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How to make gummy candy at home — it's surprisingly simple

Jen Klein is a New England-based technical writer and mother of three. When she isn't asking her kids to stop bickering, "caramelizing" the dinner or actively ignoring the dust bunnies under the couch, she enjoys knitting, gardening, pho...

You control what goes into your candy when you make homemade gummies

It wouldn't be an understatement to say that learning how to make gummy candy at home is one party trick that could add a new layer of sweetness to your life. Pick up a few novelty silicone ice trays in some adorable shapes — stars, hearts, citrus slices and little penguins — and you may never have to waste your money on store-bought candy again. These cute little confections also make a fun gift for birthdays, Easter, Halloween and Christmas.

Gummy candies are easy to make

Gummy candies aren't much more than a whole lot of gelatin and some flavoring. Yes, that simple. You might have all the ingredients you need in the house right now. As for equipment, the only thing you might not have is a mold.

Ah, the mold. This is where you can let your imagination run wild. You can use actual candy molds from candy supply houses, silicone ice cube trays or simply improvise. I like to keep the final product on the small size because I like the idea of a handful of them. If you can't locate a mold, just pour the mixture out onto a baking sheet, and cut it with a pizza cutter when it has set. And if you want to get super creative, read up on making your own custom molds with food-grade silicone.

Learn the basics, then get creative

The following basic recipe makes a relatively few number of candies — about one ice cube tray — but you can easily scale it up to make dozens more of these gummy goodies. Learning how to make gummy candy turns out to be so quick that you can even make successive batches in different flavors. And once you have the recipe and technique down, you can experiment with adding additional flavors to the gummies. A good example is adding ascorbic acid powder for tart-flavored gummies (add the ascorbic acid after melting the mixture).

Basic gummy candy recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 – 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1 package flavored gelatin
  • 4 packets unflavored gelatin

Directions:

  1. Into a heatproof glass measuring cup, pour the cold water. Sprinkle the gelatin over the water while stirring with a rubber spatula. The resulting mixture will be a super-thick mass, much like clay, but keep stirring. When all the gelatin is sprinkled on, try to get all the dry bits off the side of the measuring cup and off the spatula (as well as any moist bits), and press onto the surface of the gelatin mass.
  2. Cover the measuring cup with plastic wrap, and let the mixture rest for 10 minutes. Fill a medium-size saucepan half full with water, set over medium heat, and bring the water to a simmer. Remove the plastic wrap from the measuring cup, and place it in the water. Let the mass of gelatin melt, stirring occasionally and gently. When the mixture is clear, turn off the heat, and let it sit for 1 – 2 minutes.
  3. Very carefully pour the hot mixture from the measuring cup into the molds. If the syrup gets too thick, you can reheat it a little. If the candies contract a fair bit as they cool, top them off with a second round of the gelatin mixture. Place the mold in the freezer for 10 minutes, then in the refrigerator for another 5 – 10 minutes. Peel them out of the molds, and serve.

More candy recipes

Homemade candy recipes
How to make homemade marshmallows
How to make candy in the microwave

Updated by Bethany Ramos on 3/18/16

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