Effortless English Toffee

This recipe has been in the family for over 100 years. It has been tweaked through the years until it is the only English Toffee our family likes to eat.

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English Toffee
English Toffee

Effortless English Toffee

This English toffee recipe is a no fail method. Believe me, this wasn’t always the case.

Family Heirloom Recipe

This recipe has been in the family for over 100 years. It has been tweaked through the years until it is the only English Toffee our family likes to eat. Years ago as a teenager, I was taught how to make the recipe from my grandmother. My mother never did learn how to make it. However, my grandmother’s recipe was very finicky. If she didn’t so things just right, the recipe could separate or get grainy. So, she was very detailed in her approach to making this.

English Toffee

Grandmother’s Recipe Simplified!

The recipe is truly simplified. In fact, I would call it a no-fail method. Since I have tweaked it over the years, I have not had any issues at all! Yippie. Now, this recipe may look intimidating. Believe me when I tell you it shouldn’t be. It does take a bit of time, but I bet that your English toffee  will turn out just great too.

Variations to Toffee

We hope you enjoy it as much as we do. You can change the type of chocolate you use, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, or even milk chocolate drizzles with white chocolate. You can change the type of nuts you use; I have used pecan, walnuts, and almond. I have also added cinnamon to the toffee while cooking. It all really depends upon your taste buds. Through all of my trials and tribulations of tweaking my grandmother’s recipe, my family and I like the recipe that I have provided here for  you the best out of all of the variations.

Pan of English Toffee
Pan of English Toffee

I like to use a large cookie sheet as it helps the toffee spread out into a thin layer.

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It is essential to have a good candy thermometer. The nice thing about a candy thermometer; it will show you exactly where the hard crack stage is. No guess work trying to remember during the recipe. Because the ingredients continue to heat a bit when the burner is turned off, I generally turn off the burner once the temperature reaches 299 degrees. By the time that I get the kettle off the stove and poured onto the cookie sheet, it is 300 degrees.

My candy thermometer is almost 40 years old and my grandmother gave me the $10 to purchase it. Every time I make this English Toffee, I think of her. Warms my heart and gives me great memories.

What a treat it is!

I have to make many batches of this for family and friends near the holidays. Be careful, if you make this, you might have just started a new family tradition.

Effortless English Toffee
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5 from 1 vote

Effortless English Toffee

Rich and buttery with a smooth chocolate coating with the addition of ground almonds to add the finishing touch.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: candy, Chocolate, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: candy, chocolate, holiday, toffee
Servings: 40 pieces
Calories: 171kcal


English Toffee

  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 lb butter grade A or better (4 sticks)
  • 2 Tbsp water
  • 2 Tbsp vanilla
  • 1 cup almonds finely chopped or ground (you can use walnuts o pecans too)

Chocolate and Nut Topping

  • 16 oz melting chocolate I prefer Ambrosia milk chocolate; you can also use milk chocolate chips
  • 6 oz almonds chopped very fine or ground in a food processor


  • Use a kettle that doesn’t set on easily and a wooden spoon. Add the butter and melt over medium-high heat.
  • Once the butter is melted, add the sugar, light corn syrup, water, and vanilla. Continue to cook and stir continuously for about 20 – 30 minutes. Cook until this reaches 300˚ F.
    Beginning the English Toffee
  • Hints: make sure to stir constantly, keep the wooden spoon in the mixture until done, and use a candy thermometer to tell when you reach the 300˚ F. This will help ensure that you do not have a grainy type texture in the toffee.
  • Here is the mixture after just a few minutes of cooking. The ingredients are just starting to come together.
    English Toffee After 5 Minutes
  • This photo is of the mixture cooking about 10 minutes. Time to put the thermometer in the kettle. I make sure to keep stirring and don’t forget to stir around the thermometer too.
    English Toffee After 10 Minutes
  • When the toffee mixture reaches 300˚ F, (the color will be caramel colored) Remove from heat and pour in the 1 Cup of chopped-ground almonds and stir.
    Adding Ground Almonds to English Toffee
  • Once the almonds are all stirred in, it is ready to pour into the baking sheet. (I like having the nuts in the toffee mixture as it makes it much easier to eat. Along with having this heated to 300 degrees F. the hard crack stage, the addition of the ground nuts makes it just melt in your mouth).
    Almonds stirred into the Toffee Mixture
  • Immediately pour into a 9 X 13” pan. I scrape out the kettle with the wooden spoon, then I get a stainless steel spoon to scrape the wooden spoon clean and spread the hot toffee in the 9 X 13” pan. It usually takes two…once the toffee begins sticking to one spoon, I use the other clean one and it is enough to get the toffee spread. (be careful, the mixture is very hot)
    Spreading English Toffee With Spoon
  • Once the toffee is spread, spoon on ½ of the melted chocolate and spread over the entire 9 X 13” pan. Sprinkle with ½ of the chopped almonds.
    Pan of English Toffee
  • Put somewhere to cool. Once cool (you can touch the chocolate and the chocolate has hardened), put another clean 9 X 13” pan on top of the toffee and flip over. You might have to tap the pan a bit, but the toffee mixture should come out and be in the other container.
  • This will allow you to spread the rest of the melted chocolate over the toffee and sprinkle the rest of the chopped almonds. Once this is complete, set somewhere to let the chocolate that you just put on set.
  • Break apart and enjoy!


Clean-up hint: the candy mixture hardens, but if you fill it with water and let it set, the water dissolves the candy.


Calories: 171kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 3mg | Potassium: 64mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 15g | Vitamin A: 6IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 35mg | Iron: 1mg

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I hope that you liked this recipe. If you are looking for more ideas on what to make, here are a few other recipes that you may enjoy.

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