For the last six years, we have tapped the large silver maple tree in our backyard. We lived in our home for seven years before attempting to tap our trees. We always assumed that to make homemade maple syrup, we’d need numerous trees to collect sap from.
But our one large silver maple has a big enough circumference that we are able to install three spiles to collect from. From these three taps, we collect enough sap to boil down syrup to last us the entire year. Usually we can make enough to share with friends and family, too.
The spring of 2020 was our personal best year for sap collection. The temperatures were perfect—below freezing overnight and above freezing during the day for about six weeks.
With our excess syrup, we decided to experiment. That’s when we first made these delicious and delicate maple candies.
Since our homemade syrup is so coveted, we only make a small batch of candies. However, you can also make this recipe with purchased 100 percent pure grade A or grade B maple syrup.
The grade B syrup is darker and will offer more of a maple flavor.
Read more: Start sugaring your own maple syrup!
Supplies & Ingredients
- 2 cups 100 percent pure grade A or grade B maple syrup
- Stainless steel pot with tall sides (I use a 5-quart pot)
- Candy thermometer
- Small silicone candy molds or a parchment paper lined cookie sheet
In a large, tall-sided pot, bring the maple syrup to a boil. Boil until the candy thermometer reads 237 degrees F, stirring occasionally.
Once it reaches 237 degree F, remove from heat and cool to 175 degrees F, then quickly begin stirring until the syrup lightens in color. This will take a couple minutes.
As soon as it turns, quickly spoon the syrup into the candy molds, or pour it over a lined cookie sheet. The syrup will quickly harden, so time is of the essence.
Once completely cooled, you can carefully remove candies from the molds. If using a cookie sheet, you can break up the cooled candy to bite-sized pieces and enjoy them that way.
Maple sugar candies should be stored in an airtight container. Enjoy within two months.
Make sure you test your candy thermometer for accuracy before beginning this project.
For any hardened maple left over in the pan, you can stir and break up the mixture to create a crumble. This crumble can be used in coffee, tea, on top of ice cream, over muffins or pretty much anything your heart desires.
Be careful not to splatter any hot syrup on yourself, as it’s incredibly hot.
Do not leave the pot of boiling syrup unattended. It could boil over or burn.
The goal candy temperature will change depending on altitude. Generally, you’ll want to reach 27 degrees F above boiling point of water where you located.