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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!


  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp light corn syrup
  • 1/2 lb butter (2 sticks - NO substitutes!)
  • 1/2 lb. slivered almonds (2 cups)
  • 1/2 lb. bar of Hershey's dark chocolate (7 oz okay)*

Note: 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.


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

  1. Melt butter with sugar, syrup and water in a pan (such as a large non-stick frying pan) on medium to medium-high temperature. Stir continuously with a wooden spoon. When butter is melted, add the almonds.
  2. When mixture comes to a rolling boil, set your timer for a minimum of 10 minutes and keep stirring (no more than 15 minutes). The mixture will thicken and turn darker in color. The almonds will roast. Keep stirring and cooking until you hear it crackle. If you don't cook it long enough it will not harden, so keep stirring and listen for the crackling sound.

FYI if you have a candy thermometer: Hard crack stage - which is what you want for this candy - is 300 degrees F.

Try leaving the nuts out- make the toffee- do the chocolate thing and while it is warm press sliced or ground almonds in the chocolate. Sometimes the almonds in the toffee seem to get too dark- almost burned- this also helps the pieces from sticking together

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

  1. When the mixture crackles, pour the mixture out onto a large cookie sheet and spread it as thin as possible with a fork. While it is still hot, break up the chocolate into chunks and distribute it over the almond mixture and let it melt. Spread it evenly on the top.
  2. Let it cool to room temperature. When cool you can lift the whole thing off the pan and break into small pieces.

Another Version

Ana, it's a little time-consuming but well worth the effort. Our recipe is as follows: 2 sticks butter, 1 and 1/3 c. pure cane sugar, 1 T. corn syrup and 3 T. water. Melt the butter, add the sugar, water and syrup. Stir occasionally and cook to hard crack on a good candy thermometer. Remove from heat and quickly stir in 1 c. coarsely chopped pecans. Pour on a flexible cookie sheet. Allow to cool. Ice with melted milk chocolate and sprinkle with a 1/2 c. finely chopped pecans. When the chocolate sets back up flip the candy over and repeat the chocolate and nuts. Now, to flip it – cover the candy with waxed paper and another cookie sheet. Flip it and then flex the cookie sheet so the candy will pop off. It usually breaks up a bit. You're going to break it up anyway, broken candy tastes just as good and provides the opportunity for calorie leakage. It takes about 8-10 oz. of milk chocolate. I prefer milk chocolate for this since I ice both sides. I love dark chocolate but on both sides it would overpower the buttery toffee. I've had some problems with the chocolate setting back up this year. I know it's not humidity because we're 12“ below normal and under a fire watch. Go figure. Maybe Hershey's has changed their formula.


tags: vegetarian

Top-Secret Recipe version

Brown and Haley Almond Roca

Founded in 1914 by Harry Brown and J.C. Haley in Tacoma, Washington, the Brown and Haley Candy Company is one of the oldest confectioners in the country. In 1923 the company hit the jackpot when Harry Brown and the former cook from what would eventually become M and M/Mars, created a chocolate-coated butter candy, sprinkled with California almonds. They took the sweet to Tacoma's head librarian, and she named it Almond Roca-roca means “rock” in Spanish. In 1927 the two men decided to wrap the little candies in imported gold foil and pack them into the now-familiar pink cans to extend their shelf life threefold. In fact, because of the way the candy was packaged, it was carried by troops in World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the Gulf War.

The Brown and Haley candy company is still housed in the former shoe factory that it has occupied since 1919. Almond Roca is so popular today that it can be found in sixty-four countries and is a market leader in Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea, Taiwan, the Philippines, and Japan. The company sells more that 5 million pounds of Almond Roca each year and is the United States leading exporter of packaged confections.

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1 teaspoon light corn syrup
  • 1 cup finely chopped toasted almonds
  • 1 cup milk-chocolate chips
  1. Melt the butter in a saucepan.
  2. Add the sugar, water, and corn syrup.
  3. Cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring.
  4. When the sugar dissolves and the mixture begins to boil, raise the heat and bring the mixture to 290 degrees on a cooking thermometer. (This is called the soft-crack stage.) It will be light brown in color, and syrup will separate into threads that are not brittle when dribbled into cold water.
  5. Quickly sitr in 1/2 cup chopped almonds.
  6. Immediately pour the mixture onto an ungreased baking sheet.
  7. Wait 2 or 3 minutes for the candy surface to firm, then sprinkle on the chocolate chips.
  8. In a few minutes, when the chips have softened, spread the chocolate evenly over the surface.
  9. Sprinkle the remaining almonds over the melted chocolate.
  10. When the chocolate hardens, crack the candy into pieces. Store covered.

Makes 1 1/2 pounds.

Heath bar or Hershey's Skor These two candy bars are very similar, and both are composed of ingredients similar to those in Almond Roca. One obvious difference is that there are no almonds on top of these bars. To make these candy bars, simply follow the same directions for Almond Roca omitting step 9.


These recipes taste very much like the candies they clone, but you may notice right away that the finished products don't look like their corporate counterparts. This is largely due to the fact that the chocolate is only a top coating, surrounding the almond candy centers. This was done in the interest of simplicity–to make the recipes easier on the chef (that's you, right?). You could make your almond candy center first, then crack it into smaller peices and dip those into chocolate. But is is really worth the trouble?


recipes/dessert/almond_roca.txt · Last modified: 2017/12/19 19:42 by admin