These Almond Toffee White Chip Cookies – Gluten Free are crispy, decadent, and will become a favorite go-to!
Crisp, light, salty, crunchy, sweet, and chewy are all words to describe these Almond Toffee White Chip Cookies – Gluten Free. These little discs of joy are a cookie connoisseur’s dream and will most definitely be the culprit of an impending mass blood sugar spike in my neighborhood. Thankfully we can pass the blame to my Aunt, the wonderful Chris of Cafe Sucre Farine for the original version of these.
Just after Christmas, my Aunt and Uncle ventured down the mountain for the weekend to my home in Atlanta. Knowing my Aunt Chris, I should’ve prepped myself by fasting for three days, because she brings the most delicious treats! Come to think of it, she may be thinking the same thing about me. Whether we’re visiting them or visa-versa, it’s bound to be a dieter’s nightmare. What can I say? Food runs in our blood; we eat to work and work to eat!
The “Crack” Cookie
Anyways, one of the delicious little treats my Aunt brought were these outrageously good Almond Toffee White Chip Cookies. Unfortunately for Barbara, my wife, they were the gluten-filled version, so she had to suffer through all of our praises of deliciousness. Honestly, I think Chris felt a bit for Barbara when she suggested I make a gluten free copycat recipe (gladly!) After one hundred and twenty cookies of testing and proofing, we have a winner! And finally, Barbara got her dream eating the best cookie of her life, a Gluten Free Almond Toffee White Chip Cookies or, as she calls them, “Crack Cookies.”
The toffee nibs are key! But let me tell you a little secret, toffee nibs are nearly impossible to find! I searched high, I searched low, and the only thing I could find were Heath Bar nibs. If you don’t want the extra work explained below and can’t find toffee nibs, use the Heath nibs! I used them, well, kind of… Let me explain!
Being a purist, I made my own English Toffee instead. It’s just about the easiest thing ever. You need a baking sheet, preferably a quarter sized one, parchment to line the bottom and sides of the sheet, a medium sized pot, sugar, butter, vanilla, salt, and a spatula. Melt the butter and sugar on medium high heat, add the vanilla and salt. So it doesn’t burn, continually mix, mix, and mix… You want the toffee to reach 285°F. This can all be gauged without a candy thermometer by watching the color. Once you reach that nice deep gold color, pour the toffee into the parchment-lined baking pan and let it cool.
So now that I had my own toffee, I smashed it into pieces and used half Heath and half homemade toffee in the cookies, plus additional toffee sprinkled on top. Then, since I hadn’t already consumed years worth of sugar in a day, I made another batch of toffee just for fun. This one I topped with semi-sweet chocolate, sea salt, and pepitas (shelled pumpkin seeds) pan fried in butter… but that’s for a future post.
Crispy Rice Cereal in Almond Toffee White Chip Cookies – Gluten Free?
It sounds strange right? Who puts Crispy Rice Cereal into cookies? I promise you, it’s not just a filler. If you think about it, it’s the opposite! This cereal is filled with air cavities, so realistically it makes the cookie a bit lighter and adds that amazing crispy crunch.
Gluten vs Non-Gluten
Realistically, this was a pretty easy recipe to mimic. The trick with gluten free flour is that it’s very absorbent of liquids. Yes, I know all these gluten free flour mixes say they’re one for one, but it’s not always the case! Quite often, if you substitute one for one, you’ll end up with something much drier than it should be. And if you’re trying to convert a gf recipe to a wheat flour recipe, then the opposite will happen.
In this recipe, to counteract the liquid absorption I added an extra egg! Considering the limited “liquid” ingredients in the original recipe, this was my best choice. But a full extra egg was a bit too much liquid, so I boosted up the gluten free flour from 2-3/4 Cups to an even 3 Cups. I also like a bit more pronounced almond flavor, so I used 1/2 tsp of Almond Extract instead of 1/4 tsp. Other than an extra egg, a bit more flour, and my preference for the Almond Extract, this copycat is on par with Cafe Sucre Farine’s.
Tips and Tricks
- If you don’t like someone, bring them just one cookie. Nobody can eat just one of these Almond Toffee White Chip Cookies – Gluten Free and be satisfied, it’ll drive them nuts!
- WARNING: Rice Krispies, in the US, are not gluten free! They contain malt flavoring, which is derived from Barley and contains gluten. Being 20 parts per million its miniscule, but it can be reactive to celiacs. A gluten free option is Nature’s Path Crispy Rice Cereal, which can be found in most stores.
- Give it an extra pinch of love… A couple extra chips of white chocolate and nibs of toffee will make your day!
- Parchment, parchment, parchment… Make your life easy and line your baking sheets with parchment. Most of the time it’s a mess free clean up and virtually nothing sticks to parchment paper.
- Mind your cookies in the oven! It’s strange, I let my oven preheat for a solid 30 minutes before baking these cookies. The first sheets were always done in approximately 18-19 minutes. The second sheets took approximately 17-18 minutes, and the third sheets were done in 13 minutes. I’m guessing that my oven gives a big heat injection to keep the temperature up, so keep an eye out when you open the oven and bake multiple sheets.
- I know it says it’s optional, but topping your cookies after about 10 minutes with extra toffee and some flaky sea salt really isn’t optional. It really makes the cookie that much better.
- In regards to flaky sea salt, Maldon is absolutely amazing! It used to be nearly impossible to find it in the US, but now I see it at most grocery stores. You can use it as a finishing salt for just about anything. These salt crystals are light, pretty, and dissolve quickly. (My Aunt Chris hooked me on it years ago.)
- Yes, you can half the recipe… Four dozen cookies does seem like a cardiologist’s nightmare. Fair warning, once you start sharing they will go fast!
- If you don’t have cookie scoops, you should. They’re great for making uniformed sized cookies and anything dough-related. Here are some great ones on Amazon.