2 Candy Making 101: Your Thermometer

A good candy thermometer is essential to making quality candies.

I dusted off my ancient candy thermometer and put it to the test.

Did you know you should test your candy thermometer EVERY time you make candy?

I didn't know that, so here goes....

Get a small pan with enough water to cover the tip of the thermometer bulb.  Make sure the bulb is NOT touching the bottom of the pan.

Bring the water to a boil and let it boil for a few minutes.

What you are looking for is the boiling point for water in your area.

Water boils at 212°F at sea level, so let's take a look at what my thermometer says ...

Get down at eye level and try to read it....

208°F?  209°F?

This candy thermometer reads in 5° increments, making it more difficult to get an accurate reading.

I'm gonna say 209°F is my boiling point, because of the altitude that I live in.  (4500 feet)

All candy recipes are written at sea level (212°F), so I need to SUBTRACT 3° from all the recipes.

That little piece of knowledge may explain why I have not been successful in some of my candy making ventures...

Did you know that there are candy thermometers that measure in 2° increments, making it much easier to read and more accurate than 5° increments?
Taylor Candy/Deep Fry Thermometer

There's even digital thermometers ... I'm going to hunt down a new thermometer and let you know what I find!
CDN Digital Candy Thermometer


  1. Hi Frieda, Such good info. I live on the bench near the U of U and have a Taylor and a digital. Both of mine register at 202 degrees when my water boils. This is great info because it's so pertinent in candy making.

  2. Thanks for the hint! I only have one candy recipe (caramels), and I kinda figured this out on my own after much trial and error. I just wrote the lower number down on my recipe. This is much more scientific!


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