Patriotic Treats

With the Fourth of July inching closer with each passing day, I’ve been pondering what recipes to share with you to help you celebrate our national holiday. So, I’ve chosen one newly formulated recipe and an old favorite that I’ve made for years.

                An idea that I found on Pinterest inspired my new recipe that I call salty-sweet patriotic treats.

Originally designed as a snack for watching the Super Bowl game, the salty component consists of pretzels, and the sweet comes from candy melts and M&M’S®. For football games, the M&M’S® are supposed to represent the colors of the two teams playing the game.

                To make the patriotic treats, I used red and blue M&M’S® and white candy melts. Before inserting an M&M® into each softened candy, I added more festive color by shaking on some red, white, and blue sprinkles.

                If you are a fan of salty-sweet combos, then you definitely will love these snacks. Charles, my better half, and I certainly did.

                As for my old favorite recipe, I created it 38 years ago. Simply called my best baked beans, they are the best I’ve ever eaten. Everyone who has eaten them has loved them, too. No brag, just fact.

                My inspiration for creating it came from a recipe an old cookbook. The original recipe called for using dried beans, which was too time-consuming in my opinion. Therefore, I chose to use canned pork and beans instead. By the way, Van Camps is the only brand that I recommend using.

Several years ago, my sister Beckie asked for the recipe, so I gave it to her. Later on, she confessed that her beans were too juicy and never tasted like mine.

After much discussion, I concluded that she was cooking them in the wrong type of pan. I always cook them uncovered in a 9- by 13-inch glass baking pan. She was using a bowl-type of glass casserole, which prevented the beans from cooking down and getting thick. Problem solved.

Salty Sweet Patriotic Treats


                1 (1-lb.) pkg. Square-shaped pretzels (I used Snyder’s of Hanover Snaps.)

                1 (12-oz.) pkg. White candy wafers or melts

                Red and blue M&M’S®

                Red, white, and blue sprinkles, optional


                Preheat oven to 185 degrees F. Line a large rimmed cookie sheet or baking pan with pretzels. Place a white candy wafer on top of each pretzel.

                Bake the pretzels for about 5 minutes or until the candy has melted. Remove from oven and top with sprinkles and an M&M® candy. Allow to cool before serving.

                Note: I baked mine in my Breville toaster oven for 5 minutes at 190 degrees F.