Vegan Peanut "Brittle"
This easier take on peanut brittle involves no candy thermometers and doesn’t go on the stove top once. And it skips animal products and processed sugars entirely (no corn syrup!) for a 5-ingredient treat that comes together in 30 minutes.
I loved nuttle brittles growing up, although they weren’t something I associated with holidays, as they were for many. In my family, we got all sorts of nut-based treats – brittle, fudge, and salted and sweet-roasted nuts in giant bags – whenever we went to Renfroe’s Pecans in Pensacola, Florida. The Renfroes were my grandmother’s neighbors, and their grandkids and I grew up playing together over the summers. Their nut store on Fairfield Drive (still there and thriving today!) was always worth a visit.
Living in Paris now for the time being, I find myself craving the nuts that are so ubiquitous in America – pecans and peanuts. And I wanted to make a peanut-based treat after I was reading about the carbon footprints of various nuts, and learned that peanuts are super low-impact because, unlike tree nuts, they’re technically a legume.
So peanut brittle it was. But I didn’t want to use animal products, and I didn’t want to use corn syrups (nor could I easily find the latter at my neighborhood Franprix). If you’re willing to skip the caramelization process that the corn syrup typically enables, you can make much healthier peanut “brittle” with a minimum of prep, fuss, and ingredients. All you really need is peanuts (salted or unsalted), peanut butter, baking powder, and honey or maple syrup (and salt, if your peanuts came unsalted).
I take a bite of this quick-bake peanut brittle and I might as well be road-tripping around the South. Just the holiday escape I need when the clouds hang low over Paris. (Although really it’s quite magical and cozy here in all weather.)
Recipe: Vegan Peanut "Brittle"
Serves 2-4 as a party snack (or Netflix snack)
Time: 30 minutes (10 for prep, 20 for baking)
Can easily be doubled or tripled for a family-sized batch
- 100g roasted peanuts (raw is ok too–you’ll just toast them)
- 40g honey (can substitute maple syrup)
- 17g peanut butter
- 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
- Preheat oven to 350F/180C. If you’re using raw peanuts, place on a baking tray and roast 8 minutes until fragrant and beginning to turn golden brown.
- Meanwhile, mix honey, peanut butter, and baking powder in a medium-sized mixing bowl (you’ll be adding the peanuts next, so be sure the bowl is big enough).
- Once nuts have roasted, remove tray from oven and let cool a few minutes. Chop nuts roughly on a cutting board until they’re in small pieces (this’ll help the brittle stick together better).
- Add nuts to mixing bowl with honey-blend, and mix to incorporate and coat peanuts completely.
- Spread in a flat circle on a parchment paper-lined baking tray, and bake at 350F/180C for 8-12 minutes, or until beginning to turn medium brown at the edges.
- Remove from oven and allow to cool completely (30min-1 hour) before breaking into pieces and serving – or store in an airtight container for snacking.