Friday, March 7, 2014

Peanut Butter Nanaimo Bars

My oven is still out of service, but the good news is that the part is in and the repairman will come on Saturday to fix it! I’m very excited to have my oven back; it’s been challenging trying to find recipes that are either no bake or came be baked in the smaller microwave/convection oven. This week I opted to make a no bake cookie and whenever I think about no bake cookies, I usually turn to Nanaimo Bars. I’ve made a couple of variations, and this week I went with a classic combination: chocolate and peanut butter.

The filling is where these bars can really vary. The base is usually the same: graham cracker crumbs, chocolate, coconut, and nuts. I didn’t have very much coconut on hand, so I added more nuts. I used pecans here, although I ideally I would use peanuts, but I didn’t have those on hand. Just use whatever is most convenient for you.

These have a couple of steps, and you need to chill the bars between each layer, but just for a few minutes. I started these somewhat later in the evening, but I still got them done in no time. Waiting for the chocolate to set is the most time consuming, and cutting the bars when the chocolate is just right is tricky, as chocolate can go from too soft to too set in minutes it seems! I let me bars set about 30 minutes and that seemed to work. The flavors in these bars are fabulous! You can’t go wrong with chocolate and peanut butter.

Peanut Butter Nanaimo Bars
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
5 tablespoons cocoa powder
1 egg, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans

2 tablespoons butter, room temperature
2 tablespoons custard powder
¼ cup milk
½ cup peanut butter
2 cups powdered sugar

6 ounces semisweet chocolate
2 tablespoons shortening

Line a 9” square pan with foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Stir in the sugar and cocoa, until smooth. Add the egg and vanilla and stir to combine. Remove from the heat. Stir in the graham cracker crumbs, coconut and pecans. Press into the bottom of the prepared pan; chill until set, about 20 minutes.

Make the filling: in a large mixer bowl combine the butter, custard powder, milk, and peanut butter. Beat on medium until combined. With the mixer running on low, gradually add the powdered sugar, beating until smooth. Spread the filling over the chilled base. Refrigerate until set.

Make the topping: in the top of a double boiler or in the microwave, melt together chocolate and shortening. Spread the chocolate on top of the bars. Refrigerate the bars until the chocolate is partially set. Cut the bars before the chocolate completely hardens; then refrigerate until fully set.

Recipe from

1 comment:

Eva said...

Yum! I've been hearing about Nanaimo bars and haven't made the time to bake them yet. Yours look gorgeous!