{recipe} Sesame Ginger Candy

Do you remember eating sesame candy as a kid? I used to love the sticky little rectangles of sesame seeds suspended in a honey-sweet bar. Great news: it’s actually pretty easy to make at home, and you can add a bit of grated ginger to make it even tastier.

Sesame candy is a treat you can find in food cultures from Greece to Israel, and across the Middle East into Korea and China. In the USA, we mostly get sesame candies from Joyva, which I was interested to learn is a 90-year-old company that’s headquartered in Brooklyn. Their candies are wrapped individually because otherwise they would stick together – but when I’m serving them, I arrange single layers of parchment paper between the candies (and on the base of the plate) so they don’t stick. You could also wrap them individually in parchment, plastic wrap, or candy wrappers.

I like to mix black and white sesame seeds together to make them prettier, but you can use all black or all white. I buy large jars of sesame seeds at a Korean grocery store which are pre-toasted, but if you have untoasted seeds, you can toast them in a pan over low flame until they get light brown and fragrant and start to pop, about 3-5 minutes. Buying the seeds from an Asian grocery store tends to be a lot cheaper, too.

Recipe: Sesame Ginger Candy
makes about 30 pieces


  • 2 cups toasted sesame seeds, white, black, or a mixture
  • 1 inch piece of fresh ginger, grated very finely (like on a microplane)
  • 1 cup brown sugar (light or dark)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • Prepare a cookie sheet (ideally one with no sides) with parchment paper or a Silpat. Have a second piece of parchment or Silpat handy, along with a rolling pin.
  • In a bowl, combine the sesame seeds and ginger so the ginger is well-distributed throughout the seed mixture.
  • In a saucepan, combine brown sugar, water, and honey over low heat. Stir often to make sure it doesn’t burn. Remove from heat when the syrup is thick and viscous, like honey or molasses, about 5-7 minutes of cooking.
  • Immediately stir in the seeds and ginger and mix to combine. Pour over the prepared cookie sheet. Quickly place the second piece of parchment or Silpat on top and roll it with the rolling pin to flatten the candy and make it a roughly uniform thickness.
  • Let cool about 5-10 minutes and cut with a sharp knife into desired shape (I like rectangles.) If the knife is sticking, you can spray it with non-stick cooking spray.
  • Store in single layers with parchment between so it doesn’t stick together, or wrap individually.

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4 Responses

  1. eliza says:

    I remember having them wrapped in edible rice paper. So fun because the rice paper melted in your mouth followed by the chewy treat 🙂

  2. liv says:

    Wonderful article and recipe, thank you!

  1. January 16, 2013

    […] Off the Meat Hook shared a recipe for sesame ginger candy that could take you back to your childhood. […]

  2. February 2, 2014

    […] heat occasionally stirring. This is the hardest step in this recipe. I’m planning to make this Sesame Ginger Candy next time. I’m sure ginger enriches my childhood candy even […]