Interested in starting your own candy-making business? Whether you plan to launch a home-based candy company or set up in a local shop, you can find success creating handmade chocolates, hard candies and other delectable delights. Of course, first, you must stock up on all the necessary candy-making supplies. Fortunately, there are plenty of great places to find everything you need.
The Candy and Confections Industry in 2022
The candy and confections industry includes thousands of companies that make sweet treats including chocolate, cookies, cake, candies and a slew of other sugar-based products found online, at specialty shops, and at the grocery store.
Confections typically are divided into categories of chocolates, sugar, and gum, and the products are often low in nutrients, while rich in calories and carbohydrates. The leading confectionery company worldwide is Mars, Inc. with more than 27% of the market, which is valued at a trillion dollars in the U.S. alone.
Top Places to Buy Candy Making Supplies for Your Business
Entrepreneurs planning to start a candy-making business will need to find supplies at a fair price to purchase needed materials and maximize profits. Likewise, successful candy-making businesses will on occasion need to replenish their stock of candy-making supplies. In either case, it helps to know the best places to buy supplies for a candy business.
The e-commerce giant’s bakeware category features all sorts of useful candy-making supplies at an affordable price. Plus, Amazon Prime members can enjoy free, 2-day shipping on most purchases.
Etsy is a popular online marketplace for small business owners in almost any niche. The website includes a large selection of candy-making supplies with plenty of unique and custom products.
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3. The Baker’s Kitchen
Looking for a huge selection of candy-making supplies at a wholesale price? The Baker’s Kitchen manufactures and distributes candy-making, cooking and baking ingredients, including hard-to-find specialty ingredients, chocolate, candy fillings, flavorings and molds.
The largest online restaurant supply store also sells a large selection of candy-making supplies at a wholesale price. WebstaurantStore customers can buy everything they need to prepare candies like artisan chocolate bars and much more.
5. Confectionery House
Offering the largest-available selection of chocolate molds, the Confectionery House sells all sorts of items for bakers, candy makers, and cake decorators. Purchases of $75 or more are eligible for free shipping.
Looking for candy-decorating supplies to make your confectionery creations beautiful as well as appetizing? Wilton features supplies for decorating candies and baked goods that are designed for any skill level. Watch for special holiday promotions.
ShopBakersNook is a cake- and candy-making supply store that specializes in providing reasonably-priced products for professionals and amateurs alike. The online seller offers everything a candy business might need to make chocolate candies, filled candies, or special gift candy.
Micheals might be primarily a craft store, but it offers everything a candy-making business might need to make and sell its products. Customers can shop Michaels‘ selection online or at any of its local stores, making the process of replenishing candy-making stock easy.
9. Sweet Treat Supply
Sweet Treat Supply sells top-quality candy-making supplies at a wholesale price. The online store carries a vast selection of both hard and flex candy and chocolate molds, as well as all the tools and supplies a candy-making business might need.
10. Country Kitchen Sweetart
Confectionery businesses can stock up on cake, cookies, candy, cupcakes, chocolate and other baking supplies at Country Kitchen Sweetart. Customers enjoy a wholesale and bulk price structure when they shop with the vendor, and they can purchase all sorts of candy-making tools as well as ingredients.
You can also find top deals on candy making supplies here!
Essential Candy Supplies
Candy businesses need a steady supply of ingredients, and smart business owners will seek to purchase these vital materials in bulk and at low prices. If you’re starting a candy-making business, you’ll need plenty of raw ingredients and other supplies, including but not limited to the following:
Sugar is a sweet crystalline substance obtained from various plants, especially sugar cane and sugar beet. It’s primarily composed of sucrose and is used as a sweetener in foods and drinks. Sugar is the fundamental ingredient in most candy recipes. When heated, sugar undergoes various stages, from the thread stage to the hard-crack stage, which determines the consistency of the candy. Whether you’re making hard candies, soft caramels, or fudges, sugar is indispensable.
Corn syrup is a sweet, thick liquid made by breaking down cornstarch into glucose through a chemical process. Corn syrup is used in candy making to prevent sugar crystals from forming, resulting in a smoother texture. It’s commonly found in recipes for marshmallows, caramels, and many other candies.
Gelatin is a translucent, colorless, and flavorless food ingredient derived from collagen taken from animal body parts. Gelatin gives structure to candies like gummy bears and marshmallows. It’s responsible for the chewy texture of many gummy candies.
Cocoa powder is the dry solid remains of fermented, dried, and roasted cacao beans. Chocolate, on the other hand, is a combination of cocoa solids, cocoa butter, and often sugar and milk. Cocoa powder and chocolate are essential for making all kinds of chocolate candies, from truffles to chocolate bars. The type and quality of chocolate can significantly affect the flavor and texture of the final candy.
Butter is a dairy product made from the fat and protein components of milk or cream. It’s rich and adds both flavor and texture to dishes. Butter is frequently used in toffees, caramels, and fudges. It adds richness, creaminess, and a melt-in-the-mouth quality to candies.
Cream is the thick, fat-rich part of milk, which rises to the top when milk is fresh and is left to stand. Cream is used to create creamy textures in candies like truffles, chocolate ganaches, and caramels.
These are concentrated liquids that provide the essence of various flavors, such as vanilla, peppermint, almond, and many others. Flavoring extracts are used to enhance or introduce specific flavors to candies. A few drops can significantly alter and improve the taste of your candy.
Food coloring, or color additive, is any dye, pigment, or substance that imparts color when it’s added to food or drink. Food coloring is used to add vibrant colors to candies, making them more visually appealing.
Citric acid is a weak organic acid found naturally in citrus fruits. In its powdered form, it’s white and crystalline. It’s often added to candies to provide a sour taste, commonly found in sour gummy candies.
Nuts are the hard-shelled fruit of some plants. Popular nuts used in candy-making include almonds, pecans, and peanuts. Nuts are added to candies to provide a crunchy texture and a nutty flavor. Popular candies that use nuts include pralines, nut brittles, and certain chocolate bars.
It’s easy to decorate handmade candies using candy melts. The confectionery coatings can be used to decorate candies, cookies, cakes, pretzels and more.
|Ingredient||Description||Primary Use in Candy Making|
|Sugar||A sweet crystalline substance obtained from plants like sugar cane and sugar beet. Composed mainly of sucrose.||Fundamental for most candy recipes. Determines the candy's consistency through various stages of heating.|
|Corn Syrup||A thick liquid derived from cornstarch, broken down into glucose.||Prevents sugar crystals from forming for a smoother texture in candies like marshmallows and caramels.|
|Gelatin||Translucent, colorless, flavorless ingredient derived from collagen from animal parts.||Provides structure and chewiness in candies like gummy bears and marshmallows.|
|Cocoa Powder/Chocolate||Cocoa powder comes from fermented, dried, roasted cacao beans. Chocolate is a mix of cocoa solids, cocoa butter, sugar, and sometimes milk.||Essential for chocolate candies. Determines flavor and texture based on type and quality.|
|Butter||Dairy product from the fat and protein components of milk or cream.||Adds richness and creamy texture in candies like toffees, caramels, and fudges.|
|Cream||Thick, fat-rich part of milk.||Creates creamy textures in candies like truffles, chocolate ganaches, and caramels.|
|Flavoring Extracts||Concentrated liquids capturing the essence of various flavors.||Enhances or introduces flavors. A few drops can alter the candy's taste.|
|Food Coloring||Dyes, pigments, or substances adding color to food or drink.||Adds visual appeal to candies by imparting vibrant colors.|
|Citric Acid||A weak organic acid naturally found in citrus fruits. In powdered form, it's white and crystalline.||Imparts a sour taste, often used in sour gummy candies.|
|Nuts||Hard-shelled fruit of some plants like almonds, pecans, and peanuts.||Adds crunchy texture and nutty flavor in candies like pralines, nut brittles, and some chocolate bars.|
|Candy Melts||Confectionery coatings used for decoration.||Used for decorating and adding visual appeal to candies, cookies, cakes, pretzels, etc.|
Lollipop sticks are typically cylindrical, made from either wood or plastic, and are specifically designed to hold candies. These sticks are used to make lollipops or popsicle-type candies. The candy is molded or poured around one end of the stick, allowing the candy to be held and consumed easily.
These are clear, thin bags made of cellophane, a transparent film made from cellulose. Cellophane bags are often used to package individual candies or small groups of candies. They keep the candy fresh while showcasing its appearance.
Twist ties are small metal wires encased in paper or plastic. They are commonly used to seal cellophane bags or other candy packaging, ensuring the contents remain fresh.
These small, often fluted cups are used for individual candies, especially chocolates. They make candies easy to pick up and prevent them from sticking to one another.
Wax Paper or Parchment Paper
These non-stick, heat-resistant papers are used to line trays or surfaces where candies might be placed to set or cool, preventing them from sticking.
Thin sheets of foil, often colored, can be used to wrap candies. Foil wrappers are typically used for chocolates, providing a protective and decorative layer around each piece.
Label or Sticker
Labels or stickers can be placed on packaging to provide details about the candy, including its name, ingredients, expiration date, and branding.
|Accessory/Packaging||Description||Primary Use in Candy Making|
|Lollipop Sticks||Typically cylindrical, made from either wood or plastic. Designed to hold candies securely.||Used for creating lollipops or popsicle-type candies, allowing easy holding and consumption.|
|Cellophane Bags||Clear, thin bags made of transparent film derived from cellulose.||Used for packaging individual candies or small groups, showcasing the candy's appearance while preserving freshness.|
|Twist Ties||Small metal wires encased in paper or plastic.||Seal cellophane bags or other candy packaging to keep the contents fresh.|
|Paper Cups||Small, often fluted, paper holders.||Used for individual candies, especially chocolates, to facilitate easy pickup and prevent them from sticking together.|
|Wax/Parchment Paper||Non-stick, heat-resistant paper materials.||Line trays or surfaces where candies are set or cooled to prevent sticking.|
|Foil Wrappers||Thin, often colored, sheets of foil.||Used primarily for wrapping chocolates, offering a protective and decorative layer around each piece.|
|Label/Sticker||Printed materials offering information about the contained candy.||Placed on candy packaging to provide details like name, ingredients, expiration date, and branding.|
Candy Making Equipment and Tools Every Confectionery Needs
Small business owners specializing in candy orders can find all the tools they need at specialty stores and website vendors. Looking for quality items to create candy and other sweet treats, or perhaps you’re in search of practical storage solutions? You’ll need the right candy-making tools, including but not limited to the following:
A candy thermometer is a kitchen tool with a scale specifically calibrated to indicate various stages of sugar syrup’s temperature. Achieving the right temperature is crucial in candy-making. A candy thermometer helps ensure that the sugar is heated to the desired stage, be it soft-ball, hard-crack, or any stage in between.
Molds are shapes into which candy or chocolate can be poured to set. They can be made of silicone, plastic, or metal. Molds are used to shape candies. They come in various shapes and sizes, ranging from simple bar molds to intricate designs for specialized candies.
A double boiler consists of two pots: a large one that holds boiling water and a smaller, inset pot in which food is cooked. This tool is essential for melting chocolate and other delicate ingredients. The indirect heat prevents these ingredients from burning or seizing.
When making sugar syrups or melting ingredients, a heavy-bottomed saucepan ensures even heat distribution, reducing the risk of burning.
Candy businesses can use a melting pot for an easy way to heat their candy melts and decorate their products. This important candy-making equipment helps confectioneries make chocolate-covered strawberries, chocolate-covered pretzels, cake pops and more.
Microwave-safe bowls are essential for quickly melting or reheating ingredients like chocolate or butter in the microwave.
Sieve or Fine Mesh Strainer
A sieve is a kitchen tool made of a mesh or perforated material used to strain liquids or sift dry ingredients. In candy-making, a sieve can be used to sift powdered ingredients to remove lumps or to strain mixtures to ensure smoothness.
A heat sealer is used to seal plastic or cellophane bags, ensuring the candies inside are airtight and fresh.
Marble slabs are utilized in candy-making, especially when working with chocolate or sugar confections, because they maintain a consistent cool temperature. This helps temper chocolate and cool down sugar mixtures quickly, resulting in a smoother texture.
|Tool||Description||Primary Use in Candy Making|
|Candy Thermometer||A kitchen tool with a scale calibrated for sugar syrup temperatures.||Ensures sugar reaches the desired stage, from soft-ball to hard-crack, during heating.|
|Molds||Shapes made of silicone, plastic, or metal for setting candy or chocolate.||Used to shape candies into various forms, from simple bars to intricate designs.|
|Double Boiler||Two pots - one holding boiling water and an inset one for food.||Essential for melting delicate ingredients like chocolate using indirect heat, preventing burning or seizing.|
|Heavy-bottomed Saucepan||Saucepan with an extra thick base.||For making sugar syrups or melting ingredients, ensuring even heat distribution and reducing burn risk.|
|Melting Pot||Equipment primarily for heating candy melts.||Used by confectioneries for making chocolate-covered treats like strawberries, pretzels, and cake pops.|
|Microwave-safe Bowl||Bowl that can withstand microwave radiation without damage.||For quickly melting or reheating ingredients like chocolate or butter in the microwave.|
|Sieve or Fine Mesh Strainer||Made of mesh or perforated material to strain liquids or sift dry ingredients.||Sifts powdered ingredients to remove lumps and strains mixtures for smoothness in candy-making.|
|Heat Sealer||Machine that uses heat to seal packages.||Seals plastic or cellophane bags, ensuring the candies inside are airtight and remain fresh.|
|Marble Slab||Flat, smooth piece of marble, typically rectangular.||Maintains a consistent cool temperature, ideal for tempering chocolate and rapidly cooling sugar mixtures, resulting in smoother candy textures.|
Silicone Baking Mat
Often placed on baking sheets, these mats provide a non-stick surface for candies to cool. Silicone baking mats are especially useful for candies that might stick to other surfaces.
This type of spatula has a blade that’s slightly bent, allowing the handle to be raised above the working surface. An offset spatula is great for spreading melted chocolate or smoothing out other mixtures on a flat surface. Its design provides better control and even distribution.
Pastry brushes can be used to brush on glazes, apply edible gold leaf, or brush off excess sugar crystals from confections.
A flexible rubber or silicone spatula is excellent for scraping the sides of bowls to ensure every bit of a mixture is used. Its flexibility is also helpful for folding ingredients together gently.
A bench scraper is a flat, rectangular piece of metal or plastic with a handle used to divide or manipulate dough and other foods. In candy-making, a bench scraper can help manipulate candy, especially when working with large quantities of thick mixtures like fudge or caramel. It’s also useful for scraping and cleaning work surfaces.
Candy Dipping Forks
These forks make it easy to dip candies without making a mess, ensuring an even coating and allowing excess to drip off.
Liquid Measuring Cups
It’s hard to create the perfect candies without properly measuring ingredients. Liquid measuring cups are essential tools for candy businesses, and entrepreneurs can purchase them locally or from a variety of website vendors.
|Tool||Description||Primary Use in Candy Making|
|Silicone Baking Mat||Non-stick baking surface made from high-quality, food-grade silicone.||Placed on baking sheets to provide a non-stick surface for candies to cool, especially those prone to sticking.|
|Offset Spatula||Spatula with a bent blade, allowing the handle to be above the working surface.||Useful for spreading melted chocolate or smoothing mixtures on a flat surface, ensuring better control and even distribution.|
|Pastry Brush||Small brush with soft culinary bristles.||Used to apply glazes, edible gold leaf, or brush off excess sugar crystals from confections.|
|Rubber Spatula||Flexible spatula with a rubber or silicone head.||Essential for scraping bowl sides to utilize every bit of a mixture and for folding ingredients together gently.|
|Bench Scraper||Flat, rectangular tool, often metal or plastic, with a handle.||Manipulates thick mixtures like fudge or caramel when making candy. Also useful for cleaning and scraping work surfaces.|
|Candy Dipping Forks||Specialized forks with two or three elongated prongs.||Designed for dipping candies into melted chocolate or other coatings. Assists in achieving an even coating and allowing excess to drip off.|
|Liquid Measuring Cups||Tools specifically for measuring liquid ingredients.||Crucial for ensuring precise measurements of ingredients in candy-making. A must-have for candy businesses.|
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What Is the Most Important Equipment When Making Hard Candy?
When creating hard candy, precision in temperature is vital. Even a slight deviation from the recommended temperature can change the candy’s consistency, making it too soft or too brittle. Thus, having the right tools can make a world of difference in the outcome. Here’s an expanded list of essential tools for making hard candy:
- Candy Thermometer:
- Why it’s Important: This tool is indispensable because the various stages of sugar—from the thread stage to the hard-crack stage—are determined by precise temperatures.
- Tip: A paddle-style candy thermometer is particularly useful. This design allows it to attach securely to the side of a pan. When positioned correctly, it rests flush against the pan’s interior, ensuring accurate temperature readings. The large display and clear numbers also make it easier to monitor the sugar’s progress.
- Heavy-bottomed Saucepan:
- Why it’s Important: Sugar syrups require even heating to prevent hot spots that might cause the sugar to burn or crystallize. A heavy-bottomed saucepan distributes heat uniformly.
- Tip: Choose a saucepan with tall sides. As sugar boils, it can bubble up, and tall sides help prevent spills.
- Silicone Spatula:
- Why it’s Important: When working with hot sugar, it’s crucial to have a tool that’s heat-resistant and can handle the syrup without melting or deforming.
- Tip: Opt for a spatula made of high-quality, food-grade silicone that can withstand high temperatures without transferring any off flavors.
- Marble Slab or Silicone Baking Mat:
- Why it’s Important: After reaching the desired temperature, sugar syrup needs to be poured onto a cool, flat surface to set. Marble retains cold and provides a smooth surface, ensuring even cooling.
- Tip: If you don’t have a marble slab, a silicone baking mat on a cold surface can be a great alternative. It’s non-stick and easy to clean.
- Heat-resistant Gloves or Oven Mitts:
- Why it’s Important: Safety is paramount when working with hot sugar, as it can cause severe burns. Heat-resistant gloves offer protection when handling hot pans and pouring out the molten candy.
- Tip: Look for gloves that offer flexibility as well as protection so that you can maneuver utensils and pans comfortably.
- Wooden Spoon:
- Why it’s Important: Wood is an excellent material for stirring since it doesn’t conduct heat and won’t scratch your saucepan.
- Tip: Keep a dedicated wooden spoon for candy-making to avoid any unwanted flavors or odors being transferred to your candy.
While there are various tools that can aid in the candy-making process, the candy thermometer undoubtedly stands out as the most crucial. Monitoring the exact temperature ensures that your hard candy achieves the desired consistency and texture every time. Proper preparation and having the right tools on hand will ensure success in your hard candy endeavors.
What Tools Do Chocolatiers Use?
If your small business specializes in making chocolate, you’ll want a variety of special candy-making tools in your arsenal. Chocolatiers rely heavily on digital thermometers, silicone molds, piping bags and spatulas when filling orders.
What Is the Most Common Problem When Making Candy?
Confectioneries can run into a variety of problems when making candy. One of the most common problems they encounter occurs when they use the wrong tools. With the wrong pan or spoon, ingredients won’t mix or heat properly and the resulting mixture might not harden or form the desired shapes. Forgoing a candy thermometer is also a good sign the products may not meet customer expectations.
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