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Nonpareils Candies

The French term for button candies is nonpareils, which means "without peer." No one who remembers them from their youth would argue with that appellation. Nonpareils-dark chocolate buttons topped with sugar beads-are the caviar of childhood.

  • Yield: Makes about 50
Nonpareils Candies


  • 8 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vegetable shortening
  • 1/4 cup white or colored sugar beads


  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In the top of a double boiler or in a heat-proof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, melt the chocolate and shortening, stirring with a rubber spatula until smooth.

  2. Spoon the melted chocolate in nickel-size circles onto prepared baking sheet. Cool for 20 minutes; sprinkle with sugar beads. Let nonpareils harden in a cool place for 4 hours before serving.

Reviews (3)

  • jammie1220 22 Dec, 2012

    This recipe is great if you're looking for an easy-to-make candy that is both attractive and tasty. Be careful not to wait too long to put the nonpareils on or they will not stick. I found that 20 minutes was too long, for I ended up with a tray of half-covered chocolates.

  • kbakersdozen 21 Feb, 2011

    To get perfectly covered chocolate each time, cover a baking sheet with a layer of the nonpareils. Place melted choclate into a pastry bag or ziploc bac bag to pipe out the size you want each time! Enjoy!

  • jmis02 27 Dec, 2010

    Beautiful candy, easy recipe and so easy-definitely wait the 20 minutes the nonpareils will stick like magic-if you rush and put the nonpareils on early the chocolate will spread!

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