Divinity Candy

Old-fashioned divinity is always a special treat.

Divinity Candy

Antonis Achilleos; Food Styling: Emily Nabors Hall; Prop Styling: Missie Neville Crawford

Active Time:
25 mins
Stand Time:
1 hrs
Total Time:
1 hrs 25 mins
20 candies

Divinity candies are soft sugary clouds that are fluffy like a marshmallow, but not as chewy. Similar to nougat, this old-school candy is made from whipped egg whites, sugar, and corn syrup. Some variations add chopped fruit or nuts, but this divinity recipe tops the confection with a pecan halve for a bit of nutty crunch.

The origins of this heavenly treat are unknown, and despite being found all around the country, the South certainly claims the candy as its own. The inclusion of pecans is partly why it has such a close association with the South.

As for the name, again, we can only speculate, but one popular theory is that someone tasted the treat and exclaimed that it was divine, and the name stuck. What we do know about the history of the candy is that its popularity coincided with the rise of corn syrup in the early 1900s, and one early divinity recipe was even promoted in a Karo cooking brochure.

Another fun fact: if you swap brown sugar for white, these candies are no longer divinities, but known as sea foam candies. 

Tips for Making Divinity: 

  • Divinity candies shouldn’t be confused with meringues, although they use similar techniques. In a meringue, the sugar is cooked to about 240°F also known as soft ball stage. For this divinity recipe, you need to cook the sugar to 260°F (or hard ball stage), so that the candies have more structure. All the more reason it’s important to have a good candy thermometer on hand while making these confections. 
  • Make sure you beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form, otherwise your candy will not hold its shape—if there was ever a time to pull out the stand mixer, it’s for this recipe. 
  • Another thing to be mindful of is humidity—just like with a meringue, humidity will make the candies deflate and soften into gummy messes. This is why it’s important to store the candies in a cool, dry place, in an airtight container until ready to serve.


  • 2 cups granulated sugar

  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup

  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt

  • 2 large egg whites

  • 1/8 tsp. cream of tartar

  • Pecan halves


  1. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Stir together sugar, corn syrup, 1/2 cup water, and salt in a 1-quart saucepan; attach a candy thermometer to side of pan. Cook over medium-high, stirring often, until mixture begins to boil. Boil, undisturbed, until thermometer reaches 260°F (hard-ball stage), 7 to 10 minutes. Remove from heat.

  2. Beat egg whites and cream of tartar with a stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment on high speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. With mixer running on high speed, slowly pour hot sugar mixture into egg white mixture; beat until stiff peaks form and mixture loses its glossy sheen, 7 to 10 minutes.

  3. Working quickly, drop mixture by tablespoonfuls onto prepared baking sheets. Garnish with pecans. Let stand at room temperature until dry to the touch, about 1 hour. Store with wax paper or parchment paper between candies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 week.

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