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Food & Recipes

Irish Potatoes: Bite-Sized Candy Treats That Are Creamy + Sweet — Easy No-Bake Recipe

No *real* potatoes are harmed in the process of making this delicious candy!

To bask in the St. Patrick’s Day fun — or just make any day extra sweet — try your hand at making a whimsical treat like Irish potatoes. This candy resembles a tiny potato, but is actually a coconut-cream cheese ball that’s rolled in a spiced coating. Even better, it requires no baking and will transport easily to any festive gathering. (Our advice: Make a big batch of these bite-sized treats as guests may devour them quickly!) Keep scrolling for everything you need to know to make this beloved candy.

How Irish potatoes are made

This treat is made by shaping a cream cheese and coconut mixture into balls, which are then rolled in a cinnamon coating. While the balls look like mini potatoes, their sweet and spiced taste is a clear sign that they’re a delicious sweet treat.

What’s the story behind Irish potato candy?

Despite the name, these candies don’t hail directly from Ireland. In fact, they first cropped up in Philadelphia candy shops over 100 years ago as a unique treat to commemorate St. Paddy’s Day. The popularity of Irish potato candy grew over time, becoming a holiday tradition in homes across the US.

3 tips for preparing yummy Irish potatoes

If you’re worried that the candies won’t be smooth inside or hold their shape, don’t worry we’ve got you covered. Here, Lindsey Chastain, founder and CEO of The Waddle and Cluck, shares three simple tips for whipping up a batch of wow-worthy Irish potatoes!

1. Allow the ingredients to come to room temperature.

Use room temperature butter and cream cheese for easy mixing and a smooth consistency inside of the candy. Then, gradually add the powdered sugar to the beaten cream cheese and butter to further avoid lumps.

2. Refrigerate the cream cheese base.

Chilling the prepared base allows you to scoop and mold it into potato-like shapes. Your fridge is also great for storing rolled and coated candies to maintain their shape and texture.

3. Roll the cream cheese balls in cinnamon and cocoa powder.

Traditionally, Irish potatoes are rolled in cinnamon to resemble the brown skin on actual spuds. But, for added richness and a darker, rustic appearance, combine the cinnamon with unsweetened cocoa powder before rolling.

How to make Irish potatoes

Below, Jamie Aragonez, chef and co-owner at World Spice, shares a recipe for Irish Potato Candy that’s sure to earn raves! It features a surprise twist of adding matcha green tea powder to the base for a festive pop of green. But, you can omit the matcha for a more realistic, potato-like interior. (Click through to these recipes for Irish Cookies and Guinness Chocolate Cake to complete your holiday dessert spread.)

Irish Potato Candy

Irish potatoes with matcha green tea powder in the base
courtesy of World Spice


  • 4 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract or paste 
  • 2 tsp. matcha green tea powder (optional)
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 to 1⅓ cups flaked, sweetened shredded coconut
  • 3 Tbs. cinnamon 
  • 1½ Tbs. cocoa powder


  • Yield: approximately 24 servings
  1. Place cream cheese, butter, vanilla, salt and matcha powder (if using) in medium bowl. Whisk until smooth. 
  2. Gradually add powdered sugar. When powdered sugar is fully incorporated, add coconut and knead mixture by hand until incorporated.
  3. Using small ice-cream scoop or tablespoon, scoop out evenly portioned pieces of dough onto baking sheet. Roll dough into balls or oval shapes. If mixture feels too sticky, refrigerate it for 20 minutes.
  4. Add cinnamon and cocoa powder in small bowl. Roll candies in cinnamon-cocoa powder mixture until completely coated. Repeat with remaining candies.
  5. Place on parchment-lined baking sheet and refrigerate until ready to serve.Note: Store leftover candies in an airtight container in the fridge and enjoy within 4 days.

What to enjoy Irish potato candy with

These candies are delicious to eat while sipping a warm drink like this Irish Coffee with Whiskey Whipped Cream. They’re also great to nosh on as you’re enjoying these Irish drinks, which are delicious and authentic boozy sips!

Keep reading for more miniature dessert recipes!

White Chocolate Truffles Are Easy to Make With Just 4 Ingredients — This Recipe Wows!

Mini Bundt Cake Recipes That Are *Almost* Too Cute to Eat — Our 7 Best-Ever Treats

No-Bake Mini Cheesecakes Make It Easy to Treat Yourself — 6 Easy, Creamy Recipes

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