My husband occasionally buys these salted caramel macadamia nut clusters when we do a Costco run. They are really good, but I really hate having them in the house because
I have no self control I just cannot stop at one.
Homemade Salted Caramel Macadamia Nut Clusters
I happened to check the ingredients of the store-bought variety the other day though, and I can safely say, I will NEVER be eating them again. Self control is restored (in this respect at least)! They have soooo much stuff in there that really doesn't need to be. If it was just some refined sugar, then sure, as an occasional treat that doesn't bother me. But these guys have palm oil, caramel colouring, corn syrup, and a plethora of other nasties in there that I just can't do anymore.
I was a bit bummed about the whole thing given my major sweet tooth....so I made my own. With only 5 ingredients, these homemade salted caramel macadamia nut clusters are so much healthier and they still taste amazing. Seriously, date caramel is awesome. It's my new favourite thing.
I am a lover of dark chocolate so the 72% cacao that I used was perfect for me. My hubby prefers them with milk chocolate because they taste more like the ones we are replacing - either option works well. And regardless of the dark chocolate, the homemade version has disappeared quickly, and the tub of bought chocolates has remained in the cupboard. So that's a good sign right?
I topped mine with some pink himalayan salt because it is oh so pretty. Normal sea salt would be just as good, just less pretty of course 😛
If you have a sweet tooth, you have to check out these other little sweet treats I have on the blog:
Salted Caramel Macadamia Nut Clusters
- 1 1/2 cups packed of Medjool dates pitted
- 2 tbsp melted coconut oil divided
- 3/4 tsp sea salt
- 1/3 cup macadamia halves
- 1 cup 72% cacao chocolate or dairy free chocolate of choice
- Himalayan pink salt for serving
- Add the pitted dates to the food processor (if they aren't super sticky when you pit them you should soak for about 15 minutes in hot water before using)
- Add one tbsp of the melted coconut to the food processor and combine until a rough paste or ball forms, scraping down the sides as needed. If the mixture isn't quite coming together, add some water 1 tsp at a time
- Add the sea salt and pulse to combine
- Transfer the caramel to a medium sized bowl and add in the macadamias. Stir to combine.
- Use a teaspoon to scoop out small balls of the mixture and place on a parchment lined tray suitable for the freezer. Freeze for about 30 mins
- Melt the chocolate in a double broiler (or microwave) with the other 1 tbsp of coconut oil
- Remove the clusters from the freezer and quickly dip each one into the melted chocolate, shaking off the excess before placing back onto the parchment lined tray. Add a sprinkle of the pink salt and place the chocolates back into the freezer for about 20 minutes (I used a pair of chopsticks for this step but you could do it with a fork and spoon)
- Keep stored in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer - just remove about 20 minutes before eating so they have time to get nice and gooey on the inside