This Easy Rocky Road Fudge is loaded with peanuts, marshmallows and chocolate…and it can be made in about 15 minutes!
Disclosure: I was a guest of the National Peanut Board at their annual Peanut Harvest Tour. The opinions and recipe in this post are my own.
A couple of weeks ago, I found myself standing in the oldest dance hall in Texas. Don’t worry…I didn’t try to dance. As Laura will tell you, I’ve got 2 left feet. (That doesn’t stop me from doing the Hot Dog Dance every morning with Robbie, though!) Gruene Hall was built back in 1878, and it’s hosted an impressive array of musicians over the years. The list includes Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard and George Straight among many others. (Gruene Hall was also the setting for John Travolta’s movie Michael.) Sure enough, the night I was there, a band was playing some really cool country music.
So what was I doing down in the Texas Hill Country at a dance hall? Well, touring a peanut farm, of course! I was with the National Peanut Board, and our group consisted of bloggers, dietitians and peanut lovers from around the country. Salted peanuts are hands-down one of my favorite snacks, but I actually had no idea how peanuts were grown until that trip. Did you know that Texas is the #2 peanut producing state behind Georgia? (Other top peanut states include Alabama, Florida, the Carolinas and Virginia.)
So what does a peanut plant look like? Peanut plants are about 18″ tall, and they produce yellow flowers. However, unlike other plants, peanuts flower above ground but grow fruit (peanuts) below ground. After about 6 weeks, the yellow petals fall away, and the peanut plant produces “pegs.” These pegs grow down into the soil where they then mature into peanuts that look just like the peanuts in shells that you might buy at a baseball game. Fun side fact: peanuts are a nitrogen-fixing plant. This means that peanuts are not only naturally sustainable, but farmers are able to rotate in crops of peanuts to improve the health of their soil.
60% of peanuts grown in the United States are used to make peanut butter. Another 20% go to snacking while 15% go into the candy industry. The remaining 5% stay in shell or go to other various uses. Fun facts to know and share next time you’re talking with your friends!
On the nutrition side, peanuts are an inexpensive source of protein. At just 15¢ per 8g, peanuts are a great protein source, and they’re also packed with folate, vitamin E, magnesium and niacin. Plus, peanuts are just delicious! Oh, and to answer your question, Kelsie, it takes about 540 peanuts to make a 12-oz. jar of peanut butter.
Curing Peanut Allergies
Speaking of delicious, this Easy Rocky Road Fudge recipe is a holiday favorite around here! However, before getting into the recipe, I want to mention peanut allergies for a moment. Peanut allergies are a serious thing. In fact, one of Laura’s coworkers has a son who is incredibly allergic to peanuts. Overall, 1% of Americans have a peanut allergy. However, a recent study found that Americans believe that 24% of the population has peanut allergies.
A ground-breaking study conducted out of King’s College in London found that introducing peanuts to infants who are at a high-risk for developing peanut allergies can actually prevent that allergy from developing. How crazy is that? Of course, I recommend reading the full article in the New England Journal of Medicine and talking with your child’s doctor when it comes to introducing infants to peanuts, but those results are certainly promising!
Shifting gears a bit, let’s talk about this delicious Easy Rocky Road Fudge! I have a small confession to make. My phone is full of pictures of fudge. Well, pictures of Robbie and pictures of fudge. I often pull my phone out to grab photos of Robbie whenever he’s doing something especially cute…or especially ridiculous. But apparently I also like pulling out my phone to take pictures of fudge. I was cleaning pics off my phone recently, and I came across no less than 9 pictures of different kinds of fudge. 9 pictures!
Whenever we’re out and about and come across a candy store, I always love to stop and
stare drool. And I like taking pictures of fun fudge flavors to recreate back home. Thus the 9 pictures of fudge on my phone right now. I stumbled across this rocky road fudge at a candy store some months back, and I knew I needed it. ASAP. I mean it’s chocolate + peanuts + marshmallows. How can you not love that combo!?
Easy Rocky Road Fudge
This Easy Rocky Road Fudge is perfect for the holidays! Not only is it tasty to have around the house, but it makes for a great gift for teachers, neighbors, friends, Santa, etc. This rocky road fudge took all of about 15 minutes to make. 15 minutes! Toss the pan in the fridge for a couple of hours, and you’re left with this delicious treat!
I will note that this rocky road fudge tastes best when cold, though. So if you’re planning on serving this for dessert or at a holiday party, just keep the fudge refrigerated until it’s time to serve. It will still taste great at room temperature, but this fudge just tastes magical chilled! Enjoy, my friends!
Love peanuts and peanut butter in desserts? Check out some of these other fun recipes!
Easy Rocky Road Fudge
- 3 cups mini-marshmallows divided
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
- 1¼ cups salted peanuts
- ½ Tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup marshmallow fluff
- Line an 8” square baking pan with foil or parchment paper.
- Spread 1 cup of mini-marshmallows evenly across bottom of pan; set pan aside.
- Using a medium saucepan, add chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk. Cook over low heat, stirring often, until smooth. Remove pan from heat and stir in chopped peanuts, remaining 2 cups of mini-marshmallows and vanilla extract.
- Pour mixture into prepared baking pan, using a spatula to help spread mixture evenly.
- Heat marshmallow fluff in a microwavable bowl until soft (~15-20 seconds).
- Using a table knife, swirl the marshmallow fluff into the melted chocolate mixture.
- Refrigerate for 2 hours, or until firm.
- Remove from pan; discard parchment/foil. Slice into 36 pieces.