Melt in Your Mouth Homemade Toffee — Irresistible, buttery, ADDICTIVE, and just melts in your mouth!! EASY and perfect for holiday parties, gift-giving, or cookie exchanges!!
The Easiest Toffee Recipe
I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love toffee, and this hard toffee is irresistible, addictive, and it melts in your mouth, hence the recipe title.
The homemade toffee is easy but with any kind of candy-making, being precise while you’re making it is essential to a successful result.
It’s perfect for the holiday season to give at cookie exchanges, as a hostess gift, or to set it out at parties you’re hosting. People won’t be able to keep their hands off of it.
It’s a gentle adaptation of an Allrecipes recipe and made with just a handful of ingredients that I got delivered directly to my door courtesy of AmazonFresh.
Homemade Toffee Ingredients
Ever wondered what’s in toffee? For this easy toffee recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Unsalted butter
- Granulated sugar
- Light brown sugar
- Kosher salt
- Vanilla extract
- Chocolate chips
- Chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
- Sea salt (optional)
- Holiday sprinkles (optional)
What Type of Chocolate Is Best for Toffee?
I prefer semi-sweet chocolate rather to milk chocolate, but use your favorite.
If your chocolate chips are resistant to melting — which can happen with some brands because of the stabilizers in them (or if you wait too long before adding them to the toffee) — place the baking sheet in a 300F oven for a couple of minutes until the chocolate chips can be spread smooth.
How to Make Toffee From Scratch
I’ve given very detailed instructions on how to make homemade toffee in the recipe card below. Here’s an overview of the process:
- Add the butter, sugars, and salt to a saucepan and heat over medium-low heat.
- Boil the mixture until the ‘hard crack’ stage (290-300F).
- Stir in the vanilla extract.
- Pour mixture into a parchment paper-lined 9×13-inch baking dish.
- Sprinkle with chocolate chips, then spread them smooth once melted.
- Optionally sprinkle with chopped nuts, sea salt, sprinkles, etc.
- Let cool until set, then break!
What Temperature Should Toffee Be Cooked To?
At 290F, the homemade toffee is not as hard as it is at 300F when you’re officially in the ‘hard crack’ range of candy making. I prefer it more towards the 290F range but if you like some snappier toffee, then go to 300F.
Do I Have to Use a Candy Thermometer?
Yes, you will need a candy thermometer. I prefer a clip-on digital style available on Amazon, but any kind will do.
I have other toffee recipes that don’t require a thermometer and if you’re looking for one of those — try this one or this one.
Recipe Variations to Try
One reason why this truly is the BEST toffee recipe is because you can use it to make lots of different toffee flavors.
I made four different versions of homemade toffee from one batch:
- Pecans and flaked sea salt
- Flaked sea salt
- Holiday sprinkles
For parties it’s nice to be able to give the “I don’t like nuts” people something without nuts, the “I love salt with my chocolate” people (me!) some sea salt, and holiday sprinkles are a universal day-brightener.
How to Store Toffee
Store the homemade hard toffee at cool room temperature. It will last for weeks!
Can Toffee Be Frozen?
Yes, but it’s best frozen plain (i.e. just the toffee and chocolate) without any toppings. Wrap the toffee tightly in plastic wrap before sealing in a zip-top bag. Definitely eat it within 6 months!
Tips for Making the BEST Toffee
Don’t stir: After the butter, sugars, and salt have come to a boil, don’t stir. I know it’s tempting but displaced sugar molecules due to stirring can stick to the sides of the pan and cause graininess or crystallization in the finished toffee.
Cooking time: It’s best to let the mixture come up to the 290-300F range over medium-low heat so that the bottom doesn’t scorch. Don’t rush it, it’ll take about 20 to 25 minutes, maybe longer.
When to prepare: If it’s a humid day, i.e. snowing or raining especially, don’t make it and wait until it’s a dry day. Candy makers know that humidity and candy-making don’t mix and the toffee may not turn out properly.
Chocolate issues: Some people have asked about the chocolate lifting off the top after they cut or break the toffee. From time to time, this does happen to me as well. If I don’t add too thick of a layer of chocolate, that seems to help it keep better adhered but sometimes, for whatever reason, it does seem to separate in some pieces, which I don’t worry too much about.
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Melt In Your Mouth Toffee
Irresistible, buttery, ADDICTIVE, and just melts in your mouth!! EASY and perfect for holiday parties, gift-giving, or cookie exchanges!!
- 1 pound unsalted butter (4 sticks)
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
- 1 to 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups chocolate chips (I used semi-sweet, use milk chocolate if preferred)
- 1/2 to 1+ cup chopped walnuts or pecans, optional and to taste
- sea salt flakes, optional for sprinkling
- holiday sprinkles, optional
- Line a 9x13-inch pan with parchment paper; set aside.
- If you have a clip-on candy thermometer, attach it to a heavy, high-sided saucepan. (If your thermometer doesn't clip, that's okay.)
- Add the butter, sugars, salt, and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the mixture boils. After it boils, don't stir.
- Boil mixture until the 'hard crack' stage, 290-300F, without stirring (stirring can cause the finished toffee to become grainy or crystallize). It will probably take 20-25-ish minutes to come up to temperature if you're cooking over a true medium-low. At 290-300F, remove the pan from the heat.
- Cautiously stir in the vanilla (it will bubble up).
- Pour mixture into the prepared pan and let it sit for about 5 minutes before evenly sprinkling the chocolate chips over the toffee. Tip - Add one chip and if it sinks into the toffee, wait another few minutes before adding the chips.
- Cover the pan with foil for about 5 minutes, remove the foil, and spread the chocolate chips smooth with a spatula or off-set knife. Tip - If you chips have not melted (some brands are more resistant to others to melting and/or your toffee may have taken awhile to set up), put the pan in a 300F oven for a few minutes, or just until chips can be spread smooth.
- Optionally sprinkle with nuts, sea salt, sprinkles, etc., to taste. For this batch, I used pecans with sea salt, sea salt, holiday sprinkles, and plain.
- Let the toffee cool completely before in the fridge for about 30+ minutes, or until set. Break toffee apart with your hands or cut it with a sharp knife.
Storage: Toffee will keep airtight at cool room temp for many weeks.
Adapted from Allrecipes.
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 143Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 59mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 1gSugar: 12gProtein: 1g
More Easy Christmas Candy Recipes:
Graham Cracker Toffee (aka Graham Cracker CRACK) — Sweet, buttery, caramely, perfectly chocolaty, topped with toffee bits for extra crunch! Lives up to its name and extremely addictive! An easy holiday and party favorite!
Churro Toffee — This Disneyland copycat recipe might be even more delicious than the real deal! Buttery, crunchy toffee is coated in sweet white chocolate that’s dusted with a scrumptious combination of cinnamon and sugar for an irresistible churro flavor sensation!
Chocolate-Covered Sponge Candy — A classic homemade Christmas candy that’s light and airy candy inside and chocolate-dipped on the outside. Easy to make!
Chocolate Saltine Toffee (aka Christmas Crack) – This stuff lives up to its name and is extremely addictive! Salty, sweet, crunchy, chewy and a holiday favorite everyone loves! Easy recipe!
The Easiest Foolproof Fudge Recipe — Look no further than this recipe for the EASIEST and most FOOLPROOF fudge that takes less than 3 minutes to make!!
Holiday White Chocolate Fudge — This EASY foolproof white chocolate fudge recipe is perfect for Christmas and holiday parties!! A double dose of white chocolate with an Oreo Cookie crust for the WIN!!
Loaded Christmas Bark — This EASY, no-bake chocolate bark is LOADED with goodies!! Oreos, M&M’s, peanuts, pretzels, and sprinkles!
Post is brought to you by AmazonFresh. The recipe, text, images, and opinions expressed are my own. @Amazonfresh @Allrecipes #AmazonFresh
Originally posted December 13, 2017 and reposted December 11, 2020 with updated text.
I tried making this toffee but it burnt even on low-medium. It took at least 20-25 minutes to reach temp with my clip on thermometer, I didn’t stir, I followed all of the directions except… I only had dark brown sugar, though… maybe that was my error? 😩 I might have to try again with light brown sugar!!! 😃
Yes the dark brown sugar was your issue is my guess. Reason being dark brown sugar has a higher molasses ratio, and molasses is prone to burning. So I am guessing, although I haven’t tried, that if one does make toffee with dark brown sugar, you may not need to boil it as long because if you do, it may burn..then again, if you don’t boil it to a certain stage, it may not set up either.
Bottom line, use light brown, and triple check your thermometer. Make sure water is boiling at exactly 212F with it.
Best toffee ever my kids really loved them a lot. It is a very time I made toffees for them and they requested me to make more toffees for them thank you so much for the post my kids are really very happy having them.
What temperature would you consider to be more like store bought toffee bars? I recently bought toffee from my local chocolate shop. It blew store bought out of the water. I would love to make my own.
I’m not sure I fully understand the question. But this is toffee, toffee bars, like you would typically find around the Christmas holidays on party platters. If you’re looking for a softer toffee bar, more like a cookie bar texture, I have tons of those. Just Google Averie Cooks toffee bars and you can see what pops up
Easy to make and it came out perfectly in the pan. When I tried to cut it, it crumbled into shards and the chocolate layer did not stick. It tastes greatbut looks like a horrible mess. Not sure what happened but I think I’ll be looking for another recipe. I used a really sharp knife and even tried heating the knife. Really sad because it looked so pretty in the pan and it would have looked great mixed with the Christmas cookies in the gift boxes. Oh well…
I am not sure what happened either. It’s a very slight adaptation of an AllRecipes recipe that I linked to which has hundreds of glowing reviews. I have also had a couple people write in saying they loved it and it worked great!
I did a quick google search of your problem and this website looks very informative https://www.craftybaking.com/learn/baked-goods/candy/types/toffee
Thanks for trying the recipe.
Deb, I also had the same problem. Would not cut, just crumbled, chocolate came off, etc. Very tasty though. Next time I’m going to try pouring it into a jelly roll pan because I also thought it was too thick in the 9 x 13.
Thanks for the feedback. Like I also told Deb I basically made the exact same recipe as the Allrecipes recipe and didn’t have any issues. Try in a jelly roll pan and see if that helps give you the results you’re looking for. Glad it was very tasty!
I made this today. I think I will have to make another batch. My husband can’t stop eating it!!! It is so fantastic tasting. I will never buy anymore Heath Bars!!!,
Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad that you love it so much that you’re going to make another batch and that you’ll never buy toffee again
these look wonderful, love all of the different versions and related recipes too, thank you! I only allow myself these caloric splurges in recipes over the holidays, so glad to have them
YUM! It looks delicious and so easy to make! A great holiday treat, that’s for sure :)
Thanks so much!
Yum. Toffee is my weakness. I don’t eat a lot of sweets but this is one I literally cannot say no to.
Love all of the different topping ideas (and almost as much as not having to go out during the holidays to get groceries).
Well if you can’t say no to it (I know you are not a sweets person), then I should make this for you next time I see you :)
There is nothing better than NOT having to rush around in traffic, parking lots, etc. during the holidays indeed!
Wow, these look so delicious! I’m definitely going to try and make them myself. Thanks for the recipe!
Ooooh I need to try Amazon Fresh! And toffee is my love language…and it’s one of the only desserts Mel will eat!
You’ll love the ease and convenience! And glad this would make Mel’s cut :)
This toffee looks truly irresistible! I love the convenience of AmazonFresh! Especially during winter, when going shopping is just not fun!
Toffee is one of my true and real weaknesses. I bake so much that there are few things that I “can’t resist” but toffee is one of them. Why would you ever want to stop that flavor from being in your mouth?
I agree about it being hard to resist toffee! This batch was staring back at me every time I went in the kitchen :)
Homemade toffee is THE best!! I remember seeing a segment on the food network channel about not stirring the sugar mixture during the candy making process (I think it was Alton Brown’s show). I love the science of baking and cooking as much as the food itself!
I feel that way about baking science too! Yes the sugar molecules on the side that aren’t as dissolved can get back down into the mixture after it’s been boiling awhile and cause the whole batch to take on a grainy, crystallized nature. I’ve had this happen before when making caramel sauce and learned my lesson! I love Alton Brown, he’s such a wealth of knowledge!