Salted Chocolate Turtle Candy

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Homemade chocolate turtle candy is simple to make, and it tastes just like the real thing. Make this Christmas classic at home with this easy recipe! They’re perfect for entertaining or gifting.

Salted Turtle Candy pinterest image

Classic Christmas cookies

You know I like mixing things up here on IBC, but I’m a big fan of the classics when it comes to Christmas cookies. Last year I shared my absolute favorite recipe for cream wafer cookies. As I may have told you, if they were the only cookies I had for the holidays, I’d probably be okay with that.

Even though I like the classics, I still enjoy getting creative and try to make a few new Christmas Cookie recipes every year. And while these salted chocolate turtles technically aren’t cookies, they’re one of my “something news” for this year.

Salted Turtle Candy on a white plate

Traditional chocolate turtles

If you’ve never had a chocolate turtle, then you don’t know what you’re missing! Turtles are a combination of pecans and caramel dipped in chocolate. When you buy them, they are shaped like a small turtle.

These treats are very popular around Christmas and have become a go-to quick gift and stocking stuffer. It’s one of those treats where it’s easy to buy a box and gobble it down all to yourself before you get the chance to gift it.

Want more homemade candy to gift?

easy Salted Turtle Candies recipe

Homemade chocolate turtle candy

While these homemade turtle candies aren’t in the traditional shape of a turtle, they taste just as good!

What I love about this recipe is that you get all the flavors of turtle candy without all the work. Sprinkled with a little flaked salt, the flavor combination is on point.

You can easily make these as a treat for yourself, to serve at a party, or to wrap up and gift as a homemade gift.

caramels and pecans on tray for turtle candy
melted caramel over pecans for turtle candy

Turtle candy ingredients

Here’s all you need to make your own turtle candy at home.

  • Pecans: For this recipe, you’ll need pecan halves. This is what traditional turtles are made of, and they make the candy nice and soft compared to other nuts.
  • Wrapped Caramels: This recipe is super easy because you can use pre-wrapped caramels. I opted to use the standard square candy caramels for this chocolate turtles recipe. However, if I made these again, I would use the Lancaster soft caramels* because I prefer a softer caramel.
  • Semi-Sweet Chocolate: I prefer the sweetness level of semi-sweet chocolate. However, you can easily use milk chocolate or dark chocolate if you prefer.
  • Vegetable Shortening: I add shortening to my melted chocolate. It makes the chocolate smoother and easier to manage.
  • Sea Salt: Salted caramel is a delicious combination! But don’t worry, if salt on a cookie seems odd to your family, sprinkles work just as nicely and add a pop of color.

*The only thing to note here is that if you use the Lancaster caramels, you may need double the number since they are smaller.

a spoon of melted chocolate over pecans and caramel for turtle candy
Salted Turtle Candies with sprinkles

How to make turtle candy

Here’s a quick picture of how to make your turtle candy. For exact measurements and more detailed instructions, I’ve provided a recipe card at the end of this post.

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Put three pecan halves on the parchment paper in a Y-shape. Repeat until the whole cookie sheet is filled.
  3. Use your fingers to flatten a caramel over the center of the pecan Ys.
  4. Bake for around 5-6 minutes or until the caramel has just melted.
  5. Remove from the oven and let the caramels cool completely.
  6. While the pecans cool, place chocolate and vegetable shortening in a microwave-safe bowl. Melt in 30-second intervals, stirring between each, until the mixture is nice and melted.
  7. Dollop chocolate on top of each caramel. Let the chocolate stand for 2 minutes before sprinkling it with sea salt. Let cool completely before storing.
Salted Turtle Candies with colorful sprinkles
Salted Turtle Candies with colorful sprinkles

And that’s it. Homemade turtles don’t get much easier than that!

That’s a wrap on homemade turtle candy!

Not only are these delicious “cookies,” but they will add visual impact to your cookie tray. Mixing different shapes, sizes, flavors, and textures when presenting your cookies is always great.

I’d love to know what your favorite Christmas cookie is. What new cookie recipes have you tried that have become a yearly must-make for you?

easy homemade Salted Turtle Candy recipe

Want more Christmas desserts? You’ll love these:

Salted Turtle Candy with sprinkles

Enjoy this candy recipe and want more?

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Chocolate Turtle Candy

Learn how to make your own Chocolate Turtle Candy with this easy and delicious recipe.
5 from 2 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Dessert, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: candies, candy, chocolate turtles, christmas, holiday, salted chocolate turtles
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 6 minutes
Total Time: 26 minutes
Servings: 25 pieces
Calories: 194kcal


  • 2 1/2 cups pecan halves 75 total halves
  • 25 wrapped caramels unwrapped
  • 12 ounces semisweet chocolate or milk chocolate or dark chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening (Crisco)
  • Flake sea salt and / or sprinkles


  • Begin by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Then line two cookie sheets with parchment paper.
  • Place three pecan halves in a Y-shape on the parchment paper-lined cookie sheets. Repeat with the remaining pecans.
  • Then, with your fingers, flatten each caramel and place one in the center of each pecan Bake for 5-6 minutes until the caramel is just melted. Remove from the oven and allow the caramels to cool on the pan.
  • In the meantime, add the chocolate and vegetable shortening to a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave in 30-second intervals, stirring in between until the chocolate is melted.
  • Spoon the chocolate on top of the caramel. Let the chocolate stand for about 2 minutes, then sprinkle with sea salt flakes or sprinkles. Allow the chocolate to set completely. Pack and store in an airtight container.


Calories: 194kcal | Carbohydrates: 16g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 2mg | Sodium: 26mg | Potassium: 139mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 17IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 1mg

Love this recipe and want more?

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Have you tried this recipe? Follow me on Instagram, then share YOUR dish with #myIBC and tag @inspiredbycharm. It’s fun to see how folks are using recipes from IBC.


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Recipe Rating


  1. Made these today and felt I should leave some comments to help others who are wanting to try. First, 12 ounces of chocolate was WAY too much. I didn’t use at least half of what I melted. So a total waste of money, and I splurged for the expensive dark chocolate bars. And yes, I had the exact amounts of other ingredients. I used the Lancaster soft caramels and they were very easy to manipulate. The article suggests you may have to use more than the what’s recommended due to size. I did not find this to be true. And at over $7/bag I should hope not, another potential waste! The pecans were also way over estimated (did this guy even know how much of this stuff he was actually using?) The turtles themselves are delicious and easy to make. My children easily helped! But I will be making major adjustments to the ingredients in the future.

    1. Thanks so much for the feedback, Michelle. The recipe noted exactly how many caramels and pecans were needed. Since I’m slightly weird I saved any chipped pecans for another recipe and only used the perfect ones which is why you might have some extra. However, you need 75 total pecan halves and that’s what’s noted in the recipe. Also, the note about the caramels was just a suggestion. Since I didn’t use the Lancaster caramels I wasn’t sure if one would work (as they are slightly smaller), so I wanted folks to be prepared for that. Again, the recipe stated you only needed 25.

      Also sorry about the extra chocolate, you could always do another drizzle on your turtles, save it for something else, or use the extra to dip some fruit in.

      Merry Christmas from “this guy”. 🙂

      xo Michael

  2. I’m drooling over these lol. They’re my favorite, but I’ve never made them homemade! Your presentation is lovely too!

    Thanks for another awesome giveaway & for all the hard work you put into these posts!