Irish Potato Candy: A Unique and Delicious Treat

Irish Potato Candy: A Unique and Delicious Treat

Irish Potato Candy is a unique and delicious treat that’s easy to make and perfect for sharing. This recipe makes about 50 little, potato-shaped candies that are coated in a blend of cinnamon, cocoa powder, and powdered sugar. You’ll love the curiously-named Irish potato candy. It’s curious because the candy is not an Irish dessert and not made with potato! They are, however, a unique and delicious candy, one that’s easy to make and perfect for sharing. Made from a mixture of coconut, sugar, and cream cheese, each bite is rolled into a potato shape and coated in cinnamon and cocoa. When finished, Irish potato candy looks like a heap of mini russet potatoes.

What is Irish Potato Candy?

Irish Potato Candy is a unique and delicious treat that’s easy to make and perfect for sharing. It’s curious because the candy is not an Irish dessert and not made with potato! They are, however, a unique and delicious candy, one that’s easy to make and perfect for sharing. Made from a mixture of coconut, sugar, and cream cheese, each bite is rolled into a potato shape and coated in cinnamon and cocoa. When finished, Irish potato candy looks like a heap of mini russet potatoes.

History of Irish Potato Candy

The exact origin of Irish Potato Candy is unknown, but it is believed to have been created by Irish confectioners who immigrated to Philadelphia in the late 19th century. The candy quickly became a regional favorite, and it is still enjoyed by many people today. Irish Potato Candy is typically made with a mixture of coconut, sugar, cream cheese, and butter. It is then rolled into potato shapes and coated in a mixture of cinnamon and cocoa powder.

  • A mixture of coconut, sugar, cream cheese, and butter.
  • Rolled into potato shapes.
  • Coated in a mixture of cinnamon and cocoa powder.

What is Irish Potato Candy?
What is Irish Potato Candy?

Irish Potato Candy Recipe

This recipe makes about 50 little, potato-shaped candies. In this recipe, the candies are coated in a blend of cinnamon, cocoa powder, and powdered sugar—for a deeper flavor and a color more like russet potatoes.

You’ll need the following ingredients:

Filling:

  • 4 ounces softened cream cheese
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 2-2/3 cups shredded coconut

Coating:

  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon powdered sugar
  • Optional: Slivered almonds or pine nuts, for eyes

Directions:

Step 1: Begin the filling

Place the softened cream cheese and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer. (Or in a large mixing bowl if using a hand mixer.) Mix them together on medium-high speed until they’re blended and smooth. Add the vanilla extract and salt and mix.

Step 2: Mix in the coconut

Pour the shredded coconut into a mini chopper or food processor; pulse the machine several times to chop the coconut shreds into small pieces. Then, add the coconut to the mixing bowl and blend it into the cream cheese-sugar mixture.

Editor’s Tip: Pulsing the coconut shreds into smaller pieces in a food processor makes a smoother, finer textured filling.

Step 3: Shape the candy

Line a large cookie sheet with wax or parchment paper. Scoop a level tablespoon of the candy filling. (If you have a kitchen scale, each scoop should weigh about 1/2 ounce.) Roll the filling between your palms to make a smooth ball. Then, roll the ball into an oblong, potato shape—it should be about 1-1/2 inches long.

Place the candy on the lined cookie sheet, and continue with the rest until all of the filling is used.

Step 4: Coat with cocoa

To remove lumps, sift the cinnamon, cocoa powder, and powdered sugar together onto a shallow plate. Roll the shaped candies in the mixture to coat them completely and make them look like little potatoes. To make the potato eyes: Use a toothpick to poke one or two holes in each candy. Then, insert a piece of slivered almond, leaving it sticking out a little to look like an eye.

Once all the candies are coated, put them into a tightly sealed container or on a plate covered with plastic wrap. Stash the candies in the fridge for at least an hour before serving.

Irish Potato Candy Recipe
Irish Potato Candy Recipe

Irish Potato Candy variations

Add nuts to the filling

Toast a half-cup of chopped almonds, walnuts, or pecans in a skillet, let them cool, and then fold them into the filling with the coconut. They’ll give the candies a nutty flavor and crunch.

Nut Flavor Texture
Almonds Mild and nutty Crunchy
Walnuts Rich and earthy Crunchy
Pecans Sweet and buttery Crunchy

Try pine nuts for eyes

I use mild-flavored slivered almonds to make eyes in the potato candies, but if you like the flavor of pine nuts, use them instead.

  • Pine nuts have a mild, nutty flavor that pairs well with the sweet potato candy filling.
  • They are also a good source of protein and healthy fats.
  • To use pine nuts for eyes, simply insert a few into the top of each candy after it has been coated in the cinnamon-cocoa mixture.

How to Store Irish Potato Candy

Storing Irish Potato Candy

Because the candies are made with butter and cream cheese, they should be stored in the fridge, where they’ll last for a week. It’s important to keep the candies tightly covered with plastic wrap or in an airtight container to prevent them from drying out.

Storage Method Lifespan
Refrigerator 1 week
Freezer 2 months

Tips for Storing Irish Potato Candy

* Store the candies in a single layer in an airtight container.* Place the container in the refrigerator or freezer.* If storing in the refrigerator, allow the candies to come to room temperature before serving.* If storing in the freezer, thaw the candies overnight in the refrigerator before serving.

Freezing Irish Potato Candy

Irish Potato Candy can be frozen for up to 2 months. To freeze the candies, place them in a single layer on a baking sheet and freeze for 1 hour. Then, transfer the candies to an airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months.

How to Store Irish Potato Candy
How to Store Irish Potato Candy

Final Thought

Irish Potato Candy is a delicious and easy-to-make treat that’s perfect for any occasion. It’s a great way to use up leftover coconut and cream cheese, and it’s always a hit with kids and adults alike. So next time you’re looking for a sweet treat, give Irish Potato Candy a try. You won’t be disappointed!