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Honeycomb cinder toffee recipe

Honeycomb cinder toffee recipe

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  • Recipes
  • Dish type
  • Sweets
  • Honeycomb

Cinder toffee or honeycomb, whichever name you wish to call it, here is a simple and tasty honeycomb recipe!

Yorkshire, England, UK

64 people made this

IngredientsServes: 4

  • 100g caster sugar
  • 225g golden syrup
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda

MethodPrep:10min ›Cook:6min ›Ready in:16min

  1. Line a baking tray at least 2cm deep with greaseproof paper.
  2. Bring the sugar and golden syrup to the boil in a saucepan over a high heat. Allow to simmer for 5 to 10 minutes until golden brown.
  3. Remove the pan from the heat and add the bicarbonate of soda. Quickly mix and once the mixture has foamed up, immediately transfer to the tray and spread out a little. Allow to cool completely before breaking up and enjoying.


It is advisable to not use your best saucepans for recipes that require the boiling of sugar.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(1)

Reviews in English (1)

Too much syrup and not enough soda, came out like toffee-15 Nov 2015

Hokey Pokey Honeycomb Toffee Recipe

Do you love toffee? Craving for something sweet? Here is an easy hokey pokey honeycomb toffee recipe also referred to as sponge toffee, sponge candy, sea foam or cinder toffee. Believe it or not this crunchy candy only takes about fifteen minutes to prepare and uses only 5 ingredients. Growing up sponge toffee was one of my favorites confectionery treats. Crunchy, light, super sweet and yummy sticky texture is just a few characteristics I can describe. I can still smell the sweet fragrance of freshly prepared sponge toffee at the CNE back in the days.

The ingredients to prepare this light and airy crunchy sponge toffee is water, sugar, corn syrup, baking soda ( sodium bicarbonate) and cream of tartar. First step to is mise en place. It is important to have all your ingredients and cooking tools in place especially when working with caramelizing sugars, which in this case we will be to make the sponge toffee.

A little history about sponge toffee. This confectionery has been been around since 1900’s but became popularized in the mid 1985. Buffalo seems to be the place were sponge candy was found in many confectionery shops. Today this puffed sugar treat is found all around the world and has been named differently by different countries. If you travel to Buffalo in the United States it’s known as sponge candy. In Canada they call it sponge toffee, Britain, Ireland and South Africa named it honeycomb and Scotland simply calls it puffed candy. South America and Asia also gave this unique sweet it’s personalized name.

There are a few variation of this candy recipe typically using granulated sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, honey, baking soda, cream of tartar or vinegar. Below you will be preparing the honeycomb toffee using granulated sugar which will give your a super crunchy texture but your free to substitute it with brown sugar if you want a bit of molasses flavor.

A Recipe for Honeycomb (aka Cinder Toffee)

I love making honeycomb. Once I don’t burn myself like I did the first time. Such fun to make, a joy to eat (for all except your fillings who will retreat to the back of your mouth for safety), and a really ace little present for those you love from your kitchen.

But, wait! It’s not all fun and games. Making honeycomb has it’s downsides. The first is the intense temperature, you need to heat the sugar & golden syrup to 150C to reach hard-crack stage, and you may burn yourself. Of course most of you won’t, but I did, and I had a nice cascade of blisters on my arm. It was all worth it. Even the burn.

It’s such fun to make. Once the sugar and golden syrup are ready, adding the bicarbonate of soda causes it to foam to about four times the original size like a rush of golden lava. And then it relaxes and you can pour it into your waiting tin and admire the bubbles, and the golden sheen, and wait until you can crack it, and devour it yourself. Plus, it’s ridiculously cheap to make, so take that recession, we can still have Christmas despite your grizzly presence.

What can you do with yellowman? Eat it, give it to friends, cover it in chocolate for delicious odd shaped infinitely better homemade crunchies, put it in some chocolate mousse, have it with chocolate cake. Endless chewy possibilities await.

I have a jam thermometer as I am that kind of kitchen geek, but don’t worry if you don’t. To test whether the concotion is at hard crack stage, wait until it is bubbling and turning a caramel brown, then put a spoonful on a plate and if it solidifies and cracks when you tap it, well you’re done.

My recipe doesn’t include butter as it really doesn’t need it. I also like it dairy free as that way everyone can enjoy it, including lactose intolerants like myself! I also add vinegar as this reacts with the bicarb to create lots of bubbles and you don’t taste it at all. Some recipes add water, I do too as it means the temperature increase is a little gentler and there is a smaller risk of burning it.

This recipe will fill a large tray, use whatever you have, just make sure it’s deep. Also use a deep pot, otherwise you will have honeycomb all over your stove pot!

A Recipe for Yellowman (aka Honeycomb, Cinder Toffee)


300g White Sugar (caster or granulated)
200g Golden Syrup
100ml Water
1 tbsp Cider or White Wine Vinegar
2 heaped tsp Bicarbonate of Soda


Prepare your tin/dish by lining with lightly oiled baking parchment.

Heat the sugar, golden syrup, water and vinegar until it starts to turn amber and reaches 150C/the hard crack stage (explanation above).

Add the bicarb and stir thoroughly, then pour into your lined tin. Leave to cool to room temperature.

If you want it to be cut into ordered shapes, cut with an oiled knife when it’s nearly it room temperature. I like it to look a little rough and tumble so cut it when it’s cool.

Store in an air tight container or gift to friends in small transparent bags or jars. It is delicious covered in chocolate or with chocolate mousse.

Chef's Notes:

For bigger bubbles, use up to 2 teaspoons baking soda, keeping in mind there might be an aftertaste. Do not use baking powder!

Substitute golden syrup for the corn syrup if desired.

You can also check with a probe thermometer. Some folks say you can simply go by appearance, and when the syrup goes from clear to slightly golden, it's done, but that requires a certain amount of experience. Another method to gauge the temperature is by dropping a little bit of the molten syrup in water to see if it instantly turns into rock candy. That will work, but since thermometers aren't expensive, and every kitchen should have one, that really is the way to go.

Honeycomb toffee recipe

Put the sugar, syrup and 2 tbps water into a heavy-based pan and let the sugar dissolve slowly over a low heat, then bring it to the boil.

Boil until ‘crack stage’ is reached on a sugar thermometer — 156°C or 300°F. It doesn’t take long. If you don’t have a thermometer, drop a little from the tip of a spoon into a cup of cold water it should become hard at once and crack.

Draw the pan to one side off the hear while testing the toffee. When it’s ready, quickly stir in the bicarbonate of soda and pour at once into the tin. It will foam up (it is very hot!), but settle down again.

Mark the toffee into squares before it becomes too hard, using an oiled knife. Marking it into squares makes it easier to break. Or, when set, turn out on to paper on a board and break it up. When it’s quite crisp, store in an airtight tin. If giving to someone as a present, wrap in cellophane and tie with ribbon.

How to make chocolate-dipped cinder toffee - recipe

L ast week of term and then school is out for the summer. Faced with a round of class parties, I promised to make something for my children that they could take in as their contribution. Honeycomb, or its better name, cinder toffee, is a cinch to make. The molten, bubbling sugar bit must be left to the grownups but once formed and cooled in a thick honeycomb sheet it's up to the kids to smash it up and dip the pieces in the melted chocolate.

Cinder toffee is great for such an occasion: it's different to all the cupcakes, crisps and biscuits, it's nut-free to keep within school guidelines and cheap to make. Sure, it's basically sugar, but this is an end-of-term treat, not one for the lunchboxes! And it should earn your kids some cache as it comes with just the right amount of nostalgic crunchy bar cool for all those brilliant and battle-scarred teachers to have with a cup of tea when the gates finally close.

(makes 25cm x 25cm sheet)
200g caster sugar
2 tbsp golden syrup
2 tsp bicarbonate soda
150g milk chocolate
Splash of vegetable oil for greasing

Prepare a baking tray with greaseproof paper that has been oiled lightly with vegetable oil.

Put the sugar and syrup in a heavy-bottomed and high-sided saucepan. Stir together.

Put the pan on the hob over a moderate heat – do not mix the mixture from now – and gradually bring to the boil. Boil for three or four minutes until the mixture begins to caramelise and turn golden brown.

Take the pan off the heat and quickly add the bicarbonate soda, watching as the mixture bubbles pale gold.

Immediately, and with care, pour the cinder toffee onto the baking tray and leave to cool and set.

Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a microwave or in a bowl over boiling water. When the cinder toffee is hard, smash it into random-sized pieces and dip into the melted chocolate.

Leave to set and store in a sealed tub. It's best eaten on the day (not usually a problem!).

This article was amended on 28 July 2014 to replace all references to "hokey pokey" with "cinder toffee" following a complaint from Greyleg Investment Limited who are the owners of a UK trade mark for Hokey Pokey.

Mary Berry’s Real Honeycomb Ice Cream

While enjoying a coffee with my neighbour, Emma, she mentioned one of her favourite recipes – Mary Berry’s Real Honeycomb Ice Cream. Not only is it fun to make your own honeycomb (older kids will love helping on this one) it is also super scrummy. In fact, it is a hit with both kids and adults alike. No ice cream machine required and this heavenly Honeycomb Ice Cream can, of course, be made in advance. Best of all, this recipe is foolproof so, in the nicest possible way, what are you waiting for?

Mary Berry Real Honeycomb Ice Cream

4 tablespoons golden syrup
150g caster sugar
2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
600ml double cream
397g (1 tin) full-fat condensed milk

How to prepare
(Or click here to watch Mary’s video)

Put the syrup and sugar into a large deep saucepan and stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved and turned into a golden caramel colour.

Remove from the heat and tip in the bicarbonate of soda, stir until it is evenly incorporated and foaming. Then tip the honeycomb onto baking paper – do not touch it as it will be burning hot. Leave for about 20 minutes to cool and solidify.

Meanwhile whip the cream in a large bowl until it has soft peaks. Then pour in the condensed milk and stir to combine.

Now break the honeycomb into bite size pieces. Save a third of the honeycomb and fold the rest into the ice cream mixture.

Pour the ice cream mixture into a loaf tin lined with cling film, cover with more clingfilm and freeze for 6 hours or overnight.

  • 1 tsp FREEE Bicarbonate of Soda
  • ½ tsp vitamin C
  • 300 g granulated sugar
  • 150 g golden syrup
  • 150 g plain chocolate
  1. Line a 23 x 18cm/9 x 7&rdquo baking tray with parchment or insert a baking liner, making sure it is at least 5cm tall on all sides. This is important as the hot honeycomb may froth and needs to be safely contained. Put the tray next to the cooker.
  2. Sieve the bicarbonate of soda and vitamin C into a bowl and put this next to the cooker.
  3. Put a heatproof spatula next to the tray and bowl.
  4. Measure the sugar into a saucepan and shake it so that sugar evenly covers the base of the pan.
  5. Drizzle the golden syrup evenly over the sugar.
  6. Start to heat the pan very gently without stirring.
  7. When the sugar and syrup start to look runny, carefully swirl the pan.
  8. Simmer on a gentle heat, swirling occasionally, until all the sugar has dissolved and small bubbles start to appear.
  9. If using a sugar thermometer, put it into the pan and watch until the temperature reaches the soft crack stage, 140°C/275°F.
  10. OR watch the pan as it simmers gently for about 5-8 minutes, until the bubbles become much bigger and the syrup turns a golden, amber colour.
  11. Remove the pan from the heat and sprinkle the prepared bicarbonate of soda over the syrup.
  12. Using the spatula, stir to combine as the mixture starts to bubble vigorously.
  13. Immediately pour the frothing mixture into the prepared tray.
  14. Leave the honeycomb to set where it falls and avoid spreading it out as this can deflate the air bubbles.
  15. Leave the honeycomb to cool away from all drafts and steam.
  16. As soon as the honeycomb is completely cold store it in an airtight tin.
  17. Break honeycomb into pieces to serve.
  1. Break the chocolate into small pieces and gently melt until runny.
  2. Either pour over the top of the cold honeycomb or break the honeycomb into pieces, dip them into the chocolate and leave to cool on parchment paper.

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That being said, there really aren’t that many steps to getting set up for this recipe. However it’s extremely important that you get all your ingredients and equipment prepped and ready to go before turning on the hob. The only way to get the right consistency and crunch of your cinder toffee is to adhere to the exact recipe method and timings – so spending that couple of minutes setting yourself up at the start could mean the difference between crunchy honeycomb and a rock hard or sticky mess!


Be careful to only whisk in one direction, either clockwise or anticlockwise, as whisking in both directions will deflate the honeycomb.


Although this recipe will work fine with an 8࡮″ baking tray, I highly recommend using sillicone moulds as they will shape the cinder toffee into bars. If you use a baking dish, you will need to cut and break the cinder toffee apart, and you will not be able to get the clean lines and finish of a silicone mould.


Fill your moulds with the cinder toffee slowly. Use a spatula to ease half of the mixture into the moulds. The honeycomb will deflate slightly, then top up the moulds with the remaining half of the mixture to ensure that they get filled to the brim.


These bars don’t like heat, cold or moisture. So be sure to store them in an airtight container at room temperature – they can last for a few weeks.


Easy Chocolate Cinder Toffee Recipe

Here&rsquos what you will need to make approx 20 pieces.

  • 2 tbsp Honey
  • 2 tbsp Golden Syrup
  • 100g Caster Sugar
  • 2 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
  • 150 &ndash 200g Milk Chocolate

Step by Step Chocolate Cinder Toffee Recipe Instructions

Line a 25cm square tin with baking paper and grease lightly with oil. Or, like me, just use a silicone tin as it won&rsquot stick.

In a large pan, add the honey, golden syrup and sugar. Mix it all together now as it&rsquos not wise to do so when over the heat.

Place the pan over a high heat and bring to the boil.

Bring the mixture to 145°C (it will take approx 2-3 minutes from boiling point &ndash if you don&rsquot have a thermometer, watch the video to see what it should look like.)

Now for the magic. Immediately turn off the heat, chuck in the bicarbonate of soda and give it a good whisk until you can&rsquot see any more bicarb.

Quickly pour it into your prepared tin and leave to cool & set for 30 minutes.

When it&rsquos hard, cut/break into large chunks.

Either in a microwave or a glass bowl set over a pan of barely simmering water, gradually melt the chocolate until smooth.

Place a sheet of greaseproof paper onto a baking sheet. Then dip each piece of cinder toffee into the chocolate, and allow to set on the sheet.

Store in an airtight container at room temperature and consume within 5 days.

See, I told you it was quick and easy! Chocolate Cinder Toffee is seriously gorgeous stuff, I absolutely love it. Like glistening gold dust smothered in a smooth, silky chocolate coat&hellip drool. Yeah, they ain&rsquot gonna last long that&rsquos for sure!

I hope you enjoyed this week&rsquos post, until next time my lovelies. Miss KitchenMason x

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