Traditional English Toffee

Homemade English ToffeeHomemade English Toffee
  • Yield : A big bowl of Toffee!
  • Servings : 1 - ??
  • Cook Time : 30m
  • Ready In : 60m


  • 250g Butter (A Whole block)
  • 500g Sugar (Half a pack)
  • 2 x Tbsp Lyles Golden Syrup
  • 2 x Tbsp Brown Vinegar (Like you put on your fish n chips)


Step 1

Melt butter in a heavy based sauce pan over a gentle heat.

Step 2

Once melted add all other ingredients and stir while dissolving all together and bring to a boil.

Step 3

Turn the heat down to a simmer and keep stirring until the molten lava like mixture turns a darker golden brown. Test your toffee by dropping some in a glass of iced water - You'll know it's ready if it sets when it hits the water. Once you're happy with the toffee, pour out the mixture in to a greased baking tray and leave to cool

I just like cooking great food..

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Comments (33)

  1. posted by Keeley Slack on June 14, 2020

    very tasty toffee delicious, good recipe tried several recipes but this is the best for me!!

  2. posted by William McKechnie on July 8, 2020

    This was my third recipe attempt at making toffee and yours was spot on.

    My family all thought it tasted like daim bars

  3. posted by Susie on September 13, 2020

    Hello do you mean keep staring or keep stirring in Step 3 ? I will try both just to be sure.

    • posted by James McConnell on November 23, 2020

      LOL sorry about that, yes stirring! :o)

      • posted by Douglas Gourlay on January 3, 2021

        you might also clarify the 250g of butter as being one block. 250g of butter is one cup. a “whole block” of butter, in North America would be 500g which is a touch over one pound.

        In terms of sticks of butter…. it would be two sticks… ie one half a block of butter.
        The use of the golden syrup with or without the malt vinegar helps to keep the butter/sugar mixture from breaking.

        This is a great recipe, but the devil is in the details! 🙂

        • posted by James McConnell on January 9, 2021

          Hi Doug, thanks for the clarification re the size/quantity of butter!

        • posted by N on September 14, 2022

          I really don’t think clarity is needed as it says the measurements in grams.

  4. posted by Lesley Pellerin on October 4, 2020

    I love the simplicity of the recipe but I’m wondering what is the purpose of the malt vinegar? What does it do chemically, do you have any idea?

    • posted by James McConnell on November 23, 2020

      My mum used to say it added colour…and while it might, its more to do with as boiling continues, a portion of the sugar separates into its constituent parts—glucose and fructose. Adding a dash of vinegar to a toffee recipe helps bring about this change.

  5. posted by Suzanne on October 8, 2020

    I made it to the letter found it to be to sweet and could still taste the grit of the sugar . But I will attempt it again till I get it right

    • posted by James McConnell on November 23, 2020

      Oh sorry to hear that. I’ve recently made some and added 50ml of water at the beginning with the butter to help “dissolve” all the sugar. You might need a little patience at this stage to make sure…also be sure to test the toffee by dropping some into a glass of iced water, good luck!

      Also: One of the frustrations in toffee making comes when a smooth syrup turns quickly into a grainy mass. This is caused by sugar crystals that have formed on the sides of the pan in the process of being stirred down into the syrup.

    • posted by Jewels on October 15, 2022

      Hi, I used brown sugar and it was 👌. Best toffee I’ve made. X

    • posted by Chris Melgar on August 23, 2023

      I make Almond Toffee here in the US. If your Toffee comes out gritty it is usually because you work too fast. Low and slow. Take your time with the process of dissolving the sugar. Stir frequently, but do not scrape the sides. Take your time, stir slowly until your toffee is kind of peanut butter colored.

  6. posted by ANDY CHAMBERLAIN on October 27, 2020

    Can the butter be salted or unsalted?

  7. posted by Anne Smith on October 29, 2020

    This recipe was really nice i put some vanilla drops in was very tasty.

    • posted by James McConnell on November 23, 2020

      Glad you liked it! You can try a little treacle too for a “bonfire” style toffee too

  8. posted by Mandy on November 3, 2020

    What did I wrong!? My toffee didn’t set as it should very sugary and I could taste the vinegar 😭 in the recipe it doesn’t say how long to simmer.

    • posted by James McConnell on November 23, 2020

      Hi Mandy, you probably didn’t let the mixture get hot enough…I’ll update the post to show you, Cheers

  9. posted by Carly Gunn on November 24, 2020

    Scrummy yummy!
    I used a plant based alternative to butter and it was delicious!
    Make sure you cook it long enough..don’t guess..

  10. posted by Sophie on January 14, 2021

    Loved this recipe. I covered it in chocolate as it was cooling and it was amazing. The whole family loved it.

    This is going to be a regular make in our house!

  11. posted by Dawn on July 16, 2021

    Just made this, it tastes grainy. I used Demerara sugar as this was used when I made fudge. Is it granulated sugar or caster sugar I need?

    • posted by James McConnell on July 26, 2021

      Hmmm…I’ve always used granulated. However, I think the ‘grainy’ texture is more to do with not boling it for long enough perhaps? You need to give it time to dissolve.

  12. posted by Kevin on November 15, 2021

    Nice recipe! Thank you! I’m in the USA but from England originally. This is how I remember toffee from home. It turned out perfectly.
    Used 200g of light brown sugar (= UK Demerara) and 300 g white granulated sugar, two sticks of salted butter (a stick of butter here is 1/4 pound or 113 g) and 2 tbsp each of homemade golden syrup plus apple cider vinegar (it’s hard to get (Tate and) Lyles golden syrup or malt vinegar here).
    The final temperature for toffee is 300 degrees F, 149 degrees C – I used my digital meat thermometer to get it right.
    You’re spot on with the vinegar – acid helps the heat and water to invert part of the sucrose to glucose plus fructose (which makes it sweeter and less likely to crystallize out). My homemade golden syrup does the same thing using lemon juice.

  13. posted by Sharon on December 7, 2021

    Is this salted butter or unsalted or does it not matter?

    • posted by James McConnell on December 11, 2021

      Hi, I use salted but it doesn’t really matter.

  14. posted by Jacqui Sheppard on March 20, 2023

    Can I add nuts and dried fruits to this toffee

  15. posted by Paul Griffiths on March 22, 2023

    A fabulous recipe. Just like my nan used to make. Thank you for sharing and taking me back to my youth!! My family loved the last lot I made ❤️


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