’ in French. And so I wouldn’t be the least surprised if it turned out that Norwegian Christians are on average fatter than other Norwegians.

    • Betsy

    I’ve never made candy, but always wanted to. I think this is all the convincing I need. You had me at that chocolate drip over in the first photo. Mmmm…

    • pamela

    Wow…that is simply and utterly amazing! I would love to have some of those, any time, any where!

    • chocolatechic

    Must. make. these. soon. or I will have to eat my computer screen.

    • Lindsay

    Oh sorry, that was just my saliva drooling onto the keyboard.
    Thanks for this post. It completed my weekend.

    • Gina

    Oh. my. gawd. With treats like this, who needs any other vices?

    • Emily

    Oh Yummmm. Now that’s what I call Big Love!

    • Alta

    wow. you know, dark chocolate is my second favorite sweet, second only to salted caramel. And if they can be together? Heaven. Thanks for sharing!

    • Margie

    These look so lovely, so yummy, so sinful and are NOT on my soon-to-try list because I’m sure I couldn’t stop at just one, or two, three,…….

    sniff, sniff, sniff

    • Carambola

    As a devout Mormon woman, I am still laughing out loud at this post! I can just picture it…. Thanks for the beautiful pictures, fabulous recipe and the great story!

    • charlotte s

    OMG! these look AMAZING!!!

    • Kelly-Jane

    Goodness me! They look so good, I would also love to have a plate of those before me now. Mind you it’s maybe good I haven’t because it’s only breakfast time – and I’d probaly eat most of them. Your last picture there just shouts ‘eat me’ .

    • Deborah

    I found your post not only tempting but interesting – especially the part where you describe your equipment acting differently because of the high altitude in Salt Lake City.

    I have been to Salt Lake City many times over this past year, since one of my close friends took a temporary job there. While visiting, I made chocolate chip cookies for him and his roommates – coincidentally, YOUR chocolate chip cookie recipe. It was only after taking them out of the oven that I realized that I was at a much higher elevation than I normally am (I live near Philadelphia), so it surprised me that the cookies turned out just fine.

    Then again, this was a cheap electric oven, so who knows what temperature these suckers were actually baking at.

    (By the way, the boys raved about those cookies – after they had inhaled an entire batch in about 2 hours. Great recipe!)

    • Aunt LoLo

    BWAHAHAHA…first off, I loved that ladies comment about having “no other vices.” (I’d have to disagree – as a Mormon Woman..I’d say Twilight ranks pretty high as a vice, but nobody will admit to it. ;-))

    Glad the candy class turned out alright in the end!! I’ve never cooked at high altitudes…but it might explain why my SLC’s MIL’s pancakes never turn out as good as mine. I don’t think I’m going to tell her about this. I’d rather keep the superior pancakes, thankyouverymuch.

    • lisaiscooking

    Now I want candy for breakfast. And, I want it to be this candy.

    • dana joy altman

    a candy recipe without thermometers and other special tools! totally going for it. thanks, David, I can tell these will impress.

    • chef gui

    this looks great, David. particularly like the photos. thanks.

    • Sara

    This looks delicious!

    • baobabs

    YUMS!!!! This looks SUPER!

    • Erin

    That cursed altitude will get you every time! Those look amazing.

    • Angie

    If chocolate chips are the only chocolate I have in my house, can I just add vanilla extract to prevent them from getting “too sludgy” in the heating process? Normally dark chocolate doesn’t stick around my house long enough to be put into a recipe :)

    • david

    Angie: No, because the small amount of extract can cause the chocolate to seize. You could add cocoa butter, although most people don’t have that at home, so vegetable shortening is one substitute that people use. I can’t give exact amounts (since I don’t have any in my kitchen), but try around 1 tablespoon and see if that makes the chocolate more fluid.

    (Some home candymakers use Paramount crystals to make chocolate more fluid, too.)

    • Juliana

    Oh man, I wish I’d been there! The funny thing about the woman’s remark is that it’s TOTALLY true! As a Mormon (and Christian;) woman, I can’t drown my sorrows in alcohol so I have to drown them in chocolate! I’m seriously trying to overcome THAT vice now! Classic. Looks delicious.

    • Joana

    Hey again! My Chocolate-Covered Salted Peanut Caramel Cups came out perfect! I’m pretty amazed…(since my kitchen’s talent sucks )
    So, thank you so much, David!

    Keep on blogging!

    • amy

    *licks lips*

    • Lucy

    Oh la. I think I need a batch of these.

    • Donna Adams

    Bonjour David,

    Just made your “Salted Butter Caramel Sauce” and it came out Perfect!!! I love your recipes… Sweet thing!!!

    Merci beaucoup!!!

    • Dorothy

    You did a candy-making class in Salt Lake? How did I miss this?

    • Jeffrey C

    Holy, mother of all confectionaries.

    I. Will. Resist.
    I. Will. Resist.

    My trainer would make me write this 100 times minimum to avoid eating an entire pan of these if I make them.

    • Erica

    It’s hard to think about chocolate right now with Seattle at 100 degrees, but I love the technique! Thanks for sharing.

    • Eralda

    Mmmm…that looks delicious! What an easy candy, I can’t believe it.

    • Eralda

    Mmmm…that looks delicious! What an easy candy, I can’t believe it.

    • Julia @ Mélanger

    I really need to get myself across this chocolate and salted-caramel action! Looks amazing…..

    • Martha in Kansas

    Oh David, you naughty, naughty boy to post these decadent chocolates. I’m laughing my way through your new Paris book & enjoying it. I can just picture you dodging buses after enjoying a cup of that sinful hot chocolate. And making ice cream in your bedroom! lmao

    • Sue

    The peanutty caramel filling with a bit of salt paired with the decadent looking chocolate has me wanting one of these!
    I’m surprised that the caramel kept since last December. (Yes, I went back and read the post for the Peanut Butter Cookies.) Good to know!

    • Judith in Umbria

    I beg and plead for posts about sweetbreads and brains, and I get more candy. Lord help me, because you don’t.

    • Deborah

    Great story and recipe. Now to see what treasures are lurking in the depths of my fridge!

    • ageekymom

    Rats! I made the peanut butter cookies last December and eventually ended up tossing the salted peanut caramel because I didn’t think I’d have a use for it! These would have been perfect!

    • maria

    hey David: I was wondering if you can tell me about the Marais a little. Is it a nice area? Where are some good eats, and so on? Thanks,

    p.s put some honey on the fresh ricotta and a little lavender, yum

    • Steven

    David – I’ve been looking for a fun and “easy” candy recipe to make with my kids, and I think this might just be the one. Asking them to temper chocolate would probably cost me a limb. Thanks.

    • Beth

    Wow! I’ve been on a salted caramel kick since I made your salted butter caramel ice cream last week (Yum! Didn’t last long!). To combine with chocolate = sheer joy. I live at over 9000 ft altitude and when I made your caramel ice cream, I didn’t need to bother with the thermometer because your instructions are so thorough (and included photos!) that I can do it by feel rather than measurements – which tend to be different way up here. Keep up the good work!

    • Rosemildo Sales Furtado

    Olá amigo! O teu espaço é muito bonito e tem belas fotos, porém se colocasses um tradutor, ficaria melhor para entender e comentar.



    • Celeste

    Please excuse me while I wipe the drool from my chin…LOL…these look AMAZING!!!

    • Nancy


    Just catching up on your scrumptious blog while drinking a much needed glass of wine (been teaching a bunch of teenagers how to bake all day). I teach cooking in Denver, Colorado – the MILE HIGH CITY. As a result of my quest for perfection, ahem, I have done some research into candy making at high altitude. When cooking sugar syrups I use the following rule:

    For every 500 feet above sea level, decrease the final temperature by one degree. If for instance, you are at an altitude of 5000 feet, and the recipe calls for cooking to 234° F., cook it to 224° F.

    I have had great luck with this method.

    Thanks for your great inspiration/photos/humor etc. etc. Love reading anything you write!

    • Julie

    Wow. Some things are just worth an hour on the elliptical trainer for.

    • rebecca

    i made both the salted peanut caramel and dulce de leche versions last night with askinosie’s dark milk 52% + fleur de sel bar…


    • Nan

    As a former Utahan and still a Mormon woman I can vouch for the vices comment…unless you count big hair (Texas woman have NOTHING on Utah Mormon women!), fake breasts (there are more implants done in little ol’ SLC than La-La-Land!) and sex (which is why most Mormon women have a zillion kids!) I’m one of the exceptions…little hair, real breasts and two kids..I’ll admit to having a few vices myself…sugar, butter and chocolate…I like to think of them as the Holy Trinity. Thanks for a great recipe David! xo, Nan

    • David

    Nan: Well, another vice you have is cracking me up. Thanks for the laugh : D

    • Kathleen

    Made them, ate them, and WOW, they are good.

    • Jennifer

    Love Love Love your Sweet Life book – just finished it. I am an American living in Bermuda and found humor and sympathized with some of the cultural differneces you found in Paris – like customer service. Great book!

    • msgoodygal

    Did what Kathleen did above me, and I agree with her TOTALLY.

    • Dessert Darling

    These look absolutely insane and I love that you say they’re “simple” to make. Hmm, we’ll see about that!

    • Kathie

    This looks like heaven!


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