Candied Strawberries Recipe (Tanghulu)

April 15, 2018Van
Blog post

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 10 minutes

Serves: 16 Strawberries

Candied Strawberries or Tanghulu is a traditional treat that’s popular in China, Japan and Korea. They’re absolutely gorgeous and easy to make – strawberries are already so delicious on their own, but you’ve never truly enjoyed a strawberry until you’ve cracked into this crunchy sugar glaze–It’s such a unique treat.

You’ll have to make these at home because finding them at a shop in the U.S. will be next to impossible — and it’s best to enjoy these right away to truly experience the amazing crunchy texture. These would be fantastic for parties—you can put the strawberries on a lollipop stick and use a cake pop stand to hold and display them—guaranteed to impress your guests. Since strawberries don’t have a protective skin like apples, they’re only good for about 2 hours from the time you make them, so plan accordingly when you make these.

Tanghulu Candied Strawberries Recipe

Adding light corn syrup or white vinegar helps prevent crystallization, if the sugar crystalizes while cooking, you’ll end up with a dull looking coating (not clear and shiny)Tanghulu Candied Strawberries Recipe

You should use a cooking thermometer to monitor the temp of the sugar syrup, if you don’t have one, you can boil the sugar just until you start it seeing the syrup turn yellow on the edges, then turn off the heat immediately. Candied Strawberries Recipe

Candied Strawberries Recipe

Print Recipe

Candied Strawberries Recipe (Tanghulu)

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 10 minutes
  • Serves: 16 Strawberries



  • 1)

    The strawberries should be very fresh – wash the strawberries and dry them very well, use a paper towel to dry off each one, if there’s water on the skin the sugar syrup won’t stick to it.

  • 2)

    Place about 3-5 strawberries on thick skewers. If you want to make it lollipop style, gently pull the leaves away from the strawberries and insert a lollipop into the end of the strawberry.

  • 3)

    Place 1 Cup of Sugar, 2 Tablespoons Light Corn Syrup and ⅓ Cup of Water into a small sauce pan, and use medium-high heat to boil mixture until it reaches 300ºF (hard crack stage) use a cooking thermometer to check on the temp, then turn off the heat.

  • 4)

    Quickly & carefully dip the strawberries into the syrup & twist to make sure it’s completely covered (avoid the leaves), let any excess syrup drip off and set them on parchment paper to cool and harden. You can also use a steel ladle to pour the sugar syrup over the strawberries to coat them. If you want them to look perfect all around, insert the sticks into a large piece of styrofoam or cake pop stand so they can harden upright. Be very careful working with the syrup since it’s extremely hot.

  • 5)

    The candied strawberries will only take a few minutes to harden and they should be enjoyed within 2 hours, you can keep them in the refrigerator if you’re not serving them immediately. Enjoy!

↓ Supplies to make this recipe ↓



  • Cheyanne

    January 27, 2019 at 5:07 pm

    When I made this using the recipe you provided, the sugar mixture never hardened on the strawberries. They have been sitting for almost 2 hours. Why is this?

    1. Van

      January 27, 2019 at 6:44 pm

      Hi Cheyanne, if the sugar syrup didn’t harden it’s because you didn’t get the sugar to hard crack stage. Did you use a candy thermometer and the sugar reached 300F?

      1. Rihanna

        May 13, 2019 at 4:58 pm

        What if u don’t have a thermometer

        1. Van

          May 14, 2019 at 9:00 am

          Hi Rihanna, if you don’t have a thermometer, it’s best to get one before trying this recipe. To accurately tell when the sugar has reached hard crack stage, you need to monitor the temperature.

          1. Mirna castaneda

            June 17, 2019 at 3:52 pm

            Hi I want to make these for a birthday party but i wanted to see how long in advance i can make them since I’ll be making an baking more sweets for the dessert table

          2. Van

            June 17, 2019 at 11:16 pm

            Hi Mirna, I would make them 1-2 hours before serving – the strawberries start to wilt after a while.

          3. Maddie

            September 7, 2019 at 1:19 pm

            Can you use any kind of thermometer like a meat thermomete

          4. Van

            September 12, 2019 at 9:25 pm

            Hi Maddie, as long as your thermometer can reach 300°F – it should work fine.

  • debby buster

    February 19, 2019 at 2:57 pm

    can you use this on any fruit

    1. Van

      February 21, 2019 at 4:05 pm

      Hi Debby, yes you could use this coating on any fruit, but some will just start to weep sooner than others. Raspberries and blackberries would probably have to be eaten as soon as it cools since the skin is very thin. I hope you experiment and let me know how it goes 😀

  • Cheyenne

    July 31, 2019 at 4:59 pm

    Hi I’m going to make them and I’m really excited! Any tips?

    1. Van

      August 17, 2019 at 11:38 pm

      Use a candy thermometer to ensure the sugar gets to the correct temperature

  • Bryony

    September 14, 2019 at 2:17 pm

    What is you can’t get a thermometer is there any other way to check if it at the (crack stage)

    1. Van

      September 17, 2019 at 6:51 pm

      Hi Bryant, when it’s at the hard crack stage – drop a little of the molten syrup in cold water and it will form hard, brittle threads that break when bent. Hope that helps

  • Arya

    February 1, 2020 at 8:03 am

    What shall i do … i dont have a Thermometer !!!! Is there something i can use instead of them ??

    1. Van

      February 1, 2020 at 4:37 pm

      Hi Arya, I think you should wait until you have a candy thermometer before you try to make these. I can’t recommend a work around because the temp has to be precise to get the coating shiny.

    2. Lana winters

      June 8, 2020 at 11:38 pm

      I’m my experience 300 is right when the sugar starts to change color like 8-10 min heating on medium setting

  • Bella R

    July 9, 2020 at 9:34 pm

    would it work with organic cane sugar or Would I have to use regular white sugar ?

    1. Van

      July 14, 2020 at 7:22 am

      Yes, organic sugar would work fine.

  • Angelica

    October 7, 2020 at 7:29 pm

    love it my kids really enjoy these makes them smile every time I make them

  • Dandre

    October 27, 2020 at 6:41 pm

    Wonderful!! I am so glad I found this recipe. My grandmother made these every Christmas and I have missed them! Thanks for posting it!!

  • Lisa

    November 11, 2020 at 8:41 pm

    Anyone try it with kumquat, The taste is so excited I am sure.
    Thank you for inspired me to to make it. How relax it is!

    1. Van

      November 12, 2020 at 6:20 am

      Hi Lisa, I haven’t tried it yet, but it should work fine with kumquats too.

  • Felipa

    December 14, 2020 at 5:57 pm

    I haven’t had candied strawberries, but I’ve had a dessert that had this sugar coating. It was delicious on the dessert, so I’m sure it’s great on strawberries too. Thanks for sharing. Pinned and featuring this recipe.

  • Kate

    May 4, 2021 at 6:35 am

    does it have to be 16? I just want to try them, see how they taste.

    1. Van

      May 4, 2021 at 6:39 am

      Hi Kate, you can make as many or as little as you like.

  • Kenny

    August 8, 2021 at 6:49 pm

    WOW! so simple, yet SO tasty! This is fantastic, yum. Thanks for the recipe.

  • Mack

    September 24, 2021 at 12:34 pm

    how much are you supposed to stir the mixture while it is boiling?

    1. Van

      September 24, 2021 at 12:35 pm

      You should avoid stirring it at all, since stirring can cause it to crystalize

      1. mack

        September 24, 2021 at 12:36 pm

        okay thank you so much!

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