Tuesday, July 10, 2012

toasted coconut caramel bars

Oh hey.
I haven't done a recipe post in a while since we've been traveling, and this is technically a cheater post since I made this recipe before we left Virginia. I started baking through everything in our pantry, and after finding a bag of coconut I knew I needed to make some knock-off Samoa type bars. I've made Pillsbury Carmelitas bars before (recipe below), and decided to make something like them using coconut. I can't take full credit for these- they're a recipe I made with a mix of the three below:
This recipe from Martha Stewart  //  This recipe from Pillsbury  //  This recipe from King Arthur Flour
What you'll need to make it happen:
1 1/4 cup flour
1 1/3 cup brown sugar
2 cups shredded coconut (toasted)
6 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
8 oz caramel sundae sauce
1/2- 3/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
parchment paper

How to make it happen:
Step 1: Toast your coconut. This isn't rocket science- but if you don't pay attention, it will burn, and then you'll be super annoyed...so pay attention. Spread your coconut onto a baking sheet and begin toasting for 10 minutes at 300 degrees. Pull out, stir around, and toast for another 20 minutes. You'll see the edges will start getting dark quickly, so either scrape them off the pan early or stir them in to the middle. Set aside 1/2 cup of the coconut for later topping.
Step 2: Turn up your oven to 375. While you're waiting for it to heat up  mix your flour, baking powder, salt, and 1 1/2 cups of toasted coconut together and set aside. 
Step 3: Beat your butter and sugar together until well mixed and add your egg and vanilla. Once well mixed, and in your coconut/flour mixture. 
Step 4: Line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment paper (this will make the bars a breeze to pull out) and spread your mixture evenly in the pan. Bake for 12 minutes, or until golden brown, depending on how hot your oven runs. 
Step 5: Remove pan from oven, and while still hot drizzle 6 ounces of your caramel sauce over the baked base, and put back in the oven to cook for another 15 minutes. Your caramel should be crazy bubbling when you pull them out!
Step 6: Let the base & caramel cool for a few minutes before sprinkling your chocolate chips evenly, spreading as they start to soften. Let cool until chocolate hardens.
Step 7: Once your chocolate is cool, drizzle the remaining 2 ounces of your caramel sauce over the bars and sprinkle your remaining coconut so it adheres to the caramel. 
Step 8: Let your bars cool completely before pulling up on the sides of the parchment paper to remove. Either using a very sharp greased knife or pizza cutter, slice bars into squares. These babies are RICH, so cut into fairly small squares!

I recommend keeping the bars in the fridge, mainly because in the summer they'll just melt all over- but also because they're delicious cold!

Any favorite bar recipes you have? 
If they're anything like these, I know I'd like them...

xo, lp

pssssssssssst: thanks for all the well wishes on our trip! we're currently back in wisconsin, getting our lives all straightened up before leaving for a 5 day camping extravaganza. expect plenty of excited madison tweets/pictures....


  1. This makes me happy! A blogger in Madison!! We should try to get a little group together. :) Aaaaand these look de-lish.

  2. These look yummy! It's only 9:30 am and now I want something sweet. I totally blame you! :-) Glad you guys had such an awesome trip back home. VA misses you already! :-)

    Jayme @ Her Late Night Cravings

  3. stop it right now, Laura. stop it. I'm going to get type II diabetes.

  4. I can't even tell you how hungry this just made me. Really.

  5. I'm so obessed with coconut right now so I need to try these! Thanks for sharing.

  6. Yummmm these look so good!! Must make these ASAP. So glad you made it safely :)


  7. shut up these look so good. Omg. okay. my stomach is seriously growling right now.

    I'm loving your blog, so glad I found it! I'm hosting a giveaway right now, and I'd love you to stop by and visit!

    xoxo, Emily

  8. 8 steps is one (or eight) too many steps for me. ;) But, they look ahhhmazing! Maybe Dan will make them for me?

  9. These look delicious! So glad that I found your blog!
    your newest follower :)

  10. yummy! i'll have to try those. I always make these no bake cookie bars ;)

    xo SideSmile,

    Ps. Don't forget to enter my
    Bandiez Couture Headband Giveaway

  11. Wow! These look amazing!!!! I found this yummy chocolate chip bar recipe on pinterest and it's soooooo delicious: http://www.recipegirl.com/2011/09/29/gooey-chocolate-chip-sandwich-bars-cookies-for-kids-cancer-cookbook/.

  12. Umm.. I want to eat these so bad right now. All of my favorite things together in one delicacy! :)


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