Super easy and delicious white chocolate almond clusters are the perfect gift for the holidays or for any special occasion. Simple with these step-by-step photo instructions for the perfect white chocolate candy.
Everybody loves great candy, and it makes awesome gifts. What would be better than to give great candy that you made yourself? Just don't tell them how easy it is to make.
I have a wonderful chocolate peanut cluster recipe that many people use for holiday gifts, but it is time to change it up a bit. This kicks up that recipe a few notches.
This is the easiest 5 rating of the year.
What is White Chocolate?
The FDA said to be called white chocolate; a product contains at least 20% cocoa butter, 14% milk solids, and 3.5% milkfat — and no more than 55% sugar or other sweeteners. There is a bit more to it, but that is enough for us. FDA Offical Definition
Note that there is no cocoa powder in white chocolate. Obviously, that would no longer be white. Some will argue it is not chocolate without cocoa powder. That is an argument for another day.
Almond Bark vs. Candy Melts
Candy Melts, candy wafers, chocolate coating, and almond bark are products made for coating without needing to temper chocolate or other special handling.
Almond Bark (which does not contain almonds) is a bit old school, and in recent years, we see more "candy melt" products available. These candy making components will have partly hydronated oil that will firm up the coating and have no cocoa butter.
Think of them all as interchangeable. They will help you produce excellent results with no fuss.
Some people like the results with just almond bark/candy melts and only use these for all the "chocolate" in a recipe like this. I want better.
What "chocolate" to use?
White cooking chips are almost never labeled as chocolate since they don't meet the minimum requirements. Many are just downright bad.
Since the main "feature" of this recipe is the coating, I went with one of the top-rated chips from Ghirardelli. I added a bar of white cooking chocolate for more cocoa butter. I also used some "Almond Bark."
NOTE: This is NOT a sponsored post, and I have no relationship of any type with Ghirardelli. I mention them by name since it is a commonly available good quality brand. There are other excellent choices also. But the quality of the components is important for top quality results.
I used roasted almonds this time, but you can add almost anything. Since we are using a closed crock pot, you don't want anything with significant water.
Chocolate to Nut Ratio
You will want about 1 ½ pounds of "chocolate" to 1 pound of nuts. It can be a little more or a little less.
I used an 11 oz bag of chips, 4 oz of white chocolate baking bar, and 10 oz of almond bark (5 squares of the brand I used). So 25 oz of "chocolate."
The serving size is about one tablespoon, which is about one heaping kitchen teaspoon. Make them a little small says the guy who has eaten hundreds of these.
These candies are good at room temperature for about 5 days. I do not suggest freezing chocolate.
I prefer a crockpot for this. It can be done on the stovetop, but you will need to be very careful about overheating, or there will be texture issues.
Due to some reported issues that may be related to smaller crock pots, even though the recipe fits in a 3 quart, please use a full size crock pot.
Using a large crock pot for the small recipe, it can heat faster, so be sure to check at 60 and 90 minutes into cooking–but it will probably still take the full 2 hours.
The crock pot needs to be on low. This is not a recipe to be cooked on high. On low, most crock pots slowly will get to 200° over 4 or more hours. So a great slow heat to melt chocolate.
On high, some crock pots may run 250°+. They shouldn't, but they do. Also, the run-up to full temperature is much faster on the high setting. This adds a good chance to overheat the chocolate and "scorching" the chocolate.
You can do this in a large, heavy pot on the stovetop over low heat. You will need to add everything but the nuts. Stand there and frequently stir until the chocolate melts and comes together completely. This will take about 15 minutes to complete. Stir in the nuts at the end.
The crock version takes only a few minutes. Then you come back when done. I always do the crock pot method.
📖Crock Pot Candies
Crock Pot Chocolate Peanut Clusters
This recipe is part of Christmas Candy Recipes. Check out other easy candy recipes.
This recipe is listed in these categories. See them for more similar recipes.
🖼️Step-by-Step Photo Instructions
Decide on the "Chocolate" you are using. I use 11 oz. of Ghirardelli chips, one four oz bar of Ghirardelli white baking chocolate, and 10 oz. of white almond bark.
Spray a full size crock pot with a good coat of PAM.
Add 1 pound of almonds to the crock pot, then top with all the "chocolate." Cover and cook on low until the chocolate melts enough to mix together.
In most crock pots, that should be about 2 hours, but some crock pots are a bit hotter and may have a hotter area. Stir and check at 60 and 90 minutes. When it is melted and combined completely, you are done.
Mix well, then spoon out onto parchment paper. The serving size is about one tablespoon, which is about one heaping kitchen teaspoon. I like to use two spoons: one to scoop and one to push it onto the parchment.
Make them a little small with 3-4 almonds each and mix the crock pot occasionally while spooning.
Allow to cool for about 30 minutes.
Crock Pot White Chocolate Almond Clusters
- 1 pound almonds
- 11 oz white chips - Ghirardelli preferred
- 4 oz white chocolate bar - Ghirardelli preferred
- 10 oz vanilla almond bark - or candy melts
- Decide on the "Chocolate" you are using. I suggest 11 oz. of Ghirardelli chips (one bag), one four oz bar of Ghirardelli white baking chocolate and 10 oz. of white almond bark.
- Spray a full size crock pot with a good coat of PAM.
- Add 1 pound of almonds to the crock pot, then top with all the "chocolate." Cover and cook on low until the chocolate melts enough to mix together.
- In most crock pots, that should be about 2 hours, but some crock pots are a bit hotter and may have a hotter area. Stir and check at 60 and 90 minutes. When it is melted and combines completely, you are done.
- Mix well, then spoon out onto parchment paper. The serving size is about one tablespoon, which is about one heaping kitchen teaspoon. I like to use two spoons: one to scoop and one to push it onto the parchment.
- Make them a little small with 3-4 almonds each and mix the crock pot occasionally while spooning.
- Allow to cool for about 30 minutes.
Your Own Private Notes
- You need a ratio of about 1 pound of nuts to 1 ½ pounds of "chocolate." The chocolate can be white chips, white chocolate baking bars, or white almond bark/candy melts.
- Do not cook on high. The faster run up on temperature can scorch the chocolate.
- Since the coating is the main feature of this recipe, you need good quality. There is a lot of bad white "chocolate" out there. I used Ghirardelli which is good quality.
- I added the baking chocolate bar to get more cocoa butter and an even better taste.
- Think of almond bark and candy "melts" of various types as interchangeable.
- Most crock pots should be 2 hours, but some crock pots are a bit hotter and may have a hotter area. Stir and check at 60 and 90 minutes. When it is melted and combines completely, you are done. Overcooking will scorch the chocolate.
- I suggest getting about 4 almonds in most clusters as you spoon them out. They are very rich, and that is the size I think most people will want.
- I got at least 80 pieces, but I had some bigger pieces. I think if you keep to the 4 almond per piece range, you will be closer to 100.
- An easy recipe to double or cut in half.
- Store in an airtight container. If refrigerated then good for several weeks. Freeze if you must to store longer but freeze can affect chocolate and I generally do not recommend it.
To adjust the recipe size:
You may adjust the number of servings in this recipe card under servings. This does the math for the ingredients for you. BUT it does NOT adjust the text of the instructions. So you need to do that yourself.
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Originally Published December 2, 2018. Updated with expanded options, refreshed photos, and a table of contents to help navigation.
Well, Dr Dan your recommendation for larger crockpot worked very well this time around. I’m going to up the candy melt that I use to more like 12 ounces, not 10. I don’t think they’re as ‘melty’. I had a few more teaspoons of almonds than white chocolate at the end. Very easy once I used the right equipment.
Dr Dan, 2 yearrs ago I made two batches of these for gifts and they were outstanding except for the arduous scrubbing of my 7 qt crockpot after each batch. Did I use PAM? I don't remember. I made a batch last year in a smaller crockpot that did not melt in 3 hours., turned it to high for 2 hours and scorched the almonds that did not get any melting chocolate. VERY tasty but unsightly. Used a crockpot liner to ease cleanup. I wondered about that. THIS year, same smaller crockpot. Same crockpot liner altho I saw the instruction about PAM and hesitated. After 1.5 hours, I tried to stir every 30 minutes, but it was really stiff. At that point I pulled the liner out and examined.the contents. Very toasty almonds on the bottom. slightly melted white chocolate at the top. Unsightly but tastey, however not enough melted chocolate to glue the almonds together on parchment. I tried the microwave on defrost at 30 seconds each but didn't get enough melted chocolate to change the mixing of chocolate with almonds. Quit for the night.
1) Maybe I should not have used the liner? That liner made it more difficult to thoroughly mix from the bottom of the crock pot and incorporate the ingredients.
2) Maybe I did not have enough white chocolate in the mix? I did use your suggested quantities for Ghirardelli chips & bars and Merckens candy melts. Same as the first time I think. However, I still need a candy Christmas gift. My husband is not worried at all. He's delighted to clear out the white chocolate toasted almond debacle. A little piece by another little piece.
Any advice? I'm thinking of trying this again with some more ingredients. But we two don't need a pound and a half of more white chocolate almonds. More chocolate? Almonds on top of the white chocolate? Thoughts?
Thanks, Deb L
Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan
To Readers: Handling by email, it may be a problem with the products used but not confirmed yet.
Dan Mikesell AKA DrDan
The issue seems to be crock pot related. It was a smaller crock pot so the material was deeper. I suggest a full size crock pot for now.
Easy and perfect for gift giving. I set the clusters in cupcake liners to look pretty. Could not find any white baking chocolate. (Everybody must be making this recipe, Dr Dan). So used a little more white chips and white candy melts to make 25 oz. Delicious!
This has become a favorite, a must make every year!
What do you do about the moisture that accrues under the lid<
Welcome to the blog.
There are no ingredients that should have significant moisture. With this recipe and the peanut clusters (https://www.101cookingfortwo.com/4-ingredient-crock-pot-chocolate-peanut-clusters/) I have never had a problem in probably 20-30 times.
Having said that water is the enemy of chocolate. If you have a problem or think you will, leave the top off like my crock pot fudge and cook a little longer. https://www.101cookingfortwo.com/5-minute-fudge/ . It has sweetened condensed milk so produces humidity.
Hope that helps.
These are delicious but the very bottom of my batch seem to Scorch slightly on the bottom of the Crock-Pot so should I stir these during cooking? Please let me know your thoughts as I plan to make several batches of these for Christmas thank you so much and Merry Christmas!!
Welcome to the blog.
Some crock pots run hotter and if the heating element is on the bottom vs around the sides, it can get hotter in a few areas.
What to do? Check and stur at 60 and 90 minutes. I'm adding this to the recipe. I happened a little to me last week with a different crockpot.
Thanks for the note and Happy Holidays,
Well, I only had a brick of the white vanilla almond bark, which I just call white chocolate and I didn t have any peanuts. But I did have cashews and macadamia nuts. Even better! Real white chocolate can be used, but it s going to be more expensive. You can also use chocolate chips and make these Slow Cooker Chocolate Peanut Clusters. YUM!
These are definitely a Oh My Goodness great tasting & easy candy to make. We love them as much as the chocolate peanut clusters! Thanks for all your recipes. Merry Christmas!
I do think this is my recipe of the year. I will be deciding in a few weeks.
They are the best candy I have ever made.
Thanks for the notes and Happy Holidays.
OMG these look so yummy, love the chocolate peanut cluster recipe, can’t wait for my grand babies to come visit, so we can make/try these!