Pecan Caramel Chocolate Turtles

Turtles Candy

by Alli

If you need something easy and delicious to contribute to a Christmas party, this is it. My mom made Pecan Caramel Chocolate Turtles for years – way before recipes on the internet were even a thing.

We always have turtles at Thanksgiving, Christmas, family beach vacations, and, well, every single time we’ve ever visited mom and dad. You can see more of my favorite candy recipes here!

To see my collection of recipes featuring pecans, check out my Best Recipes Featuring Pecans.

These days, I’m making everything I can think of that mom used to make. Memories are too precious to forget.

close up photo of turtles candy

Once upon a time, mama made turtles that actually looked like turtles. Eventually, she took a shortcut and never looked back. The first time I tried these, I skipped an important step and they weren’t mom’s.

Finally, I’ve nailed it and I have to share it with the world or at least my little corner of the world. Here goes!

Turtles Candy

After I melt the caramel mixture, I pour it over the pecan halves, stir to combine, and drop by spoonfuls onto wax paper that has been sprayed with cooking spray.

This is what the caramel and pecan mixture looks like when you drop spoonfuls onto the wax paper. (I just eyeball it).

caramel and pecan mixture drying on wax paper

After the caramel/pecan mixture hardens (it will not be rock hard), melt the chocolate candy coating (I always use Candiquik) and dip to cover completely, letting the access drip back into the melted candy coating. Place on wax paper to harden completely. 

These are great for taking to Christmas parties. I usually make a batch of these and a batch of Puttin’ On The Ritz Cookies.

Puttin’ On The Ritz Cookies – Bonus Recipe!

Puttin’ On the Ritz Cookies are the cookies that you add peanut butter between two Ritz crackers. Continue making the peanut butter and crackers until you’ve used 1-1/2 sleeves. Dip each peanut butter cracker into melted vanilla Candiquik and let harden on wax paper. How easy was that?

Pecan Caramel Chocolate Turtles

Believe it or not, out of all the candies, cookies, etc. I make these during the Christmas season, my kids love the Turtles and Ritz ones the best and they are the easiest of all to make.

When Making Mom’s Candy I Have All The Feels

PS – It’s not a post unless I overshare so here goes! A few days ago I found a voicemail on my iPhone that my mom left me back in October 2015 (she unexpectedly went to heaven on May 7, 2016).

My daughter, Caitlin, and I were headed down to mom’s house to attend my niece’s wedding. She called to let us know she was headed to the rehearsal but would leave the back door unlocked (small-town love). She told us to drive safe, she loved us and could hardly wait to see us.

Normally, I delete voicemails as soon as I listen to them. However, this is one time I’m glad I didn’t. When I’m having a rough day or just need to hear her voice, I play the voicemail. I’ve saved it in several places to make sure it never gets deleted.

What’s your favorite holiday candy or memory? Please share! I read all comments.

Yield: Approximately 24

Pecan, Caramel and Chocolate Turtles

close up photo of turtles candy

My mom always made Pecan Caramel Chocolate Turtles during the holiday season. Toasted pecans and creamy caramel are mixed together, allowed to harden, and dipped in melted chocolate.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Additional Time 30 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes


  • 2 cups pecan halves
  • 1 package chocolate Candiquik
  • One package caramels (11 oz) (I use Kraft Caramels)
  • 2 Tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup butter


  1. Remove the caramels from the wrappers.
  2. Preheat oven to 350ºF. Place pecans in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for 5-7 minutes or until toasted. Watch carefully! Set aside.
  3. In a heavy saucepan, melt caramels, water, and butter on medium-low, stirring constantly, until melted.
  4. Add pecans to the caramel mixture and mix well.
  5. On lightly greased wax paper (or parchment), spoon tablespoons of caramel/pecan mixture. Let harden. (You can also pop these in the freezer for 30 minutes to harden!)
  6. Heat Candiquik in the microwave according to package directions.
  7. Dip each candy into Candiquik with a fork and let excess drip off. Place on wax or parchment paper and let harden. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.


Serving size is approximate, based on how large or small you make the candies.

Candiquik is a premium candy coating. You can also use chocolate almond bark. Candiquik brand is my favorite candy coating.

To speed up the hardening process: After dropping the caramel/pecan mixture by spoonfuls onto a wax paper-lined baking sheet, pop them in the freezer for 30 minutes to harden.

Nutrition Information



Serving Size


Amount Per Serving Calories 90Total Fat 8gSaturated Fat 2gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 5mgSodium 23mgCarbohydrates 4gFiber 1gSugar 2gProtein 1g

Did you make this recipe?

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Mom’s Divinity

Melinda’s Buckeyes (AKA Peanut Butter Balls)

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Chris Lewis December 15, 2016 - 6:18 am

Oh my gosh I have to stop starting my day with reading these decadent posts…. they look so good! I know I mentioned that the Buckeyes are my downfall but these look amazing too!

Terry Lingle December 3, 2021 - 7:50 pm

Ambrosia by far the best chocolate for turtles!

Fayrene Bilby December 15, 2021 - 10:49 am

I made these but the Carmel never hardened up I had to dig my fingers to be able to dip in chocolate!! I was so disappointed!! Did I do something wrong?? Thanks my kids all loved them but I don’t know if I’ll ever make them again unless I can figure out how to harden the Carmel drops!! Any advise would be greatly appreciated!!

Alli December 15, 2021 - 11:32 am

That’s strange. I have never had that problem. Next time, maybe try placing them in the refrigerator to harden. Also, make sure you lightly grease the parchment paper. The caramel mixture won’t get extremely hard, but you shouldn’t have to dig to get them off the parchment paper.

Robin Masshole Mommy December 15, 2016 - 7:38 am

These sound like a wonderful sweet treat. I needed an idea for a family Christmas party on Sunday and these will go over big with my family.

Polarbelle December 15, 2016 - 8:24 am

Your food photography is really amazing. Everything looks so fresh and delicious

Jacqui @FlightsFancyMom December 15, 2016 - 8:53 am

Tis the season to enjoy tons of baking! Making candies is also one of my favorite things to do. These turtles look fantastic!

candy December 15, 2016 - 10:30 am

Making candy at christmas is a special tradition I do with my daughter. We always make these turtles one because they are our favorite and two they do make great gifts.

Dee December 15, 2016 - 10:36 am

I am in love with chocolate turtles, but I have never dreamed that I would be able to make them myself. Thank you so much for sharing I am going to have to try this recipe over the holiday break.

Pam December 15, 2016 - 5:07 pm

We make a ton of candy every Christmas season. I have been looking for a good turtle recipe to try this year.

Jenn @ EngineerMommy December 15, 2016 - 5:40 pm

Wow, these treats look absolutely incredible! I would definitely love to try this recipe this weekend. I know the whole family would love these desserts!

Bella December 15, 2016 - 8:47 pm

These look fantastic (even though they don’t look like turtles haha). Turtles are one of my favorite chocolates so this would save me a lot of money!

rika December 16, 2016 - 2:07 am

These chocolate candies look so delicious.. I love easy recipe, can’t wait to try this!

Lisa Favre December 17, 2016 - 7:43 am

My boss loves Turtles chocolates! This is something I should make for him – he would love it!

Lori Vachon December 17, 2016 - 11:28 am

Of all the sweets I’ve prepared for the holiday seasons I’ve never made Turtles! I’m going to make them one of these years, yours look delish!

Garf December 18, 2016 - 8:07 am

This is definitely a hit for the holiday. Looks so good. Thanks for sharing the recipe, I can’t wait to give it a try.

Anosa December 18, 2016 - 8:59 am

These look absolutely delicious not had these kind of candy turtles before. Thanks and Merry Christmas

LaShawn December 18, 2016 - 7:52 pm

OMG i remember these when i was younger, we called them Katydids I think? I haven’t seen them in years!

Nikka Shae December 18, 2016 - 8:15 pm

All I can say is yummy!!! This is perfect anytime of the day!!

Jasmine Watts December 19, 2016 - 6:39 am

Chocolate is my favorite flavor and this sounds delicious! I would love to try out this recipe!

William Gwartney March 2, 2017 - 12:54 pm

I used to be very pleased to seek out this web-site.I wanted to thanks in your time for this excellent learn!! I positively having fun with every little bit of it and I’ve you bookmarked to take a look at new stuff you blog post.

Linda Maw December 3, 2021 - 10:52 pm

Love your voicemail story. Five years ago my Dad had throat cancer and had to have his voice box removed. Two years ago I was going through old voicemails and found one my Dad left a month before his surgery. He sang Happy Birthday to me. Like you, I have made several copies and love listening to it. I played it for my Dad once and he cried.

Alli December 4, 2021 - 7:18 am

Thank you!! How wonderful that you saved that old voicemail of your dad singing Happy Birthday! Priceless!!

Suzanne Shipley December 4, 2021 - 12:05 am

Can chocolate chips be use instead of caniquik, since I can’t find here in Ontario

Alli December 4, 2021 - 7:15 am

Yes! Add 1 Tbsp. vegetable shortening per 1 cup of chips. In the microwave, melt the chocolate chips in an uncovered, microwave-safe bowl on HIGH power for 30 seconds; STIR. If needed, heat an additional 10-15 second intervals, stirring after each interval until melted.

Lisa December 16, 2021 - 7:12 pm

I couldn’t get the caramels to harden either and coating them was a huge mess. On a good note, they still tasted good, but definitely not something I would put put for guests.

Alli December 17, 2021 - 8:53 am

I hate to hear that! I have been making these for years and I made them again for Thanksgiving and they were perfect as always. After reading your comment late last night, I rushed to the grocery store early this morning, grabbed the ingredients needed to make this candy, and made them again. Turned out perfectly again. So, let’s try to troubleshoot what could have gone wrong because I want my recipes to work for everyone.

I always use the 11 oz package of Kraft caramels – the ones that are in the wrapper. Unwrap the caramels, place them in a small saucepan, and heat them on low with the water and butter. Stir often until completely melted. Pour the melted caramel mixture over the toasted pecans (in a medium-sized bowl) and stir well.

Then I drop spoonfuls onto wax paper that has been sprayed with cooking spray. I try to work fast because, at this point, they are already starting to harden a little. When I say harden, I don’t mean rock-hard. The butter and water help keep the candies from getting rock-hard so that they are smooth and silky once they are dipped into the melted chocolate.

Allow the caramel/pecan mixture to sit for at least 30 minutes before dipping them into the melted chocolate. I always use Candiquik Chocolate coating because it melts to a smooth consistency. If you’re having problems with the caramel mixture getting hard enough to dip, try placing them in the freezer for 30 minutes.

Because I spray the wax paper with cooking spray, the caramel/pecan mixture tends to just peel off the wax paper. I place the candy, one at a time, on a fork and dip it into the melted chocolate.

I do hope you try this recipe again! Thanks for commenting!


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