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User Rating 5 Star Rating (1 Review)


(c) 2008 Elizabeth LaBau, licensed to About.com, Inc.
Sugarplums are a classic holiday candy popularized in poems and the Nutcracker Ballet. This sugarplum recipe contains different varieties of dried fruit and nuts, along with some preserves and holiday spices.

Supposedly, Sugarplums got their name by including dried plums, or prunes, in the list of ingredients. My recipe includes prunes, but it's very flexible, so you can subsitute other dried fruits if you like, and you can also play around with the nuts and preserves listed. If you like brandy, consider adding a spoonful to the mixture for a more adult candy. Don't miss the video showing how to make sugarplums!

Yield: about 24 sugarplums


  • 3 oz (1/2 cup) pitted dates, coarsely chopped
  • 3 oz (1/2 cup) toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
  • 1 oz (1/4 cup) dried cranberries
  • 1 oz (1/4 cup) prunes, finely chopped
  • 1 oz (1/4 cup) toasted skinned hazelnuts, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp cherry preserves
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar


1. Place the chopped dates, prunes, cranberries, hazelnuts, and walnuts in the food processor. Pulse the mixture a few times.

2. Add the jam, cinnamon, and cloves, and pulse several more times until the mixture begins to come together. It should hold itself into a ball when you squeeze it between your fingers, but you want to retain some of the texture--do not process it into a sticky paste.

3. Roll the candy into small 1-inch balls, and roll the balls in the granulated sugar. Place them in candy cups to serve, or in an airtight container between layers of waxed paper to store. Sugarplums can be kept, refrigerated, for up to one month.

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User Reviews

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 5 out of 5
Fabulous Holiday Treat, Member Cannes3or4

This recipe makes a great holiday treat that is relatively low-cal (by holiday standards) if you leave off the sugar-roll at the end. I made bite-sized treats to get three dozen from the recipe. Without the sugar, they ""weighed in"" at about 30 to 35 calories per candy. Tasty and fast and easy to make, they'll definitely become a tradition at my house.

9 out of 9 people found this helpful.

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