How to prepare a Kumquat Tanghulu for the perfect candy

Kumquat Tanghulu

Kumquats are exotic fruits, not only for their appearance but for how they are eaten, since you can eat them in various fun ways. One of them we will see today is an excellent recipe for a famous candy called Kumquat Tanghulu.

 Kumquat tanghulu is an exquisite sweet native to northern China. This recipe has become very popular with almost everyone through social networks due to its shape and the sound it emits when chewed. That is why we will learn to do it with a few simple steps today.

Before starting with the recipe, we will explain what it is. This simple candy is only caramelized fruits on chopsticks, that is, caramelized fruit skewers. In the cities of China, it is traditional and can be made with almost any fruit, but the most requested are kumquats.

Requirements to make a kumquat tanghulu

This famous Chinese treat has several ways of making it, but today we will develop a simple and traditional way of making tanghulu kumquats. To make this recipe, you only need so many ingredients, which takes a little time.

We can do it to create a fun snack, full of colors and out of the conventional for the children of the house, and the best thing is that you are feeding them with fruit. Without a doubt, they will love it, and only this we will need.

Preparation time: 10 minutes


  • 1/2 cup (113 g) sugar
  • 0.34 oz (10 ml or 2 tablespoons) water
  • 4 kumquats whole and fresh
  • 1 tablespoon corn syrup, honey or cream (optional)


  • 1 wooden stick, high stick or chopstick
  • 1 small pot
  • 1 wooden pallet
  • 1 medium cup filled with cold water or ice water

Preparation steps 

This recipe is only for one serving (a single tanghulu kumquat stick). If you want to make more than one, you should multiply the measurements of each ingredient by the number of servings. For example: For two servings, only multiply each measure by 2.

Step 1: Wash the kumquats

We will first wash the kumquats with plenty of water, then dry them very well with a spotless towel.

Step 2: Insert the kumquats into the toothpick

Then we take the toothpick and nail it in the center of the first kumquat. Again, remember to leave space for the other kumquats. This time we will only add three kumquats to the chopstick; the fourth kumquat we will reserve for later.

Step 3: Cooking the syrup

Add the sugar and water medium to a small pot, then take it to the stove to cook over medium-low heat.

Step 4: Add the kumquat

So that the sugar does not crystallize, cut the fourth kumquat in half and add it to the pot. In this country, you can add corn honey or any options at the top so that the sugar does not crystallize.

Step 5: Remove

Stir with the wooden paddle to help the sugar dissolve and wait for it to reach its boiling point.   

Step 6: Check that the syrup is at its point.

For this, we must add a teaspoon of the syrup to a cup of ice or cold water. If when adding the syrup, it hardens like a crystal, it is already at its point.

Step 7: Caramel cover

Finally, we introduce our kumquat flag into the syrup, always ensuring that the fruits are well covered with caramel.

Step 8: Let it drain 

After fogging, the kumquats drain very well, and in a few seconds, the caramel should harden. When that happens, our tanghulu kumquat is ready to be tasted. 

Frequently asked questions:

Recipes like these are straightforward to make, but that does not mean that we often have doubts and even more if they are new recipes that we did not know. We’ll help you answer those questions below.

For how long and where can tanghulu kumquats be stored?

An advantage of kumquat, which does not have the other fruits with which tanghulu is made, is that it lasts much longer. However, typically this sweet is made for daily consumption since there are many risks, such as caramel melting.

But if you make tanghulu for your consumption, you can store it in the refrigerator. At a suitable temperature, this candy can last two days maximum.

Can tanghulu kumquat be mixed with any other fruit?

With this recipe, you can make crazy, fun, and rich combinations with the fruits of your preference. For example, combine your kumquat tanghulu skewer and add some strawberries, grapes, or pineapple pieces.

In the cities of northeastern China, the most traditional way to make a tanghulu is by adding berries; among them are blackberries, raspberriescherries, grapes, and strawberries. Any of these options are also valid to combine with the tanghulu kumquat.

How many kumquats can there be in a tanghulu toothpick?

This traditional Chinese snack is made and decorated in a variety of ways. Many vendors sell each skewer with eight kumquats, but you can use 2 or 3 kumquats at home.

The truth is that the amount of fruit is not so indispensable. That will depend on the fruit size and how many can fit on the toothpick.

If the caramel hardens in the pot, what can I do to take it off?

If you are going to use the same candy again, what you should do is put the pot back on the stove over medium-low heat, and you will also add a little more water. As it heats up, the caramel will detach from the pot.

Now, think about how to take the caramel off the pot to discard it and wash it. First, add enough water to the pot until it covers all the caramel. Then you will let it soak for 5 hours, and after that time, the caramel will peel off, and your pot will be as before.

All cultures are different and full of different colors, traditions, and recipes. One of the best things is that we can now enjoy a touch of every culture in the world with just one click. 

That’s why we invite you to know more about these and other incredible recipes made with your favorite fruits on our website, where you can find informative quality so that you nourish your mind with the best of the world of fruits.