*Update* I have finally added photos to these great Christmas Lollipops!
In another life (long before I became a food blogger) I was a preschool teacher. Probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise to anyone, especially when people learn I have 5 kids. Yes, I do love kids.
My children on the other hand, love to raid my preschool activities stash. Which is kinda comical to see really. 5 kids, age 14, 14, 12, 10 and 9, sitting at the kitchen table doing crafts that a 3 or 4 year old would find fun. The thing is, they still enjoy them tremendously. And I, as their mother, enjoy watching them and encouraging them to keep doing them.
Today it was just plain cold, and the kids were just plain bored. So we got out the books and folders I have stuffed with fun activities and we came across this one.
It called for any hard candy, but especially suggested Jolly Ranchers.
Since Christmas is fast approaching, we decided to do some fun Christmas colors and make lollipops to enjoy and to give away to family, friends and neighbors.
They really are very fun to make and extremely easy. Obviously a 3-4 year old can line up some candies on a cookie sheet. So can some pre-teens. haha
- Jolly Ranchers Candy, in red and green
- Lollipop Sticks
- Aluminum Foil
- Parchment Paper
- Preheat oven to 200 degrees.
- Cover a cookie sheet with tinfoil and then add a layer or parchment paper. I prefer cooking with the piece of parchment paper on top because when the candies cool, they are VERY easy to remove.
- Unwrap your jolly rancher candies and line them up on a cookie sheet. Mix and match colors. I tried to stick to three candies per lollipop because any bigger and the lollipop is un-sturdy and difficult to get the stick into.
- When you are lining them up on the sheet, make sure there is plenty of space between each “lollipop” both on the sides AND the bottom to place the stick. Layer a red candy, a green candy and then a red candy. Do it again the opposite way. Only use 2 candies – one red, one green. See you can have lots of fun.
- Once you have created your combinations, carefully place the cookie sheet in the oven trying not to disrupt the candies touching each other (if anything shifts, fix it as soon as possible)
- Bake at 200 degrees for about 5-7 minutes. Here’s the thing. You cannot walk away. You need to start watching about 3 minutes in and keep watching until you see them melted. Remove them from the oven just as soon as you see them melted. I mean, immediately. Otherwise they melt too much (trust me) and you can’t do anything with them because they run into all the other ones and make a big candy mess.
- As soon as you remove them from the oven, work quickly to add the lollipop sticks to each set of candies you have melted. Roll the stick to make sure it gets coated on all sides and stays secure. These candies cool quickly, especially in the winter months, so work fast.
- Allow them to cool about 20 minutes on the pan.
- As soon as they are cool, they should remove easily from the pan and can be eaten immediately or wrapped and given as gifts.