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Straightforward Nanaimo Bars Recipe | The Novice Chef


Triple-layered Nanaimo Bars are a wealthy, no-bake dessert that’s straightforward to make! A chocolate-graham-cracker crust, studded with chopped nuts and shredded coconut, is topped with thick vanilla custard and a shiny layer of hardened chocolate.

Layered dessert bars stacked on top of each other on a background of parchment and white countertop. Several bars are arranged around the stack.

A Decadent No-Bake Dessert Bar

In relation to wealthy, dense, decadent treats, nothing beats a bar cookie. I exploit the time period loosely, as a result of numerous the easiest bars aren’t actually cookie-like: they’ve a granola texture, a cakey texture, a brownie texture… however for the sake of simplicity, “bar cookie” is a simple title to make use of, proper?

These specific bar cookies are particularly distinctive of their texture, as a result of they’ve three very distinctive layers. That’s what makes them so particular and such a deal with! Every sq. of this decadent bar cookie has a richly flavored, buttery crust made with graham crackers, cocoa powder, and coconut. The center layer of the bars is a vanilla custard that’s thick and creamy, and on prime is a layer of ganache-like chocolate, which hardens after the bars are minimize.

Are you craving Nanaimo bars but? I do know I’m!

What Precisely Are Nanaimo Bars?

These triple-layered bar cookies have an uncommon title, for positive! They’re named after the town the place they had been invented, Nanaimo, British Columbia. Nanaimo bars are a Canadian favourite that has develop into standard stateside, as nicely, and it’s straightforward to see why! Nobody might resist the crumbly chocolate graham-cracker crust full of shredded coconut, topped with creamy custard, and a layer of agency, milky chocolate!

Clockwise from top: Sugar, walnuts, heavy cream, egg, instant pudding mix, vanilla, chocolate chips, graham crackers, butter, powdered sugar, pecans, cocoa powder.

The Elements!

Listed below are the delicious components to make these no-bake delights. Truthful warning: Simply studying by means of this record might completely set off a chocolate craving… and a coconut craving… and a custard craving! 

For the Crust

  • Graham Cracker Crumbs: You can also make your personal very simply and shortly, by operating them by means of a blender.
  • Coconut: Shredded coconut provides sweetness and texture.
  • Chopped Nuts: I exploit pecans and walnuts, however you should use no matter you want!
  • Butter: Utilizing salted butter within the crust combination ensures a satisfying, salty-sweet consequence.
  • Cocoa Powder: The cocoa powder blends with the butter to make a darkish chocolate crust combination.
  • Sugar: You don’t want a lot sugar, for the reason that graham crackers are already candy.
  • Egg: A big complete egg helps carry the crust collectively. 

For the Filling

  • Powdered Sugar: AKA confectioner’s sugar, this smooth sugar dissolves simply into the custard.
  • Instantaneous Pudding: Vanilla taste
  • Cream: Heavy cream provides unimaginable richness to the straightforward filling combination.
  • Vanilla: Slightly extra vanilla extract makes this custard filling a lot extra flavorful and homemade-tasting.

For the Topping

  • Chocolate Chips: Melted chocolate chips are the idea of the ganache-like topping.
  • Butter and Cream: Added butter and cream flip the melted chocolate right into a wealthy, fudgy prime layer for our Nanaimo Bars.
Side view of Nanaimo bars on a baking rack lined with parchment, showing the layers of the bars.

Tips on how to Make These Straightforward Nanaimo Bars

Making these bars is just like making most different no-bake layered desserts, besides that you will want to include an egg! To prepare dinner the egg, it’s tempered with somewhat little bit of scorching butter-cocoa combination, after which combined totally into the recent butter-cocoa combination to complete coming to a protected temperature.

A square baking pan with a layer of chocolate-graham-cracker crust pressed into the bottom. Small bowls with vanilla custard and chocolate chips with butter sit on the countertop as well.

Make the Crust

  1. Prep the Pan and Dry Elements. Earlier than you get began on the crust, line a 9-inch sq. baking dish with parchment paper, and set it apart. Subsequent, mix the graham cracker crumbs, coconut, and chopped pecans and walnuts in a big mixing bowl.
  2. Make the Melted Butter Combination. Soften your butter in a small saucepan over medium warmth. As soon as the butter is melted, add the cocoa and sugar, whisking till the sugar dissolves.
  3. Mood the Egg and Add to the Butter Combination. Beat the egg flippantly. Whisking constantly, add a few spoonfuls of the recent butter combination. Then pour the egg combination into the cocoa combination, nonetheless whisking always. Whisk over medium warmth till the combination thickens. This gained’t take lengthy! Rapidly take away the thickened butter combination from the warmth so it doesn’t curdle.
  4. Make the Crust. Pour the butter combination into the graham cracker combination, and stir it nicely. That is the crust on your Nanaimo bars. Dump it into the ready pan, and press all the way down to make a fair layer. Let the crust cool utterly earlier than including the layer. It’s finest to relax the crust for quarter-hour (or longer) earlier than persevering with.
A baking dish with a layer of custard spread inside. Nearby is a bowl of melted chocolate.

Make the Filling

  1. Mix the Filling Elements. In a medium bowl, whisk collectively the moment pudding combine and the powdered sugar. Pour the heavy cream and vanilla in, and whisk till easy.
  2. Add the Filling to the Bars. Pour the filling over the cooled crust, and easy it out evenly with a spatula.
  3. Chill. Chill the filling for about 10 minutes earlier than including the chocolate topping.
A square baking dish with a layer of melted chocolate topping visible inside. An empty, microwave-safe bowl with some chocolate still stuck to the sides sits on the countertop nearby.

Make the Topping 

  1. Soften the Chocolate. To soften the chocolate chips, place them into a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on excessive for 15-second intervals. Stir every time, till they’re easy. 
  2. Add the Butter and Cream. Stir the heavy cream and butter into the chocolate till the combination is easy.
  3. Prime the Bars. Unfold the chocolate  evenly over the filling layer. Permit the topping to set for 3 – 4 minutes earlier than slicing the bars into squares. After slicing, permit the bars to completely harden earlier than serving.
An uncut square of Nanaimo Bar dessert, lifted out of the pan and resting on parchment paper.

Useful Suggestions and Hacks

Everybody has their very own ideas and tips for making Nanaimo bars the straightforward method, or the short method, or what have you ever, and I’m no exception! Listed below are my finest hacks for creating decadent Nanaimo bars that look (and style) excellent.

  • Reducing the Bars: It’s necessary to chop the bars when the chocolate layer is sort of set, however not totally hardened. In the event you attempt to minimize the bars when the chocolate is about, it typically cracks or presses the custard layer down. I additionally advocate utilizing a really sharp knife and warming it in a bowl of scorching water between cuts.
  • Egg Tempering: Even skilled pastry cooks generally battle to mood eggs with out scrambling them! In the event you mood the egg and discover that the combination is somewhat bit lumpy or scrambled, you’ll be able to pour it by means of a strainer or superb sieve to take away the lumps. If it is vitally lumpy, you will have to re-make it in order that the custard thickens accurately.
  • A Little Goes a Lengthy Means: With a lot sweetness and richness in each chunk, these squares are finest minimize small. You possibly can minimize one pan into 16 small squares.
  • Variations: There are many enjoyable variations on traditional Nanaimo bars, however my favourite technique to customise them is by including extracts to the custard combination! A tiny little bit of mint, rum, or orange extract is all you have to make mint-chocolate Nanaimo bars, candy rum Nanaimo bars, or orange-chocolate Nanaimo bars!
Several nanaimo bars on a sheet of parchment, decorated with shreds of coconut and a couple of broken graham crackers.

How Ought to I Retailer Further Bars?

Nanaimo bars must be saved within the fridge, to guard the custard and chocolate and stop them from melting. Right here’s how!

  • Place the bars in hermetic containers, ideally shallow ones, so you’ll be able to retailer in a single layer with out extra air. In the event you should retailer in multiple layer, use parchment or wax paper to separate them.
  • Hold the bars within the fridge for as much as 2 weeks, or within the freezer for as much as 6 months.
  • Thaw frozen bars in a single day within the fridge, earlier than serving.

Can I Make Nanaimo Bars In Advance?

Sure! Because the bars freeze nicely and refrigerate nicely, you may make them as much as 6 months upfront (retailer within the freezer and thaw in a single day), or two weeks upfront (retailer within the fridge). Serve chilled.

Yield: 16 Squares

Straightforward Nanaimo Bars

Layered dessert bars stacked on top of each other on a background of parchment and white countertop. Several bars are arranged around the stack.

Triple-layered Nanaimo Bars are a wealthy, no-bake dessert that’s straightforward to make! A chocolate-graham-cracker crust, studded with chopped nuts and shredded coconut, is topped with thick vanilla custard and a shiny layer of agency, milky chocolate.

Prep Time
20 minutes

Extra Time
40 minutes

Complete Time
1 hour

Elements

For the Crust

  • 1 ½ cups graham cracker crumbs (about 1 ½ giant packages, put by means of a blender)
  • 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
  • ¼ cup chopped pecans
  • ¼ cup chopped walnuts
  • ½ cup salted butter
  • ¼ cup cocoa powder
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg, flippantly crushed

For the Filling

  • 1 ¾ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons immediate vanilla pudding
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

For the Topping

  • 8 ounces semisweet chocolate chips 
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream

Directions

Make the Crust

  1. Line a 9-inch sq. baking dish with parchment. Put aside.
  2. Place the graham cracker crumbs, coconut, and nuts in a big mixing bowl.
  3. In a small saucepan over medium warmth, soften the butter. Add the cocoa and sugar, whisking till nicely mixed and the sugar is melted.
  4. Place the egg in a bowl and whisk in a few spoonfuls of the recent cocoa combination. Then pour the egg combination into the cocoa combination over medium warmth, whisking always. The combination will thicken shortly; take away from the warmth in order that the eggs don’t curdle and develop into lumpy.
  5. Pour the butter combination into the graham cracker combination and stir completely to mix. Pour into the ready pan, and press all the way down to make a fair layer.
  6. Let the crust cool utterly earlier than including the layer. You possibly can chill the crust for quarter-hour (or longer) earlier than persevering with.

Make the Filling

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk collectively the moment pudding combine and powdered sugar. Add the heavy cream and vanilla, and whisk till easy.
  2. Pour the filling over the cooled crust, and easy into a fair layer utilizing a spatula.
  3. Chill for 10 minutes.

Make the Topping

  1. Place the chocolate chips and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on excessive for 15-second intervals, stirring every time, till easy. If there are any lumps, microwave a further 5 – 10 seconds.
  2. Stir the heavy cream into the chocolate till easy.
  3. Unfold evenly over the filling layer. Permit to set for 3 – 4 minutes earlier than slicing. After slicing, permit the chocolate to completely harden earlier than serving.

Vitamin Info:

Yield:

16

Serving Measurement:

1

Quantity Per Serving:
Energy: 311Complete Fats: 19gSaturated Fats: 11gTrans Fats: 0gUnsaturated Fats: 8gLdl cholesterol: 39mgSodium: 124mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 2gSugar: 27gProtein: 3g

Extra No-Bake Treats

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