Crazy for Crust

Dec 08

Butterscotch Squares copycat recipe

If you love those Butterscotch Squares from your favorite candy shop…this recipe is for you!

Butterscotch Squares Copycat Recipe | | Just like the original!

I’ve mentioned before about my See’s Candy addiction. Growing up, a pound lasted less than a day. The chocolate factory is in my hometown, so that whenever I smell the inside of See’s store, I think I’m home.

If I had to pick one kind of See’s Candy to eat for the rest of my life it would be the Butterscotch Square. There would be no deliberation, hesitation, or hemming and hawing. Butterscotch Squares: they’re my favorite!

The boxes of See’s we’d get when I was a kid came with one butterscotch square. And it was mine – always. Everyone knew to back away from the square. My mom got the divinity, my dad the bordeaux. Me? I got the butterscotch square.

Of course, in true Dorothy fashion (and since I didn’t know the name for the longest time), called them brown sugar squares. I’d polish it off and then tell everyone I knew how much I hated butterscotch.

Yes, I’ve learned the error of my ways. Butterscotch and me, we’re BFFs.

And now I’ve made a copy cat of my favorite candy. So you can make it at home.

I’m not entirely sure if that’s good…or bad?

Butterscotch Squares Copycat Recipe | | Just like the original!

The base of the recipe is a cooked mixture of butter, brown sugar and heavy whipping cream. When that trifecta boils together, you get a rich butterscotch candy.

Have you ever heard of penuche? This recipe is very similar to penuche candy/fudge. The difference is the amount of powdered sugar used at the end. Also, some of the penuche recipes I came across used evaporated milk. I tried that in this candy and it did not work. Learn from my mistake!

Butterscotch Squares Copycat Recipe | | Just like the original!

I did a lot of searching online for a copy cat recipe and kept coming up with the same base recipe (some with just a few changes or additions) over and over. I finally traced it back to the oldest one I could find, but I’m not sure where that one came from.

I do recommend using a candy thermometer for this recipe. The recipe I used as a guideline just gave times, and the first time I made this it really did not turn out. After doing some research on penuche, I realized I really did need to use my candy thermometer. They’re relatively inexpensive, and I highly recommend getting one. Using one also takes the guess work out of candy making. No more “is it done???” and praying; if you use the thermometer you know when it’s done!

A note about the finished candy: it’s very brittle. If you’re not careful when cutting it into squares, it will break into pieces. Here is how I suggest you cut it:

  • Use a large kitchen knife.
  • Remove the candy from the pan using the foil. Cut it in quarters. Some little pieces may break off.
  • Cut each quarter into slices, then cut each slice into squares. Make small cuts to avoid breaking the candy.

Then dip them in chocolate (I love using Candiquik) and enjoy! They’ll take you back to childhood, I promise.

And, like in childhood, I’m not sharing. ;)

Butterscotch Squares Copycat Recipe | | Just like the original!

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Butterscotch Squares {copycat recipe}

Yield: 36 pieces

Butterscotch Squares {copycat recipe}


  • 2 cups brown sugar (I used light)
  • 3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 16 ounces melting chocolate for dipping (such as Candiquik or almond bark)


  1. Line a 9x9” pan with foil and spray with cooking spray.
  2. Place brown sugar, cream, and butter in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until melted. Bring to a rolling boil, then reduce heat to low and place a candy thermometer in the pot.
  3. Stir occasionally and simmer until the mixture reaches 236º, about 7-8 minutes. Turn off heat and stir in vanilla and salt. Whisk in powdered sugar. Pour into prepared pan and allow to set at room temperature (a few hours, but this can be done the day ahead).
  4. When ready to cut, remove from pan. Use a large kitchen knife and cut the square into quarters. From here, use small cuts to cut them into small squares. Be sure to use small but swift cuts. The candy is fragile and is prone to flaking and breaking, so a quick cut will make the candy stay together.
  5. Melt chocolate according to package directions and dip each square, tapping off excess. Place on a wax paper lined cookie sheet and chill to set.


Adapted from here.

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Maple Walnut Truffles

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Mountain Bars


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100 Grand Fudge


100 grand fudge

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71 Responses to “Butterscotch Squares copycat recipe”

  1. Tieghan posted on December 8, 2013 at 5:43 am (#)

    These look so good, Dorothy! I love the combo of butterscotch and chocolate. These bites are like bites of Christmas candy heaven!


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  3. Averie @ Averie Cooks posted on December 8, 2013 at 7:03 am (#)

    I love See’s! WOW you nailed these! And I love butterscotch. You just make this WAY too easy! Wow…so impressed!


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  5. Erin @ Dinners, Dishes and Desserts posted on December 8, 2013 at 9:44 am (#)

    My husband is obsessed with butterscotch, but we have never tried these. I might have to surprise him with them this year!


  6. Kate posted on December 8, 2013 at 11:13 am (#)

    These look so good! I am totally making them next weekend- thanks for sharing :)


  7. Erin | The Emerging Foodie posted on December 8, 2013 at 11:45 am (#)

    Oh my goodness, Dorothy! These look perfect–I could see these in a candy store! And they look SO delicious!


  8. Laura @ Lauras Baking Talent posted on December 8, 2013 at 1:18 pm (#)

    These look divine!


  9. Mom posted on December 8, 2013 at 2:03 pm (#)

    OMG! These look great and the pic is so clear I feel like I could bite my screen.


  10. Erica posted on December 8, 2013 at 4:27 pm (#)

    Quarter cup of salt? Really?


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:49 am

      No! Totally a typo. 1/4 teaspoon!


  11. Jennie @themessybakerblog posted on December 8, 2013 at 4:28 pm (#)

    Dorothy, these look perfect. I wouldn’t mind getting a box of these for Christmas. Yum!


  12. Amy posted on December 8, 2013 at 5:14 pm (#)

    You’re so cute with your See’s candy copycats! First truffles, now these… By the time Christmas rolls around, people might not have to buy boxes of See’s for presents anymore — they can just make your recipes! :) I love the backdrops your dad made too; this blue one looks so good!


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:49 am

      Lol, we’ll just go steal boxes from them to make it authentic! ;)


      • Amy replied on December 9th, 2013 at 12:26 pm

        I won’t tell — your secret is safe with me! :)

  13. karensdifferentcorners posted on December 8, 2013 at 5:38 pm (#)

    I’ll have to try it out since these are one of my favorites, but is it actually 1/4 cup of salt? That seems like a lot! :-)


    • Maralyn Woods replied on December 8th, 2013 at 5:56 pm

      I was wondering the same thing about the salt. 1/4 cup would be more than a year’s worth of my sodium allowance. Butterscotch squares are my all time favorites too. I have ordered 2 lb boxes from See’s with only butterscotch squares in them. Of course I hid them and to this day never felt guilty about not sharing.


      • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:48 am

        It’s 1/4 teaspoon, I apologize Maralyn! A typo!

        • Maralyn replied on December 9th, 2013 at 1:41 pm

          Thanks for the speedy reply. AND thanks for the great recipe.

    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:48 am

      Totally a typo!!! 1/4 teaspoon. It’s fixed!


  14. Karissa @ Sweet as a Cookie posted on December 8, 2013 at 6:33 pm (#)

    I’ve never had a butterscotch square. These remind me of butterfingers, minus the peanut butter of course. I’ll have to try these sometime :)


  15. Teri posted on December 8, 2013 at 6:49 pm (#)

    See’s candy is the one store I miss from living out west! We get pop up stores only for the holidays but they lack the beautiful candy display that See’s candy is known for. Thanks for bringing a little See’s to our home in the east.


  16. Rachel @ Bakerita posted on December 8, 2013 at 7:39 pm (#)

    Butterscotch squares and California brittle are definitely tied for my favorite See’s Candy…love them both! Definitely need to try this recipe. Pinned! It’s gonna be dangerous being able to make these at home…I’ll eat them all the time!


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:47 am

      Oooooh! I looooove the brittle too!


  17. Whitney @ The Newlywed Chefs posted on December 8, 2013 at 8:08 pm (#)

    Dorothy, these look perfect to make this holiday season to give as gifts! Delish!


  18. Carole Resnick posted on December 8, 2013 at 11:41 pm (#)

    Thank you. Have a god holiday season.


  19. Jennifer @ Not Your Momma's Cookie posted on December 9, 2013 at 2:00 am (#)

    I wouldn’t share these either – YUM! :)


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  22. Christa posted on December 9, 2013 at 7:19 am (#)

    I grew up with See’s and, like you, I had my “one favorite” piece that was always mine in the box. It was the Scotchmallow. Mmmm. Thank God for the internet, because I don’t live near a See’s store anymore.


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:27 pm

      Mmmm I loved those too!


  23. Mary Frances @ The Sweet {Tooth} Life posted on December 9, 2013 at 7:59 am (#)

    Haha, that would be me! I remember at a restuarant (I was only 7) and Mom got me and my cousin shrimp and calamari. We were scared of the calamari and told everyone we hated it and went ahead and ate all of (what we thought:) was the shrimp. Turns out we polished off the “disgusting” calamari. We never lived that one down! These candies look incredible! Every time you talk about See’s, I wish I could visit! It sounds so good:)
    P.S. I made your gingerbread cinnamon rolls over the weekend and we all loved them!


  24. Linda posted on December 9, 2013 at 9:00 am (#)

    Ha, I find it amusing that I moved to the area with See’s about 11 years ago and have never gone into a store. But I certainly hear about the candies and how much they are loved and cherished by folks who do buy from them. This one looks great. Shame about it being so brittle and breaking. Does it help to cut it sooner than later while it might still have some give? I have a special caramel recipe I make each year and a special coconut candy one (like a Mounds ball) but have never tried a butterscotch one. I have to say I always loved the butterscotch hard candies from Brach–butter rum even more. Sounds like a good one to try! Thanks, Dorothy!!


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      That might work Linda! I left them at room temp, instead of chilling. They were good, even with broken off pieces. :) (More to eat!)


  25. Jessica @ A Kitchen Addiction posted on December 9, 2013 at 10:47 am (#)

    My grandma used to make candy a lot like this! It’s been so long since I’ve had it. This will have to go on my ever growing candy making list!


  26. Karen I posted on December 9, 2013 at 1:18 pm (#)

    I also was addicted to See’s butterscotch squares and the truffles. When I was pregnant I bought myself a pound of their vanilla nut fudge and shared it with no one!! I think I ate the whole box in 3 days. I plan to make both the squares and truffles really soon!! Thank you so much for posting these.


  27. Robyn | Add a Pinch posted on December 9, 2013 at 2:13 pm (#)

    Love, love, love this. They’ve been taunting me from Pinterest all day and I am absolutely smitten with them. Genius!


  28. Ann Key posted on December 9, 2013 at 4:21 pm (#)

    Butterscotch squares are my absolute favorite also. Have you tried cooking these to a lower temperature to produce a slightly softer/less brittle candy center? We live in the South where the only place you can find See’s is in a kiosk at some of the larger airports. I do have local access to Peter’s Chocolate however which is the chocolate that See’s uses to coat their candy.


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 9th, 2013 at 6:24 pm

      And I’m super jealous that you have access to Peter’s Chocolate!!!! :)

      I cooked them to the temperature that was said for the penuche fudge, but maybe cooking them lower and slower would make a difference! Thanks for the tip!


  29. Heather @ French Press posted on December 9, 2013 at 8:51 pm (#)

    looks better than See’s!


  30. Heather @TheSoulfulSpoon posted on December 9, 2013 at 10:02 pm (#)

    Oh my gosh! Dorothy, thanks so much for offering us this giveaway! It would help out so many of us during the holiday season, I’m sure! Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    PS- Butterfingers were always something I couldn’t turn down! Honestly, they just really are to die for, and YOURS- geez! These look awesome! I’m pinning this and will share it on my blog Friday!:) You’ve inspired me to create a healthy Butterfinger just from these photos!:) I hope you’re having a good holiday season. You’re incredibly talented<3


  31. Dina posted on December 10, 2013 at 5:54 pm (#)

    i love See’s chocolates. this sounds like a great replica!


  32. Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel posted on December 10, 2013 at 8:13 pm (#)

    Oh my god! These look PHENOM, Dorothy!! I love all of your genius See’s copycat candies! This has to be one of my faves, though. Cannot RESIST that incredible butterscotch!!


  33. Terri Hughes posted on December 11, 2013 at 8:26 am (#)

    WOW….what a giveaway. Thanks!


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  35. Wendy posted on December 11, 2013 at 9:52 am (#)

    I had never made candy before this year and am having such fun playing with my candy thermometer! Next candy experiment will be these butterscotch squares! (If you ever figure out how to make Fanny May vanilla cremes, let me know. They are my favorite boxed candy ever!)


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 12th, 2013 at 6:50 am

      Oooh, I’ve never had those! They sound wonderful. I wonder if they’re anything like my Mountain Bars (a vanilla center)?


  36. marcella posted on December 12, 2013 at 2:27 pm (#)

    Oh dear, these look quite dangerous. I love this particular See’s candy too. My son always takes the rum nougat and my husband the coconut cream. See’s uses guittard chocolate so I might have to try your filling with that and see how close I can get to the original. Thanks for sharing!


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 13th, 2013 at 7:02 am

      I love guittard melts but I can never find them anywhere! :)


  37. JRose posted on December 12, 2013 at 8:42 pm (#)

    I seriously LOVE butterscotch squares, but am not the biggest fan of chocolate so I usually just cope with it being there (and by cope, I mean I eat the chocolate off of the square and then enjoy the center sans coating). I am totally making these and leaving the chocolate off, so I can save myself some time. =P


    • Dorothy Kern replied on December 13th, 2013 at 7:01 am

      Totally! If I were you, I’d just gnaw on the 8×8 square. :)


  38. Shauna posted on December 18, 2013 at 2:09 pm (#)

    Those Sees chocolates are my favorites too. A few years ago I tried making 3 of those recipes I found trying to get the right one as well. I liked them all pretty good. I added some melted white chocolate to one too that turned out pretty good. I’m totally gonna try your recipe, can’t wait. Thanks


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