Appalachia Appalachian Food

Haystacks – The Kind You Eat

How to make butterscotch crunchies
When this time of the year rolls around, I find myself wanting to cook more sweets-namely all the ones Granny used to cook up when I was a girl.

Granny has made Haystacks or Butterscotch Crunchies ever since I can remember. It’s an easy recipe to whip up-sorta like the Lunchroom Cookies I told you about-only easier and faster.

Recipe for butterscotch candy

You only need 3 ingredients to make Haystacks: A bag of butterscotch morsels, 1 cup of peanuts, 2 cups of chow mein noodles.

Haystack candy
First: melt butterscotch morsels-either slowly in the microwave or in a double boiler on the stove top.

Second: once butterscotch morsels are melted and smooth-add in 1 cup peanuts and 2 cups chow mein noodles-mix well.

Easy butterscotch candy recipe

Drop the mixture by spoonfuls onto wax paper or aluminum foil. Allow to cool slightly and then enjoy! Easy uh?

Have you ever had haystacks/butterscotch crunchies before? What sweets do you make during the Christmas Holidays?



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  • Reply
    March 2, 2021 at 11:19 pm

    Try it with cashews

  • Reply
    Deborah Thomas-Wilton
    December 10, 2016 at 4:18 pm

    Oh Wow Tipper Thank you for reminding me of these. My Mom made them every year at Holloween. Except she used potato sticks instead of chow mein noodles. No idea why she substituted the potato sticks but they make for a salty sweet treat.

  • Reply
    December 4, 2011 at 7:02 pm

    My Mother-n-law makes these and I love them.
    I tried once and they didn’t turn out well. Maybe I’ll have better luck with your recipe.

  • Reply
    Laura @ Laura Williams' Musings
    December 1, 2011 at 11:51 am

    I haven’t had these in a while. I need to make them again. YUM!

  • Reply
    Lisa @ Two Bears Farm
    November 30, 2011 at 2:42 pm

    I’m not big on butterscotch or peanuts, but I would totally make these for family, and I actually have all the ingredients on hand!

  • Reply
    Granny Sue
    November 30, 2011 at 10:39 am

    I always made mine with chocolate chips and they remained a favorite with my sons long after they grew up and moved away–I even shipped them to Korea, Germany and the mid-East while they were in service!
    I hope you and your readers will stop by my blog for the December Giveaways–2 a week in December! Have a merry one, Tipper.

  • Reply
    November 30, 2011 at 9:58 am

    Oh my word those things are magic!

  • Reply
    Laura Cunningham
    November 30, 2011 at 9:28 am

    I love haystacks! I have never made them but have eaten them loads of times. Thanks for the recipe! During the holidays there are a handful of things I make for our family every year. The second it starts to get cold I make a batch of hot cocoa mix that lasts a couple months and we put mini marshmallows on top. I also bake banana bread/muffins, snickerdoodles, pretzels dipped in white chocolate (sometimes with peppermint sprinkles), and sugar cookies with buttercream frosting. Yummy!

  • Reply
    janet pressley
    November 30, 2011 at 1:49 am

    You know I love the haystacks!!! Hope you made some for all the horses. Nana

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 11:26 pm

    I love those~haven’t made them in years–thanks for reminding me about them. I love to make sweets in the winter, too, especially around Christmas. This year, I’m making a lot of bar cookies as well as fruit type breads.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 9:25 pm

    Our sister Cindy made no bakes like this, and snickerdoodles and cutouts which we loved to frost and eat when the boys were little, but once they grew up, she stopped.
    My range of baking is sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies and chococolate chip cookies. Otherwise, not so much.
    God bless.

  • Reply
    susie swanson
    November 29, 2011 at 7:53 pm

    Boy these look good, never heard of them but I’m sure gonna try them.. Thanks for the recipe. I like simple ones…Susie

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    Its good to see all those festive
    things you make. I have never
    acquired a taste for Butterscotch,
    although they look delicious!

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Aunty used to make haystacks but I think she’d drizzle melted chocolate over them too.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 11:26 am

    Yes, we did have those. Haystacks and fudge were two mainstays of our sweets. The only candy I make now is toffee. And only at Christmas.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Finally a good and easy treat that doesn’t involve chocolate. Asked Alex and he likes butterscotch. So when he gets home I will absolutely be making these. Funny how the things I remember from when I was a kid don’t involve a lot of ingredients. I know how to make peanut butter cheese fudge if anyone wants to know. Oh and you can make it chocolate if you like.

  • Reply
    Bill Burnett
    November 29, 2011 at 10:51 am

    I love Haystacks plus a variation made the same way but with White Chocolate instead of Butterscotch and pretzel sticks in place of the Noodles. Use the small pretzel sticks and break them in half before mixing with peanuts and white chocolate.

  • Reply
    Uncle Al
    November 29, 2011 at 10:47 am

    Can’t recall ever having these, but they do look yummy. Will try for sure.

  • Reply
    Karen Twiss
    November 29, 2011 at 10:37 am

    Tipper- You are making me hungry for haystacks….I may have to make some. Thanks

  • Reply
    lynn legge
    November 29, 2011 at 10:30 am

    mmm everyone is making me hungry.. lol now i got drool all over the keyboard.. heh
    have a great week all

  • Reply
    Kimberly Burnette
    November 29, 2011 at 10:22 am

    I LOVE these! Our church used to have slumber parties for the girls when I was growing up and one of the moms made us “spider cookies”. I loved them and I wondered how they were made. Years later, I found a recipe for “hay stacks” and figured out that they were the same thing! I was so happy! I have made them using chocolate chips too.

  • Reply
    Darlene LaRoche
    November 29, 2011 at 10:02 am

    when we make the hay stacks, we use Special K cereal insted of the chow mein noodles, healthy and tasty…lol

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 9:56 am

    These are very similar to a recipe I make called Chow Mein Chews, using chocolate instead of the butterscotch chips.
    My mother has requested Buckeyes this Christmas, I haven’t made them in a couple of years.
    I also like to make Pecan Logs for the holidays.
    Now my mouth is watering! 🙂

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 9:54 am

    Never heard of these. My mother didnt bake sweets so much except to bake a cake for birthdays. To this day I dont eat much in the sweets department & I don’t bake sweets much either. I’ll slap my mama next time I see her 😉

  • Reply
    Karen Larsen
    November 29, 2011 at 9:49 am

    My mother used to make something very similar, but I can’t remember if she called them Haystacks. They were good and now I want to make your recipe of them!

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 9:36 am

    Those haystacks look so yummy! I’ve never had them before. My favoriote candy during the holidays is peppermint bark.

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    November 29, 2011 at 9:31 am

    How could I forget my friends peanut brittle…it’s to die for I love it…I am not a good peanut brittle maker….Nor am I a good stack cake maker ’cause no one and I have tasted many, could make a stack cake like my Mother-in-law..The stacks so high you would think it would topple over…By this time she would have already had a fruit cake wrapped in cloth soaking in brandy….by Christmas it would knock you out…LOL It was gooood fruitcake….and I am not a lover of fruit cake…
    Could I ask if anyone has a good recipe for a Yule Log? I haven’t make one in years and have lost or misplaced the recipe I had…
    Thanks Tipper,

  • Reply
    Jen Y
    November 29, 2011 at 9:29 am

    When you said the kind you eat – I thought of taco salad. LOL We didn’t call taco salad haystacks in WV but we everyone did when we lived in Chattanooga. After we moved to Arkansas no one knew what we meant when we’d say we were having haystacks for supper!
    This would be fun to say haystacks for supper then haystacks for dessert. (It’s early for me here so I’m not all there yet!)

  • Reply
    Sheryl Paul
    November 29, 2011 at 9:19 am

    Never tried them, sounds good though. Maybe I’ll make a batch.

  • Reply
    B. Ruth
    November 29, 2011 at 9:11 am

    I remember these but we used cashews in the butterscotch ones and peanuts in the sweet milk chocolate…but my favorite was butterscotch….haven’t made these in years..
    I make ambrosia for Christmas…sometimes not always…adding a Tablespoon of Peach Brandy to the gallon jar…(just cause my Mother-in-law added a little Brandy to hers) We are not partakers of the brew here so I have to have the better half stop for one of those tiny brandy bottles if I remember to get it….Most times all the fruit and juice is plenty of flavor…I have quit making so many candies…but love the Peppermint bark so colorful and easy at Christmas…and maybe some Buckeyes…well, maybe some pecan butter roll cookies…Oh shoot, maybe I’ll make some divinity?…Aww heck, I think I’ll make Fruitcake cookies…NOW see what you have started!..LOL
    Thanks Tipper,

  • Reply
    Mike McLain
    November 29, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Never had these, but the look and sound delicious! Adding to recipes.

  • Reply
    Pat in east TN
    November 29, 2011 at 8:58 am

    Boy oh boy, do those look GOOD! I’m going to have to try them over the holidays.

  • Reply
    David Templeton
    November 29, 2011 at 8:42 am

    Clearly not a staple for the Adkins Diet bunch. But, hey! What diet?

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 8:33 am

    My family loves these too — I make them with half butterscotch and half semi-sweet chocolate chips. My father-in-law said he didn’t even want to know what was in them, he was enjoying them so much…was just going to say chow mein noodles!

  • Reply
    Janet Smart
    November 29, 2011 at 8:28 am

    You can’t get much easier than that! I’d say they would be delicious with chocolate chips or even peanut butter chips.

  • Reply
    Ethelene Jones
    November 29, 2011 at 8:22 am

    Tipper (and readers!),
    I’ve made Haystacks a long time. When I was librarian/media specialist at Fannin County Comprehensive High School (1976-1990) my clerk, library aides and I always gave the faculty and staff a “Christmas Reception” in the conference room of the library. Along with the beautifully decorated tables, punch bowl and the like, we served all sorts of homemade goodies. Haystacks–using caramel in half and chocolate in half–were always served, as well as the Lunchroom cookies, only we called them no-bake cookies. I remember those days with great fondness, and the faculty and staff felt “special” to be thus treated near Christmas break.

  • Reply
    Ruthie Millar
    November 29, 2011 at 8:20 am

    I love these and for some reason only make them during the holidays, same with buckeyes. I love to make buckeyes…some people add shredded coconut to thier buckeyes but I’m a purist, don’t mess with a good thing.
    Thanks for the sweet memories, and I’m going to run to the store today to pick up the ingredients!
    Have a wonderful Tuesday!

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 8:19 am

    I make these too. I am like you ready to make candy for the holidays. I live in Louisiana and we have great pecans. I am the candy maker in our family and my sister is the baker. I take care of the candy and she does all the cookies and other baking. Every year I make pralines, fudge, Martha Washington’s, peanut brittle and several other things. We like to get together as a family and have a candy making party. My nieces and nephews and their families come and and help me make candy. Then everyone packs ups some to take home with them to have over the holidays. Today is my dad’s birthday and he would have been 87 years old. He had a sweet tooth and always wanted the home made goodies for his birthday. He liked the haystacks. I sure do miss him today!

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 8:02 am

    never had one or heard of one but i do now want one. my mouth is watering, I love butterscotch anything. this is about the easiest recipe ever.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 8:01 am

    I always made these with either dark chocolate or milk chocolate. Butterscotch looks rather tempting. Thanks for the idea.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    November 29, 2011 at 7:59 am

    Tipper, I love your Haystacks. I look forward to them when I visit this time of year.
    In fact if you’ve got them made it must be time for me to visit!

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 6:54 am

    Ed-Im sure you could-and I bet therell be a comment from a Blind Pig reader who has used chocolate chips instead : )
    Blind Pig The Acorn
    Celebrating and Preserving the
    Culture of Appalachia

  • Reply
    Patty Hall
    November 29, 2011 at 6:52 am

    Yes,I’ve had these and I love them! You can also add some whole peanuts in that mix too.

  • Reply
    November 29, 2011 at 6:51 am

    Instead of making haystacks with butterscotch, I’ve made them with chocolate chips. Running across this recipe, I’ll have to make them again. Haystacks are easy enough to let my 10 & 11 yr old granddaughters make for Christmas and if they aren’t up to it, I’m sure my 6 & 8 yr old grandsons would be right there wanting to make them.
    When my daughters were kids, I use to make several types of fudge, milk chocolate, chocolate mint, vanilla, peanut butter. Also cookies, chocolate chip, double batch of sugar cookies where the second batch was turned into snicker-doodles.
    The two things that have been constant the last 34 years, that I dare not show up at a family dinner without is sweet potatoes with marshmallows for my grand kids and pumpkin pie cake for everyone. I would be voted out of the family if I didn’t take them.
    Merry Christmas!!

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    November 29, 2011 at 5:55 am

    Looks awfully good. But, I’ll eat anything with peanuts in it. Could you do the same thing with milk chocolate instead of butterscotch?

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