This month I’ve talked a lot about trying to simplify things so Christmas is a time of peace not pressure. And, in that spirit, I’m offering a simple post today in this last week before Christmas, one that might make you look like a baking rock star. Here’s how you make peanut brittle in the microwave in under 10 minutes.

A few years ago at Thanksgiving I was visiting my mom and her new husband, Nelson, and I watched as he whipped up peanut brittle in the microwave while we all stood in the kitchen chatting. Shut up! No candy thermometer. No standing over the stove for an interminable time. I thought that was the only way to make this treat that seems to show up this time of year. He gladly shared his late-wife’s recipe with me and I’m so glad he did.

Some notes to start. First, you can’t double the recipe. No idea why but the year I tried that the whole batch was ruined and I had to toss it. Instead, if I’m making a bunch, I just make one at a time. And since it’s so easy and fast the only drawback of that was cleaning the bowl between batches. Second, I’m not sure if you can use other nuts. No one in my home has a peanut allergy so we haven’t tried. But go ahead and knock yourself out and try almonds or another nut if you want. Third, for some reason higher humidity can make it more chewy and less brittle. It’s still good but just be advised in case it turns out that way.

Easy Microwave Peanut Brittle


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup raw Spanish peanuts
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 Tablespoon butter (not margarine)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda

Stir sugar and corn syrup in a microwavable bowl well. Stir in peanuts and salt. Microwave for 5 1/2 minutes, stirring once at 3 minutes.

Then, stir in butter and vanilla. Microwave an additional 30 seconds. Add in baking soda and pour immediately onto previously buttered cookie sheet. Cool until you can crack it into pieces. Enjoy.

Printable version: Easy Microwave Peanut Brittle

Hope this adds some fun to your Christmas baking and makes you look like a candy-making rock star. Merry Christmas from my kitchen to yours.

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