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Grandma’s Potato Candy

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This old-fashioned potato candy recipe is a classic for good reason. It takes just four ingredients and makes a fun sweet treat that is surprisingly good.

Hand holding a peanut butter pinwheel with layer of soft white mashed potato candy mixture rolled around peanut butter spiral.

There is something extra special about a good vintage treat. Grandma’s potato candy recipe is an oldy, but a goodie.

It uses a surprising base of mashed potatoes along with powdered sugar, vanilla, and peanut butter to make a fun spiral shaped candy. It is so good that when my husband’s grandma entered it in our potato cook-off, it got second place!

Plate of sliced mashed potato candy, ready to eat.

That is really saying something because there were almost 20 entries, so there was plenty of competition. It was unexpected and was probably the most talked about entry after we tasted them all.

If you have never had potato candy, you will have to make some to see for yourself. It may sound strange, but it really is good.

Preparing the Potato

It is best to start with plain potatoes. You don’t want black pepper, or garlic in your candy.

The best way to make the candy is to use inside of a leftover baked potato. Or microwave a potato and then remove the peel to keep the water content down.

That way you won’t have to use as much powdered sugar to get it to come together.

Or make some mashed potatoes for dinner. Pull a half cup of the potatoes out of the pan before you add the milk and butter.

Ingredients: russet potato, vanilla extract, peanut butter, and powdered sugar ready to be made into peanut butter pinwheels.

Those extra potatoes can be put in a container in the refrigerator until you are ready to make the candy. That way you are getting double duty on your boiled potatoes.

You will want to start with really smooth mashed potatoes. So either use a ricer or take your time and try to get them lump free.

Making the Candy

Put the mashed potatoes in a large mixing bowl and start stirring in powdered sugar. Add a couple of cups and sugar and mix it in.

You will be surprised what happens as you stir it together. The two solids come together to make a liquid.

Stir in a splash of vanilla, then keep adding powdered sugar a cup at a time until you get a playdough consistency.

The exact amount of powdered sugar you will need will depend on a variety of factors. The biggest being how much moisture was left in your potatoes.

Once you have a nice dough consistency, sprinkle some powdered sugar over a sheet of wax paper or parchment paper. Roll the mixture out into a rectangle that is about 13x18x¼-inch.

Gently spread peanut butter over the sheet of potato candy. Then, use the wax paper to help roll it up like you would a cinnamon roll.

Wrap the wax paper around the candy and chill it for at least an hour to help it set up. Use a sharp knife to cut it into ¼-inch slices and put them in an airtight container in the refrigerator until you are ready to serve it.

It really is pretty simple to make. It just takes a little trial and error to get the right consistency.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use something other than peanut butter?

Of course! Any nut butter works. Nutella would be a fun substitution for a little bit of chocolate and hazelnut. Or you can use cookie butter if you want to go nut free.

What kind of potato should I use for potato candy?

Russet potatoes work best for making potato candy. The starch content in Russet potatoes make them ideal for this recipe.

Cutting chilled potato candy into individual slices of peanut butter pinwheels.

Can I use instant potatoes in this recipe?

Unfortunately, no. It is not recommended to use instant potatoes. The texture will be different.

What can I do if my potato candy is too soft?

If you find that your potato candy is too soft, just chill it uncovered on a wax paper lined sheet pan for a couple of hours. The dry air in the refrigerator will help to firm them up a bit. Then, transfer them to an airtight container for longer storage.

How do you store potato candy?

Store your potato candy in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Put a sheet of wax paper between layers of candy slices to keep them from sticking together.

For another fun old fashioned treat, check out stupid pie. The name alone should make you curious, but just wait until you see the ingredients!

Check out my collection of homemade candy and fudge recipes for more sweet inspiration.

Hand holding a peanut butter pinwheel with layer of soft white mashed potato candy mixture rolled around peanut butter spiral.

Grandma’s Potato Candy

Servings: 30 Pieces
Author: Carlee
This old fashioned potato candy recipe is a classic for good reason. It takes just four ingredients and makes a fun sweet treat that is surprisingly good.
5 from 3 ratings
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes


  • ½ cup mashed potatoes plain
  • 6 to 7 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • cup peanut butter


  • In a large bowl, combined smooth plain mashed potatoes and a couple of cups of powdered sugar. The mixture should look really loose and liquidy.
    ½ cup mashed potatoes
  • Stir in the vanilla. Then keep adding powdered sugar, a cup or so at a time, until the mixture is the texture of playdough.
    1 teaspoon vanilla extract, 6 to 7 cups powdered sugar
  • Dust a 13×18-inch piece of wax paper or parchment paper with powdered sugar. Put the potato dough on top and roll it out into a ¼-inch thick rectangle.
  • Spread the peanut butter over the mashed potato mixture. Use the wax paper to help roll it like you would cinnamon rolls.
    ⅔ cup peanut butter
  • Wrap the log in the wax paper and chill for at least an hour.
  • Cut the candy into ½-inch slices.
  • Store the candy in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.


You can use any nut butter, Nutella, or even cookie butter in place of the peanut butter if you want.


Serving: 1pieceCalories: 132kcalCarbohydrates: 26gProtein: 1gFat: 3gSaturated Fat: 1gPolyunsaturated Fat: 1gMonounsaturated Fat: 1gSodium: 26mgPotassium: 44mgFiber: 0.3gSugar: 24gVitamin A: 0.1IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 3mgIron: 0.1mg

Nutritional Disclaimer

“Cooking With Carlee” is not a dietitian or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is an estimate. If calorie count and other nutritional values are important to you, we recommend running the ingredients through whichever online nutritional calculator you prefer. Calories and other nutritional values can vary quite a bit depending on which brands were used.

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