Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Making English Toffee

English Toffee  |  Delicious as it Looks

I've always been afraid of making candy. Anything that required a thermometer scared me away. I used to be afraid of making yeast bread too, and look at me now! So I thought it was time to challenge myself by making English Toffee from Food.com. It turned out to be not as difficult as I thought. Plus, it's gluten-free and a treat I can enjoy in moderation.

First you cook the butter and sugar. This is where you need a thermometer. I really like my digital thermometer. Very useful. You want to cook it to "hard-crack" stage, which is 300 degrees F. This is also about as high as my thermometer registered. It will take quite a while to reach this stage, about 10 minutes. Don't give up hope.

This is where you have to be prepared because the candy has be immediately poured into the pan. Have your pan ready ahead of time! The recipe said to use a 13" x 9" inch pan. Glass was all I had, so I lined it with parchment paper (always a good idea) and spritzed lightly with cooking spray. If you have a non-stick pan, you could probably skip this. Let the toffee harden, which happens rather quickly, then sprinkle with chocolate chips (I won't tell if you use a little more than the recipe calls for).

Let the chocolate chips melt then spread them out with a spatula.

Next sprinkle with chopped pecans.

English Toffee  |  Delicious as it Looks

Cool completely and break into pieces. There. I made candy (using a thermometer) and lived to tell about it!

English Toffee
adapted from Food.com
English Toffee  |  Delicious as it Looks


1 cup unsalted butter (no substitutes!)
1 cup granulated cane sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans


  1. Prepare a 13" x 9" pan by lining with parchment paper and spritzing lightly with cooking spray.
  2. In a large heavy saucepan over medium heat, combine the butter, sugar, water and salt. Bring to a boil and cook, while stirring constantly, until mixture reaches hard-crack stage (300 degrees F). This will take about 10 minutes.
  3. Pour immediately into prepared pan. Cool until hardened, but still hot. Sprinkle with chocolate chips. Let the chocolate chips melt, then spread out with a spatula. Sprinkle with pecans.
  4. Let cool 2 - 3 hours or refrigerate 30 minutes. Break into pieces.


  1. where could I get granulated cane sugar? Can't I use just plain white sugar?

  2. Granulated cane sugar is plain white sugar. plain white sugar could also be made from some sort of sugar beet, but either way it is the same, in Uk and in North America.

  3. Easy to make. Just need to have patience waiting for the temp to get to 300. Thank you for the recipe!

  4. FYI -- I made candy a couple of years ago with granulated sugar that wasn't labeled "pure cane sugar" and it was a disaster. I never had problems candy making before. I switched back to the more expensive Imperial Sugar, which is labeled Pure Cane in the US.

  5. I also like to use pure cane sugar because it is non-GMO. If a sugar doesn't specify, it's probably beet sugar, and is most likely GMO. I use C&H pure cane sugar.

  6. Does it have to be unsalted butter?

    1. Well, if you use salted butter, you'd probably have to adjust the salt added to the recipe. I would either reduce to 1/4 tsp. or eliminate altogether. It's hard to tell since I have not made this with salted butter.