This recipe is a little bit nostalgia and a whole lot chocolate and caramel and pecan. I pretty much love anything with caramel and chocolate. Add in something crunchy and I’m in heaven; Twix is my favorite candy bar but these little babies are one of my absolute favorite confections. I could eat them anytime but they’re traditionally found around the holidays especially in home made form like Peanut Brittle; but CHOCOLATE. I prefer milk chocolate but this could easily be made with the equivalent semi sweet or dark chocolate and they’d be just as good if not a little less sweet. Are you ready to make chocolate turtles ?? I know you’re ready to eat them just LOOK at those!
Start with a parchment paper lined baking sheet and either butter spray or you could use actual butter and butter the pan; the point really is to keep the caramel and chocolate from sticking and it isn’t strictly necessary, they might not; but why take the chance?
Pecan halves go on the buttered pan, I buy these little bags in the baking section at the grocery store so the ‘halves’ aren’t all intact to make the perfect little feet on the turtles but I don’t mind. I’ll show you how we deal with the little pieces in a bit
Everybody into the preheated oven! Try to spread them out relatively evenly so they all have a chance to get equally toasty
Wrapped caramels! While the nuts are toasting you could start unwrapping caramels, it makes me feel like the squirrels in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory who are all sitting at their little stations shelling nuts; maybe that’s just me. Or maybe it’s the nuts.
You can see they’re all beautiful and toasty now! If you skip the toasting step it really changes the texture of the whole thing (don’t ask me how I know that…) so I’d advise against it, but it’s up to you. It only takes 5-10 minutes and they’re ready!
Pick out the super pretty (or acceptable) pieces and arrange them in little stars, these are the turtle feet. You should have about half of the nuts, mostly in small pieces, left. Some people use 5 nuts it’s up to you, I like 4. Give them a little room because we’re going to have caramel and chocolate spreading all over and you don’t want to accidentally combine two turtles, then you’ll have one big turtle and you’ll have to eat the whole thing…. maybe the spacing isn’t that important come to think of it…
One caramel per each, please!
Put them back in the oven and let that caramel melt then set them out to cool and harden while we get the chocolate ready
Double boiler time! You could also take a bag of chocolate chips and put them in a (non metal) bowl in the microwave for 15 second increments, stirring them between rounds until they melt. It works too, but I have the double boiler so why not use it? If you don’t the microwave totally works just watch it closely and make sure to stir every 15 seconds! With the double boiler, fill the bottom to the fill line and put it on the stove over medium low heat.
Add chocolate chips to the top portion
And stir them about every 15-30 seconds until they get nice and melted!
By now the turtles should be pretty much cooled off, dollop as much melted chocolatey goodness over them as you’d like! I’d only use about half; we’re going to need the other half in a bit
MMMMMMMM Melty gooey! Depending on where you live, you may want to pop these into the fridge or freezer now to set. I live in super hot Arizona right now so if I leave them on the counter they will pretty much stay like this and never get solid. I slide the parchment paper onto a cutting board and pop that into the fridge for 10-15 minutes and they come out perfect though
All nice and ready to gobble up!
So those remaining pieces; we need to use them right? Well actually while we started the chocolate I arranged them evenly in little clusters…..
Popped on a caramel each and stuck them in the still warm oven, then once they got melty, kind of piled up the nuts on top of the caramel so they stuck together. The caramel is more tacky than melty so it’s not scalding hot and molten lava or anything. So by the time the other turtles go to the fridge to cool
We can use the other half of the chocolate to cover these little lumps and while they’re not as adorable as the turtles, they’re exactly as delicious!
Turtle Power!! These make a great addition for a Harry Potter night too, sure they’re no chocolate frogs but I didn’t hear any complaining!
And just look how cute they are <3
- Baking Spray optional
- 6 oz Pecan Halves
- 10-20 Wrapped Caramels
- 11.5 oz chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
Spray or butter baking sheet lined with parchment paper
Spread out pecans on sheet and bake in oven for 5-10 minutes, until browned
Remove from oven and turn down to 250 degrees
Arrange Pecans in clusters of 4-5 and top with caramels
Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes, until the caramel melts, remove and set out to cool
Once the clusters and pan are cool (15-20 minutes) add water to double boiler and put on stove, add chocolates to the top portion
Heat burner to medium low and stir regularly until melted
Pour equal amounts of chocolate on each cluster and allow to set, enjoy!
What will you use them for? Some people package up sweets like this for Christmas presents, we eat them for Harry Potter nights or just because they’re delicious! I do particularly like them around the holidays though, anything sweet is welcome when it’s chilly and you’re snuggled up with family! I’d love to hear what you did with them in the comments below.