We're improving BBC Food

We are making some changes to the website over the next few months


Traditional toffees

Also called toffee dabs, wrapped in greaseproof paper or celophane these sweets would be a lovely edible gift

Unfortunately we are unable to add this recipe to your favourites, please try again later.



  1. Lightly grease a 12 hole mini muffin tin with a little butter. Have 12 lollipop sticks at the ready.

  2. Dissolve the sugar and water over a low heat. Once the sugar has completely dissolved, add the golden syrup, butter and vinegar and increase the heat. Boil rapidly for about 4 minutes or until it has become a rich golden brown colour. Be careful as the mixture can become too hot and burn at this point, but under-boiling will result in a toffee that does not set.

  3. Test the toffee by dropping a little of the toffee mixture from a spoon into a glass of cold water. The toffee should harden instantly and be brittle. If you can squash the ball of toffee, the mixture needs to boil further. (Alternately, if you have a sugar thermometer, boil until the mixture reaches 140C/300F, hard crack stage). Take care when cooking sugar syrups as they can be very hot, and if splashed onto skin can cause bad burns.

  4. Once the mixture is ready, remove from the heat immediately and pour a little of the mixture into each of the holes of the greased muffin tin, filling them as much as you would like to make small or large toffees. Insert a lollipop into each toffee, standing it upright. Allow to cool.

  5. Once cooled, gently remove the dabs from the muffin tin by twisting gently.

Recipe Tips

If you can't find lolipop sticks, or want a smaller toffee, try pouring the hot toffee mixture into a greased baking tray. Once hardned, tip the toffee out onto a surface and arefully crack into smaller pieces by bashing with the end of a rolling pin.