Delicious Sugar-Free Hard Candy Recipe

With so many people with diabetes and others on special diets, delicious sugar-free hard candy recipes are in high demand. Everyone wants a sugar-free candy recipe that can be made at home less expensively than commercially purchased hard candy. You can also personalize these special sugar-free treats based on an individual's tastes. While mint-flavored hand candy is popular, some gourmet candy recipes shy away from mint entirely and rely instead on toasted nut fillings or rich, creamy chocolate coatings to give them that flavor boost candy lovers crave.

Making Candy
While it's not hard to make candy, it is a lengthy process and can be filled with pitfalls for the unwary cook. Filling candy molds can get a little tricky, and working with any type of sugared or sweetened sauces can be very dangerous if the hot syrup touches your skin.

When making candy, even the weather sometimes seems to conspire against you. High humidity levels, hot days and rainy weather can ruin a batch of candy. Because humidity, heat and rain all change the atmosphere, any candy recipe that incorporates sugar-or even sugar substitutes-is particularly vulnerable to weather mishaps.

Sugar Vs. Sugar Substitutes
Though sugar substitutes are used for just about any other type of baking, they're generally not used in candy recipes. Because sugar substitutes do not contain the same structural foundation of real sugar, and can actually be much sweeter than real sugar, there is yet to be a sugar substitute that mimics sugar close enough to fit the mold. Therefore, most sugar-free candy recipes still include a reduced portion of sugar or some type of sugar-based syrup.

Sugar Substitutes Used in This Recipe
Maltitol is a sugar substitute. Referred to as a sugar alcohol, maltitol has the highest glycemic value of all sugar substitutes commonly used today. Since the goal of making your own sugar-free candy is to keep the sugar content low or non-existent, diabetics and others who have medical conditions that require the avoidance of sugar, should consult their physician before using this product or any other sugar substitutes.

Sugar Free Hard Candy Recipe

Ingredients You Will Need:
1 ½ cup sugar-free syrup
1 cup Maltitol
½ teaspoon candy flavoring oil
Food coloring

Spray the candy molds with non-stick vegetable spray.

Use a heavy-bottomed saucepan to heat the first two ingredients. Quickly bring the mixture to a boil and then insert a candy thermometer. Make sure the thermometer is not touching the bottom of the pan. Boil the syrup until it reaches 300 degrees.

Immediately remove the pan from the heat. When the syrup stops bubbling, add the flavoring oil and food coloring and immediately pour the candy into the molds. Use a funnel for small molds and sucker rings. Let the candy cool completely before attempting to remove the sucker rings or pop the candy from the molds. Wrap candy in individual foils or plastic wrappers and store in airtight containers.

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