Butter Pecan Toffee is CRISPY, BUTTERY, and studded with TOASTED pecans. Easy to make, it’s great for giving as an edible gift for friends and family!
If you’d rather skip my (very helpful, I think) tips and tricks, essential cooking info, and similar recipe ideas – and get straight to this delicious & easy recipe – simply scroll to the bottom of the page where you can find the printable recipe card.
This post is sponsored in conjunction with ChristmasSweetsWeek. I received product samples from sponsor companies to aid in the creation of the ChristmasSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are mine alone.
What’s the difference between toffee and brittle?
Toffee is one of my favorite candies to eat. I prefer toffee over brittle because toffee is softer and it doesn’t get stuck in my teeth.
There are three main differences between the two:
- cooking temperature
- time at when the nuts are added
Brittle is made with sugar and water. The mixture is cooked to 300F-310F, which is called the hard-crack stage. At 300F, almost all the water is cooked out of the mixture leaving just hard sugar when cooled.
Toffee is made with butter and sugar. The toffee mixture is cooked to the lower end of the hard-crack range. It will harden completely when cooled and will snap when broken into pieces but it will chew a little softer due to the butter in the mixture.
The water from the butter will have evaporated but the fat will remain to make the toffee easier to chew.
Also, toffee is usually covered with chocolate right after the mixture is poured onto a baking sheet to cool.
Nuts may sometimes be sprinkled over the chocolate as well, but I didn’t do either with this recipe. For Brittle, the sugar and water are cooked to the hard crack stage and then the nuts and flavorings are added.
The nuts are added to the toffee mixture after the butter melts and before the temperature has reached the hard crack stage.
Again, for this recipe, I poured the toffee mixture over the toasted pecans after it had reached the hard crack stage. Maybe I should have called it Pecan Butter Rum Toff-rittle. LOL!
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How to make toffee on the stovetop
STEP ONE: Gather all your ingredients. Prepare your pan with butter, silicone baking sheet, or butter-coated foil and make a space on the counter to let your pan cool after you pour the toffee mix on it.
STEP TWO: Gather all your ingredients next to the stovetop, get your thermometer ready, and have a small glass or bowl with water in it and a pastry brush.
STEP THREE: Place the butter and sugar in a heavy-bottomed saucepan. Heat to medium-high heat, stirring to combine. Stir often until the sugar dissolves and the mixture comes to a boil.
STEP FOUR: Once the mixture starts to boil, remove spoon/whisk and insert your candy thermometer. Do not stir until the mixture reaches the hard crack stage (300f).
STEP FIVE: After the mixture is boiling, take a pastry brush and dip it in the water. Brush the sugar crystals from the sides of the pan. If the sugar mixture touches an undissolved sugar crystal on the side of the pan, it could cause all the other sugar crystals that have already dissolved to form again, making your toffee grainy.
STEP SIX: Once the toffee mixture reaches 300F, remove the pan from the stove, add in the extracts and flavorings, stir to combine, and immediately pour onto the baking sheet. Spread with a spatula or spoon to even it out.
Let cool (1-2 hours) and then break into small pieces. Store in an air-tight container for up to a week.
Can I freeze toffee?
Up to one week at room temperature or in the freezer for about a month.
Can I use different nuts than pecans?
Yes you can! I use pecans because I wanted it to taste like my Ma’s Butter Pecan ice cream.
Can you use a different flavor than the butter rum?
You can, but it won’t taste like butter rum LOL. Feel free to substitute any other flavor you have that goes with pecans.
What can I use if I don’t have a candy thermometer?
You can use the water method. Every so often during the cooking process, take a spoon and pull out a tiny bit of the toffee mixture and drizzle it into the water. After a few seconds, pull out the toffee and see if it’s hard. If you pull it out and the candy is still soft, keep cooking. If it is hard, you are ready to go.
The star of this Pecan Butter Rum Toffee is the Butter Rum flavor. There isn’t any actual rum in the toffee but LorAnn Oils Butter Rum flavoring.
LorAnn Oils carries a variety of super strength candy flavoring oil and baking emulsions. Their flavorings and emulsions bring intense and vibrant flavors without it “baking out.”
What’s the difference between an English Toffee Recipe and a regular toffee recipe?
English toffee is typically made with brown sugar and butter whereas American toffee is made with white sugar and butter.
Also, English toffee doesn’t usually have chocolate and crushed almonds on the top, it is like the recipe here.
But in America, we have taken the recipe and added the chocolate and crushed nuts, which the English call buttercrunch or Almond Roca.
Remember, English toffee doesn’t have chocolate or nuts. If you see something labeled English Toffee and it has chocolate and nuts, it is really buttercrunch.
Take Two Tapas Tips
- When adding the extracts and flavorings, do it one the mixture has come to the hard crack stage making sure to remove the pot from the stove.
- Have a spot set up to put the pot on (like a trivet or a thick oven mitt on the counter) before you start cooking. Once the cooking starts, you don’t want to leave the pot.
If you love this recipe as much as I do, please write a five-star review in the comment section below and be sure to help me share on Pinterest!
Other candy to make
Pecan Butter Rum Toffee Recipe
Prepare the pan and pecans
- If you haven't already, toast your pecans in the oven.
- Once they are toasted, chop them and sprinkle evenly on a baking sheet that has been coated with butter.
- Place the baking sheet on a heat-proof surface as you are going to pour the hot toffee mixture on it.
Cook the toffee mixture
- Melt the butter in a heavy large saucepan over medium to medium-high heat.
- Stir in the sugar, water and corn syrup.
- Stir mixture until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Once the mixture comes to a boil, Do Not Stir.
- Using a pastry brush dipped in water, wash down the sides of the pan to prevent any undissolved sugar crystals from coming into contact with the syrup.
- Attach a candy thermometer to the pan (do not allow the tip of thermometer to touch the bottom of the pan).
- Without stirring, continue cooking to 300°F (hard crack stage).
- When syrup reaches the hard crack stage, immediately remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract and the LorAnn Oils Butter Rum flavor.
- Carefully pour the toffee mixture onto the prepared baking sheet.
- Cool completely and break into bite-size pieces.
- The Pecan Butter Rum Toffee can be stored at room temperature for 7 days, or frozen for about a month.
*If you like this recipe, please leave me a comment and rate it with some stars. Thank you!
Nutrition Information:Yield: 16 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 261Total Fat: 17gSaturated Fat: 11gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 6gCholesterol: 46mgSodium: 6mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 0gSugar: 28gProtein: 0g
This nutrition information was generated via a third party, Nutritionix, and can not be held liable for any discrepancies in the information provided.
Other great #ChristmasSweetsWeek recipes to try:
Bourbon Salted Caramel Coffee with Whipped Cream from With Two Spoons
Cookie Butter Eggnog Cocktail from My Suburban Kitchen
Coquito from A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
Eggnog Martini from Everyday Eileen
Frozen Caramel Hot Chocolate from Eat Move Make
Hazelnut Hot Chocolate Sticks from Family Around the Table
Mulled Red Wine Sangria from Platter Talk
Red Velvet Hot Chocolate from Live Love Texas
Salted Caramel Affogato from Tara’s Multicultural Table
Salted Caramel Apple Cider Martinis from Sweet Beginnings
Salted Caramel Chocolate Martini from The Crumby Kitchen
Salted Caramel Espresso Martini from An Affair from the Heart
Salted Caramel White Hot Chocolate from Who Needs A Cape?
Sugar Cookie Martini from Strawberry Blondie Kitchen
Pecan Butter Rum Toffee from Take Two Tapas
Christmas Eggnog Fudge from For the Love of Food
Christmas Grinch Bark from Blogghetti
Cookie Butter Bark from Seduction in the Kitchen
Eggnog Sugar Cookie Bark from 4 Sons ‘R’ Us
Peppermint Marshmallow Fudge from Daily Dish Recipes
White Christmas Sugar Cookie Dough Fudge from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
Black Forest Cheesecake from Kate’s Recipe Box
Butter Rum Cheesecake from Cookie Dough and Oven Mitt
Butter Rum Nutty Biscotti from Love and Confections
Chai Snickerdoodle Cookies from Mildly Meandering
Christmas Cornflake Wreaths from The Mandatory Mooch
Cookie Butter Blossom Cookies from The Bitter Side of Sweet
Frozen Mint Meltaway Pie from Cooking with Carlee
Vegan Gingerbread Cupcakes with Eggnog Frosting from The Baking Fairy
Lemon-Cardamom Sugarmen Cookies from Culinary Adventures with Camilla
Peppermint Mocha Cupcakes from The Beard and The Baker
Red Velvet Cupcakes with Eggnog Butter Frosting from Lady Behind the Curtain
Santa Hat Cupcakes from The Redhead Baker
Slice ‘N’ Bake Grinch Cookies from Big Bear’s Wife
White Chocolate Dipped Gingerbread Cookies from Cheese Curd in Paradise
Thank you Christmas Sweets Week Sponsors: Dixie Crystals, Cabot Cheese, Lorann Oils & Flavors, Torani, Joyjolt, and Sweets & Treats Boutique for providing the prizes free of charge. These companies also provided the bloggers with samples and product to use for ChristmasSweetsWeek recipes. All opinions are my own.
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