Nanaimo Bars originate from Nanaimo, BC (imagine that!), and since their first known introduction in the early 1950’s (according to Wikipedia), they have been a Canadian staple at gatherings all across the Great White North. I feel that being a proud Canadian, it is my obligation to further spread the love of Nanaimo Bars on One Tip For The Future. And well, Graeme requested them so I had to be a good girlfriend and throw together a 13×9 pan for my sweetie.
Consider these an early Christmas present from me to you… and one that you could make for your friends and family this holiday season.
The recipe I used does not include nuts, but if you would like to swap out a ½ cup of coconut in the crust for ½ cup of finely chopped nuts, all the power to ya. I also didn’t use any custard powder in the middle layer since it was early in the morning when I made them and I wasn’t quite up for making a dash to the store to buy some. Oh, and feel free to make a 9×9 pan of these by halfing the measurements below. Or if you would like to feed an army, just leave everything as is.
They also do not require an oven -just a stove! (Wish I had thought of these while I was living in Hong Kong without an oven!)
Mint Nanaimo Bars Recipe
1 cup unsalted butter
1/2 cup granulated sugar
8 tbsp cocoa powder
1 egg, beaten
4 cups graham cracker crumbs
1 1/2 cup shredded coconut
2 tsp vanilla
Middle Mint Layer
1 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 cups confectioners sugar
2 tbsp milk
1 tsp peppermint flavor
8 drops of green food coloring (or more depending on how green you want to make these bad boys)
Top Chocolate Layer
8 oz semi-sweet chocolate squares (2 cups of chocolate chips)
3 tbsp butter
1) In a large sauce pan melt the butter, granulated sugar, and cocoa powder together and stir.
2) Mix in the beaten egg.
3) Add the graham cracker crumbs, coconut and vanilla. (You can add ½ cup of nuts in substitution for ½ cup of coconut if you desire). Stir until combined.
4) Line a 13 x 9 glass pan with parchment paper. Press the graham cracker mixture into the bottom of the pan. Place in the fridge to cool (approximately 15-20 minutes).
5) In a large mix master bowl, mix the butter and sugar, until it is light and fluffy.
6) Add the milk one tbsp at a time. Next, add the peppermint extract and food coloring and beat until light and fluffy.
7) Spread onto the crust layer and chill for 20 more minutes.
8) In the microwave, melt the chocolate and butter for 30 seconds at a time until all chocolate has melted completely. Pour on top of the middle layer, and spread with a spatula. You can also tip the pan slightly back and forth to ensure an even coating of chocolate.
9) Place the Nanaimo bars back in the fridge for at least 30 minutes to chill. When ready to serve, cut into squares.