Bonfire toffee

Ready in 1hr + cooling


Makes around 500g of toffee

Crowds will love this sweet treat of dark and sticky treacle toffee smashed into hard bitesize chunks

Nutrition and extra info


  • kcal-
  • fat-
  • saturates-
  • carbs-
  • sugars-
  • fibre-
  • protein-
  • salt-
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  • oil, for greasing
  • 450g dark brown sugar
  • 125ml hot water
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar
  • 115g black treacle
  • 115g golden syrup


  1. Line the base and sides of an A4 sized tin with non-stick parchment and then grease it really well.

  2. Put the sugar and hot water in a heavy bottomed pan and heat gently until the sugar is dissolved, do not stir the mixture at any point instead tilt the pan if you need to move it around.

  3. Weigh out your remaining ingredients, if you put them in a really well greased jug they will be much easier to pour out. Once the sugar has dissolved add all the ingredients and pop the sugar thermometer in, you can use the thermometer to give it a quick swirl but try not to mix it too much.

  4. Bring to the boil and boil until you reach soft crack on your thermometer (270/140C) This may take up to 30 minutes, be patient and do not leave the pan unattended as it can change quickly. As soon as it reaches the temp, tip it into your tin and leave it to cool.

  5. Once cool remove it from the tin a break up with a toffee hammer or rolling pin. Store in an airtight tin or wrap up in boxes or cellophane bags to give as gift.

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Comments, questions and tips

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Comments (15)

shetlandgirl123's picture

This is amazing! Just made this for the first time as my Dad's Chistmas present and I had a sneaky taste and it was just delicious! The tip abou cleaning the pans was so helpful as it saved us from hours of srubbing. It's the first reipe I've attempted using a sugar thermometer and I will certainly b trying more!

Rosekay's picture

Made 2 batches of bonfire toffee this afternoon, one using a different recipe, which turned out nicely. The recipe above however just didn't work. I used a sugar thermometer and the temp rose to 160 where is just stuck for ages. It took way longer than the other recipe, although I used same pan, burner etc. Had to turn it up to make it eventually come up to temp. Toffee is bitter and horrible. Really disappointed with the outcome. And the waste of ingredients!

brzjaw's picture

Is it possible to replace the treacle with molasses?

Treacle's difficult to get hold of in the US and when it's ordered online the Lyle tins are so heavy one costs a fortune to be mailed.

bracken1's picture

hi i know its nearly a year since you posted your question but i think black treacle is the same as molasses

clarejames's picture

made this and it went down a treat... and have passed the recipe on to quite a few colleagues after I shared it out at work... if it is sticky and chewy (toffee should chewy to some extent ?)... then it hasn't been boiled for long enough... I found that without my thermometer I would have taken it off the boil long before it had reached the right temp/was ready... a friend made it and read the Fahrenheit temp instead but we suggested she melted it down again and tried again and it worked perfectly...

trinitallia's picture

for me this recipe was ultimate fail :( it refuses to set, is sticky and chewy and tastes vile!

boweri's picture

Delicious! Used half the recipe and a smaller tin and came out wonderful!

jnoble20987's picture

I made this recipe tonight for bonfire night on Tuesday and have to say it was both simple and delicious! I cannot rate this recipe highly enough!

One tip for anyone who struggled to find a thermometer at the last minute from three generations of my mums family:

If you fill a saucer with a little cold water and take a spoon of the mixture as its boiling, add it to the saucer and see if the toffee sets. If it sets virtually instantly, then you know your mixture is about the right temperature. We used this method tonight and it worked to a acceptable degree. Our toffee wasn't solid and was a little chewy but it was a excellent first try until we can buy a proper thermometer.


morricl's picture

Very easy recipe for treacle toffee. I also tipped at 132 and it is a little brittle. Sugar thermometer makes this so much easier than guessing and temperature of hob does not need to be high. I made this as a child with my mum and this recipe is very similar to the one we used. I couldn't remember the amounts of family recipe so made this instead. I cooled it outside and it was ready to eat in an hour.

cjclare's picture

It was very easy to make but I burnt the bottom of the pan, so the toffee tastes horrible. My fault, clearly not the recipe's!! How do I stop it burning and ruining the whole batch?

anna3448's picture

i usually dont like Bonfire toffee but I made some for my husband ysing your recipe. my husbands quote was'i dont care who you are or what youve had this is the best bonfire toffee in the world' .I quite agree. Its gorgeous.

neritchie's picture

I poured at 132C and it was fine. If anything a little too brittle.

coll_smedley's picture

Great recipe- really authentic dark bonfire toffee taste!!!
One thing to note, use a big pan, a REALLY big pan!! I used the biggest one I've got, and had to transfer the mixture to a wok to finish boiling it!!

mikey2012's picture

Hi I would like to make this for Christmas presents & wondered how long it will last for? :)

Questions (3)

Rosekay's picture

There is no butter in this recipe? Every other one I've seen has butter - is it a mistake?

goodfoodteam's picture
Hi there. This is a traditional recipe so it doesn’t contain any butter.
bobcooks's picture

General question
Where has my online cookbook with all my recipes gone please?

Tips (1)

morricl's picture

Wrap in greaseproof paper or baking parchment. Don't use kitchen paper as it will stick to the toffee.