8 Best Pioneer Candy Recipes For Your Children

We thought making pioneer candy recipes would be a fun summer hobby — and it was!

We produced old-fashioned rock candy and pioneer taffy. It took a while to prepare but it was worth the time. These pioneer candies are ideal when living with children at home.

We’ll share our expertise in producing pioneer different candies for your kids in this post.

8 Pioneer Candy Recipes For Your Children

8 Pioneer Candy Recipes For Your Children

Back before there were 15 different brands of peanut butter, pickle-flavored chips, and chocolate bars that looked like patio furniture. Pioneer candy was literally candy plus a side of country charm.

When you hear the word candy, what thoughts come to mind? Sweet, sugarcoated treats might be some of your first associations.

However, some candies are not so obvious in appearance. These “candies” were some of the earliest treats given to children during pioneer times.

Caramel Apples Candy

Caramel Apples Candy

In America’s history, apples were one of the most prevalent fruits. Everything including vinegar and cider to pies and sweets was made with them. 

An apple covered in caramel and then rolled in almonds was a particular favorite.

Materials You’ll Need To Make Caramel Apple Candy

  • 16-ounce package of caramel candies (the pioneers created this from scratch by melting sugar and cooking it until it caramelized, but we’ll make it safe and easy).
  • 6 apples (except Grannie Smiths, which are better for cooking in general).
  • 2 cups crushed nuts (any sort) or a nut combination
  • 6 Popsicle-sticks or 6 twigs with one end stripped of bark and polished to a point.

Instructions To Make Caramel Apple Candy

Step 1: By the stem, insert the sticks into the apple’s middle.

Step 2: Melt the caramel candy in a double boiler, stirring regularly until smooth.

Step 3: Move the cover of the dual boiler to the countertop using a hot pad, then roll and twirl the apples in the caramel. 

If desired, wrap the apples in chopped nuts or simply eat them with the caramel covering alone; however, let the caramelized apples cool for 20 minutes before serving.

Tip: If kept chilled, they should last up to 2 or 3 weeks. Furthermore, if you are interested in more candies to make double the ingredients of the recipes.

Orange Peel Candy

Orange Peel Candy

Provitamin A, folic, riboflavin, thiamine, vitamin B6, and calcium are all abundant in orange peel. This candy is quite easy to make, requires only a few basic ingredients and about 45 minutes.

Materials You Will Need To Make Candied Orange Peel

  • Water
  • Sugar
  • Orange Peels

Instructions To Make Candied Orange Peel

Step 1: Slice orange peel into four vertical parts. Chop into 1/4-inch-wide strips with a 1/4-inch-wide strip cutter.

Step 2: In a big bowl of hot water, cook the peels for 15 minutes; drain and rinse.

Step 3:  Bring three cups of sugar and three cups of water to a boil, stirring often to incorporate the sugar. After that, throw in the peels.

Step 4: Bring the water back to a simmer. Lower the heat and cook the peel for 45 minutes or until it is very soft. 

Step 5: Spread a layer of sugar on parchment paper and toss the peel while adding an additional cup of sugar on top.

Step 6: Toss the peels in a bowl and set them aside to dry. Allow one to two days for the sugared orange peels to dry completely. Refrigerate for up to two months after wrapping.

Snow Candy From Maple Syrup

Snow Candy From Maple Syrup

Syrup made from maple trees. Snow candy is confectionery at its most basic level.  Preparing maple candy or maple taffy is a common Canadian winter custom. 

Materials You’ll Need To make Maple Syrup Snow

  • 1 Cup Maple Syrup (if you want more sweets, increase the quantity).
  • A candy-thermometer is required. The required temperature for a firm, crunchy candy is 245 degrees Fahrenheit. 
  • The snow candy will be mushy and chewy if you don’t get it to that temperature. 

Don’t just squirt maple syrup on the snow. It’ll disintegrate into the snow. It must be prepared.

Instructions To Make Maple Syrup Snow

Step 1: While stirring frequently, take the required amount of syrup to a boil in a pot over the intermediate heating.

Step 2: Take off the heat after five minutes if your candy thermometer reaches 245 degrees.

Step 3: Sprinkle the syrup over the snowflakes or crushed ice straight away and let it solidify for two or three minutes.

Step 4: Transfer to a serving plate and serve immediately or preserve for a future stage.

Tip: Although real maple syrup is preferred, store-bought syrup manufactured with corn syrup may suffice.

Lakanto Sugar-Free Maple Syrup

Lakanto Sugar Free Maple Syrup - Monk Fruit Sweetener, Keto Diet Friendly, Vegan, 1g Net Carbs, Pancakes, Waffles, Oatmeal, Coffee, Tea, Granola, Frosting, Marinade, Dressing (13 Fl Oz - Pack of 1)
  • Tastes Like Real Maple Syrup: The perfect mix of water, tapioca fiber, non-GMO Lakanto Monkfruit Extract, natural flavors, sea salt, and other quality ingredients makes this sugar free maple syrup a perfect topping for pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, granola, frostings, marinades, salad dressings, and other sweet, sugar free treats. You may also use it with beverages like coffee and tea.
  • Delicious Sugar Free Condiment: Our keto sugar free syrup has 1 net carb and lower calories than traditional maple syrup. Plus, it’s all natural, low glycemic, and gluten free.
  • Lifestyle Friendly: Lakanto Sugar Free Maple Flavored Syrup works with ketogenic, diabetic, candida, paleo, vegan, low sugar, non-GMO, and all natural diets. Diabetics and dieters alike can enjoy the texture, taste, and sweetness of syrup without spiking their glycemic index.

Mashed Potato Candy

They’re simple to make and a fantastic way to put surplus mashed potatoes to good use.

Materials You’ll Need To make Mashed Potato

  • 6 big potatoes (peeled and finely chopped into pieces)
  •  3 tablespoons sugar 
  • 2 Tablespoons Vanilla extract
  • 1 package of 8-ounce pieces or 8-ounces crushed chocolate
  • 1 cup chopped nuts (option of nuts) (the pioneers used either roasted acorns or black walnuts).
  • 1 cup coconut flakes, shredded

Instructions To Make Mashed Potato

Step 1: Cut the potatoes into four pieces after peeling them.

Step 2: Until they are fork-tender, keep boiling the potatoes for about 20 to 30 minutes or more.

Step 3: Remove the potatoes from the water and mash them. Mash in the sugar and the 2 tablespoons of vanilla extract.

Step 4: Refrigerate the finished mash for 30 to 60 minutes.

Gently grease the bottom of a plate, then scoop up some mashed potatoes with your palms and form them into a ball the size of a medium-sized meatball in your palms.

Step 5: Refrigerate the oiled tray with the mashed potato dumplings for thirty min.

Step 6: It’s time to cut the nuts and create the chocolate coating while they’re freezing. Cut your nuts into the proportion you like.

Step 7: You’ll need a double boiler to prepare the chocolate glaze.

In a double boiler, melt the 8 ounces of chocolate chunks.

Step 8: Stir regularly until the mixture is smooth. Dip balls which were refrigerated potato in melted chocolate then rolled in peanuts or coconut.

Shredded Coconut Flakes Organic Unsweetened 8 Ounce Bag

Fiesta Tropicalé Unsweetened Shredded Coconut, Organic Dried Coconut Flakes, Coconut Shreds With No Added Sugar, Rich in MCT, Diabetic-Friendly, Great for Vegan or Keto Recipes, 8 Oz Bag, Pack of 3
  • Wholesome Ingredient: Our unsweetened coconut flakes are made from 100 percent organic coconuts, delivering pure island bliss with no added sugar, preservatives, and sulfites
  • Allergen and Dairy Free: Created without gluten, dairy, peanuts, and tree nuts, our organic shredded coconut elevates your recipes with a satisfying nutty flavor while being free from major food allergens
  • Nutritious: Add a healthy, tropical crunch to your everyday snacks with these desiccated coconut strips, rich in fiber, minerals, vitamins, and medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) with no trans fats

Crab Apples Candy

The majority of crabapple types have a harsh acidic flavor that is sweet and sour in nature.

Crabapples are available in a range of hues, including red, orange, yellow, maroon, and green.

Materials You’ll Need To make Candied Crab

  • Unpeeled crab apples with stems
  • 2 sticks of cinnamon
  • Syrup prepared with 3 cups sugar and 4 cups water-dissolved over medium heat in a saucepan
  • 6 tbsp. red food coloring (optional)

Instructions To Make Candied Crab

Step 1: The crab apples should be washed and rinsed. Fill jars with cinnamon sticks.

Step 2: Bring to a boil the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly.

Step 3: Reduce heat to simmer and add 1 cup crab apple juice or cider and add red food coloring. Cook until the mixture becomes thick. 

Step 4: Dip apples in mixture and place on wax paper to cool.

Step 5: Roll apples in cinnamon sugar. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve. 

Baked Apples

Because cooking might cause certain minerals to be destroyed, consuming apples raw is the best way to maintain their nutritional value. 

Baked apples, on the other side, are a nutritious snack that may aid in the maintenance of your general health.

Materials You’ll Need To make Baked Apples

  • Butter
  • Cinnamon
  • 6 Apples (any variety)
  • Brown sugar
  • Cloves

Instructions To Make Baked Apples

Step 1: Simply cut off the apple’s central core with a melon baller or knife, removing the core and seeds. If you make a hole at the base of the apples, the filling will drain out.

Step 2: Insert a slice of butter into the core and sprinkle with cinnamon and cloves. Place the core on a prepared baking sheet and stuff it with brown sugar.

All of these processes may be completed with the assistance of the children.

Step 3: Heat the oven and bake the apples for 20 to 30 minutes, or until soft.

Step 4: Allow the apples to cool for 10 min before placing them in a bowl and slicing with a knife and fork.

Tip: Baked apples don’t store well and are best eaten fresh, but if you have any leftovers, they’ll last for approximately a week in the fridge.

Hard Taffy (Pulled Candy) 

It’s so much fun to make pioneer sweets! Pioneers Day, a homeschooling class, a Very little Apartment on the Hill project, and much more call for hard-taffy and rock candy.

Materials You’ll Need To make Hard Taffy

  •  1/2 cups Water
  • 2 tbsp Butter
  • 1 cup Corn syrup (White)
  • 1 tsp Vanilla
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 2 tsp Glycerin
  • 2 cups Sugar

Instructions To Make Hard Taffy

Step 1: In a large saucepan, combine the water, sugar, corn syrup, and cream of tartar. Stir to mix well. Place the saucepan over medium heat and stir constantly until the mixture boils. 

Step 2: Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pan and cook, without stirring, until the mixture reaches 260 degrees Fahrenheit. Add the flavoring and coloring (if using) and stir to combine.

Step 3: Grease two large baking sheets. Pour the syrup onto the prepared pans and allow to cool until it feels firm when gently pressed. This will take about 15 minutes. 

Step 4: When the taffy is cool enough to handle, turn it out onto a floured surface and separate into small balls. 

Step  5: With buttered hands, start pulling and twisting the taffy into a desired thickness. Let cool completely before wrapping or eating.

Old Fashioned Rock Candy

This is an ancient family recipe from my youth. Most individuals recall cutting this candy with their moms and grandmothers as a child. 

I’ve passed it on and am now putting it here so that everyone may partake in this beloved Christmas tradition!

Materials To Make Old Fashioned Rock Candy

  • 2 Cups Granulated Sugar
  • 1 Quart of Water
  • Cup Corn Syrup 
  • Teaspoon Extract of Peppermint
  • 1 Red Food Coloring Drop 
  • Quarter-Cup of Confectioners’ Sugar

Instructions To Make Old Fashioned Rock Candy

Step 1: Cook sugar, water, and corn syrup over medium-high heat to 290 degrees.

Step 2: Add teaspoon extract of peppermint and red food coloring drop. Stir and cook. Heat to 300 degrees mixing thoroughly.

Step 3: Pour onto a greased baking sheet. I used wax paper instead of the cooking spray and it worked well.

Please be very careful at this stage. You definitely do not want to touch the hot candy syrup. As the syrup cools, it will form a sheet of candy.

Step 4: Break up the sheet into chunks and stick your popsicle sticks or lollipop sticks in there however you can. The candy is still very gooey at this point so just try to get the sticks in somewhat straight.

Step 5: This syrup makes a lot of rock candy crystals. Once you pour the syrup onto your baking sheet, it will start to cool quickly and form into a solid mass.


Several of these recipes call for heating water and sugar to a high temperature. That is dangerous. Keep your kids away from any part of the water or sugar-boiling process.


If you want your children to eat well and instill proper values into them, there is no better way than with pioneer candy. Pioneer candy is delicious and educational! 

That is why I have taken it upon myself to provide a comprehensive guide to Pioneer Candy on Em off-grid.

At the end of the day, we will never forget those who have come before us and the delicious treats. We hope you enjoy our article and stick to our site for tips and advice.