Easy Peanut Clusters recipe for no-bake delicious treats made with 3 ingredients. Chocolate peanut candy perfect for holiday gift baskets!
We love to make easy no bake treats like Mixed Nut Clusters and Chocolate Covered Almonds for easy Christmas treats. Check out our Candy Recipe catalog for more easy recipes you can make for any occasion, or no occasion at all!
Can you think of an easier candy recipe than mixing melted chocolate chips and your favorite salty snack? From nuts to Potato Chips, we love pairing sweet milk chocolate with savory, crunchy ingredients and adding a dash of salt to hit every taste bud.
Table of contents
- About our Peanut Clusters Recipe
- Peanut Clusters Ingredients
- Kitchen Tools & Equipment
- How to Make Peanut Clusters
- Nutritional Facts
- Peanut Clusters Recipe Tips & Tricks
- What to Pair With Peanut Clusters
- How to Store Peanut Clusters
- Alternative Peanut Clusters Cooking Techniques
- FAQ for Peanut Clusters
- Peanut Clusters Variations
About our Peanut Clusters Recipe
These Peanut Clusters are so easy to make, you can put your youngest kitchen helpers on candy duty. You may want to help make sure the chocolate candy melts properly, but once it’s melted, kids can handle dropping spoonfuls of chocolate covered peanuts on the baking tray. To keep their little hands safe, wrap a microwave safe bowl in a thick kitchen towel.
This is one of the simplest, back to the basics candy recipes ever. Three ingredients you could even grab at most gas stations if needed. Peanuts, chocolate chips, and a sprinkle of salt and you don’t even have to get fancy with sea salt. On the other hand, you can get more creative and add sprinkles or flavors like peanut butter.
Peanut Clusters Ingredients
- Chocolate Chips: You’ll need 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips to make the chocolate coating for the clusters. Semi-sweet chocolate chips are great for candy like Peanut Clusters because it sets nicely and you don’t have to worry about tempering. Plus it has better chocolate flavor than candy melts.
- Peanuts: The only other ingredient you need to make this delicious candy is 2 ½ cups peanuts. This recipe uses unsalted peanuts and then you add sea salt to give it just a hint of salty taste. However, if you wanted to skip the salt and make it a 2-ingredient candy, you could use salted roasted peanuts.
- Sea Salt: To finish off the chocolaty peanut candy you need ¼ teaspoon of coarse sea salt. The large flaked sea salt adds a delicious saltiness to the sweet treat and adds a delightful crunch. You could also use Pink Himalayan sea salt or smoked salt to subtly change the flavor.
Kitchen Tools & Equipment
- Parchment Paper: You want to line your baking sheets with parchment or wax paper so that you can easily remove the candy. Even if the candy sticks to the baking paper, you can just gently peel it off where trying to scrap it directly off the baking sheet could break the chocolate up.
- Glass Bowl: To melt the chocolate, you want a large glass microwave safe bowl. It needs to be microwave safe so that it doesn’t get hot spots and burn the chocolate, or worse your hands. Even with a heat safe bowl, it’s best to use oven mitts or a heavy kitchen towel to handle it to prevent burns.
How to Make Peanut Clusters
Time needed: 30 minutes.
- Melt the Chocolate
In a large heat safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips by microwaving in 30 second increments. Stir the chocolate each time and heat again until the chocolate mixture is smooth.
- Coat the Peanuts
While the chocolate is melting, cover two baking sheets with parchment paper. Once the chocolate is fully melted and smooth, carefully stir in the peanuts until they are fully coated.
- Shape the Clusters
Add small spoonfuls of chocolate covered peanuts in mounds on the prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle the top of each of the chocolate clusters with flaky sea salt.
- Chill and Serve
Place the cookie sheets in the refrigerator and chill for two hours until the chocolate candy treats are firm. Transfer to an airtight container and keep at room temperature or the fridge until you are ready to serve.
Peanut Clusters Recipe Tips & Tricks
- Microwave the Chocolate
- You might think to melt chocolate you need a stove top but really for chocolate candies like these clusters the microwave works just fine. You need a double boiler set up if you are tempering chocolate to make it glossy or if you are making a sauce like Chocolate Ganache but for these simple candies the extra work isn’t necessary.
- Use Chocolate Chips
- Another way this recipe simplifies your candy making is by using a bag of plain ol’ chocolate chips. No special candy bark or melting chocolate wafers. Not only does this mean no special trips to craft and hobby supply stores, but chocolate chips are much less expensive.
What to Pair With Peanut Clusters
Drinks: These sweet chocolaty Peanut Clusters make the perfect holiday treat with a mug of Peppermint Hot Chocolate. They would be great crumbled over the whipped cream on top of your hot chocolate or Eggnog too!
Desserts: You could use leftover Peanut Clusters as an ice cream sundae topping too! Make an extra special Vanilla Ice Cream sundae with Whipped Cream, Hot Fudge and a handful of Peanut Clusters that have been chopped up.
How to Store Peanut Clusters
Store: Cool for at least 30 minutes to fully set. Store these snacks in a cool, dry place in an airtight container. Keep your Peanut Clusters in the refrigerator or at room temperature for up to 2-3 weeks. Place a row of parchment paper between layers of these chocolate treats so they don’t stick together.
Freeze: Line the bottom of your freezer-safe container with wax paper to prevent sticking and another layer before adding the lid to prevent moisture. Chocolate Peanut Clusters will freeze well for up to 4 months in an airtight freezer bag.
Alternative Peanut Clusters Cooking Techniques
Slow Cooker Chocolate Peanut Clusters
To make Crockpot Peanut Clusters, you’ll want to replace half of your chocolate chips with almond bark. Vanilla almond bark works nicely and adds a rich vanilla flavor. Melt chocolate by cooking on low setting, stirring occasionally, for 2-3 hours. Fully mix in peanuts and scoop onto parchment lined baking sheet. Cool for at least 30 minutes.
FAQ for Peanut Clusters
Chocolate will turn white due fat bloom, or the cocoa butter (or other liquid fat) making its way to the surface of the chocolate and crystallizing over time.
You can definitely freeze Peanut Clusters, but keep in mind that condensation will collect and they won’t be as pretty when thawed. For gifting, it’s best to make them fresh so they look their best.
Almond bark is very different than using chocolate chips. It is made of oils, sugars, and flavorings but no cocoa butter or chocolate liquors so it is not chocolate. It is good for adding to chocolate meant for dipping because it makes it smoother and stays liquid longer, but you don’t want to use it for these peanut candies.
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
- 2 1/2 cup unsalted peanuts , shelled
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- Add the chocolate chips to a large glass bowl and microwave in 30 second increments until smooth, stirring in between each 30 seconds.
- Add in the peanuts and stir to coat.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper then add small spoonfuls to the baking sheet in mounds.
- Sprinkle with sea salt while chocolate is still wet.
- Refrigerate until firm.
Peanut Clusters Variations
Chocolate: Mix up the chocolate that you are using by substituting white chocolate chips, dark chocolate chips, or milk chocolate chips. You can also use melting chocolate wafers.
Peanut Butter: Make these even more peanut buttery by adding ½ cup creamy peanut butter to your melted chocolate. Stir in peanut butter chips with the peanuts for extra bursts of peanut butter flavor.
Fruit: Go for an easy, trail mix inspired treat by mixing in dried cranberries and granola bites. Use hard granola so it doesn’t get soggy.
Caramel: Stir in finely diced bits of Salted Caramels in with the peanuts, then drizzle melted caramels over the Peanut Clusters after they have hardened.
Nuts: Substitute half of the peanuts with other favorites like walnuts, almonds, or cashews. Try smoked peanuts or spicy peanuts for a different kind flavor.
Mix Ins: Just like cookies, you can mix in so many baking ingredients in to Peanut Clusters like butterscotch chips, roughly chopped pretzels, M&Ms, or chopped Marshmallows.
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