You guys will never believe how EASY these Foolproof Microwave Southern Pralines are! Made 100% in the microwave, they require NO special candy thermometer and are made in minutes yet taste like traditional, authentic Southern Pralines!
YOU GUYS. Sorry for screaming but also I’m not sorry because these pralines.
They are a GAME CHANGER. A life changer. Seriously INCREDIBLE. You are going to flip!!
I am a HUGE praline fan. In fact, it is one of my favorite candies but I almost never have them. California is ahead of the curve for many things, but Southern candy specialties is not one of them. It is virtually impossible to find southern-style pralines anywhere in California – our claim to fame seems to be salt water taffy which, meh.
The first time I had a praline, I was in the Atlanta airport, of all places. I walked by a Savannah Candy Kitchen store while I was killing time in between flights and decided to try these candies which I’d been lusting after for so long. I bought four or five pralines, thinking I’d share some with my family when I got back home… but I ate ALL of them before the flight home even began. Oops! They are just so irresistible! Besides my brief foray at the ATL airport, I’ve only ever been to Texas and Arkansas, so I have yet to try New Orleans pralines!
The reason why I never tried to make them prior to my airport experience was because I had an irrational fear of candy thermometers for the longest time. There’s something about boiling, molten sugar and precision with a thermometer that just gave me the heebie jeebies. Not to mention all that stuff about “hard crack, soft ball, hard ball” and the “tips” about dropping hot candy into water to see if it threads…????? I mean, that is WAY too technical for me.
But then I got over my fear of candy making equipment and made these pralines which are my favorite! Pretty simple and taste awesome!
But THESE Foolproof Pralines are really, really easy. Like, SO foolproof/goofproof/idiotproof that anyone can make them without candy making experience necessary. I made them twice, consecutively, and both times yielded the most amazing, perfect, authentic tasting pralines.
If you’ve never had a praline before, they are a candy that’s firm but yielding to your bite with a melt-in-your-mouth texture that’s studded with toasty pecans. So divine.
These pralines are made with similar ingredients to a traditional recipe: heavy whipping cream, granulated sugar, a pinch of salt, butter, pecans and vanilla. So delicious.
Everything is done in the microwave, of all places, which is the beauty of this recipe. The microwave is the unsung hero because it just does all the work for you. All you have to do is set the timer and stir it when the recipe states to. Once it’s done in the microwave, you’ll beat it with a wooden spoon until thickened and then drop mounds of it onto parchment-lined baking sheets to cool and set.
This is going to be one of my go-to praline recipes from now on. It’s just so stinkin’ simple! I think you’ll agree!
Foolproof Microwave Southern Pralines
- 1½ cups granulated white sugar
- 1 cup sweetened condensed milk or heavy whipping cream
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 2 cups chopped pecans
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- First: know the wattage of your microwave. This recipe works best on a 1000-watt microwave. If your microwave is less than 1000-watts, you may need to increase the cooking time. If it is higher than 1000-watts, you may want to decrease the cooking time.
- In a large plastic microwaveable bowl, add in the sugar, heavy cream, salt, butter, and pecans. Do not stir. Microwave on HIGH power for 3 minutes. Remove from the microwave and stir for 30 seconds. Microwave again on HIGH power for another 3 minutes. Remove from the microwave and stir for about 45 seconds. Lastly, microwave once more for 2 minutes and 30 seconds on HIGH power.
- Remove from the microwave and add in the vanilla. Beat the mixture with a wooden spoon, stirring vigorously until mixture becomes thickened and cloudy/dull in color, about 2 minutes or so.
- Working quickly, drop heaping spoonfuls of the pralines onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Allow pralines to cool and set at room temperature before storing in an airtight container.
These pralines are so buttery, melt-in-your-mouth and DELICIOUS. I know you’re going to love them!
Have a super sweet day!
Amazing girl you are a genius! Can’t wait to try them!
Finally I made microwave pralines!!!! Excellent. I have an 1150 watt microwave and multiplied the time x .87 and they came out perfect. Now I don’t have to go to New Orleans!!!! very happy
Are the pecans roasted or raw?
Hi Pegi, you can certainly toast them before proceeding with the recipe, but I left mine raw.
Looks wonderful. How long do they stay good? I’m thinking of Christmas gifts.?
Hi Miranda, I would say they’d be good airtight for about a week!
Hi, made these with my daughter this past weekend using your recipe with the sweeened condensed milk. They were as easy as you say and a huge hit. My question is what is the difference in outcome with this new recipe formulation?
Hi Linda! You can actually use heavy cream or sweetened condensed milk in this recipe. There is no difference, really – both will yield virtually the same results.
Thanks! We are going to make another batch as a hostess gift for Thanksgiving! Great recipe.
Does it not make them too sweet using sweetened condensed milk instead of heavy cream?
Hi Kelly, yes, pralines are notoriously very sweet, and the sweetened condensed milk does make them quite sweet! You can always use heavy cream instead.
Easy but grainy and not as shiny
Hi Cindy! I went ahead and re-tested the recipe using more heavy cream/sweetened condensed milk. I found the condensed milk gives the shinier appearance, so use that in place of heavy cream. And hopefully now you’ll find they aren’t grainy.
I plan on trying out this recipe tonight.. What brand of butter do you use?
Hi Nikki, honestly whatever is on sale, ha! I like using unsalted butter so I can control the salt in the recipe. But if you use salted butter, just omit the actual salt from the recipe.
Hello dear, would you be so kind to give us recipe in European measurements?
Hi! How many pralines will this make, and do you suggest doubling the recipe or just making multiple batches? I am making quite a lot for Christmas gifts and came across this recipe to save me some time versus my usual method 🙂
Hi Taylor! Depending on the size of your spoon/scoop and how much you scoop, this could make anywhere from 8-10 large-ish ones, or maybe 12-15 smaller size ones I’d think! And as with any candy recipe, I recommend making multiple batches rather than doubling up. It just makes for more consistent results, as I do feel that doubling the recipe would change the consistency and/or the texture since I feel like the cook time would also be affected.
Why the plastic bowl instead of glass?
Hi Rob! I generally prefer to stay away from glass pans and bowls because I find they conduct heat differently and yield inconsistent results.
Will the outside weather affect the outcome of this recipe?
Hi Sheryl, yes, rumor has it that humid temperatures outside may affect candy outcomes. It may make it harder for the pralines to set up. However, I would still try it anyway!
Great recipe i tryed it with whiiping cream not heavy did on a 1200 watts for 10 minutes everyone loved them thanks
Going to try your recipe what adjustments do I make for high altitude? Denver, Colorado
Hi Reba, unfortunately I am not familiar with high altitude adjustments so I cannot say for sure!
I am at 5500, followed the recipe for a 1200 watt, worked great for me
I’ve found that roasting pecans in oven few min, just til fragrant makes a Huge difference in the quality of taste of a praline. Huge. Give it a go!
I have 1000 watt microwave & it boils over & made horrid mess in just step #2 at 2 min. & can’t go the full 2 min in step #3 either, only about 1:30 or 40. Tried with sweetened condensed.milk & heavy whipping cream & both ways came out grainy. Also doesn’t set at the times I was able to go to before boiling over. I had to keep heating it to point of about to boil over several more times & had to addd more butter (2 tbs more – have seen another recipe same as yours but with 4 tbs butter) which I added in the last several heatings. Tried with light brown sugar, subbing some maple syrup, even adding some baking soda at end ( stove recipes have b.s. in it) which I also added in the last few heatings – seemed to need @3 more heats before candy would cool into something firm enough to remove from paper in 1 piece. Was very tasty, just could Get the texture I thought should be, came out like grainy fudge. Used largest plastic bowl I had but was not as big as a large glass or steel mixing bowl, more med. size, was that my problem? I can say I added 1/8 tsp sriracha powder (sans seeds) & 1 tsp Organic ginger powder, which helped off set the extreme sweetness without adding any obvious heat (I don’t like spicy foods.). I was actually surprised that the ginger flavor was barely detectable. I’m not sure anyone would even know I’d added either, my Sister didn’t. I used walnuts once & that was delicious too, tried pistachios but they didn’t have right mouth feel. Another time short on pecans, I added chopped dates, which was delicious, but made candy very dark. They pretty much melted into candy body, next time I’ll try larger chunks & use whole dried dates I chop up myself instead prechopped. I think cashews would work well as a nut substitute & May try dried apricots &/or candied ginger for fun flavor additions. Just wish I could get the texture right. I even checked temperature w/digital thermometer & it never got above 220F, I know stove recipes say to boil until reaches 230F but it boiled over before getting that hot. Any suggestions? Also, why is it the amount of sugar isn’t changed if using heavy cream instead of sweetened condensed milk, as obviously the SCM has a much higher sugar content? It only seems logical that you’d add more with the HWC? Thanks for providing such a fun recipe even if I can’t get it to work. All I can think is I need a bigger bowl? Would that make that much of a difference? Because why did it boil over in step#2 when you don’t even show it reaching the roiling boil point until step #3?
Has anyone tried this with a 700 watt microwave? I’m trying to figure out the time changes.
I just made these with a 1600 W microwave and did have to adjust the time down. I found a conversion chart. I like what I did but I wonder if you couldn’t substitute brown sugar for the white sugar
Becky Land says
I made this recipe with the sweetened condensed milk. I used an 8 cup bowl but it was not near large enough. I also have a 1200 watt microwave so I cut the time each of the three times in the microwave. But it boiled over each of the three times and made a gosh awful sticky mess on everything. What size bowl would you recommend? The flavor is good and they are not grainy. I have 38 pralines so I must not make them as large as you do.. I am going to try it with the heavy cream but a much larger bowl. Any advice on the bowl size would be helpful. And whether or not the boiling over was due to leaving it in too long each time.
Have you ever thought about added a pkg of butterscotch jello pudding mix to your recipe the small box? Delicious!!!
Thank you so much for this recipe, just like my mom used to make but a lot easier. Going to make some more later today, better then using the candy thermometer, Thanks again