"Survival Candy"





Introduction: "Survival Candy"

A few years ago I bought some "Survival Candy" at a gun show for $1.99 for about 8 oz of hard candy. I was sitting around the other day thinking about the silly candy so I did a Google search and found that I could still buy some, only now it would cost between $4.99 and $7.99 depending on which site you went to. Being the cheap SOB I am I decided to make some of my own.

Step 1: What You Need

You will need the following:
  • 2 cups Granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup Light Corn Syrup
  • 2 1/2 table spoons Flavoring
  • 3/4 cup water
  • Food Coloring
  • Powdered sugar
  • Cooking spray
  • Measuring cups
  • Measuring spoons
  • Large sauce pan
  • Cookie sheet
  • Aluminium Foil
  • Candy Thermometer

Make sure all of your ingredients and tools are within easy reach of the stove. 
Once you have assembled all your tools and ingredients line your cookie sheet with aluminium foil, give it a LIGHT COAT of cooking spray, and set it aside for now.

Step 2: Mixing and Cooking

Add the granulated sugar, light corn syrup, and water to the sauce pan and cook over med-high heat, stirring until all the sugar is dissolved.

Once all the sugar has dissolved place your candy thermometer in the pan making sure that it doesn't touch the bottom of the pan.

Bring the mixture to a boil without stirring.

If you need to you can "wash down" any sugar crystals that may form on the sides of the pan with a very wet pastry brush.

Continue cooking the mixture until it reaches between 250-260 degrees then add your food coloring until you get the desired color. Don't stir the mixture after you add the coloring since the boiling action will mix it into the syrup thoroughly.

Remove from heat at precisely 300 degrees F (keep in mind that the temperature will continue to rise some after you pull the syrup from the heat) or if you aren't using a thermometer, drops of the syrup form hard, brittle threads in cold water (hard crack stage). After all the boiling action has stopped add your flavoring and stir thoroughly.


Step 3: Pouring and Breaking

Once you have finished adding your flavoring pour the entire mess into the lined cookie sheet you coated (LIGHTLY) with cooking spray and set it all aside while you clean up your mess.

Once the "Survival Candy" has cooled enough that you can touch it without burning yourself (about 15-20 minutes give or take a few minutes) cut the big piece into smaller ones with a sharp knife (I used an old cheese knife). If it sticks give the blade a good coat of cooking spray to keep it from lifting the candy out of the pan.

Allow the whole thing to cool completely (about 1 hour or so) and then dust it with the powdered sugar. I would say use a sifter of some kind so you don't make the mess I did or add as much as I did since you are just looking to dust it with the powdered sugar.

Flip the whole thing over, don't worry if it breaks when you do, and dust the other side too.

Once you have dusted both sides break the candy up along the lines you scored into it and place in a large zip-lock or other storage bag.

Step 4: Conclusion

OK, so I just made old fashioned  hard candy and called it "Survival Candy" you say? And you would be absolutely correct! But, believe it or not it actually does have uses in your survival kit. 

If you have a "sweet tooth" like I do this candy will help with that in a world where getting a Reese's Cup or two is going to be a pain. 

Also, each piece has around 80-90 calories (depending on the size you make or break them) based on the ingredients used to make them and the overall size/weight of the completed sheet of candy and some (I am sure bad) math which can give you some quick energy in a survival situation . Their light weight makes them easy to pack and they do add a psychological "boost" to your kit.

This recipe makes just about 1 pound or so of the candy (at least it felt like it was about a pound) and costs about $ .02 per piece or $ 1.20 per sheet (depending on how big you make the pieces).

I look forward to reading your comments.

As always, Train to Survive!



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You know, if you were to get some of those "hard candy" vitamins or even crush up a few regular ones, you could fold them into the cooling mixture while still soft and have some *Real* survival candy that would have some real benefits to it.

vitamins might give it a nasty after taste.

Since the original writing of this Ibile I've started adding Flintstone's children's chewable vitamins to the mixture. I pulverize them into a fine powder and mix 3/4 I with the candy it self and the other 1/4 into the powdered sugar used to coat them after they cool... We haven't noticed any change in taste and as some above said it now has some more to it than just sugar for energy. One half bottle of Flintstone's chewable vitamins per batch... I don't recall off the top of my head at the moment but we get the big bottle which is either 250 or 500 count...

I was talking to my son today. He is interested in taking a backpacking trip. I will try the vitamin enriched version just cause I have make the plain candy one many times. If they like the vitamin version, it would be a nice addition.

Cornstarch might work better than powdered sugar to reduce stickiness between the pieces. That's what I use on my homemade marshmallows

I use a powdered sugar and corn starch mix--about 50/50 but I don't bother to measure anything.

I don't understand the "survival" part. It seems to be your basic sugar candy with no essential nutrients, just empty simple carbs. Sugar is just 4 calories per gram, just like protein, as opposed to 9 calories per gram for fat, so it is not even dense energy by weight. A sack of peppermint candies would do as well for quick energy, for instance if one were in a hypothermia situation. Candy bars containing other nutrients, like nuts and fats would be a better alternative, and pemmican even better.

Oooh, great idea, I could put nuts into mine! Thanks! :D

In Louisiana we have a candy called pralines. However, don't plan for them to last any length of time, since they are really delicious. I just ate some my wife had hidden a year ago and they still tasted WONDERFUL.

Pralines are a New Orleans institution!
This praline recipe produces sweet, slightly crumbly brown sugar candies
loaded with toasted pecans. It's important that the pecans be
well-toasted so that they impart maximum flavor and crunch to the candy.

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 4 tbsp butter, cubed
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1.5 cups toasted pecans, coarsely chopped

1. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In a medium saucepan combine the brown sugar, granulated
sugar, and evaporated milk over medium heat. Stir until the sugar
dissolves, then insert a candy thermometer.

3. Cook the candy, stirring occasionally, until the candy reaches 240 degrees on the thermometer.

4. Once the proper temperature is reached, remove the pan from
the heat and drop the chunks of butter on top, but do not stir. Allow
the pan to sit for one minute.

5. After a minute, add the vanilla extract and the pecans, and
begin to stir smoothly and constantly with a wooden spoon. Soon the
candy will begin to get thicker and lighter in color.

6. Continue to stir until the candy starts to hold its shape.
It should still be easy to stir, however. It is important not to stir
too much, as pralines quickly go from fluid to rock-solid. Once it is a
lighter, opaque brown and holds its shape, quickly begin to drop small
spoonfuls of the candy onto the prepared baking sheet.

7. Work quickly to form the candies, as the pralines will
start to set in the saucepan. If the candy stiffens before you’re done
scooping, add a spoonful of very hot water and stir until it loosens,
then continue scooping until you have formed all the pralines.

8. Allow the candy to fully set at room temperature, for about
30 minutes. Store New Orleans Pralines in an airtight container at room

I have to make this. My son wants to go backpacking. If I can arm him with sugar for energy and nuts for protein, then I know he will be good for at least a day.