Almond Roca with Pure Maple Syrup (Grain/Corn Syrup-Free)
The buttery crunch of pure maple syrup toffee, topped with chocolate and almonds, is the perfect gift for family and friends! This recipe will fill a small 9x13 baking sheet. Double the recipe for a party, or halve it to share with a friend. It freezes very well! Recipe adapted from Tasty Kitchen. As always, be careful when working with the hot candy mixture, as it could cause bad burns if spilled.
Recipe type: Dessert/Candy
  • 2 sticks of butter (16 Tbls)
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 2 Tbls water
  • 1 cup almonds, coarsely chopped
  • ½ cup (heaping!) chocolate chips (I use a dairy/nut/soy free brand. You could also use dark chocolate for less sugar content)
  • ⅓ cup finely chopped almonds for sprinkling
  1. Prepare a small baking sheet (9x13) with parchment paper. Be sure to use one that has edges so the toffee doesn't drip out.
  2. In a saucepan, or cast-iron skillet, melt the butter, maple syrup, and water together on high, stirring constantly.
  3. These ingredients will move from a light golden color with a foamy consistency to darker with more bubbles, and eventually thicker and caramel-like.
  4. When the color begins to darken, and smells slightly toasty (be careful not to burn it!), remove the pan from the heat and quickly stir in the 1 cup of coarsely chopped almonds.
  5. Immediately spread the mixture onto the parchment paper evenly before it hardens. It will darken in color at this point.
  6. Sprinkle the chocolate chips on top. After a minute or two the chips will have melted into the hot toffee.
  7. Use a knife to spread the chocolate over the top.
  8. Sprinkle finely chopped almonds onto the chocolate.
  9. Refrigerate until hardened, or freeze for 20 minutes if you're impatient like me :)
  10. Break the roca into small pieces and enjoy!
UPDATE: Some readers have requested instructions for using a candy thermometer. I have not personally used one, so I don't know from experience what temperature would work best (I rarely make candy, so I never invested in one). However, I have read that the 290-300 F range would result in a nice hard brittle. Kimi shared a helpful link for candy making stages in the comments. If you're using a thermometer, I would recommend looking at that tutorial! She also shared that she has used the timing method by dropping pieces of the candy into ice cold water to check its hardness. This recipe can be tricky as there are a lot of variables that could contribute to a too soft, or overdone brittle (both of which I have experienced). If you're not using a thermometer, it's hard to say how long the brittle should be on the heat, but for this batch I made it was around 7-10 minutes. I found that my gas stovetop heats up much hotter and quicker than my old electric stovetop. I also used a cast iron skillet, which may heat differently than a stainless steel saucepan. I hesitate to put a timeframe on this recipe, because I know the variables will be different for everyone. For some better pictures of the candy making stages you can also check out the original recipe that I adapted this from. That may be very helpful for some, as it was how I originally learned to make Almond Roca!
Recipe by The Nourishing Gourmet at