Homemade candy hearts recipe

Did you know you can make your own conversation hearts at home?

After I spotted this recipe in Food Network Magazine, I couldn’t wait to try making my own.

These DIY conversation hearts are pretty easy and a lot of fun to make. They taste quite a bit like “real” conversation hearts – even though I think candy hearts are kind of flavorless. 

The real fun is in making them, customizing them, and getting your family involved.

Homemade candy hearts recipe

If you really want to get fancy, write your own messages on these hearts with an edible food decorating marker. Then you can customize your messages to your recipient.

The Cost

These are quite cheap to make. A huge batch – which makes several cups full of miniature candy hearts – costs right around $3.00.

Please note: I needed slightly more than two pounds of powdered sugar to make a stiff dough. Instead of running to the store to get more, I made my own.

More Homemade Valentine’s Day Treats


Homemade candy hearts recipe

Homemade Candy Hearts

Prep Time: 1 hour
Additional Time: 1 day
Total Time: 1 day 1 hour

Shopping tip: I found small heart-shaped cookie/fondant cutters at Michaels. Allow at least 24 hours for the candy hearts to dry. At that point, you can write on them with an edible marker.


  • 1/4 ounce packet unflavored gelatin powder
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 2 pounds powdered sugar (plus a little more, if needed)
  • Assorted flavorings or extracts (like peppermint or orange)
  • Food coloring, for tinting


In a large mixing bowl, combine gelatin, corn syrup, vanilla, salt, and boiling water. Beat with an electric mixer until gelatin dissolves. Begin adding powdered sugar, one cup at a time, until you have a stiff, slightly sticky dough. I needed slightly more than 2 pounds of powdered sugar to achieve this consistency.

Transfer the dough to a clean surface and knead for about 5 minutes, or until dough is smooth and pliable. Use additional powdered sugar to avoid sticking, if necessary.

Divide dough into 4 equal parts, and place in individual bowls. Add a few drops of food coloring and extract to each bowl to achieve desired color and flavor, respectively. Knead dough to evenly distribute. Cover dough when not using to avoid drying out.

On a clean surface, take one dough ball and use a rolling pin to roll the dough out to 1/8 to 1/4-inch thickness. Use heart-shaped cookie cutters to make hearts. Carefully remove hearts and place on a large baking sheet to dry. Repeat with remaining dough.

Allow hearts to dry for 24 hours, turning over once in between. After the hearts are completely dry, you can write on them with a food decorating pen.

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