Gluten Free Vegan Allergy Friendly Candy Bar Fudge

Dairy Free, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Nut Free, Seed Free, Top 8 Allergy Free, Vegan

This is the time of year when as allergy/food restriction parents, it can be a bit scary, daunting, and discouraging knowing there is a lot that our kiddos can’t enjoy when they Trick or Treat. There is no safe commercial candy bar that Casey can have so OF COURSE I had to get cracking to make something for my buddy and all our special friends out there in KBFC Land for Halloween! 💙🍫

My candy bar fudge is very similar to making cereal treats, with a few added touches to make that great candy bar taste and texture. Using your safe “butter”, whether it be soy, sunflower, peanut, or nut butter, this is GUARANTEED as good as any candy bar you can have. I gave it a spooky little Halloween touch by swirling chocolate on the surface to make “spiderwebs”.

The best part is, it’s always customizable for your safe needs and the kids can very easily be involved with measuring and stirring. My boys ate an obscene amount of these during the testing phases. Waiting for it to chill is the hardest part!

So, be safe for Trick or Treat this year (ALWAYS carry 2 epinephrine pens!) and remember life is short so enjoy HALLOWEEN safely!! 💙👩🏻‍🍳🎃💀👻

**As always, please check which brands are safe for your needs**

 Ingredients and Substitutions

No Nut Butter/Seed/Nut Butter Spread – I used Wow Butter for the base of the candy bar fudge, but you can use any other safe spread alternative you like. NOTE: it is NOT RECOMMENDED to use any of the spreads that are “natural style” because they are too oily and will make the candy bar fudge greasy.

Non-Dairy or Regular Sweetened Condensed Milk – This is essential for the proper consistency of the candy.  I use Native Forest coconut sweetened condensed milk, but you can use any other non-dairy or regular as an alternative.  Please note this is not the same as heavy cream or coconut cream.  The coconut version comes in a can that is half the size of a can of regular dairy sweetened condensed milk so please note that amount when making the recipe.

Marshmallows – Again, this is a necessary ingredient to get the right texture of the candy bar fudge.  We safely use Jet-Puffed brand, but I know many families use Dandies or Kosher marshmallows as an option.  You need marshmallows (egg free) as opposed to marshmallow crème/fluff, which does contain egg.

Pretzels – Pretzels give an awesome salty crunch and flavor and helps make it a true candy bar!  Casey can safely eat Snyder’s of Hanover gluten free pretzels.  Feel free to experiment and use cereal or crushed crackers.

Chocolate – As always, Pascha is my safe go-to for delicious dairy free chocolate.  The taste is fantastic and as a company, they are wonderfully allergy aware and transparent. 

Gluten Free Vegan Allergy Friendly Candy Bar Fudge

Dairy Free, Egg Free, Gluten Free, Nut Free, Seed Free, Top 8 Allergy Free, Vegan

Author: Katie Martino Lopez

Prep & Cook Time: 20 minutes total

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Chill Time: at least 4 hours

Total Time: 20 minutes/4 hours minimum chill time

Yield: I prefersmall pieces and like to get at least 48 small rectangles but you can make as large or as small as you’d like.

Ingredients

  • 1 ½ Tbls. (1/2 oz./15 g.) vegan or regular butter
  • 1 c. (8 oz/230 g.) safe “butter” spread ex. Wowbutter, peanut butter, sunflower butter, nut butter NOTE: DO NOT use “natural” styles, it will make the recipe very greasy.
  • 1- 7.5 oz (210 g.) can sweetened condensed coconut milk -OR- 1 c. regular sweetened condensed coconut milk
  • 2 c. (3 ½ oz./95 g.) mini marshmallows
  • 3 c. (4 oz./110 g.) gluten free or regular pretzels, broken up AFTER weighing (see notes in recipe). You can sub in a cereal like Chex or Cheerios, but the volume and weight will be different
  • 1/3 c. (3 oz.) safe dark chocolate, chips or chopped finely
  • Optional: 1/8 c. (1 ½ oz.) white chocolate, melted

Method

  1. Set oven to 300 degrees, you will need it just for a few minutes to melt the chocolate after the candy is done.
  2. Lightly grease a 9” x 9” square pan or line with parchment paper. NOTE: You can use an 8” x 8” pan but the candy bar fudge will be much thicker with a smaller yield.
  3. Place pretzels in a large zip top bag and break them up to just have large pieces. Set aside.
  4. Measure out all ingredients and set aside so you can move quickly once you start.
  5. In a medium heavy bottom pot over low heat, melt the vegan/safe butter and then add marshmallows on top. Do the butter first because it helps the marshmallows not to burn and stick as it melts.  Stir constantly until melted.
  6. Add in the sweetened condensed milk and safe “butter” spread, stirring very often for about 4 minutes over low-medium heat. The coconut sweetened condensed milk might look weird and separated but don’t worry, it’s ok! Don’t let it boil or it will burn and stick!
  7. Remove from the heat and immediately stir in the broken pretzels. Drop in the prepared pan and smooth out.
  8. Sprinkle the chocolate evenly over the surface and pop in the warm oven for no more than 5 minutes, it’s just to melt the chocolate. Watch that it does not burn!  Take out and set the pan on a rack to cool.
  9. Optional white chocolate spiderweb swirl: This must be done as soon as the pan comes out of the oven and the dark chocolate is melted! While the pan is in the oven, melt the white chocolate until JUST done (be careful!  White chocolate burn easily!) and pour into a pastry bag or a zip top bag.  Cut a very small opening at the tip.  From the outside of the pan, make concentric circles starting large and coming smaller into the center.  Using a toothpick or a sharp knife tip, drag the tip straight down through the white chocolate from the large outside rings into the center, repeating all the way around to make a spiderweb pattern.  Keep the lines straight as you pull the toothpick into the center.
  10. Cool until the bottom is no longer hot then chill at least 4-8 hours for the best texture. The longer it chills the firmer the candy will be.
  11. Keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to 10 days. The candy bar fudge can also be frozen, well wrapped, for up to 2 months.

Recipe Notes

  • The sweetened condensed milk is necessary to give the candy it’s texture, and the dairy free coconut option definitely does not have a strong coconut flavor.
  • Flavor-wise the pretzels really take it next level but feel free to experiment with cereal or crushed crackers. Salty/crunchy works great against the sweetness of the candy.
  • The candy freezes great as long as it is very very well wrapped!

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Disclaimer

As we all know, reading labels and preparing food when managing allergies is a job within itself with much responsibility. All the brands I use are ones that I have contacted, and Casey has eaten safely. That being said, I must remind…

Please do your own research when deciding which products and foods are safe for the allergies you manage. These are the ones that are safe for our needs but may not be for you. Everyone has different comfort levels with manufacturing and production procedures.

And, as a friendly reminder, always have 2 epinephrine auto injectors on hand!

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