Instructables

Homemade Altoids Recipe

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Picture of Homemade Altoids Recipe
altoids1.jpg
Altoids are surprisingly simple to make, and you can create any flavor you can think up!  All you need are a couple ingredients, some flavored oils, and your imagination.

No longer do you need to be a slave to the Altoids empire!  Now you can make curiously strong candies in your own kitchen.  I started with peppermint, cinnamon, and sour apple.  What's next?  Clove? Coffee? Bacon??  The sky is the limit!  

These can be stored and gifted in your own personalized tins.  How thoughtful!

Step 1: The Secret Ingredients

These Altoids require few ingredients, but they might not be too easy to get a hold of, so I've provided some easy links:
I used a liquid citric acid to add to my apple flavor, but that was a disaster!  I highly recommend using the powdered form I linked to above.


Scoochmaroo is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.

Step 2: Measurements!

Picture of Measurements!
powder.jpg
In researching other people's attempts at making Altoids, I discovered a surprising dearth of actual measurements to use!  Everyone seems to just "wing it."  But that's not good enough for me!  Of course, you can (and should!) adjust to your personal preferences, but here are the measurements I had the most success with:

100g gum paste : 1 dram flavoring

The powdered sugar is used to keep the dough from getting sticky, so you really just need a sprinkling of it.

 
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You could make convo hearts the same way, you'd just have to figure out how to print them..
scoochmaroo (author)  banzitothecheeto3 years ago
I was thinking the same thing this morning! I even have a tiny heart-shaped cutter. And they make these cake decorating pens you could use to write on them!
PoopD1 month ago

It's also easy to just roll the dough into small balls (think coke balls) and it's less icing sugar and time needing to punch out and reshape dough. I love the sound of the other shaping ideas though! Take care :-)

cosborne32 months ago

Do you have any suggestions for how to make ginger Altoids? Can you put the actual spice into the gum paste or does it have to be the oil? It would be nice to have some in my purse because I've heard they're good for digestive issues and I've never seen them in a store before. Thank you!

These are really cool! I had never thought you would make them that way...
alright quick question how many mints on average would a set of 100g make and what have you found to be the best flavours? thanks for the answer in advance
scoochmaroo (author)  nightninja871 year ago
Oof, I don't remember how many. I'm going to take a stab and say 50, since that seemed like what I was seeing in the picture. I loved the cinnamon ones the best. Sour apple was the group favorite though!
thank you so much i will have to try and make them myself and the bad part of sour apple is i would not be sure if i would be allergic or not because i have a weird allergy to apple candy but not apples keep up the great work on the ibles though
scoochmaroo (author)  nightninja871 year ago
Yes, you would probably have an allergic reaction the the flavoring. What about sour cherry or sour grape?
nothing actually just sour apple.
Those look like ecstasy pills.
Mrenglish1 year ago
Fantastic! I'm going to make Cinnamon!
craftpro1 year ago
Ooooooh thanks so much i love alto ids!
Kydilee1 year ago
So I know that I'm a little late to this thread.. however I've been trying to come up with a way to make my own Xylitol mints. Apparently 2tsp of xylitol a day will seriously keep the dentist away.. for those curious.. please look at the links below.

I"m excited to try this, but I'd like to incorporate xylitol into this recipe. Any thoughts on the best way to do it? Ideally, I'd like to make it so that eating 3-5 mints throughout the day would end up having 2tsp of xylitol.

http://www.drellie.com/Xylitol.php
http://www.xylitol.org/dental-benefits-of-xylitol
http://www.healingteethnaturally.com/xylitol-dental-care-frequently-asked-questions-faq-4.html
I wanna try these but I'm not sure where to get flavored oil...Could you find it at a cake shop? Like if someone wanted to flavor fondant or something?
scoochmaroo (author)  clonetrooper131 year ago
I've just updated to include links to find everything!
kryptohawk2 years ago
Massive Altoid?
sbrooker3 years ago
Okay, the biggest question I have about this is, of course, how are the taste and texture? I mean, in a blind test, would I be able to tell which was an Altoid and which was homemade? Is there a significant difference, or is this a rather uncannily awesome recipe?

Because as much as I adore the 'toids, it IS rather an expensive addiction. I noticed that on the Altoids tin, their ingredients are sugar, gum Arabic, artificial flavors, gelatin, and dye. Do you have an opinion on the use of gelatin or doesn't it make a significant difference?
vxb222 sbrooker2 years ago
If you decide to try making your own gum paste recipe to do these, than the gelatin will come into play. Since the 'toids have been around for so long they didn't have some of the things used now in gum paste recipes. The first recipe listed here http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080906001555AAfNYFT is the one I use, and while the texture isn't spot on for altoids it's pretty dang close. Enough so that unless friends ask me (or I get lazy and just roll little balls of the things since I suck on them anyway) they don't always know the difference.

One of the perks of using a powdered gum paste mix like Wilton's makes or making your own is you can use tea or coffee to make the stuff, and that gives you more options of flavors. I like to make chai ones.
clibanarius2 years ago
This has been on my radar for a while, and was one of my first 30 days of instructables projects. I used the gum paste powder and the proportions here (started with good ol' peppermint). Took a good two weeks to dry out properly (GA humidity?), was INTENSELY strong, just the way we like them. Was surprised that gum paste is almost entirely powdered sugar. Seems like the next step would be to make your own gum paste first!
thanks clibanarius!
scoochmaroo (author)  clibanarius2 years ago
Do it!

Glad it worked out for you. Your 30 days of Instructables is brilliant! I absolutely love it.
Xm3buX3 years ago
I've never tried Altoids, what is the texture I am aiming to get for these? Chewy? Hard? Something in between?

Thanks.
Altoids are hard and, well, a bit chalky but in a good way!
shveet Xm3buX3 years ago
hard. really thats all i can say,.
adamazing3 years ago
100g gum paste : 1 dram flavoring


Is that a misspelling, meant to be "1 gram flavoring"? As in the gram, unit of mass? Or is it really a dram? I only ask because both amounts are small and not outside the realm of possibility. :)
;) A dram is a legitimate unit of measurement. I believe a dram is equivalent to an 8th of a fluid ounce? Please do correct me if I'm wrong. :)
Hi there, yeah I knew that, but I've never bought flavouring and didn't realise it was actually sold in drams. Other than this instructable, I've only ever heard "dram" referring to a "dram of whiskey" though evidently there's a world of cake-makers and sweet-makers that still use it! :)


I guess it's one of those archaic units of measurement that persists due to one particular usage, like furlongs in horse-racing.
In cooking a dram is equal to approximately 3/4 tsp.
Close but alas no cookie According to my "converts any measure to any other measure" chart 
1 Dram = 27.34375 Grains
               1.771845 Grams
               0.0625 Ounces
There are also troy drams should you wish to measure precious metals.
1 Dram (troy) = .1371429 Ounces
                         .125 Ounces (troy)

I know, way more than anyone wants to know, but hey that's the way my head works.
scoochmaroo (author)  adamazing3 years ago
I do mean dram. It's the full amount of oil as commonly sold.
So basically, according to wikipedia, you could just put 3.5mL of the oil in?
COOL!! can u make cinnamon altoids.
TheGreatS3 years ago
Couldn't you just roll the Altoids "dough" to the desired width and cut it with a knife? I think you could waste less dough that way (or at least save you the trouble of molding the "dough" back into cut-able size).
I had the same thought but without having made these (yet) I would be concerned that the dough is not dense enough to support a knife cutting it, unless that knife was extremely thin or extremely sharp.

You might end up with squashed shapes simliar to these:
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/1/19/After_dinner_mints.jpg

or if you rotate the rolled dough 90 degrees per cut you could get e triangular sharpe like these:
http://www.thesweetiestall.com/chocolate%20mints.JPG

I suspect that using scissors will enhance the look.
Thank you on the clarification. I didn't know the dough wasn't all that strong and couldn't support a knife.
A pizza cutter will probably work easily.
just when i was running out of ways to use my altoids tins, now i can just fill them back up
Years ago, at a rubber stamp fair, one of the vendors was using the stamps and food coloring to stamp lollipops before they hardened. You'd just need a brand new set of stamps. The silicon ones seem to me to be the better choice when compared to the rubber ones, but I'm just estimating here.

Suzanne in Orting, WA
ajohnson1533 years ago
You never did answer the question posed above about how close these match in consistency to the real deal. I bring it up because I am curious as well. Also can you mold them into different shapes using chocolate molds? I wanted to make some in different shapes as party favors or something like that.
scoochmaroo (author)  ajohnson1533 years ago
They are remarkably like the original - except the sour ones which stayed a bit soft because of using the liquid citric acid. I imagine you can use some molds! Give it a shot!
derykgoerke3 years ago
OMG these are so good...i made sour tangarine
danneauxs3 years ago
Just in case gum paste finding is an issue there is this alternative:

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080906001555AAfNYFT

haven't tried it yet but it appeals to me since we have about 20 Lbs of confectioners sugar left over from over ambitious holiday plans.
razordu303 years ago
This is great! One question - I want to make homemade caffeinated mints like these: http://bit.ly/hzax63

The problem is while caffeine is pretty harmless in its proper dosage, it can be pretty dangerous if you take too much. So my question is what would be the safest way to introduce caffeine powder? My worry is whether or not the caffeine gets distributed through the entire mix and each pill has the proper amount. It would be scary if it all ended up only spread out among four or five mints.
BE CAREFUL!!

I used to make my one soda pop. I wanted to add caffeine. I was faced with the same dilemma of dosing small amounts. So I dissolved the caffeine in water. You can make the mixture however dilute you want and when it dissolves it is very evenly distributed. And since you dry the candy all that water will evaporate.

I was torn between making my mixture 10mg per 1ml or 10mg per 10ml. Well I mixed it at 10 to 1 but added it so my soda as if I mixed it 10 to 10. So I accidentally added 10 times what I meant to. What made matters worse is that I mixed the soda with alcohol and so didn't notice the effects until early the next morning when the alcohol had worn off but the caffeine was alive and well in my system. My heart was racing, my skin was crawling, and I couldn't sit still. I ended up going to the emergency room. I was in no real danger of dying and the doctors thought it was rather hilarious but it was terrifying. They gave me drugs to calm me down 24 hours later I was fine.

So go ahead and do this if you want, I don't mean to dissuade you. Just let me repeat, because it bears saying twice...

BE CAREFUL
I'm doing the same thing. My plan is to make a batch first without caffeine, taking care to note all my measurements. See exactly how many units the batch produces. Then divide the target-dosage-per-unit by number of units.

If you buy bulk caffiene, like at purebulk dot com or amazon dot com, you should know that 1/8 th of a teaspoon equals 215 MG of caffeine, so don't eyeball it. Work the math to target 100 MG per mint, or whatever you want. Add the caffeine to the second batch.

Warning those who will eat them that eating more than 600 MG in one sitting will make them ill (more or less per person). Excessive amounts will make them dead. One Red Bull has 80 MG, in comparison.

Another easy option for this is to make Butter mints (the no cooking kind).
maxs razordu303 years ago
I would use the powder gum base and caffine tablets like NoDoze. That way you can crush the tablets into a fine powder and mix them VERY WELL with the powdered gum base. Then use the flavoring oil and water to constitute the powered gum base. This is how pharmaceutical companies make tablets, by mixing all the powdered ingredients (active ingredient, colorants, fillers and binders) together before they put it in a tablet machine.

The Penguin Caffeinated Peppermints say they have as much caffine as a 12 ounce cola. Coke and Pepsi have about 35mg of caffine in a 12 ounce can.

You probably could do this with the gum base you buy as a paste and not a powder, but it would be more difficult to get an even distribution of caffine.

Let us know how it turns out. Just don't eat all of your homemade mints at once!
HollyMann3 years ago
Wow scoochmaroo you are all over the place on here - so many awesome projects - thank you! My son will absolutely LOVE this! You are amazing!
rcampanoli3 years ago
You could also roll the dough out into a log or "snake" and then cut it in small increments
taragl3 years ago
I tried making these mints and they turned out great. Mine were cherry mint pictured here (I would go a little heavier on the cherry next time), and my son made some kind of buttery vanilla marshmallow mixture which was an even bigger hit. This is the first time I've worked with Lorann oils and they were fairly inexpensive and really neat to play with. We halved the recipe so we could play with flavor combinations in smaller batches.

One thing I would caution is that the peppermint oil is some heavy duty stuff. I managed to drip a bit on a bamboo bowl and it removed the finish on that spot. (And I got myself into trouble with my habit of rubbing my eyes, but we won't go into *that* ridiculous story...)
photo.JPG
Aspirin993 years ago
What flavor did you end up liking the best?
scoochmaroo (author)  Aspirin993 years ago
Sour apple!
Awww that's good news. I love sour apple, but didn't know how it would work in this application.
harthoppy3 years ago
i wonder how you would get a bacon flavored or even better yet a bacon flavored with Caffiene!! call Santa I know what i want for Christmas!!!

awesome 'ible thanks a ton i am going to look this up again this week or next i think . ( lots of time home from work right now )
lilrkt3 years ago
I wonder if I can use honey oil to make some honey-love altoids....
thepelton3 years ago
Coffee or caffeine based pills exist under the name NO-DOZ. I used to use them when I worked the overnight shift as a Security Guard. They may not have been intensley minty like Altoids, however.
Can you buy caffeine extract? That would be great to put a drop these homemade altoids when you need caffeine.
Yes, United Nuclear sells it in 2, 4, and 8 ounce containers.
"This material is for experimental purposes only and not to be added to food or drink products."
Man, I was going to use a drop in my drink, I would stay awake for
Hours!
(removed by author or community request)
Caffeine overdose?
Phifft! It would give me more days being awake!


lol
shmyt dombeef3 years ago
Hmmm... I should try that, I have not felt any effect from caffeine in over 3 years and I have tried almost every commercial energy drink and expresso I can find... Maybe pure caffeine will do it...
dombeef shmyt3 years ago
Please don't, even breathing that stuff open would probably give you 2/3 of a daily dose
You'd need a balance that goes to 0.0001g.
Or dilute it in a gallon of water, then use a pipet and get a small part of it.
caffeine overdose! sounds like fun!
Fun?

Errr, no.

I remember the day of drinking 3 pots (as more than 3 liters) of German style drip coffee (has more caffeine per cup than espresso) in an afternoon. Was in preparation of an exam....

Suddenly the heart started racing, the hands started to shiver almost out of control, a general feeling of uneasiness - not nice. Just an intoxication. Nothing more, nothing less. After all, caffeine is a toxic substance, so take care, if you play with the pure stuff.

Just saying.

On the other hand, if I could find a source in Europe... ;-)
Yeah!!!
Go to any workout supplement store and you can easily find caffeine powder or pills for extremely cheap, i have a bottle of 100 200mg caffeine pills in my car that i bought for $4.95

And the best part is, it's dirt cheap and can be used in recipes.

http://www.bodybuilding.com/store/sf/caffeinepowder.html?MCID=F-GOOG-SF272

the amount contained in that bottle is equivalent to 877 16.9 ounce Redbull drinks.

which saves you about $3,000 of redbull purchases :D
It is probably more filler than caffeine
And it won't include bull intestine.
Red Bull does not contain bull intestine. I'm not sure where you got that idea, but it did cause me to head to google, which made me laugh. After typing "Does Red Bull contain" google suggested such interesting ingredients as bull sperm, bull semen, and bull urine. It contains none of these.

Red Bull does contain something called taurine, which is an amino acid which occurs naturally in the human body. But rest assured, you're not drinking anything that came from an actual bull. :D
Taurine is NOT an amino acid. Amino acids have a particular structure with a carboxyl group (-COOH), amine group(-NH3, hence amino) and a variable side chain. Taurine is derived from an amino acid but is not itself an amino acid.

It was isolated first in bull bile so they named it with the Latin root. Biochemists don't name things like chemists do so their discoveries aren't named after the chemical structure.
Oops! Thanks for explaining that. Apparently my quick google was misleading... imagine that! ;)
Oh, I thought that taurine was bull intestine.
And anyways, I don't drink red bull or the other energy drinks, it can't be healthy after a while.
Nope, it's just an amino acid that's found in your own body. It's interesting the sorts of rumors that go around about different things!
Well then where do they get it from?
I would assume it's created synthetically, like many other things. However, I've emailed the creators of Red Bull, so that I'll know the answer direct from the source.
Although thy might not tell you the whole thing
As I suspected, the people at Red Bull stated that there are no animal by-products in their drinks. As I suspected, that Taurine is made in a lab somewhere. The Red Bull manufacturer then buys the Taurine in bulk to add to their product.

This seems much more logical to me than them using bull intestines. That just makes no sense. However, you're welcome to believe whatever you like, regardless of how strange or incorrect it is.

Have a great night!
Taurine is bile
No, taurine is found in bile. Big difference. And the taurine in Red Bull is not from actual bulls. Sorry.
Caffeine extract in liquid form undiluted can be very dangerous
I know, it would have to be diluted before use, even if that amount is too much
Jay_Clark3 years ago
Do these have the same consistency/hardness as the OTC altoids or are they more like the candy hearts that make up standard Valentine's fare? I am curiously pondering this question! :D
I wonder if you can substitute butter for the oil.
i dont think so, the oil is the flavoring unless you want a butter flavored tablet.

Judith7563 years ago
Can cornstarch be used instead of powdered sugar to prevent sticking? It is used in a lot of candy making.
Thanks.
What about making your own gum paste from marshmallows and sugar? http://www.wilton.com/recipe/Rolled-Marshmallow-Fondant and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AKNJygznYAI
I can't get to the site. Is that recipe like the instructable for homemade fondant? I've made it a few times before.  I once made it with chocolate marshmallows and some cocoa powder mixed in with the powdered sugar to give it a chocolate brown color.  I left it out to harden for a few days to grate and use in place of grated chocolate in an edible prop that I did not want to melt in the heat. 

The fondant does dry hard if exposed to the air for a while and still tastes nice.  It doesn't have quite the Altoid consistency but instead reminds me of the inside of a Charleston Chew bar.  It snaps into pieces like one too.  I might have to make some Charleston Chews with it for the candy contest.
jmsdo3 years ago
I accidentally bought the powder mix instead of the bagged paste. It worked out well. I used the oil as part of the moisture to form the dough and adding H20 drop by drop. I made the dough stiff and non-sticky then the confectioners sugar was not needed to keep things from sticking. A pen cap served as the punch. Great idea. thanks!
I bought the dry mix too how much oil did you end up putting in?
scoochmaroo (author)  jmsdo3 years ago
That's awesome! I don't even know where to find the powder mix. Seems like a great opportunity to get a more intense flavor by using less of the oil.
The Wilton dry gum base mix is available on Amazon with Prime shipping. They also have the CK Products dry fondant mix for a decent price, but the shipping is more than 2x the cost.
jmsdo3 years ago
Yes, it was Wilton mix. My town does not have a cooking/gourmet store (or anything close!). The local Joannes fabrics has a small cake decorating section that had the powder and the pre-made paste. The 16 oz can was $6.99
Maybe the dough is too soft, but couldn't you just make a roll and slice pieces off instead of using a straw?
scoochmaroo (author)  sandpaperback3 years ago
That's a good idea! You could actually just roll it out flat and use a knife or pizza cutter to make squares too. Probably the easiest way to go.
you are a genius!!!!
peacenique3 years ago
~ahem~ Bacon flavoured??!!
Do you mean ~ahem~

BACON FLAVORED!?!?! **glitter**  8- D **fairies**  **world peace**
Madrigorne3 years ago
Could you use cornstarch as a non-stickening agent instead of powdered sugar?
scoochmaroo (author)  Madrigorne3 years ago
Absolutely! It would lower the glycemic index of the candy as well as the slightly sugary taste that can upset the other flavor profiles.
Hi there!

Dram is in the apocathary system of measurement and is still actually used in medicine....for example..10 grain tylenol= 650 mg.....and 1/150th grain nitroglycerin is 0.4 mg!

=D i am a nurse btw =D

loved the Ible!

Gashlycrumbtiny
twighahn3 years ago
now there's an idea,whiskey flavored altoids.but then u could not use it to cover ur use of alcohol and they would have alcohol in them if u used real whiskey
well, actually no. Alcohol evaporates faster than water, so if these are dry, they have no alcohol in them, IIRC
twighahn3 years ago
u have brick wall inside?
gramsof103 years ago
I have a bunch of empty Altoid tins & love this idea! Thanks!
HollyHarken3 years ago
You could make a stamp, color it with the food coloring markers and stamp your candies. I'm sure there must be an instructable on the site to make your own rubber stamp.

I love this idea of making your own mints! Great job as always smooch!
Ok, let's see...

Make things out of altoids tins

Make things out of altoids

Make Altoids...

The next logical steps would be:

Make an altoid tin maker

Make a home made Altoid tin :)
kill-a-watt3 years ago
Citric Acid is also known as "sour salt". Just in case you want to try ethnic markets. Also, I did see it one time years ago at wal-mart near the canning jars. It's used in some recipes.

One more local source before hitting up Amazon: Try Beer and Whinemaking suppliers.
I never thought of making my own Altoids. Thanks!!
splazem3 years ago
I know you work for Instructables, so can you enter contests? Are you ever a judge for contests? Who are the judges? Anyway, keep up the good work, I love all of your instructables!
scoochmaroo (author)  splazem3 years ago
I can enter contests, I just can't win! I am often a judge for our contests, and we choose the rest of our judges from within our community or from experts in related fields.

Thanks!
You can't win?!? That stinks, you often have the best instructables, like the girl scout cookies in the snack food contest.
ooh, looks Nice =)