You’re craving something sweet, and those tiny packages of Jolly Ranchers caught your eye. But instead of just popping one in your mouth, a wild thought crosses your mind – what if you could melt them down and pour the gooey goodness over an apple or mix it into a drink? You wander over to the trusty microwave, but quickly realize you have no idea how to do it. Can it even be done?
In this article, I’ll explore all the ins and outs of melting Jolly Ranchers in a microwave. I’ll discuss how long it takes to melt them, some tips for making sure things go smoothly, and alternative uses for your melted candy.
Can You Melt Jolly Ranchers Using a Microwave?
Yes, you can melt Jolly Ranchers in a microwave. Out of all the methods for melting candy, microwaving is one of the fastest and easiest ways to get the job done. All you need to get started is a microwave-safe dish (such as a glass bowl), some Jolly Ranchers, and about 1-2 minutes of your time.
However, even though melting Jolly Ranchers in a microwave is simple, there is one important thing to keep in mind. The candy will solidify quickly, so it’s important to work fast and keep a close eye on the melting process. With a little practice and some trial and error, however, you should be able to master the art of microwaving Jolly Ranchers in no time!
How Long Does it Take to Melt Jolly Ranchers in a Microwave?
Generally speaking, four Jolly Ranchers will take about one minute to melt in the microwave. Of course, the exact time may vary depending on the wattage of your microwave and how many candies you’re melting.
I experimented with four Jolly Ranchers and found that they were fully melted after 60 seconds on 80% power in my 1000-watt microwave. Four Jolly Ranchers are the minimal amount of candy needed for most applications. If you have a different microwave or want to melt a larger quantity of candy, you may need to adjust the cooking time accordingly.
How to Melt Hard Candy Using a Microwave
Before melting Jolly Ranchers in a microwave, you need to prep the candy first. To prep, the Jolly Ranchers, separate them into different colours and then crush them into small pieces using a hammer or rolling pin.
Some people skip this step, but I found that crushing the candies makes the whole melting process easier and more effective. Once you’ve done this, you can start melting your Jolly Ranchers in the microwave.
Here’s a step-by-step guide for melting Jolly Ranchers in the microwave:
- Place your crushed Jolly Ranchers into a microwave-safe bowl or container.
- Set your microwave to 80% power and start heating for 1 minute or until the candy is fully melted. If the candy is still not completely melted after one minute, continue to heat in 15-second increments until it is fully melted.
- Carefully remove the dish from the microwave, and use the melted candy right away.
- The melted candy will begin to solidify again in a few minutes. If this happens, simply place it back into the microwave and heat the candy again in 15-second increments until it is fully melted.
Tips for Melting Hard Candy in a Microwave
There are a few tips and tricks that can help you melt Jolly Ranchers in the microwave more easily. Here are some of the most important ones:
1. Use a glass Pyrex measuring cup. This is one of the best containers to use for microwaving hard candy, as it has clear sides and a flat bottom that makes it easy to gauge the progress of the melting process. Moreover, Pyrex doesn’t get as hot as other containers and it has a handle that makes it easy to remove from the microwave.
2. Crush your Jolly Ranchers first. This may seem like an extra step, but it will help your candy melt more quickly and evenly in the microwave.
3. Arrange the candy in a single layer. To make sure that your candy is evenly heated, try to arrange it in a single layer at the bottom of the bowl. This will help ensure that all parts of the candy are exposed to heat.
4. Work fast! As I mentioned earlier, the melted candy will begin to harden quickly once it’s removed from the microwave. So it’s important to work fast and get your project finished as soon as possible.
5. Be careful when removing the candies from the microwave. The melted candy will be extremely hot, so use a pot holder or oven mitt to prevent yourself from getting burned.
6. Allow the container to cool a bit between each use. If you melt multiple batches of candy at the same time, make sure to let the glass slowly cool down in between heating to avoid cracking or breaking.
7. Use a little more candy than you think you need. If your recipe calls for four Jolly Ranchers, it’s better to add four extra candies to your bowl just to be safe. This way, you’ll have extra melted candy to work with in case you need more later on.
How to Store Reshaped Jolly Ranchers
Once you’ve molded or reshaped your Jolly Ranchers, you’ll need to store the candies properly to make them last longer. Here are some tips for keeping your candies fresh:
Location, Location, Location
The first step to properly storing your candy is finding the right location. Most importantly, you want to find a spot that’s cool and dry. A pantry or cupboard is a good choice, as long as it’s not right next to the stove or sinks where heat and moisture can seep in.
It’s not necessary to refrigerate or freeze your candy. Putting your candies in the fridge or freezer can actually cause them to lose their shape more quickly since they’ll be exposed to extreme cold conditions.
Once you’ve found a suitable location, make sure the area is clean before you start filling it with candy. Any dirt or crumbs in the storage area can attract bugs, which will ruin your sweets.
Choose Your Container Carefully
The type of container you use is also important. Airtight containers are ideal for keeping out moisture and preventing your candy from going stale. Glass or metal jars with tight-fitting lids work well, or you can use resealable plastic bags designed for food storage.
Label Your Containers
It’s also a good idea to label your containers so you know what’s inside them. This is especially important if you have multiple types of candy stored in one area. Use a permanent marker to write the name of the candy on the outside of the container, and include the date you stored it so you’ll know how long it’s been sitting there.
Alternatives to Melting Jolly Ranchers in a Microwave
If you’re not comfortable using a microwave for melting your candy, you can also use an oven. Here are the steps to follow:
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
- Place your Jolly Ranchers in an oven-safe dish, making sure that they are evenly stacked.
- Heat the candies for about 10-12 minutes, or until it has fully melted.
- Use oven mitts to remove the candies from the oven and use them immediately.
What Can You Use Jolly Ranchers for After They Have Been Melted?
There are many different things you can do with melted Jolly Ranchers. Here are some ideas to get you started:
1. Reshape the Candy Using a Mold
If you have a mold handy—say, in the shape of a star or a flower—you can use it to give your melted Jolly Ranchers a new lease on life. Simply pour the melted candy into the mold, let it set, and voila! You’ve got yourself some brand-new shaped candy.
2. Coat Apples
Halloween is just around the corner, and what better way to get into the spirit than by coating apples with melted Jolly Ranchers? Just wash your apples thoroughly, dip them in the melted candy, and let them dry on some wax paper. You can even get creative with this one by using different colors of candy to create a striped or swirled effect.
3. Make Your Own Lollipops
If you’ve ever wanted to make your own lollipops, now’s your chance! Just pour your melted Jolly Ranchers into popsicle molds (or any other mold, for that matter), insert sticks, and let them set. Once they’re solidified, you’ll have homemade lollipops that are sure to be a hit with kids of all ages.
4. Mix Into Your Favorite Drink
Add a little flair—and flavor—to your favorite beverage by mixing in some melted Jolly Ranchers. This works especially well with alcoholic drinks, like cocktails or wine spritzers. Just be warned: Too much of this sugary concoction can lead to a nasty headache the next morning.
5. Make Gingerbread Houses and Windows
Whether you’re celebrating Christmas or Hanukkah, there’s no denying that gingerbread houses are always a hit. But why settle for boring old clear sugar when you can add some personality (and color!) to your houses by using melted Jolly Rancers as windows? Simply pour the candy into small silicone molds in whatever shapes you desire, let them set, and then use them as decorations for your gingerbread masterpiece.
So, can Jolly Ranchers be microwaved? The answer is yes! Not only is it a quick and easy way to melt them down, but there are also plenty of fun things you can do with your melted candy. From pouring it over apples to making lollipop-like treats, the possibilities are endless. So why wait? Start experimenting with this fun and delicious way to melt Jolly Ranchers today!