When The Husband picked up a package of Seven-Layer Bars at the store last night,I was surprised; I had no idea that he had wanted them! They had been a big seller as a dessert choice for lunches and Sunday dinners at my bakery/restaurant. So when I made them for him and related our fairly amusing exchange at the store on Facebook today, I was asked for the recipe.
If you have never made Seven-Layer Bars, they are an easy treat, which is popular at parties for all ages and for bake sales.
They can be made dairy-free by using Cream of Coconut instead of sweetened condensed milk, nut-free and Gluten-Free by using GF cookies and carefully reading labels and choosing your toppings.
Seven (?) Layer Bars
You may make more or fewer layers. These are VERY rich.
2 cups Cookie crumbs, plain, cinnamon or chocolate Graham cracker and/or hard cookie crumbs: Vanilla wafers, Ginger snaps, Digestives
½ cup melted butter or margarine + extra or cooking spray for pan
1 can Sweetened condensed milk = any flavor “Eagle Brand”,( not evaporated milk); 8 oz. Cream of Coconut, (not coconut milk), can be substituted
Multiple Topping choices :
Shredded coconut (1/2 cup)
Nut pieces, ½ cup (pref. walnut, but almonds, hazelnuts, cashews can be used/mixed)
Baking chips, 1+ cup total; choose, mix and match any or all:
Semi-sweet chocolate, white chocolate, milk chocolate;
Dried fruit-opt. (¼ cup)
Crushed toffee-opt. (¼ cup)
Small caramel pieces, or thick caramel in small dollops-opt. (1/3 cup)
[optional for Christmas: mint chips and/or crushed peppermint candy]
Preheat oven to 350F
Butter or spray an 8X10 or 9X9 baking pan.
Mix the melted butter or margarine and cookie crumbs.
Press firmly into the bottom of prepared pan, rising a little at edges.
Pour milk over the crust, indenting about ½ inch from the edges
Scatter coconut over the milk. Add layer by layer the nuts, chips and/or candy pieces, avoiding the edges.
Bake for approx. 40 minutes, until the chips are melted and the edges slightly browned.
Let cool in pan on rack COMPLETELY to set. When cool, cut into bars.