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English Toffee

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English Toffee is rich, buttery toffee topped with nuts and chocolate. This is one candy recipe you’ll want to make again and again. Be sure to watch the video in the recipe card at the end of this post to see step-by-step, how to make English Toffee.

english toffee on a white plate

January 8th is National English Toffee Day. Thank goodness there’s a day of the year that we can all make and eat this much-loved confection without guilt! Heath Bars (a candy bar) in the US are the closest thing that you can get to buying English Toffee, though I highly recommend you make some homemade!

“The sweet taste of candy calms my soul.”

-Cresila Pinero

Although referred to as “English” Toffee, you likely won’t find this variety of toffee in the UK. American made English toffee is a very buttery toffee made with almonds or pecans and chocolate. In England, toffee is made with brown sugar instead of white sugar, and you’re more likely to find it labeled as “Buttercrunch” instead of English Toffee.

toasted pecans on a baking sheet

How to toast pecans:

Place a skillet over medium heat. Add the pecans and toast them in the hot skillet until they are fragrant and lightly browned. Remove the pecans to another surface to cool.

Line a 9×13-inch rimmed pan with parchment paper. Sprinkle half of the toasted pecans evenly on top of the parchment.

making toffee in a pot whisking mixture

How to make English Toffee:

Spray a heavy, light-colored saucepan with nonstick spray. This is a crucial step because it will help to prevent boiling syrup from flowing over the side of the pan. Combine butter, sugar, water, corn syrup and salt in the pan and heat over medium temperature. It’s important to use a light-colored pan so you can more easily observe the color of the toffee as it’s cooking. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pan so it’s touching the syrup but not the bottom of the pan.

Cook to the “hard crack” stage (295 to 300 degrees F), whisking constantly and watching closely. This should take 15 to 20 minutes. Don’t rush the process. Low and slow is good. Syrup that does not reach temperature will be chewy instead of crunchy. And if you try to cook it more quickly, you’ll end up with the butter separating from the sugar.

toffee bubbling away in a pot

Pull the pan off the heat when it has reached temperature. It should be a nice, golden brown color.

hot toffee spread onto pecans on a baking sheet

Immediately pour the hot toffee over the pecans in the pan and spread evenly with a metal spatula.

english toffee cooling on a baking sheeet

Sprinkle chopped chocolate on top. Let it sit for a minute until the chocolate melts, and then spread the chocolate over the hardening toffee. Sprinkle the rest of the nuts on top.

Let the English Toffee cool at room temperature for about an hour. Then move it to the refrigerator to harden the toffee completely. Chop or break the toffee into pieces.

english toffee

Store your toffee in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 months- layers separated by wax paper. You can also freeze it in this manner for up to 3 months. Keep it at room temperature up to 2 weeks, but at room temp it may become a little sticky.

If you’re a lover of chocolate, you might like to try making some Chocolate Covered Strawberries too!

Tips for making the best English Toffee:

  1. What to do if you don’t have a thermometer:
    If you don’t have a candy thermometer you’ll need to do a “hard crack” test. Drizzle some syrup into a cup of ice water, and let it set for 10 seconds. Take the hardened candy out of the water and test its texture. The syrup is done if it’s crisp in texture and snaps cleanly, rather than bends.
  2. How to keep toffee from separating:
    Opt for using chopped chocolate instead of chocolate chips. Chocolate chips have a coating on them that helps them keep the form of a chip. That “coating” can mess with the chocolate’s ability to stick to the toffee.
  3. How to make toffee if you aren’t at sea level:
    If you live above sea level, you’ll want to cook the toffee to a slightly lower temperature. Look up the temperature water boils at for your elevation, then subtract that from 212 degrees F. The number you get is how many degrees you should subtract from the 295 to 305 degrees F range given in the recipe.
english toffee on a white plate

English Toffee

Yield: One pound of candy (16 servings)
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

Traditional recipe for the best English Toffee! Buttery toffee paired with toasted nuts and chocolate.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon corn syrup
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 ounces semisweet chocolate

Instructions

TOAST THE PECANS:


Place a skillet over medium
heat. Add the pecans and toast them in the skillet until they are fragrant and
lightly browned. Remove the pecans to a paper towel or cutting board to cool.

Line a 9x13-inch pan with
parchment paper. Sprinkle half of the toasted nuts evenly on top of the
parchment paper.

MAKE THE TOFFEE:

Spray a heavy, light-colored saucepan with nonstick spray. This is a crucial step because it will help to prevent boiling syrup from flowing over the pan. Combine butter, sugar, water, corn syrup and salt in the pan and heat over medium temperature. It's important to use a light-colored pan so you can more easily observe the color of the toffee as it's cooking. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pan so it's touching the ingredients but not the bottom of the pan.

Cook to the "hard crack" stage (295 to 300 degrees F), whisking constantly and watching closely. This should take 15 to 20 minutes. Don't rush the process. Low and slow is good. Syrup that does not reach temperature will be chewy instead of crunchy. And if you try to cook it more quickly, you'll end up with the butter separating from the sugar.

Pull the pan off the heat when it has reached temperature. It should be a nice, golden brown color.

Immediately pour the hot toffee over the pecans in the pan and spread evenly with a metal spatula.

Sprinkle chopped chocolate on top. Let it sit for a minute until the chocolate melts, and then spread the chocolate over the hardening toffee. Sprinkle the rest of the nuts on top.

Let the English Toffee cool at room temperature for about an hour. Then move it to the refrigerator to harden the toffee completely. Chop or break the toffee into pieces.

Notes

    • Store your toffee in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 months- layers separated by wax paper. You can also freeze it in this manner for up to 3 months. Keep it at room temperature up to 2 weeks, but at room temp it may become a little sticky.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1 ounce
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 227Total Fat: 18gSaturated Fat: 9gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 159mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 1gSugar: 17gProtein: 1g

Nutritional information is an estimate and is not likely to be 100% accurate.

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