The Ultimate Candy-Making Equipment List
A digital scale is the most important piece of equipment you can invest in for candy making (and baking!). “If you can start by eliminating every other variable, the closer you’ll get to perfection,” says Jamie Curl of Portland, Oregon’s QUIN Candy. “Especially when measuring small amounts of ingredients like food coloring or citric acid, it’s hard to be precise with volume measurements.”
Our pick: Ozeri Digital Scale, $14
Sugar is very fickle. In order for most candy, like lollipops or caramels, to achieve the correct texture, the sugar needs to be cooked to a specific temperature. A thermometer is essential for good results!
Our pick: Taylor Deluxe Candy and Deep Fry Thermometer, $28.95
When making caramel or lollipop syrup, stirring is not encouraged. This is where a simple pastry brush comes in handy for brushing down the sides of a saucepan. Bits of sugar will crystalize on the side and can make your sugar syrup gritty. We prefer a silicone brush so that you don’t end up with stray brush hairs in your candy.
Our pick: Oxo Good Grips Silicone Pastry Brush, $7.99
Fine Microplane Grater
Plastic Lollipop Molds
While not entirely essential, plastic lollipop molds are inexpensive, reusable, take up almost no space and make homemade lollipops so much easier.
Our pick: 1.5” plastic lollipop molds (fits 6 lollipops), $6.99
For a 1.5-inch lollipop, we suggest a 4-inch lollipop stick for the perfect handle.
Our pick: 4-inch lollipop sticks, $4.30 for 50
Citric Acid is a crucial ingredient in any tart candy. It balances the sweetness of the sugar and a small amount will give you that perfect citrusy pucker.
Our pick: Ball Citric Acid, $7.51 for 7.5 oz.
Sheets of gelatin are the preferred choice over granulated by almost all professional candy makers. Counting sheets of gelatin is more accurate than measuring teaspoons of the powdered version and there is less of a risk of having undissolved granules in the final candy. It’s especially important for a light, fluffy marshmallow.
Our pick: PerfectaGel Gelatin Sheets, $12.99 for 20 sheets.
Natural Food Coloring
Natural food coloring, made with all natural vegetable juices and spices, yields a more muted color than artificial food coloring, but it’s a great choice if you don’t want any additives in your candy.
Our pick: Dr. Watkins Assorted Natural Food Coloring, $6.99 for 1.2 Fl oz.
To add the final touch to your homemade candy, choose a square of cellophane or wax paper for a wrapper. For a 1-inch caramel or 1.5-inch lollipop, a 5-by-5 inch square of cellophane is the perfect size. Be sure to also buy ribbon or twist ties to secure the wrapping.