Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Chocolate Toffee Bark - Saltine Cracker Candy

Saltine crackers, spread with a boiled brown sugar and butter sauce, then topped with chocolate, sometimes called Christmas Crack or Crack because they are downright addictive. Scatter some finely chopped nuts on top if you like!

Saltine Cracker Candy

Chocolate Toffee Bark or Saltine Cracker Candy as it's known, is truly one of my most favorite chocolate treats. Trisha Yearwood's family calls it crack and some people have taken to calling it Christmas Crack around the holidays - but geez, associating those two words together well, that just seems so wrong on so many levels.

Yes, it's true - it's a very addictive cookie treat - and so super easy to throw together, and made out of, all things ... plain ole saltine crackers! Who knew? It's mostly known across the net as Saltine Cracker Candy or sometimes Fool's Toffee, but I decided to rename it Chocolate Toffee Bark because that is the taste it reminds me of, kinda like a Heath bar.

Here's how to make them.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Take a sheet of aluminum foil and put it on a jellyroll pan, turn up the edges of the foil and spray it real good with some non-stick spray. Take a sleeve of regular saltine crackers and spread 'em out on that foil in a single layer. Depending on your brand of saltines, you might need more or less than one sleeve. You can also substitute graham crackers.

Cook up a cup of butter - yes that is 2 sticks - and a cup of brown sugar for a few minutes and pour that evenly on top of the crackers, spread it around with your stirring spoon and stick 'em in a 400 degree F oven to bubble. You can use light or dark - I prefer light.

Break up a bunch of Hershey chocolate bars. You can also substitute chocolate chips, but I love this with the Hershey bars personally and they are super easy to spread - plus I think that they set better than the chocolate chips!

Lay them all over the top of the bubbly cracker toffee yum yum.

As the chocolate begins to melt, take a spatula and spread the chocolate all over the top.

Until you have a big ole tray of gooey chocolate goodness. See how nicely it spreads? Plus those Hershey bars are just downright tasty!

Right now is when you want to add any toppings you like - crushed peanuts, walnuts or pecans are favorites, but coconut, Bits 'O Brickle Toffee Bits and even cooked, and finely crumbled bacon sprinkled on top are all good! I love them just plain myself, but this is a tray I made with half pecan and half pecan, coconut and dried cranberry. The coconut and cranberry are really good over white chocolate for the holidays. Just be sure that you gently press whatever toppings you add into the melted chocolate so that they will set in. Otherwise they'll just fall off.

Let it cool then transfer the tray to the fridge to set.

Carefully cut it into squares.

Enjoy that chocolaty, toffee smeared goodness and marvel that you just created a dessert out of crackers!

Recipe: Saltine Cracker Candy

©From the Kitchen of Deep South Dish
Prep time: 10 min |Cook time: 5 min | Yield: About 4 to 6 servings

  • More or less 1 sleeve of saltines, enough to cover a half sheet jellyroll pan
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) of butter
  • 1 cup of light or dark brown sugar, well packed
  • Multi pack of full size Hershey’s milk chocolate bars, or one (16 ounce) bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Crushed pecans or walnuts, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a half sheet baking pan with foil, turn up the edges to form a tray and spray foil with non-stick cooking spray.

Arrange saltines with the salty side up in the jellyroll pan. In a saucepan, bring the butter and brown sugar up to a boil and cook for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Carefully pour mixture over the crackers and spread it out, evenly coating each cracker. Bake for about 5 minutes until bubbly.

While that is baking, break up the Hershey bars a bit. Remove the crackers and quickly top with the chocolate bars. As they begin to soften and melt, use a spatula to spread the chocolate evenly all across the top. Sprinkle top with chopped nuts or other toppings, if desired, gently pressing the toppings into the melted chocolate so that they set. Be sure that you gently press whatever toppings you add into the melted chocolate so that they will set in. Otherwise they'll just fall off. Set aside to cool in the pan then transfer to the refrigerate to set. Cut into squares.

Optional Toppings: Sprinkle tops of cracker candy with coconut while the chocolate is still warm. Another good topping is to add Hershey's Bits 'O Brickle Toffee Bits sprinkled over the warm chocolate - you'll probably want to use about 6 ounces. May also top with any finely chopped nut - pecans, walnuts, peanuts, whatever you like. Try these with cooked, crumbled bacon sprinkled on top!

Cook's Note: You may also substitute graham crackers for the saltines. Add a pinch of salt to the caramel. I prefer using the Hershey's bars because they have such a smooth, creamy texture and they spread so fast and so well, plus they seem to set better than the chips. You may also use chocolate chips and stick the tray back into the oven for a minute to soften before spreading, or melt them on the stovetop and then pour over the top.

Gluten Free Variation: Gina from over on the Facebook page offered a great way to make these gluten free. Replace the saltines with rice crackers - she likes using the sesame variety - and you have a gluten free cracker candy. Thanks so much Gina!


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©Deep South Dish
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Posted by on November 18, 2009
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  1. I've never made this before but I am it looks good!

  2. Don't you just love these? They are just so incredibly easy and tasty. Thanks for reminding me of them. Come join me for Crock Pot Wednesday whenever you can.

  3. This is one of my favorite recipes that I make for my Christmas cookie trays!! So easy and yummy! My dad especially loves it and can't believe it begins with saltines!!!

  4. I make home made chocolate toffee bars but never this. What an easy and I'm sure delicious candy!

  5. when will I learn not to look at your blog this late at night! Now I'm starving for these!

  6. I've never heard of these. I can't wait to try them. Have you ever tried the ones that use the wafer crackers and you place a split almond on each one and drizzle with a toffee syrup?

  7. wow does this look easy and very impressive looking... Maybe top with just a little coconut... maybe a few cashews... I love these!

  8. So that's how you make those! I've enjoyed eating them, but never made them myself. These look so easy and I know that they taste good...I might have to add them to my cookie list this holiday season.

  9. Reminds me of the ones that you use graham crackers, brown sugar, and pecans. You can't go wrong with chocolate though. Something about salty and sweet. We put M&M's in our popcorn.

  10. Just found your blog through SITS.

    Now I could go for something like this!

    p.s. I grew up in the south...but now I live in NY :(

  11. Those look so good! And so you think I could get away with making these for the cookie exchange I'm participating in next month?

  12. This looks great. It's kind of like a Paula Deen recipe I made last Christmas that is supposed to taste like KitKat bars. I don't know how many batches of that my family went through, but it was amazing. I'm trying yours next.

  13. What a yummy and easy idea. My two little boys are going to love this.

    -Visiting from SITS

  14. ohhhh that looks good! I will have to try that one!

    stopping by from SITS!

  15. Wow, this looks so good, I have heard of this, but have never tasted it. Its perfect for my family, we love that sweet salty goodness.

  16. I'm going to try these with whole wheat crackers so I can pretend they're health food. Yum!

  17. I just made these tonight and they are great!! (I was doing a dry-run for our annual family Christmas cookie baking extravaganza.) Super easy! Mine didn't look as pretty as yours at first, but they are a very forgiving cookie, I think! (I used Walmart brand instead of Hershey chocolate bar and they didn't melt as good. Gonna buy the REAL stuff next time!) Thanks so much for a great recipe!

  18. Hey Rachel! They are sure are good aren't they? I'm not sure about the generic bars, but the Hershey's bars are so creamy and they really melt well. Trouble will be staying out of them now LOL!! Enjoy.

  19. Oh, my. I just made these and They are dee-vine. Now I've got to figure out where to put them so I'll still have some at 7 when our sips and strokes party starts :)

  20. This looks really good! I wonder if I can get away with dark brown sugar instead of the light? It's what I happen to have in the cupboard.

  21. Sure you can! The light is just a lighter flavor but dark will work just fine. Enjoy!

  22. I have a question, I made these according to recipe and they taste fine, but..... the chocolate will not keep a firm consistency at all, even at room temp they are melting....

    1. Hmm... never experienced that! Let's see if we can figure this out. Would you tell me what type & brand of chocolate you used? Once it's melted for pouring and set aside to cool, it should go right back to being solid & shouldn't be melting even at room temperature. It should look just like those first & last pictures with the Hershey bars or regular, semi-sweet chocolate chips. I do refrigerate mine just to speed up the setting process.

  23. Does altitude have amything to do with the chocolate not resetting? I know it affected the way caked and pies are made, maybe she lives in a higher altitude than the deep south? Just and idea, love all ur deserts, my kids are loving being my test dummies, thank you.Lisa Metcalf.

    1. Thanks Lisa! That's possible I guess but I really don't know a thing about higher altitude cooking & can't imagine why the chocolate didn't set. Haven't had that experience. I can say that just looking at these again makes me want some! :)

    2. I live at high altitude and I have never had this problem.

  24. How long will these store? I need to make some for Friday...but am not sure how much time I'll have to make them!

    1. I think about a week in a tightly sealed container at room temperature, as long as the house isn't too hot. Any longer than that I'd refrigerate or freeze them - I've done both!

  25. Thank you for posting this recipe!! My daughter just asked me the other day to make it and now I can!!
    Love all your recipes..... Merry Christmas!!!!!!!

    1. They are SO good Donna - enjoy & Merry Christmas to you and your family!

  26. Can plain sugar be substituted for the dark or light brown sugar and if so, how much? thank you for a quick reply...i need for tomorrow.

    1. Hi Kathryn. The real thing is made with granulated sugar so you could, though you'd have to make sure it reached the correct temperature for toffee so that it sets correctly - I think somewhere between 280 & 300 degrees F.

      This is essentially a shortcut version of toffee and I have never seen it made with granulated sugar. The brown sugar is faster and easier and the crackers make up for the sugar base of the real thing. In other words, if you're going to make it with granulated sugar, I'd just go for the real deal toffee!

  27. I made these tonight....made two batches. I didn't like how the Hershey bars didn't set hard (even in the fridge) and how it softened after I broke them apart. I used Merckens candy melts for the second batch. Set up perfectly, hard and smooth. The recipe itself is great...Very Yummy. Thanks:)


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