Southern Homemade Peanut Brittle Recipe

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Homemade peanut brittle is an easy, peanutty sweet treat that satisfies your sweet tooth and crunchy cravings. Bite-sized golden pieces of brittle with peanuts will have coming back for more!

Peanut brittle spilling out of a bowl onto a counter top.

You don’t need a candy thermometer to make this old-fashioned peanut brittle. I’ll show you how to make it without one along with a special “pulling” technique. It’s the only recipe that I use for making Homemade Peanut Brittle.

Don’t worry if you are not an experienced candy maker or know anything about “crack stage” or how to temper chocolate. (By the way, there is no chocolate in this recipe.)

This recipe came from my Southern mother-in-law. To make her peanut brittle, you need two cups of raw or parched peanuts. (I used the entire contents of a 16-ounce bag of parched peanuts. The more nuts the merrier, in my opinion.)

Let’s look at how to make this Southern treat.


To make this peanut brittle recipe, you need the following ingredients:

  • ⅔ cup light corn syrup
  • 1 ½ cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups raw peanuts
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda
Peanuts spilling out onto a counter top.

How To Make Peanut Brittle

In a large saucepan, combine the nuts with corn syrup and sugar and cook over medium-high heat until it turns honey-colored. It takes me about 15 minutes.

Stir the sugar mixture often, but not constantly.

Peanuts and sugar being stirred in a pot with a wooden spoon.
A wooden spoon stirring peanut brittle in a pot.

Once the color becomes rich, golden brown, add baking soda.

Stirring peanut brittle in a metal pot.

A chemical reaction will occur and the mixture will foam and lighten in color.

Spreading peanut brittle on a parchment lined cookie sheet.

Spread the candy mixture onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or one that has been well-greased. (A couple of tablespoons of butter should do the trick.) Or you can go all Alton Brown and use a Silpat liner (silicone baking mat).

Close up view of hot peanut brittle on parchment paper.

Spread the mixture out a bit using a wooden spoon or spatula.

Pulling peanut brittle with a fork.

Store peanut brittle in an airtight container at room temperature for 6 to 8 weeks.


Before it has cooled completely, take two forks and “pull” the brittle apart. This technique set my mother-in-law’s brittle apart from others. The pulled brittle is easier to eat than the thick brittle typically sold in stores.

Be careful because the brittle is really hot.

Do not attempt to make peanut brittle when it is humid outside or while it is raining. It’s very similar to making divinity. Humidity and peanut brittle are not friends.

Peanut brittle makes a great edible gift during the holiday season. Layer it in a glass jar and tie a festive ribbon. Your gift recipients will thank you for this family favorite delicious treat.

Peanut Brittle

Vernel’s Homemade Peanut Brittle

You don’t need a candy thermometer to make this peanut brittle. The special “pulling” technique creates sweet, crunchy strands of sugar and nuts that you will love.
4.58 from 7 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Desserts
Cuisine: American
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 6
Calories: 578kcal


  • cup light corn syrup
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 2 cups raw peanuts
  • 1 tablespoon baking soda


  • Grease, butter, or line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside
  • Mix together corn syrup, sugar and raw peanuts in a large saucepan.
  • Cook over medium-high heat until mixture turns honey colored.
  • Remove from heat. Add baking soda and stir well.
  • Pour mixture onto prepared baking sheet. As soon as brittle has set, use utensils to pull and stretch brittle into pieces. Caution: Brittle will be very hot.


***Do NOT make on rainy or high humidity days.


Calories: 578kcal | Carbohydrates: 86g | Protein: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Sodium: 708mg | Fiber: 4g | Sugar: 78g
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The nice thing about this peanut brittle recipe is that you don’t need a candy thermometer to make it. Once you have made it a few times, you learn how to judge the process by the colors of the mixture.

Crunchy Peanut Brittle on a table.

Be sure to come back and tell us how your homemade peanut brittle turned out!

Hungry for more Southern favorites? Be sure to check out these other delicious recipes:

  • Easy Chicken and Dumplings – Both a family and reader favorite, this recipe is easy to make and is Southern comfort food at its finest.
  • Buttermilk Biscuits – You only need three simple ingredients to make these light and fluffy biscuits. They’re perfect for serving alongside a meal or stuffed with meat, egg, and cheese for the main course.
  • Old Fashioned Tea Cakes – This recipe is an authentic Southern recipe – it was transcribed while my mother-in-law made them by heart.
  • Classic Pound Cake – This recipe comes from Lulu Buffet, the sister of singer Jimmy Buffet. It’s a great treat to enjoy with company.

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    1. For me after about a couple of hundred batches it’s easy?. My mother showed. me and I took it from there.

  1. I have made peanut brittle. I once made two different types, I cooked one the old fashioned way and the other in the microwave for a couple of minutes. I actually liked the microwaved better. I love the pulling technique. I think that would make it a lot easier on my teeth.

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