Irish Potato Candy
This no-bake recipe for Irish potato candy is flavored with coconut, cream cheese, sugar, butter, and a dash of cinnamon. They’re perfect for St Patrick’s Day!
This post contains affiliate links. Read the disclosure policy.
Table of Contents
- About Irish Potato Candy
- Are these actually made with potato?
- So, what is Irish potato candy?
- What’s in Irish potato candy?
- Is Irish potato candy really Irish?
- How long will these potato candy balls last?
- Can you freeze Irish potato candy?
- Notes & tips for this Irish potato candy
- Other festive Irish recipes
- How to make Irish potato candy
- Recipe Details
About Irish Potato Candy
No matter the holiday, I’m always down for whipping up a batch of festive candy, and this Irish potato candy was no exception.
And really, how can you possibly go wrong with sugar and coconut, no matter the time of year? When it comes to coconut, wrapping it up in a sugary candy is one of the best ways to enjoy it.
Plus, they’re super easy to make, which I’m sure we can all appreciate after we’ve had a few green beers and lots of Irish stew.
Are these actually made with potato?
I hate to be the bearer of disappointing news, but no, these candies do not include actual potatoes.
So why are they called potato candy, you ask?
It’s actually just because of the way they look. This candy is typically rolled into round or oblong shapes, and once it’s dusted with cinnamon, they do resemble tiny potatoes. Some recipes even take it a step further and press roughly chopped peanuts on the outside of the candy (to create “eyes” of a potato).
So, what is Irish potato candy?
This candy has all the characteristics of a truffle (round candy, sweet and creamy center) except it does not include any chocolate. It’s typically made with butter, cream cheese, sweetened shredded coconut, and powdered sugar (aka confectioner’s sugar). All of these ingredients are mixed together, rolled into bite-sized pieces, and dusted with ground cinnamon.
What’s in Irish potato candy?
To whip up a batch of these unique candies, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Sweetened shredded coconut – Used as the primary ingredient for the filling to mimic the look and texture of a potato.
- Vanilla, cinnamon, and powdered sugar – Used for sweet flavoring and as a delicate coating for the outside of the potato candy.
- Salted butter and cream cheese – Adds flavor, texture, and helps hold the truffle filling together into a round shape.
Is Irish potato candy really Irish?
I’m sorry, guys. More bad news.
Irish potato candy is not from Ireland.
It actually originated in Philadelphia and is fairly popular in local candy stores and supermarkets, especially around St. Patrick’s Day. See’s Candy also distributes their own version of this confection.
How long will these potato candy balls last?
Once prepared, Irish potato candy can be stored in a sealed container on the refrigerator for up to five days.
Can you freeze Irish potato candy?
Yes, you can totally freeze this candy. In fact, one of the preparation instructions is to freeze it so that it will set properly.
If storing this candy in the freezer, be sure to use a sealable container or a freezer bag. For best results, candy can be stored in the freezer for up to 2 months.
Notes & tips for this Irish potato candy
- For this recipe, I highly recommend using a stand mixer or a hand mixer. This recipe would be difficult to make by hand with a whisk.
Other festive Irish recipes
How to make Irish potato candy
This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.
Step 1 – Using a stand mixer (or hand mixer + large bowl), add cream cheese and butter. Whip them together on medium-high speed until ultra creamy.
Step 2 – Reduce the mixer speed to low and blend in the vanilla extract.
Step 3 – Keeping the mixer speed on low, and slowly add in the powdered sugar. To limit making a mess of your counter, I’d recommend adding 1/3 to 1/2 cup of powdered sugar at a time at a time.
Step 4 – Remove the bowl from your mixer and use a spatula to scrape around the sides of the bowl, collecting creamy mixture in the center of the bowl. Pour in about 1/2 of the shredded coconut and then gently mix everything together. You can use a spatula or your hands; whichever works best. Finish up by adding in the remaining 1/2 of the shredded coconut and mix until combined.
Step 5 – Using a 1 teaspoon (or up to 1 tablespoon) cookie scoop, scoop out some of the coconut mixture and roll it between your hands, forming a ball. Roll the ball in some ground cinnamon, coating the outside, then place the finished potato candy on a baking sheet. You won’t be baking these, so the candy can be placed close together on the baking sheet if needed. Repeat this step until all of the coconut mixture has been used.
Step 6 – Freeze the Irish potato candy until firm, about one hour.
Step 7 – Serve and enjoy!
Irish Potato Candy
- 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- 1/4 cup salted butter, softened
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 cups powdered sugar
- 7 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper and add ground cinnamon to a small bowl. Set both aside.2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
- Using a stand mixer (or hand mixer + large bowl), cream together butter and cream cheese on medium-high speed until smooth, about 5-7 minutes.1/4 cup salted butter, 4 ounces cream cheese
- Drop mixer speed to low and add vanilla extract, then beat for 30 seconds.1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Keeping speed on low, slowly scoop in powdered sugar, adding about 1/3 to 1/2 cup at a time and beating thoroughly between each addition.4 cups powdered sugar
- Turn off mixer and remove bowl. Pour in flaked coconut and use a spatula (or your hands) to knead the ingredients together.7 ounces sweetened shredded coconut
- Using a 1 teaspoon cookie scoop, scoop out dough and roll it between your hands to form a ball. Drop the ball in the small bowl of cinnamon and roll to coat. Place finished candy ball on prepared baking sheet. Repeat this step until all dough has been used.
- Place dough in the freezer and let chill for 1 hour or until the candy has set. If desired, roll candy in cinnamon again for a fresh, powdery coat.
- Serve immediately.
I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.