Christmas Crack is a fun name given to a classic holiday treat that is completely addicting and kind of magic. Saltine crackers are turned into a crispy, buttery toffee, topped with chocolate and nuts, and broken into bite size pieces for snacking.
Other names for this iconic dessert include Saltine Toffee, Toffee Saltines, and Cracker Toffee, but I think Christmas Crack is just more fun to say! If you’ve never made this candy before, you’ll be surprised at how simple it is to turn some regular ingredients into decadent candy.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
- Simple Ingredients: You might already have the ingredients for Christmas Crack in your pantry! Simple pantry ingredients are all that’s needed to create this saltine toffee.
- Quick to Make: Altogether you need about 10 minutes to cook and assemble the toffee and crackers, and then you just need to wait for them to cool before you dig in.
- Everyone Loves This: You’ll tell your family that you made this candy from scratch and they’ll be impressed. Then you’ll tell them that you made candy out of saltine crackers and they’ll be extra impressed! There are never leftovers of Christmas Crack. It’s the first thing to be gone from the cookie tray.
Here’s what you’ll need:
Complete list of ingredients and amounts can be found in the recipe card below.
- Saltine Crackers: Saltine crackers or soda crackers are the base to this cracker candy recipe. Use any brand that you like. Cheap saltines will work just as well as the name brand ones.
- Butter and Brown Sugar: This combo cooks together to create the toffee part of our saltine toffee. Unsalted butter is the best option here, since the crackers are already salted.
- Chocolate Chips: Semisweet chips create the top layer of this candy. I like to use a higher quality chip like Guittard or Ghirardelli for this recipe because they melt very well.
- Pecans and Sprinkles: Pecans add flavor and crunch to the top of our Christmas Crack, while some holiday sprinkles make it festive and fun.
These Christmas sprinkles are perfect!
How to Make Christmas Crack
- Prepare: Preheat the oven to 300°F/150°C, and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Arrange Crackers: Line the baking sheet with saltine crackers in a single layer.
- Cook Caramel: In a small saucepan, melt the butter and add brown sugar. Bring to a boil and cook for 2-3 minutes. When the temperature of the caramel reaches 270-290°F, remove from heat and pour it over the saltines. With the help of a spatula, spread the caramel evenly over the saltines.
- Bake: Place the baking sheet in the oven, and bake for 5 minutes or until the temperature of the caramel reaches 300-310°F/150-155°C.
- Add Chocolate: Remove the tray from the oven and scatter chocolate chips all over the hot caramel. In a few minutes, the chocolate chips will become soft and melted (if not, pop back in the oven for 1 minute). Use a spatula to evenly spread the chocolate over the caramel.
- Finish: Top with chopped pecans and sprinkles, and allow to cool completely for the caramel to harden. When cool, break into pieces or use a chef’s knife to cut into even pieces.
More toppings are a good thing here! Add sprinkles, candy, nuts, or whatever you like to the top of your Christmas Crack!
Christmas Crack Tips and Tricks
Either break it or cut it: It’s up to you how you want your Christmas Crack candy to look. Breaking it into pieces is fun, and gives a rustic, candy bark look, while cutting it into uniform squares might be more your style. Either way will be perfect.
Cook the caramel long enough: It’s important to cook the caramel to the point that it will harden. Using a candy thermometer makes this really easy, as you can measure to be sure it’s at the right temperature. Without a candy thermometer, be sure to cook for the time indicated in the recipe, no less.
Use the right tools: For this recipe, I’m using my favorite Nordic Ware baking sheet. These things are so well made and will last forever. You’ll also need a silicone spatula to spread out all of that sticky caramel. If you’re in the market for a new set of measuring tools, this set is amazing! They are magnetic so they stack up and stick together.
Ways to Top Your Cracker Candy
The classic recipe for Saltine Toffee or Christmas Crack has chopped pecans on top, but you can add anything you like to give this candy your personal touch. Try using walnuts or cashews for a change, or add chopped candy bars, toffee pieces, or even crushed candy canes.
What to Serve with Christmas Crack
With More Holiday Treats! Christmas Crack fits in perfectly on a cookie tray, at the end of a buffet table, or in a holiday gift box. Make these other Christmas treats to go with it:
With Christmas Dinner: Get ready for the holiday rush by planning your meal now. See my holiday side dish recipes and try out recipes like Cornish Roasted Hens, Instant Pot Honey Glazed Ham, Crockpot Green Bean Casserole, and Sausage Stuffing.
There are usually 40 crackers in a sleeve of saltines. For Christmas Crack Candy you’ll need exactly one sleeve! Keep in mind that brands might be different, and you might find some crumbled crackers, so have some extras on hand just in case.
Christmas Crack can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. It’s delicious eaten frozen, directly from the freezer too.
Sure! Saltines are traditional, and I really like that they are square and fit together to cover the whole tray, but any type of cracker can be used in this recipe. Try Ritz crackers, Club crackers, or even graham crackers or pretzel crisps for a different spin on Christmas Crack.
Oh no! Soggy or chewy toffee saltines are no fun. There are a couple of things that may have gone wrong.
You didn’t let it cool long enough. Make sure you let the finished cracker toffee cool at room temperature before storing it in the fridge. If the caramel is still soft, it will soften the crackers and make things chewy.
You didn’t cook the caramel long enough. Use a candy thermometer to make sure that your butter and brown sugar mixture cook to a temperature between 270-290°F.
Start a new tradition with this simple recipe for Christmas Crack made out of Saltines! It’s fun and easy to make, and even more fun to eat.
- 40 saltine crackers
- 1 cup (225g) unsalted butter 2 sticks
- 1 cup (200g) light brown sugar packed
- 2 cups (340g) semi-sweet chocolate chips I recommend Guittard or Ghirardelli
- 1 cup (125g) pecans 4 ounces, roughly chopped
- ½ cup holiday sprinkles
- Preheat the oven to 300°F/150°C, line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Arrange saltines in a single layer.
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter and add brown sugar. Bring to a boil, and cook for 2-3 minutes. When the temperature reaches 270-290°F/135-145°C, remove from heat and pour it over the saltines. With the help of a spatula, spread the caramel evenly over the saltines.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven, and bake for 5 minutes or until the temperature reaches 300-310°F/150-155°C.
- Remove from the oven, and scatter chocolate chips all over the hot caramel. In a few minutes, the chocolate chips will become soft and melted (if not, pop in the oven for 1 minute), use a spatula to evenly spread the chocolate over the caramel.
- Top with pecans and sprinkles, allow to cool completely for the chocolate and caramel to harden.
- Break into pieces, or use a chefs knife to cut into even pieces.
- Any type of cracker can be used in this recipe. Try Ritz crackers, Club crackers, or even graham crackers or pretzel crisps for a different spin on Christmas Crack.
- Christmas Crack can be stored in the refrigerator for up to one week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. It’s delicious eaten frozen, directly from the freezer too.
This website provides approximate nutrition information for convenience and as a courtesy only. Nutrition data is gathered primarily from the USDA Food Composition Database, whenever available, or otherwise other online calculators.
© Little Sunny Kitchen