Monday, March 2, 2015

Magic Turtle Bars

These days I'm looking for quick recipes for delicious treats that I can make either while Logan sleeps or while he "helps" me when I wear him in the kitchen. Magic bars definitely fit the description because they are basically just piles of tasty goodies layered on top of one another and baked to perfection. Very easy to do, even when your littlest kitchen helper falls asleep on you while you explain the merits of semi sweet versus dark chocolate chips. And this turtle candy inspired version of a magic bar live up to the hype. They are amazing--dark chocolate, caramel and pecans are an irresistible combination. The chocolate gets slightly melted, the caramel is gooey and the nuts offer a perfect salty crunch. Plus the texture of these bars is like a party for your mouth. Based on how quickly these vanished from our counter (and the fact that I had to package some up to give away), these are a huge hit.

This recipe is from Joan at Chocolate, Chocolate and More but I did make a few changes. My crust is a little thicker because I love a delicious cookie crumb crust. And I did sub the dark chocolate chips for semi sweet because I wasn't a little more richness as well. By definition Magic Bars are forgiving and let you make a ton of substitutions (anything you put together will be delicious, like magic) and I am in love with this turtle version--it's one of my favorite types of candies. In fact, when we vacation in Maine there is a little chocolate shop we always visit--family owned and generations old--and the first thing I pick out when we go are a few turtles, both milk and dark chocolate versions. Now I can make these bars to have them pretty much any time. No I just have to not eat them all in one sitting.

Magic Turtle Bars


12 ounces vanilla wafer cookies
1/2 cup butter
3 cups dark chocolate chips
11 ounces caramel bits
1 1/2 cups pecans
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk

Line a 9 x 13 inch pan with parchment or a silicone mat and lightly spray with cooking spray. Using a food processor or chopper, grind vanilla wafers until they are fine crumbs.

Melt butter and mix with cookie crumbs until sandy in texture. Press into the bottom of the pan in an even layer.

Spread half the chocolate chips over the cookie crust. Then sprinkle the caramel bits over the chocolate and 1 cup of the pecans over the caramel. Add the remaining chocolate chips and top off with remaining pecans.

Pour the sweetened condensed milk evenly over the entire pan, taking care to coat everything.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 25-30 minutes. The milk will start to brown and the chocolate and caramel will be melty and gooey.

Remove from oven and cool in pan on wire rack for at least an hour. Remove from pan and cut into bars using a sharp knife.

Makes 24 bars.

Happy Baking,
The Cookie Princess

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