Updated December 2012
Of course you can eat them as they are... but you can also...
1. USE AS STIR STICKS...
Use candy canes instead of spoons and stir sticks in all of your favorite beverages! They're yummy and add a bit of sweet peppermint taste to hot chocolate/cocoa, tea, coffee and hot apple cider. They're also great in milk shakes!
2. CRUSH THEM AND...
• Use as SPRINKLES on top of: ice-cream and frosted cookies, cupcakes and cakes. Put them on top of the whipped cream on your hot cocoa!
• MAKE CANDY CANE SUGAR...
Pulverize candy canes into a finer powder and use for: Sweetening your tea, cocoa, iced tea and coffe drinks!
3. CRUSH AND MIX INTO FAVORITE RECIPES... Crushed canes mixed with melted chocolate or white chocolate make a delicious chocolate peppermint bark or fudge...make Peppermint Ice Cream, Candy Cane Brownies...add them to Rice Kripie Treats! (Recipes for Wands and Brittle are below)
TIP: If you're going to 'MIX IN' crushed candy canes--blend or puree them. It makes a much finer taste as it's baked or mixed into another dessert. You can do this with candy canes or peppermint round candies. Using a blender, crush them to powder. Be prepared...it gets loud!
4. MAKE PEPPERMINT WHIPPED CREAM FOR HOT CHOCOLATE...
→ Buy peppermint candy canes or peppermint round candies. Using a blender, crush them to powder.
→ Using either 16 oz. of 'Cool Whip' or your own whipped--whipping cream-- use a 1/2 cup of powdered peppermint candy.
→ Stir the crushed candy into the cream topping. It makes a fun pink cream and the tiny chunks that didn't crush add to the yummy!
→Top each mug of cocoa with one or two spoonfuls of peppermint pink topping.
To store left over cream, put into freezer baggies or a freezing container; freeze until needed again.
To thaw--place in refrigerator.
To store leftover peppermint powder--place in a plastic bag or covered container.
5. Use them as KABOB STICKS or as a dessert fondue SKEWER. (Great to spear those marshmallows and dip in chocolate and roll in special coatings!)
6. USE AS HOLIDAY ORNAMENTS, GIFTS, and EMBELLISHMENTS
• HOT GLUE CANES AROUND a basket, container, or candles. Preserve them with a cover of clear acrylic coating.
Another wonderful idea is from oodlekadoodle...Using a glue gun, glue candy canes, side-by-side (standing on end with their hooks at the top) to the outside of a terra cotta pot. Tie a red ribbon around the pot. Place a small poinsettia or greens inside the pot... or fill the pot with wrapped candy. (Note: I don't see the hooks. It appears as oddlekadoodle used peppermint sticks-but either way would be lovely. Barb)
• Canes are pretty just put in a glass jar-and grouped with other candy. Or use this idea at Holiday time from classytreats (I needed to disable the link. When I tried it the url had changed)...
Just hang wrapped candy canes from the edge of a bowled-dish! Put a jar candle inside. (You could also fill the inside with peppermint candies or any other Christmas candy instead of using a candle.)
• Use Candy Canes along with other Christmas ornaments and hang on your tree...
• Scatter 'round red and white peppermint candies' inbetween your candles and Holiday table decorating items. It adds a nice touch to your dinner table and guests can enjoy after dining.
7. 'CANDY CANE' RECIPES...
• MAKE CANDY CANE WANDS...Special candy canes for the holidays! Dip them in chocolate and sprinkle with candies ready for tasty festivities! Start to Finish takes 30 min
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips or white vanilla baking chips
2 teaspoons shortening
16 candy canes or peppermint sticks---about 6 inches long
Crushed hard peppermint candies
Miniature chocolate chips, candy decorations
Colored glitter sugars or coarse sugar crystals (decorating sugar), if desired
1. Line jelly roll pan, 15 1/2 x 101/2 x 1 inch, with waxed paper.
In 1-quart saucepan, heat 1/2 cup chocolate chips and the shortening over low heat, stirring occasionally, until melted.
2. Tip saucepan so chocolate runs to one side. Dip 1 candy cane at a time into chocolate, coating about half of each cane. Place on waxed paper in pan. Let stand about 2 minutes or until chocolate is partially dry.
3. Roll chocolate-dipped ends in candies. Place on waxed paper in pan. Let stand about 10 minutes or until chocolate is dry. Store loosely covered at room temperature up to 2 weeks.
FOR A SPECIAL TOUCH...
Double-Dipped Candy Cane Wands: Dip candy canes into one kind of chocolate and allow to dry, then dip into a second chocolate, leaving part of the first chocolate to show. A Better Crocker Recipe
• CHOCOLATE DIPPED CANDY CANES (Great to stir Hot Cocoa!)
Chocolate chips or favorite melting chocolate
Hot Chocolate Drink Mix
1. Melt chocolate in microwave. If using semi-sweet or milk chocolate chips-melt it in the microwave and check it each minute.
2. Dip the candy canes half-way into the chocolate.
3. Lay on wax paper to cool. You'll now have the yummiest stir sticks around! (Visit the wonderful Hot Cocoa Category!)
• How cute are these?! REINDEER CUPCAKES
Use small candy canes (take wrappers off) to decorate and make 'Reindeer' cupcakes! Your kids will love doing this one!
• CANDY CANE (Hot Chocolate) MINT FLOAT
3/4 cup (6 oz.) prepared hot chocolate
1/8 teaspoon peppermint extract
1/2 cup Mint Chip Ice Cream
Whipping cream, whipped
Mint candy cane, crushed
(OK...If you're an adult loking for a yummy holiday drink--you can add 2 tablespoons peppermint schnapps or creme de cocao liqueur instead of the extract)
In large mug, pour hot chocolate and extract or liqueur; stir to mix. Spoon ice cream into hot chocolate mixture. Top with whipped cream and sprinkle of candy..Or top with whipped cream and a peppermint candy cane or stick. Yumm...
Makes 1 serving...
TIP: For 4 servings, use 3 cups (24 oz.) hot chocolate, 1/2 cup liqueur or 1/2 teaspoon peppermint extract and 1 carton (14 fl. oz.) of ice cream. Follow directions above.
• HAPPY HOLIDAY HOT COCOA with pulverized Candy Canes mixed in...
Ingredients: 8 cups dry instant skim milk
4 3/4 cups powdered sugar (note: can use 1/2 Splenda & 1/2 icing/confectioners sugar)
1 3/4 cups cocoa
1 1/2 cup Light non-dairy creamer
1 small package Low-fat instant chocolate pudding mix
1 box of 12 candy canes, pulverized (See dirtions at top of page on how to pulverize)
Combine above ingredients in a large mixing bowl and fold together well-- or place into a food processor and mix to make it a fine powder.
Mix 2 tablespoons in a mug of hot water, top with marshmallows ...can put a candy cane in cup as stirrer... Source: celebrating-christmas.com
• PEPPERMINT FLOATS
Miniature candy canes
Red and green sugar sprinkles (crystals)
Large opening straws
Add one scoop of vanilla ice-cream to cup.
Pour ginger Ale over top of ice-cream.
Add a candy cane and sprinkle the colored sugar on top
Submitted by Gerri/Illinois
• POPCORN BALLS ON 'CANDY CANE' HOOKS
Make popcorn balls and put the straight end of a miniature candy cane into each one.
Sprinkle colored sugar onto the balls before they harden.
Wrap in colorful cellophane.
The popcorn ball ornaments will have built-in peppermint tree hooks.
Note: These make great gifts!
• MAKE 'CANDY CANE' BRITTLE
Makes 2 pounds
From the kitchen of Cheree Bailey
1/2 cup light corn syrup and 1 cup sugar
1 cup crushed candy canes OR 1-1/2 cups nuts of your choice
1 teaspoon butter or margarine
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon baking soda
1. In a round 1-1/2 quart microwave safe dish, combine corn syrup and sugar. Stir well until blended. Microwave on high for 4 minutes.
2. Stir mixture (if using nuts instead of candy canes, stir nuts in now).
3. Microwave on high 4-5 minutes or until light brown.
4. Stir in butter and vanilla-blend well. Microwave on high 1-2 minutes.
5. Add baking soda--stir lightly until foamy.
6. Quickly pour onto lightly greased baking sheet (you can use Pam or shortening). Pour crushed candy canes over brittle while warm and press lightly onto surface. Let cool.
• MAKE CANDY CANE SYRUP
2 cups of sugar, 1 cup of water, 6 to 8 candy canes.
1. Put sugar and water into a saucepan; with stove-top at medium heat stir.
2. Add the candy cane pieces to the pan and continue stirring frequently as the mixture heats.The candy canes will start dissolving, and the syrup will begin to turn a creamy pink color. (Or whatever color the canes are--when all the sugar and candy canes are dissolved, it will turn clear and take on a deep pink color.
3. Continue cooking until syrup comes to a boil. Let it boil for about 2-3 minutes and then let syrup to cool in the pan.
4. When cooled, pour into a jar with a lid.
Wonderful for adding to hot chocolate, drizzling over ice cream or putting in pretty jars and bottles (with a candy can attached of course!) for a 'sweet' gift.
• CANDY CANE REINDEER FEED
6 cups Rice Chex® or Chocolate Chex® cereal
1 bag (12 oz) white vanilla baking chips (2 cups)
1/3 cup coarsely crushed peppermint candy canes (14 miniature, unwrapped)
1. Line cookie sheet with foil or waxed paper. Place cereal in large bowl. 2. In microwavable bowl, microwave white vanilla baking chips uncovered on high about 1 minute 30 seconds, stirring every 30 seconds, until chips can be stirred smooth. Stir in half the crushed peppermint candy.
3. Pour over cereal; toss to evenly coat. Spread mixture in single layer on cookie sheet.
Immediately sprinkle with remaining candy. Let stand until set, about 20 minutes. Gently break up coated cereal. Store in airtight container.
• VALENTINE CANDY CANES... Remember this one when you have left-over Christmas Candy Canes!
Hot glue two candy canes together at the tips. They make a perfectly shaped heart! Put out construction paper, paper doilies, the candy canes, markers, ribbons, etc. Next, challenge the children to use their imagination in creating cards! If you have small photos of the children, you could glue these in the center of the hearts. Image byMs. Jane at the Kansas City Public Library.
• CANDY CANE CAPPUCCINO (Gift Jar)
1 cup powdered non-dairy creamer
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
1 cup instant coffee
1 cup hot cocoa mix
8 regular sized candy canes, crushed
Blend all ingredients in a food processor or blender until it becomes a smooth powder. Place mixture in small jars and decorate with fabric and ribbon-- and attach the tag.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR TAG (attach to jar/bag)... Candy Cane Cappuccino...
Stir 1 tablespoon of cappuccino mix into 1 cup boiling water. For a richer cup of cappuccino, place 1 tablespoon of mix into 1 cup of hot milk.
• GROW CANDY CANES FROM 'CANDY CANE SEEDS' (A cute, easy, and quick Holiday gift)
Put round, red and white peppermint candies into a pretty container or a small bag--tie with this poem attached.
I once knew a gardener who knew how to grow-
Bright tasty candies, right out of the snow.
I asked him to share his secret with me-
And this is what he said quite readily.
To garden in winter is difficult you see
It takes lots of care and a special seed.
I'll give you a couple to grow your own treats-
And you'll soon reap a harvest of candy cane treats
•'PEPPERMINT CANDY' SPOONS
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 candy cane or 5 peppermint candies, crushed
12 heavy-duty plastic spoons in Christmas colors
1. Put candy in a baggie and crush with a rolling pin.
2. Melt chocolate.
3. Dip spoons into chocolate to fill.
4. Sprinkle with crushed candy.
5. Place on waxed paper covered cookie sheet to cool.
Wrap with cellophane and tie with ribbons for gifts.
• CANDY CANE REINDEER
2 pipe cleaners, candy cane, two 6 mm google eyes, 1/4" pom pom, glue, scissors
This has been around awhile--but great fun for first-timers!
1. Cut one long pipe cleaner in fourths.
2. Twist the other long pipe cleaner around the top of the cane to make 2 large antlers.
3. Wrap 2 pieces of the cut pipe cleaner pieces --around each antler to make the "branches" on the antler.
4. Glue the eyes to each side of the cane "hook.
5. Glue the pom pom at the end of the cane for the nose. You have a reindeer!
NOTE: Oops! I didn't look at the 'antler' directions when this was made. This sample shows one half of a pipe-cleaner twisted and then bent a bit...Depending on your age group--do which ever is easier...(Image by KidActivities.net)