Nanaimo bars are a delicious Canadian treat originating in – you guessed it! – Nanaimo. I first tried one in British Columbia on our way to Whistler (read about that trip here) and I was forever changed. Nanaimo Bars are super rich chocolatey layer treat with coconut, graham cracker crumbs and nuts. Divine!
You really want to enjoy these well chilled. Don’t rush it! I baked these to celebrate Canada Day but they’ll be good well into the 4th of July. Keep them in the fridge after you bake them.
Traditional Nanaimo bars call for almonds. I’m calling these Texas Nanaimo Bars because I used toasted pecans. This is the South, darling. We like pecans. I also used dark cocoa powder because I prefer dark chocolate. They are knock-your-socks-off rich so prepare yourself!
These are quite tedious to make, to be honest. They dirty a lot of dishes and take about 45 minutes of active prep time, which feels like quite a bit compared to brownies or cookies but my gosh do they taste special. If you need a bar that’s sure to impress, you’ve found them!
Texas Nanaimo Bars
1/2 cup European style unsalted butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
5 Tbsp dark cocoa powder
1 egg, beaten
1 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup pecans, toasted and chopped
1 cup grated unsweetened coconut
- Melt first three ingredients in a double boiler.
- Slowly add the egg in while beating with a whisk. Cook mixture for a couple minutes until thickened and glossy.
- Remove from heat and stir in crumbs, coconut, and nuts. Press firmly into an uncreased 8×8″ pan.
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
3 Tbsp heavy cream
2 Tbsp vanilla custard powder or instant vanilla pudding mix
2 cups powdered sugar
- Cream together softened butter, cream, pudding mix, and powdered sugar with a hand mixer until combined. Carefully spread over bottom layer.
4 oz semi-sweet baking chocolate
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
- Break chocolate into small pieces. Melt with butter at a low heat in the microwave, stirring every 20 to thirty seconds until smooth and glossy. Cool for two minutes, then carefully spread on top of middle layer.
- Refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight. Cut into squares and enjoy! Keep leftovers in the fridge.
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