Pine Bark (Cracker Candy) Recipe

This is a fabulously easy recipe that makes deliciously chocolaty treats. Everyone will be so surprised that the base of these goodies is saltine crackers.


Preheat your oven to 400 degrees at some point while doing the next several steps, based on how long your oven takes to preheat to that temperature.


Cover a cookie sheet (with sides) with foil, and then grease the foil. (I just use some cooking spray.) Set out about a sleeve’s worth of Saltine crackers — salt side up.


Prepare 1 cup of butter (two sticks), as you will be boiling it. To me, it is always easier when you cut them into pats of butter instead.


Plop them all into the sauce pan, and start melting them!


Add in 1 cup of packed brown sugar.


Starting to look good! Keep stirring frequently while waiting for it to start boiling.


Especially once it starts to boil, make sure to just keep stirring constantly. You’ll want to let this mixture boil for about three minutes. (You might even be able to get away with two minutes, but I always do three.)

Once you’re done boiling the mixture, remove it from heat, and add in 1/2 teaspoon of almond extract. When you add the extract, it will start sizzling. (I suspect this has to do with the flash point of almond extract.) Just mix it throughout.


Pour the mixture over your crackers. The first thing I do when I pour is to try to get it as much over all the crackers as possible. This is what mine looked like at this point.


Now, go ahead and make sure to spread (using a spoon or the like) over the whole pan of crackers.

As long as your oven has preheated by this point, you will pop this pan into the oven and bake it for about 4 – 6 minutes. (Use your knowledge of your oven to know if you should be on the low or high end of this range.)


While the crackers and mixture are baking, you will be busy breaking up chocolate bars. Now, this is an important note — you need 20 oz of chocolate. The first time I made this, I looked at my Mom’s recipe and saw four chocolate bars. I thought, hey — no problem, and bought a six pack of Hershey’s bars. I then ended up scrambling while I was baking the mixture, because I realized it was four of the five ounce bars (those big ones), not the standard ones.

So, get your four BIG bars and break them into chunks while your crackers are baking. Or, if you have children, you can ask them to work on it instead.


Oooo…bubbly and cool looking! Your crackers are ready to come out of the oven. But, be careful, as I find it to be kind of liquid kava at this point, so you need to carefully carry it to a counter.


Toss your broken up chocolate onto the hot mixture. Seriously — do it as soon as you set the pan down. Then, just wait about 20 or 30 seconds. Just let them sit.


Okay, NOW you can try spreading out the chocolate with a spatula. But, I actually just spread it out some, and then step away again for about 20 – 40 seconds. This is how it looked after I first spread it out.


Once I stepped over to do it again after waiting, it easily spread the rest of the way.

Let this cool for a bit, and then you’re going to break up the cracker candy and lay it on wax paper.


This has got to be one of the hardest parts of the recipe — letting it sit out to set the chocolate mixture before eating. And, seriously — sometimes we just don’t wait. Sometimes we just have chocolaty fingers after enjoying a piece fresh off the pan.


Ingredient List:
  • One sleeve of saltine crackers (ends up being about 36 – 38 crackers or so)
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 4 (5-oz) Hershey bars, broken into pieces (remember — 5 oz is the big size)

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What do you think?



  1. 5

    I have made this several times. Sometimes the mixture coats the crackers and sometimes it absorbs into them. We love it either way but it is definately better the latter way. Does anyone know why it happens differently? Is it the brand of crackers or how long the caramel cooks or the type of butter or sugar?

  2. 6

    Wow — thanks for the fun new ideas for making these! Club crackers and pecans sounds amazing!!!

  3. 7

    This recipe is great also using graham crackers and leaving out the chocolate. YUM!

  4. 8

    I love these things. My sisters makes them with Club crackers and adds pecan pieces. So good.

  5. 9

    Oh lordie…… this looks crazy good!