the best English toffee bars that will melt in your mouth – DF, GF, RSF

English Toffee Bars
stacked oat bar cookies - golden oat bars with a thin chocolate layer on top. Two cookies stacked to the left with 3 cookies to right side. Lateral view, on black granite pinit

Grandma’s classic English Toffee Bars transformed into a healthier and more delicious version. Melt in your mouth goodness that’s gluten, dairy and refined sugar free.

AKA… the best Christmas cookies of all time!

They were always my fave at Christmas time, and if you’ve been keeping up, you know there was a lot of stiff competition in the christmas cookie realm as a kid.

Even now, it’s hard to get the dough in the oven without it all escaping into my mouth. But it’s totally fine. I don’t have to feel so bad about it because they are packed full of good things: almonds, walnuts, and lots of coconut.

And ya, they have more sugar than I should eat even if it’s unrefined, it’s Christmas so I don’t care. Plus, it’s way better than your average cookie.

overhead view of golden oat bars on black table with thin chocoalte layer on top of cookies

A quick cookie for the rushed holidays

It’s no surprise that I try to fit more than humanly possible into most of my days. That problem gets worse around the holidays.

Today, for example, I planned to go for coffee with an old friend who is back in town, go to the grocery store to buy ingredients for the toffee bars, make these toffee bars, photograph these toffee bars, post the recipe, do a full day of work, clean the house, wrap presents for the weekend, finish my holiday shopping and drive up to the mountains to see some other out of town friends for dinner.

So far, I’m way behind. And canceling plans left and right.

Does anyone else overcommit?

Luckily, these English toffee bars are pretty quick to make. They only use one bowl, so clean up is easy. And they only take about 10-15 minutes to prep and 15 minutes to bake.

That means it’s possible that I could get everything done!


stacked oat bar cookies - golden oat bars with a thin chocolate layer on top. Two cookies stacked to the left with 3 cookies to right side and several more scattered in background.. Lateral view, on black granite

The English toffee bars

The bars themselves are based off another one of my grandma’s recipes. Butter is replaced with coconut oil, heaps of granulated sugar replaced by 1/3 the coconut sugar, and the all-purpose wheat flour was replaced by nuts and paleo flours.

I feel a lot better eating this version!

I tried several variations to get this just right. The other variations were delicious, but they didn’t have that same flavor and texture of grandma’s recipe. One ended up being a great granola and one ended up being closer to shortbread.

After lots of trial and error (and taste-testing) I found the perfect mix.

I love these new English toffee bars and I know they’ll continue to be a holiday staple in our house.

The process of making the super-fast and easy toffee bars

Gather ingredients.

Small white bowls with different ingredients for cookies: almond and cashew flour, oats, coconnut sugar, coconut oil, chocolate chips and egg and vanilla

Mix together

english toffee cookie batter - light brown with visible oats -in mixing bowl with white kitchen aid mixer attachment in the dough.

Push evenly into pan

english toffee cookie batter - light brown with visible oats -clumped in center of square tin baking sheet on black granite
square silver baking tin with uncut cookie bars in them on top on black granite surface - flour dusted around on surface

Bake and then spread chocolate chips on top and cover

close up of square silver baking tin with cookies in them with chocolate chips scattered on top on black granite surface

Smear melted chocolate

square silver baking tin with cookies in them with nicely smoothed chocolate smeared on top on black granite surface

Cut and enjoy!

The chocolate chip topping

This is the best and it makes them so EASY!

We simply cover the bars in chocolate chips right when they came out of the oven and put a baking sheet on top of the pan to seal in the warmth.

The chips melt and then easily spread over the surface, creating a chocolate crust topping.

no time to make ganache? jsut use chocoalte chips to coat the english toffee bars: gluten free, dairy free

If you go the chocolate chips route, look for a dairy-free version. Note: it’s difficult to find chocolate chips without refined sugar.

My favorite brand right now (not sponsored by them at all – just what I’m using right now) is Pascha! I usually mix the bittersweet and unsweetened for a little more bitter taste, but go with what fits your tastebuds and sugar preferences.

If you don’t want to use chocolate chips

If you want to make your own, you can use a ganache which is included in the recipe below.

Making chocolate, while it seems daunting, is actually really quick and easy. You just melt cocoa butter or coconut oil, whisk in cocoa powder until combined, and stir in some maple syrup or honey for sweetness.

I prefer to make my own chocolate sauce to reduce the refined sugar. Because if I don’t make my own and use chocolate chips with cane sugar, I’ll still eat half the batch and end up getting a sugar headache. No bueno. Especially with all the things to do.

For this ganache, I used cocoa butter for a richer, chocolate taste, but you could use coconut oil as a substitute.

Use the first portion of the recipe to top the English toffee bars and the second portion to make delicious chocolate ganache truffles!

The truffles and the ganache are gluten-free, dairy-free, and refined sugar-free. And they will be a hit at any holiday party.

stacked oat bar cookies - golden oat bars with a thin chocolate layer on top. Two cookies stacked to the left with 3 cookies to right side. Lateral view, on black granite

the best English toffee bars that will melt in your mouth – DF, GF, RSF

Prep Time 10 mins Cook Time 25 mins Total Time 35 mins
Servings: 20 Calories: 219 kcal


Crunchy, crispy english toffee bars that melt in your mouth and delight the taste buds with a rich layer of creamy chocolate on top.


Cooking Mode Disabled

Chocolate Walnut Oat Bars

Chocolate Topping


English Toffee Bars

  1. preheat oven to 350
  2. Mix coconut oil, vanilla, egg, and coconut sugar together in a medium mixing bowl
  3. Add almond flour, oats, and cashew flour to the bowl and mix until all ingredients are well combined.

  4. Spread dough evenly and flat  on the bottom of a 8x8 pan

  5. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown around edges and no longer jiggly in the center


  1. Remove bars from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips on top. Put a baking sheet over top to melt the chips for several minutes.

  2. Using a butter knife, spread the melted chocolate into an even layer

  3. Optionally top with other toppings like desiccated coconut or chopped walnuts

  4. Let cool completely before cutting into cookies and serving

Nutrition Facts

Amount Per Serving
Calories 219kcal
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 17g27%
Saturated Fat 12g60%
Cholesterol 8mg3%
Sodium 26mg2%
Potassium 74mg3%
Total Carbohydrate 15g5%
Dietary Fiber 1g4%
Sugars 8g
Protein 3g6%

Vitamin A 12 IU
Calcium 36 mg
Iron 1 mg

* This nutrition information does not tell the whole story of food's nutritional value! Make sure to use your gut intuition on what your body needs, eat your veggies and get 30 plants a week for optimal gut health. This nutritional data is calculated based on the above values and standard brands. This information may vary. Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet. Your daily value may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs. Tried this Recipe? Tag me Today! Mention @EatYourWayClean or tag #EatYourWayClean!


For step-by-step photos - Look up in the post at the "Process of making" section

Make sure to let the cookies completely cool and the chocolate to harden before serving. 

You can cut these diagonally into beautiful diamonds or into squares. The diamond-shaped cookies look great with a walnut half in the middle of them. 

This recipe is based on dry climates like Denver and San Diego where your flour is apt to absorb a significant amount of the oil for a crispy taste and texture. If you live in a humid location like Florida, try decreasing the oil by 1/4 cup. 

If you don't have cashew flour, sub in almond meal. Alternatively, you could just use 1 1/3 cup of almond flour.

If you are avoiding coconut, this will work well with pastured butter or sustainable palm shortening, but the flavor is best with coconut oil. 

Keywords: Cookies

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