Homemade Almond Roca

Homemade Almond Roca is an easy English toffee with almonds that’s topped with dark chocolate. It's even easier if you use a candy thermometer. Perfect for holiday gifts!

Overhead view of almond roca candy on a plate.
Annika Panikker

I have a severe weak spot for Almond Roca during the holiday season. I can resist fruitcake, all manner of Christmas cookies, puddings, and mince pies.

But when it comes to Almond Roca, will power abandons me. (That will be an extra hundred situps for the next two weeks, please.)

My mother's friend Myke brought over a delicious batch a week ago, which lasted, um, an hour? A phone call with a rave review prompted her to bring us a second batch along with the recipe. Thanks Myke!

Side view of roca candy piled on a plate.
Annika Panikker

What is Almond Roca?

Almond Roca is a brand of hard toffee and almonds covered in chocolate. Created by Brown & Haley Co., it's been around since 1914. This recipe is for a homemade version of the commercial brand.

What is the Difference Between Almond Roca and English Toffee?

Almond Roca and English toffee are similar. As mentioned above, Almond Roca is a name brand that mixes the toffee with the almonds. Our version of English toffee has a layer of chocolate between the toffee and the nuts, but it's very similar in flavor to Almond Roca.

Troubleshooting Tips

It may take a try or two to get Homemade Almond Roca right. Improve your chances sooner rather than later by using these tips.

  • If it's a humid or rainy day, don't attempt to make this.
  • Use chocolate with a low cocoa butter content, such as Hershey's.
  • If you have one, use a candy thermometer. Clip it to the pan when you add the almonds. When the candy is ready, it should register between 295°F and 305°F.
  • If the toffee is coming out grainy, it's because the sugar isn't dissolving. Try this. Coat the inside of the pot with a thin layer of butter so the sugar can't cling to it, and add the sugar into the center of the pot so it doesn't touch the sides. If any stay sugar does end up on the side of the pot, remove it using a wet pastry brush.

How to Store Almond Roca

Room temperature: Store homemade Almond Roca in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. Place waxed paper between layers of the square so they don't stick together.

Refrigerator: Refrigerate homemade Almond Roca in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Place waxed paper between layers of the square so they don't stick together.

Freezer: Freeze homemade Almond Roca in an airtight container for up to 6 months. Place waxed paper between layers of the square so they don't stick together.

More Classic Candy Recipes to Try!


The method of recipe was slightly modified on November 8, 2021.

From the Editors Of Simply Recipes

Homemade Almond Roca

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 20 mins
Total Time 25 mins
Servings 20 small pieces
Yield 1 pan

If you try to make this, please read all the comments listed below. It's actually trickier than one would think.

Use an inexpensive chocolate such as Hershey's. It has low cocoa butter content. If you use a premium chocolate with a high cocoa butter content, unless you temper the chocolate first (look up directions online), the cocoa butter may separate into white streaks as the melted chocolate cools.

You can use other kinds of nuts such as pecans or macadamia and white chocolate.

Do not attempt to make this on a humid or rainy day. Do not double the recipe, make one batch at a time.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup sugar

  • 1/4 cup water

  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, cut into large cubes - NO substitutes!

  • 8 ounces (1 2/3 to 2 cups) slivered almonds

  • 1 (7 to 8-ounce) bar regular Hershey’s Special Dark chocolate, broken into pieces (see recipe note)

Method

  1. Prepare the baking sheet:

    Have a large ungreased cookie sheet or sheet pan ready near the stove to pour the candy onto.

  2. Add the sugar, water, corn syrup, and butter to the pan:

    Place the sugar in the center of a medium saucepan or large, deep skillet. Slowly pour the water directly over the sugar, then the corn syrup (adding the ingredients this way helps to prevent grainy candy). Add the butter.

    Bring to a simmer, without stirring, over medium-high heat. Once the butter is melted, add the almonds and begin stirring continuously with a wooden spoon.

    If you are using a candy thermometer, clip it on now. It's helpful, but not required.

    Melting butter in a red pan to make almond roca recipe.
    Annika Panikker
    Adding nuts to melted butter for an almond roca recipe.
    Annika Panikker
  3. Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture turns a warm amber color:

    Stirring constantly, cook until the mixture turns a warm amber color (if using a candy thermometer, it will register between 295°F and 300°F), about 10 to 15 minutes into the boiling. To avoid burning, you may need to reduce the heat to medium bit by bit. The longer you cook the mixture, the thicker it will get and the harder it will be to stir. Cook too long and it will burn.

    Butter and nuts simmering in a wide skillet to make Melting butter in a red pan to make an almond roca recipe.
    Annika Panikker
  4. Pour the mixture out onto a large cookie sheet:

    When the almonds are light brown and the mixture is thick and the color of peanut butter, pour it out onto the large sheet pan or cookie sheet and spread it as thin as possible with a fork.

    Pouring almond roca onto a baking sheet.
    Annika Panikker
    Spreading almond roca on a baking sheet.
    Annika Panikker
  5. Put the chocolate on top, let melt, then spread:

    While the almond mixture is still hot, distribute the chocolate pieces over the almond mixture and let it melt (this may take 2 to 3 minutes). Spread it evenly on the top.

    Adding chocolate to the top of the almond roca candy.
    Annika Panikker
    Spreading melted chocolate over almond roca.
    Annika Panikker
  6. Cool to room temp:

    Let the almond roca cool to room temperature. When cool you can lift the whole thing off the pan and break into small pieces.

    Lifting cooled almond roca up off the baking sheet.
    Annika Panikker
    A large sheet of almond roca split in half on top a baking sheet.
    Annika Panikker
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
253 Calories
19g Fat
20g Carbs
3g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 20
Amount per serving
Calories 253
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 19g 24%
Saturated Fat 8g 42%
Cholesterol 25mg 8%
Sodium 77mg 3%
Total Carbohydrate 20g 7%
Dietary Fiber 2g 7%
Total Sugars 17g
Protein 3g
Vitamin C 0mg 0%
Calcium 40mg 3%
Iron 1mg 7%
Potassium 147mg 3%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.