How sweet it is!

Christmas candy contest results

Homemade candy has been a holiday tradition for hundreds of years. Readers submitted almost 300 candy entries of their family holiday favorites, making it a difficult decision narrowing down entries.

Ultimately, winners emerged as judges sampled from 14 different selections including a variety of caramels, fudge, toffee, hard candies and chewy favorites.

First place went to the winning combination of toasted nuts, toffee and chocolate in Linda Pittman’s Triple Nut Toffee. The Honey Caramels, submitted by Jerry Daugherty, were a close second place for their smooth luscious texture and Carol Walk’s Snickers Fudge placed third for its chocolate, peanut, caramel combo that tastes just like its namesake.

The five honorable mentions are: Chocolate Amaretto Snowballs, submitted by Nancy H. Peterson; Rock Candy, submitted by Diane Sherman; Pecan Espresso Bark, submitted by Barbara Wiesen; Nougat, submitted by Mary H. Hammann; and Maple Bacon Fudge, submitted by Dorothy Billington.

1st place
Triple Nut Toffee
2nd Place
Honey Caramels
3rd Place
Snickers Fudge


View all submissions below. There will be something to entice the sweet tooth in every family.

Recipe submissions

Swedish Caramels


2 cups cream
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup Karo syrup
1 tablespoon butter


Mix ingredients together and cook until it gets stiff in cold water. Pour into a buttered pan. Enjoy!

Angie Gabriel
Jo-Carroll Energy, Inc. (NFP)

My grandmother, Ruth, corresponded with her cousin who lived in Sweden for a number of years. Her cousin, Marj Britt, had a friend who was able to translate her letters from English to Swedish. They exchanged many letters over the years about farm life here and in Sweden. They sent gifts back and forth, which I have a few including a pair of woolen mittens and a wreath weaved out of straw. Marj sent a cookbook to my grandmother and we had a lot of the recipes translated through Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill. My grandmother always made these caramels at Christmas. My grandmother and her cousin are both deceased now and I love to make these caramels and remember these two very special people in my Swedish heritage.