This Old Fashioned Potato Candy is a classic treat made with only 4 ingredients and doesn’t require any baking!

sliced old fashioned potato candy in a spiral pattern on white plate

I was at a friend’s house last week and she set out some leftover Old Fashioned Potato Candy she had made for a baby shower she hosted. There were only a few pieces remaining…and I coveted them all.

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Have you ever heard of this? I hadn’t. But naturally when something is made with copious amounts of powdered sugar, I’m like a moth to a flame.

But mashed potatoes mixed with powdered sugar? Like…what? You can’t taste the potato at all; it’s obviously used more as a binder here. But I was fascinated. So I took to the Internet and researched it!

What is Potato Candy

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Rumor has it that this potato candy recipe originated in Germany and then brought to the United States. There’s also debate over it being Irish, Russian, and Pennsylvania Dutch.

What we do know is that it became popular during the Great Depression, when people needed to be frugal, making use of ingredients that were widely available and really inexpensive. Makes sense now that I think about it – they used potatoes in everything. Why not put it to use in a dessert, too. Depressed people need sweets more than anyone!

Even though the Depression era was temporary (thank goodness), this recipe lives on for eternity, because it’s sweet, easy to make, and irresistible!

Old Fashioned Potato Candy slices

Is Old Fashioned Potato Candy the same thing as Irish Potato Candy?

Nope! Although many people confuse the two. Old Fashioned Potato Candy is made up of powdered sugar, mashed potatoes, and nut butter. Irish potato candy is a traditional sugary confection that (despite its name), is not from Ireland, and does not usually contain any potato. The candies have a coconut cream center and a cinnamon exterior, which makes them resemble small potatoes.

Recipe Notes

  • This treat is super sweet and rich, so a little goes a long way.
  • This recipe is incredibly easy, but it requires you to pay attention to how much powdered sugar you are adding. 6 cups might be enough, or you might need 7. Just stop adding it once a putty-like texture is achieved. You don’t want it so stiff that it cracks as you roll into a log, but you don’t want it sticky.
  • This dough does dry fairly fast, so work quickly.
  • Don’t waste the excess dough you trim off! Roll back into a ball (before it dries out) and pinch off small amounts; form into balls and coat with cocoa powder.

Potato Candy Recipe Variations

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You want to stay true to the powdered sugar and potatoes, but as far as the filling, there are many options! You can use…

  • Any nut butter (peanut butter, sunflower butter, almond butter, etc.)
  • Cookie butter (my kids favorite!)
  • Nutella
pin for Old Fashioned Potato Candy

Storing Potato Candy

Leftover candy can be stored up to 2 weeks in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

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Potato Candy is such a nostalgic treat. If this is your first year trying some, it won’t be your last. It makes a great addition to any holiday candy tray!

Other holiday candy recipes

  • (see’s Copycat) Polar Bear Paws
  • Cream Cheese Mints
  • Turtles Candy
  • Saltine Cracker Toffee

I hope you love this delicious and simple recipe – be sure to give it a review below! Also don’t forget to follow Belly Full on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube!

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How To Make Potato Candy


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