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How to Make Praline

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Learn How to Make Praline and imagine gorgeous shards of caramel-y candy folded into your favorite desserts, like fudge and ice cream!


Hi Bold Bakers!

Bold Baking is all about having the confidence to bake anytime, anywhere, and to help you do that, I love teaching you the building blocks to incredible desserts. My Bold Baking Basics are just that: the foundation to creating fantastic results, and How To Make Praline is no different.

From folding praline into ice cream or Praline Fudge (COMING SOON!), to topping off brownies and blondies, this caramel flavored, nut-studded candy is an absolute must try!

What is Praline?

No, praline is not just a flavor added to drinks by way of syrup, it’s first and foremost a candy.

My recipe starts out similarly to a caramel with sugar, butter, and water, but instead of adding cream or another liquid component to make a sauce, it’s mixed with nuts and then poured onto a flat surface to harden.

Once it cools it takes on the look and texture of hard candy — shiny and glass-like. The best part about making it is cracking and shattering it into gorgeous large shards. These shards or chunks of homemade praline can be eaten or given as a gift all on their own, or they can be added to other sweets and baked goods. Either way the flavor is off the charts.

What are the best nuts for praline?

Praline can be made with all different kinds of nuts, but the most classic flavor is almond. I like to use thin toasted slivered almonds as they look lovely and lie nice and flat. The heat of the candy toasts the nut when they meet, too, and as it hardens the nuts set into the candy making for a really professional look.

Side note: You can add already roasted and even salted nuts into your candy and this will just add even more flavor.

Why won’t my praline set?

Even though praline has a caramel-like flavor and scent, it should in no way resemble caramel sauce or soft chewy caramel. The low fat content is very different than in its cousin caramel.

Just one tablespoon of butter is used in the base, too, which ensures it will in fact harden up while still being slightly rich and creamy like Werther’s style hard candy. If your praline doesn’t set, either you used the wrong amount of butter or perhaps it is a very humid day as moisture in the air can affect the setting of your praline.

Does praline need to be refrigerated?

Since praline is a hard cooked candy, it is best stored at room temperature in a cool and dry place. You don’t want the praline to come in contact with moisture, so I suggest covering and storing in an airtight container.

Another awesome thing about my homemade praline is that it will keep for quite some time. I love to keep praline in my kitchen if I can, but I find it never lasts very long ;).

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4.34 from 15 votes
How to Make Praline
Prep Time
5 mins
Cook Time
10 mins
cooling time
30 mins
Total Time
15 mins
 

Learn How to Make Praline and imagine gorgeous shards of caramel-y candy folded into your favorite desserts, like fudge and ice cream!

Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Author: Gemma Stafford
Ingredients
  • 1 1/2 cups (7 1/2oz/213g) slivered almonds
  • 2 cups (16oz/450g) sugar
  • 1 tablespoon (1/2oz/14g) butter
  • 1/2 cup (4floz/115ml) water
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Place almonds on a baking sheet, and toast until golden brown and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Remove from oven, and set aside to cool.

  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Butter the parchment. Set aside for later. 

  3. In a medium sauce pan, combine the sugar and water over medium-low heat. Allow the sugar to dissolve and once it does you can then bring the mix to a simmer. Brush down the sides of pan with a pastry brush dipped in water to prevent crystals from forming. 

  4. Simmer without stirring until the caramel is deep amber in color, roughly 10-15 minutes.

  5. Straight away turn off the heat and add in the butter and almonds, coating them in caramel. 

  6. Immediately pour the praline onto the prepared baking sheet. Be careful not to touch the caramel. 

  7. Once hardened break into pieces and either eat as-is or add it to my Homemade Praline Fudge (COMING SOON!). Store the praline in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week. 

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Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I’m passionate about sharing my years of experience to show you how to make game-changing baking recipes with over-the-top results! Join more than 1 Million other Bold Bakers in the community for new video recipes every week!

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52 Comments

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  1. Helga Scheel Estrada on December 5, 2018 at 9:13 am

    Hello Gemma!
    Can I add chocolate to the praline?
    I think if my mother will still be alive, she would’ve be just like you. You make any recipe so easy to follow, you give me the confidence to make them. I got my three daughters to become bakers because of you. Blessing from Los Angeles, CA

    • Gemma Stafford on December 6, 2018 at 10:51 am

      WOW that a lovely message, i am delighted to hear that! You can add chocolate. After breaking up the praline you can dip the pieced in melted chocolate then let it set for a super yummy home made candy.

  2. Mary Robinson on November 30, 2018 at 8:22 am

    Hi Gemma can you use pecans instead of almonds in your praline recipe?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 30, 2018 at 9:31 am

      Hi there, yes that would be yummy!

  3. Carrie gaze on November 29, 2018 at 11:38 am

    My praline didn’t set. How can I fix it?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 30, 2018 at 4:21 pm

      Hi there, how much butter did you use. Once it is set its usually pretty chewy and does not fully set.

  4. Teresa Marie Montoya on November 29, 2018 at 9:39 am

    Im not a fan of brittle (I am a fan of Bigger, Bolder, Baking) I think I may try this with your Honey comb candy crumbled into the fudge with some nuts…Cant wait to try, I’ve been making the marshmallow fluff fudge most of my life and the results aren’t always consistent…though it is yummy…

    • Gemma Stafford on November 30, 2018 at 4:30 pm

      You’re going to love it! Cant wait for you to give it a try!

  5. Melissa on November 29, 2018 at 5:11 am

    This looks wonderful. I make candy and pies for Christmas gifts. This is going to be a new “gift.” Yay!!
    My most sought out candy gift is divinity. It’s wonderfully delicious.
    Thank you for so generously sharing your recipes.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 30, 2018 at 10:36 am

      I’m delighted to hear that!

  6. bellalunafan on November 28, 2018 at 1:58 am

    Hi Gemma! Was wondering if I could substitute rum for the water to make it a boosie recipe??? Yeah, my family LOVES to whoop it up during the holiday season! LOL.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 29, 2018 at 8:40 am

      I’m right there with you!!!! I start add baileys to my hot chocolate October 31st!

      Unfortunately you won’t be able to sub rum for water here. The results would not be good I’m guessing.

      Hope this helps,
      Gemma.

  7. Janet Newnham on November 26, 2018 at 3:51 pm

    Hi Gemma. Regarding your Praline, my grandson is dairy and soya intolerant. Instead of butter could I use a dairy free spread.
    Thank you.
    Janet

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 4:41 pm

      Hi, yes you can use a vegan butter. Enjoy!

  8. Anna on November 26, 2018 at 1:46 pm

    Hi, I know that pralines are candies but can I lessen the 2 cups of sugar? I wonder What will happen?Will i ruin the recipe?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 4:42 pm

      Hi, yes that will alter the finished product, i would not suggest it.

      • Mariam Benny on November 28, 2018 at 10:35 am

        Could you please show in future videos how to make butterscotch chips? I didn’t find it in my place.

        • Gemma Stafford on November 28, 2018 at 3:34 pm

          That’s a great idea, ill have to work on a recipe for that!

  9. Mila on November 26, 2018 at 10:59 am

    Hi Gemma, this looks good I will give it a try. Can you please make something with Ginger ? I Love gooey ginger desserts but only have them when I visit England which is very rarely . Thanks, looking forward to the xmas recipes. Love from cyprus 🤗

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 4:56 pm

      I love ginger too! Give this one a try, it’s always a big hit! https://www.biggerbolderbaking.com/gingerbread-pudding-cake/

      • Mila on November 27, 2018 at 8:10 am

        I don’t have a crock pot or microwave, can you show us in a future video how to steam desserts? I never tried before and your videos always makes us feel a little bolder in the kitchen. Thanks again ☺

        • Gemma Stafford on November 27, 2018 at 4:38 pm

          Wow, that’s a great idea! I’ll have to work on that. I know a lot of great steamed pudding recipes so check back soon 🙂

  10. Michelle Monroe on November 26, 2018 at 9:26 am

    In your video, you say that the pralines keep at room temperature for 4 week, but in the print recipe, it is noted as keeping for 1 week. What would be the ideal storage time for these delicious pralines.

    Michelle

    • Gemma Stafford on November 27, 2018 at 3:12 am

      Hi Michelle,
      haha! this is a tortured question! It depends on the room. Where I come from in Ireland room temperature rarely goes over 18c, here in LA it can be 30c at times, and this will determine the outcome. Humidity is the arch enemy of caramel, so, in an airtight container at cool room temperature this should hold well for weeks, if the room is hot and humid then a shorter time, and it may well be a week. I find it difficult to be specific about this recipe, sorry,
      Gemma 🙂

  11. Suzanne on November 26, 2018 at 6:39 am

    Ohhhhh! This will definitely be on my to-do list when I start my Holiday baking. I have two sons-in-law who will be quite happy to find this in their stockings. Come to think of it, I have some grandchildren who will love this as well… especially if I dip it in chocolate or candy melts. The trick will be to not eat it ourselves. 😀

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 4:54 pm

      You’re going to love it, enjoy 😀

  12. Lynne on November 26, 2018 at 5:20 am

    Hi Gemma
    I have tried recipes that require sugar to dissolve but I never seem to eat it right
    could you tell me how long it should take for this amount of sugar to dissolve
    I am using an electric hob
    Many thanks

    Lynne

    • Gemma Stafford on November 27, 2018 at 4:33 am

      Hi Lynne,
      If you use a wooden spoon to stir you will feel the sugar granules in the bottom of the pot. Gently melt these, until you feel nothing! Then you will know. It is variable, depending on the temperature, the water temperature and the size of the granules/crystals. If you can get caster/fine sugar then that will dissolve more quickly.
      I hope you get this right for you, it is worth it!
      Gemma 🙂

  13. Denise on November 26, 2018 at 4:25 am

    I live in the humid south Louisiana. When making candy I use a thermometer. When making US pralines, if it is humid, I bring the temperature up to the top end of the range for that stage of candy making. Works every time despite the humidity. My question: What stage or temperature should I use for your pralines? Thank you.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 27, 2018 at 4:43 am

      Hi Denise,
      Great tip for a humid place, I am going to save this!
      soft crack stage, 132 – 140 ish, harder than that it is very hard, like a boiled sweet. It sounds to me though that you have mastered this for your own environment, I appreciate this input, it is difficult to explain the variables.
      Thank you for being in touch,
      Gemma 🙂

  14. Mary J. Clark on November 25, 2018 at 10:39 pm

    Gemma, I love most of your recipes, but being from the southern United States, I have never seen pralines like this, as these look hard, like peanut brittle, have to be broken apart, and look very difficult to chew. The Southern pralines are round, and are very soft and creamy inside (they can turn to sugar if they are not made perfectly but are still soft and chewable.) They do have pecans in them, and often are dropped on a marble slab to harden. Not sure I still have my grandmother’s recipe, but the pralines she made at Christmas were memorable.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 4:49 am

      Hi Mary,
      Haha! I have been in trouble with this one!
      This is the big question here today, and on Facebook too, almost a Praline war ;). It is the difference between what is called praline in Europe and what is praline in the Southern States of America.
      1. French pralines, a firm combination of almonds and caramelized sugar.
      2. American pralines, a softer, creamier combination of syrup and pecans, hazelnuts or almonds with milk or cream, resembling fudge.
      3. Belgian pralines consist of a chocolate shell with a ganache type filling filled with different combinations of hazelnut, almond ‘praline’. This is a very luxurious chocolate, expensive and delicious.
      So, it is about interpretation really. The American one seems to have been reinterpreted from the French settlers version, a fudgey one, and delicious too.
      In France and Belgium the chosen nut is generally hazelnut, in the Southern States it is Pecan, the pecan nut is not generally grown outside of the US, or indeed outside of the Southern States, this may explain the use of this nut in this version of this particular candy.
      One way or the other it is a delicious thing, if you find that recipe you must let us have it! We need to do this version too.
      Thank you for the input, sounds delicious,
      Gemma 🙂

  15. Jami on November 25, 2018 at 8:27 pm

    Thank you for this recipe.. I’m so excited to try. Never made this candy before. 😊

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 4:29 am

      That is great Jami, do try it, I hope you like it,
      Gemma 🙂

  16. Cherith on November 25, 2018 at 5:05 pm

    Well super easy peasy Gemma! I coated them with milk chocolate as these are not for me. I’m not a sweet person (despite all evidence to the contrary…. 😉 So since I won’t eat the praline anyway, might as well make them just the way David would like them. However….If I was into these I’d be making them with dark chocolate and a sprinkling of salt!

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 3:51 am

      Cherith, you are a feeder, that is what they say about me, and my mum too, we get more out of making and sharing than eating! good on you, sounds delicious,
      Gemma 🙂

  17. Samira on November 25, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    Hello gemma,
    Can you make mirror glaze cake . I wish to do it but I trust no recipe but yours. 😃

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 3:18 am

      Hi Samira,
      I have been avoiding this! The reason for this is that there are so many recipes out there, and gelatin is a tricky thing for many people.
      So many people do not use an animal source gelatin and the alternatives vary in their application, it is tricky. I think I will leave this to others, though we may get to it eventually, I will pop it on to my list,
      Gemma 🙂

  18. ELAINE D SMITH on November 25, 2018 at 12:19 pm

    isn’t this what we call peanut brittle?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 3:01 am

      Hi Elaine,
      This is the big question today! It is the difference between what is called praline in Europe and what is praline in the Southern States of America.
      1. French pralines, a firm combination of almonds and caramelized sugar.
      2. American pralines, a softer, creamier combination of syrup and pecans, hazelnuts or almonds with milk or cream, resembling fudge.
      3. Belgian pralines consist of a chocolate shell with a ganache type filling filled with different combinations of hazelnut, almond ‘praline’. This is a very luxurious chocolate, expensive and delicious.
      So, it is about interpretation really. The American one seems to have been reinterpreted from the French settlers version, a fudgey one, and delicious too.
      In France and Belgium the chosen nut is generally hazelnut, in the Southern States it is Pecan, the pecan nut is not generally grown outside of the US, or indeed outside of the Southern States, this may explain the use of this nut in this version of this particular candy.
      However, whatever the nut it is a delicious thing, and whatever you call it, it will be delicious too, so go on, try it,
      Gemma 🙂

  19. Guy Gervais on November 25, 2018 at 10:56 am

    Simple and Great! as usual 😉

    BTW the praline fudge link is not working

    Regards,

    Guy

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 2:38 am

      Thank you Guy,
      I will have the guys check it out from all the platforms,
      Gemma 🙂

  20. Aislinn on November 25, 2018 at 10:29 am

    Hi Gemma. 🙂
    This looks more like brittle than the pralines I am used to. Is there a difference?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 2:37 am

      Hi Aislinn,
      Haha! I have caused a praline war this week!
      This is a big question, and it is the difference between what is called praline in Europe and what is praline in the Southern States of America.
      1. French pralines, a firm combination of almonds and caramelized sugar.
      2. American pralines, a softer, creamier combination of syrup and pecans, hazelnuts or almonds with milk or cream, resembling fudge.
      3. Belgian pralines consist of a chocolate shell with a ganache type filling filled with different combinations of hazelnut, almond ‘praline’. This is a very luxurious chocolate, expensive and delicious.
      So, it is about interpretation really. The American one seems to have been reinterpreted from the French settlers version, a fudgey one, and delicious too.
      In France and Belgium the chosen nut is generally hazelnut, in the Southern States it is Pecan, the pecan nut is not generally grown outside of the US, or indeed outside of the Southern States, this may explain the use of this nut in this version of this particular candy.
      I say, as Shakespeare might say, ‘what’s in a name’ though they really are different things in different places.
      Gemma 🙂

  21. Emma Vincent on November 25, 2018 at 10:08 am

    Hi Gemma,
    Love this recipe will be making some for Christmas gifts for m son’s teacher as she loves Almond..!!
    Was just wondering, it might be a silly question but can I use pecan nuts instead of Almonds and would they need toasting before hand like the Almonds…??
    I am going to make a peanut version as my Dad loves that he used to eat it as a child but he knows it as “Peanut Brittle”.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 2:35 am

      Hi Emma,
      Yes! you can certainly make this with peanuts/pecans/hazelnuts too. Not at all a silly question as it has different names in different places, quite a history really!
      This is the big question this week! It is the difference between what is called praline in Europe and what is praline in the Southern States of America.
      1. French pralines, a firm combination of almonds and caramelized sugar.
      2. American pralines, a softer, creamier combination of syrup and pecans, hazelnuts or almonds with milk or cream, resembling fudge.
      3. Belgian pralines consist of a chocolate shell with a ganache type filling filled with different combinations of hazelnut, almond ‘praline’. This is a very luxurious chocolate, expensive and delicious.
      So, it is about interpretation really. The American one seems to have been reinterpreted from the French settlers version, a fudgey one, and delicious too.
      In France and Belgium the chosen nut is generally hazelnut, in the Southern States it is Pecan, the pecan nut is not generally grown outside of the US, or indeed outside of the Southern States, this may explain the use of this nut in this version of this particular candy.

  22. Sharon Peek on November 25, 2018 at 10:03 am

    These look more like brittle. Are they pralines or brittle?

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 2:33 am

      Hi Sharon,
      This is a big question, and it is the difference between what is called praline in Europe and what is praline in the Southern States of America.
      1. French pralines, a firm combination of almonds and caramelized sugar.
      2. American pralines, a softer, creamier combination of syrup and pecans, hazelnuts or almonds with milk or cream, resembling fudge.
      3. Belgian pralines consist of a chocolate shell with a ganache type filling filled with different combinations of hazelnut, almond ‘praline’. This is a very luxurious chocolate, expensive and delicious.
      So, it is about interpretation really. The American one seems to have been reinterpreted from the French settlers version, a fudgey one, and delicious too.
      In France and Belgium the chosen nut is generally hazelnut, in the Southern States it is Pecan, the pecan nut is not generally grown outside of the US, or indeed outside of the Southern States, this may explain the use of this nut in this version of this particular candy.
      I hope this is of help,
      Gemma 🙂

  23. Mary on November 25, 2018 at 9:53 am

    Is Praline the same or nearly the same as Peanut Brittle? I used to make Peanut Brittle years ago, but gave it up when I couldn’t have sugar.

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 2:15 am

      Hi Mary,
      Yes, really and nut in a caramel can be called a brittle, it depends where you come from.
      This is not an easy thing to do without sugar, most of the alternative sugars will not caramelize. Pity that, thank you for being in touch.
      Gemma 🙂

  24. Cherith on November 25, 2018 at 9:46 am

    So weird Gemma. Today I’m going to be making my Christmas Candy and I always make Clodhoppers Or what is known down in the US I think is OMG but I was lying in bed this morning thinking it would be nice to have some caramel flavoured ones..wondering if I should look up a Skor like recipe to add…and woke up to this post….! I’ll be taking these and tossing them in the melted chocolate.
    Yum! Thanks for your perfectly timed post Gemma! 🙂

    • Gemma Stafford on November 26, 2018 at 2:13 am

      Hi Cherith.
      You are an industrious lady indeed! Such a lovely gift too, always appreciated.
      Thank you for being in touch,
      Gemma 🙂

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