Shanon and I were back in the virtual kitchen together again last month, and you can thank her for choosing these little bars of awesomeness.  I’ve been all about sweet-salty dessert combos lately.  There’s just something about that peculiar flavor balance that keeps people wanting just one more bite.  If you haven’t tried it yet because you think salt on a dessert is weird, don’t worry I totally get it.  I felt that way too.  For a long time, I’d see desserts that looked gorgeous but for the generous sprinkle of salt on top.  I gave them the side-eye.  Last fall, I tried these cookies on a whim and everything changed.  Now I’m a convert and I have learned to appreciate the role of salt in giving a dessert that extra something.

Chocolate and caramel are made for each other, and even skeptics know that salted caramel is the bomb so it stands to reason that a salted caramel chocolate shortbread bar would be awesome…and it is.  I’ve seen recipes such as this likened to Twix bars before but we didn’t really think they tasted like Twix at all.  Don’t get me wrong, I looove Twix, but these are maybe a more sophisticated version of the same flavor palette.  The caramel layer is a bit soft and gooey, and we found we liked them best from the freezer.  You will definitely want to freeze some because the recipe makes enough to feed a small army.  But you wouldn’t really want to halve it, because that would just be silly, right?  If you enjoy the sweet-salty dessert combo, be sure to stay tuned because I have several more planned in the next month or so and I can’t wait to share them with you!


For the shortbread layer:
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. baking powder
¼ tsp. salt
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup sugar

For the caramel layer:
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup sugar
4 tbsp. light corn syrup
2 (14 oz.) cans sweetened condensed milk

For the chocolate layer:
8 oz. semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
1 tsp. light corn syrup
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into pieces
Fleur de sel or sea salt, for sprinkling


  • 01

    To make the shortbread layer, preheat the oven to 325° F.  Line a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with parchment paper.  In a small bowl combine the flour, baking powder and salt. Stir with a fork to blend, and set aside.  In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium speed until well blended, about 1-2 minutes.  With the mixer on low speed blend in the dry ingredients just until incorporated.  Transfer the dough to the prepared baking pan and press in an even layer over the bottom of the pan.  Bake 15-18 minutes or until golden.  (If the crust puffs up a bit while baking, just gently press it down while it is cooling.)  Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.

  • 02

    To make the caramel layer, combine the butter, sugar, corn syrup and condensed milk in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted.  Increase the heat to medium-high and bring to a boil.  Reduce the heat to maintain a simmer, stirring constantly.  Continue simmering and stirring until the mixture turns an amber color and thickens slightly.  Pour the mixture over the shortbread layer, smooth the top, and allow to cool completely and set.  (I chilled at this stage to ensure that the caramel layer would not melt when the warm chocolate was added.)

  • 03

    To make the chocolate glaze, combine the chocolate, corn syrup, and butter in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water.  Heat, stirring occasionally, until the chocolate is completely melted and the mixture is smooth.  Pour evenly over the caramel layer and use an offset spatula to smooth the top.  Allow to cool for a minute or two and then sprinkle with fleur de sel.  Chill, covered, until ready to slice and serve.


  • I haven’t tried the salty/sweet combination yet either, but it would be hard to say no to these!

  • These sound lovely! Great recipe!

  • Jessica L.

    These look amazing!!

  • Oh my, these look and sound heavenly!!!

  • Sweet & salty is classic! Who can ever turn down the classic chocolate-covered pretzel? These look great, will be putting on my ‘to-make’ list. Thanks!

  • Sweet + Salty = Heaven in my book. These look great!

  • Wow, these are being made immediately. And then my elastic waistband pants are comin’ out.

  • Lakeisha

    These look delicious! Just in time for Sundays Football Season kick-off :-)

  • YES, these look so.good. I love salty/sweet combos. I’ve recently discovered the ingenious Lindt chocolate bar made with dark chocolate and sea salt. Like you said, it sounds weird but it’s delicious.

  • Love the sweet and salty combo!

  • Can’t wait to try this recipe! Just made the pumpkin cream cheese muffins and they were divine!

  • kate C.

    Oh my goodness, just reading about this is killing me with the calorie overload… but I just might have to make it anyway! Do most normal grocery stores sell the fleur de sel, anyone know?

  • Those look so delicious!

  • I’m such a fan of the salty and sweet combo!

  • These look amazing! After my fight, I’ll have to make some.

  • Lauren

    These look delicious, and I will definitely try them. I am glad I went to check out the Shanon’s version of them though – I don’t think mine will turn out quite as picture perfect as yours. I thought it was funny that Shanon said hers made 12, while yours made 60! I think I’ll be a little closer to her estimate – especially if they taste as good as they sound.

  • Oh, yum. These look amazing! I can’t wait to try them.

  • These look delicious! I love shortbread!

  • WOW these are to die for!

  • These look so good!!! CARAMEL!!!

  • Tried to make a version of these last weekend and the shortbread completely fell apart when I tried to cut the bars, just crumbs left sticking to the caramel layer. I’ll have to try these, The flavor was great but hard to eat.

  • Oh wow, these look amazing!

  • Annie

    Well, she did make an 8 x 8 pan while I made 9 x 13 so that’s a big difference :)

  • These bars look perfect! I always love a salty/sweet combo!

  • nina

    These sound divine! They are going to the top of my to-bake list. Question about the condensed milk though – what size are your cans? I have another recipe that calls for cans of sw. condensed milk and they are different from what is sold here. Thanks!

  • K

    These look amazing and right down my crunchy/sweet/salty-in-one-bite pregnant cravings. Cooking Light had a recipe for Salted Caramel Brownies and it was wonderful, but was missing the crunch factor.

  • these look very yummy!

  • These look divine!! I have lately become obsessed with the salty/sweet combo. Going to file this recipe in my “must make folder”!

  • These look AMAZING! I might just conquer my fear of making caramel to have these!

  • Annie

    Don’t worry, this isn’t even a real caramel in that sense so it’s not hard at all. But don’t be intimidated by caramel, it’s really easy!

  • Wow, these look so delicious! I’d love to try them.

  • alicia

    These look wonderful. Are they hard to cut? Is there some sort of special technique for getting such a clean cut?

  • Annie

    I just repeatedly wipe the knife clean throughout the cutting process.

  • Annie, I want to eat these right now. Mind mailing me a package? I’ve been in the kitchen all day and yet still you come up with something inspiring enough to make me want to get up and start baking *again*. :)

  • These look incredible. Thanks for sharing.

  • Mary

    Loove salty-sweet and these look awesome. These just went on my to-do list for tomorrow!!

  • These look like they have turned out absolutely perfectly, and i am yet to try the salty sweet combo so definitely loving the idea of trying these out sometime :) gorgeous as always!

  • Jenna

    I just finished the caramel step of this process and it’s cooling. I had so much trouble with the caramel. While I was waiting for it to heat through, it started to burn and I was stirring constantly. Not sure what the problem was or if it was just a not great saucepan to use…:( I dont think they will turn out at this point.

  • Annie

    Jenna, that’s a bummer! The saucepan definitely could have played a role, or maybe the heat was a bit too high.

  • Emily

    I just made these tonight and my caramel, while delicious definitely wasn’t smooth like a actual caramel would be, like yours are in the picture….. do you have a time that you went by. The recipe says cook until amber color, but how long did that take for you to get there? I also had problems with burned bits floating about but I do blame that on my pan, I usually make caramel in a heavy bottomed pan.

  • Annie

    Hi Emily, I didn’t specify a time because it can vary so widely depending on your pan, the heat level, etc. etc. I don’t really remember exactly how long it took for me. I would guess you might want to try a lower heat for longer and maybe a better pan. Good luck!

  • I fell on this recipe like a noncompliant diabetic at an Easter egg hunt. I happened to have everything except the condensed milk, and wanted to make something involved and decadent on my day off. This definitely fit the bill! I have lots in the freezer to bring to work tomorrow. If they stay in my house I will need to install a lock on my fridge. My husband already had 3!

  • Oh my goodness these look so delish! You had me at salted caramel.

  • I just wanted to stop in and tell you how much I enjoy seeing your recipes come into my google reader! I def have quite a few bookmarked to try :)
    Do you have to Google Friend Connect hooked up at all? I was looking to follow you that way, but didn’t see it on the main page. Just checking, but of course it won’t keep me from reading!
    Have a great week!

  • Annie

    Amber, I actually haven’t even heard of that yet. I’ll have to look into it. Thanks for reading!

  • Holly

    YUM! How would these freeze??

  • Annie

    Please read the post :)

  • Annie

    I believe they are 14 oz. cans. Sorry that wasn’t clear, I will edit the recipe. Thanks!

  • Ok, these are the most irresistible, sinfully delicious-looking bars I have seen!! YUM!

  • I want one. Right now. I love the flecks of salt on top. Thank you for sharing.

  • Jenny

    Hi Annie,
    How important is the parchment paper? I just ran out and I’m wondering if I can use either tin foil with a vegetable spray or a baking mat? any suggestions on which would work best? Thanks

  • Annie

    I think foil sprayed with cooking spray would probably be fine. It may stick to the caramel a bit around the edges but you can just peel it away. Enjoy!

  • Ahh I make these exact same bars, only a vegan version They’re soo good- I have to keep them in the freezer so I don’t scarf them all down in one sitting and end up with a stomach ache!

  • Katie Lew

    Making these this weekend for a tailgate – what I won’t be doing is tell everyone that there are FIVE sticks of butter in one recipe!

  • Beautiful! These are similar to a faux twix bar I made a couple of months ago. Love love the salted caramel. Must try.

  • Wow. These will make great homemade gifts this holiday season. Thanks.

  • Melissa

    5 sticks of butter????? They look delicious!!

  • w

    I made these tonight and so far everything is coming along smoothly, I have yet to taste though. I was unsure of the caramel but I kept stirring until it looked nice and amber, then i cooled some to taste and it firmed up and was sweet like caramel. Love it, thank you =)

  • I can’t stop staring at these, they look so fabulous! What’s better than those all combined?????? NOTHING!!! This will be something I try for sure. Thanks for sharing!

  • Caramel flowing just fell like bite into it immediately.

    Great pictures

  • scarlet young

    hi! new reader just stumbled on your blog. I live in Scotland, and thought you should know they call this millionaire’s shortbread over here. it is lovely…and I’ve also seen it made with a buttered graham cracker/digestive biscuit crust rather than the shortbread.


  • Jacquelyn

    In the process of making these…yours look fabulous. I just had a question about the caramel. Mine does not look like yours. Am I suppose to stir it while it boils? I didn’t do that and when I stirred for the simmering part, little dark chunks came up (I believe they were burnt parts?) Is there something I am missing in the process?

  • Annie

    Yes, you should stir it, just as it says in the instructions. It helps the caramel cook evenly and not burn.

  • Dodi

    I love that you share your recipes with all of us. I know that if I make something from your blog, it will look wonderful and taste even better. I am making these next week for a luncheon at school and was wondering if you could share what kind of chocolate you use in your recipes. I have always used Baker’s chocolate, but am thinking about splurging and trying Valrhona.

  • Annie

    I typically use Ghirardelli but use better quality for things like mousse, flourless chocolate cake, etc. where the quality is key (Callebaut, Valhorna, Scharffen Berger, etc.). I don’t like Baker’s chocolate and pretty much only use it if there is nothing else available. I would use Ghirardelli for these bars.

  • These look incredible! I plan on making them today. If I were to use a candy thermometer, would I cook the caramel to a softball stage?


  • Annie

    I’m not sure about that. It’s really more based on appearance, and I didn’t use a thermometer.

  • Neera

    Annie, ok to use a 9 x 13 pyrex dish for this?

  • Annie


  • Made these for the second time today. I adjusted the recipe by halving the caramel layer and leaving the other two layers as is. I felt that it resulted in a better ratio of shortbread to caramel. The first time I made it, the caramel layer was oozing all over the place. Plus, the shortbread was kind of overpowered. I think it’s perfect now!

  • Heidi

    These bars are fantastic! My husband is on call this weekend and will be thrilled to come home and find these. However, I don’t know how you have the self-control to have a freezer full of them… I’ve proven to myself today that I can’t be trusted. I am packaging them up as we speak to distribute to a couple of our friends, or I will never lose this baby weight :) Thanks for the recipe!

  • Betsy

    Well, okay, so ever since I saw this recipe I knew I was going to use it somewhere, somehow; but I did not expect the HUGE reaction I got from the people who ate these. The acclaim was near universal with people I didn’t even know asking for the recipe. I will definitely make these again; they were wonderful. I’m a texture eater and I have to say that the gooey caramel with the shortbread and the stiff chocolate was DIVINE! Also, you can’t go wrong with a bit of salt on your sweet things.

  • Becky

    A friend shared this recipe with me and it was love at first site. I made them yesterday and they are so delicious! My caramel layer is pretty oozy after cutting them, so my bars look quite ugly, but they taste divine. The ugliness didn’t stop my coworkers from gobbling them up! I’ve kept them in the refrigerator, but next time I will store the finished product in the freezer. I may also half the caramel layer. Great recipe!

  • Oh my my! These look amazing! Thank you for sharing!
    I think I’ll try a test run of these before our holiday cookie exchange and see how they turn out. If they turn out half as nice as how yours look, then they would probably make a great holiday gift for friends in the neighborhood. So fancy!
    Thanks again, Sarah

  • Diana

    Thank you so much for this suggestion! I’ve tried other recipes like this and they’ve never turned out because of the caramel. Halving the caramel was the perfect solution and they came out beautifully!

  • Dawn

    I made these and everyone loved them! The only thing I would change is cut the amount of caramel in half. It was way too thick for me. I’m making them for the holidays.

  • Kacy Furner

    I LOVE the salty sweet combination, especially chocolate/caramel/salt – yum! I’m in the process of making these right now for a family get together this weekend. I’m breaking it down into 3 steps over 3 days, which makes it super easy do. I’ve just finished the caramel step, and I could eat just that it’s so good! Can’t wait to try the finished product!

  • Stacy

    Made these today! Thought I ruined the caramel. It seemed to be taking forever to get done, so I turned it up and walked away for a minute. When I came back the mixture had separated and no matter how I stirred, it would not blend again. Tried a mixer on low speed and it blended it PERFECTLY! Put it all in the fridge to cool for a couple hours and then cut it with a pizza cutter. Cut like a breeze! All stayed in tact. My kids and I LOVE them! They are so yummy!!! Thanks for the recipe!

  • April

    I just made these for my Christmas platters with great success! Thanks for the yummy recipe!

  • Yum. I’ve made these twice – both times with the intention of freezing some, but they’ve never made it that far. I’m actually headed to the fridge for another bite (or two).

    I see a lot of the comments about the burned bits – for me that happened because I used a ceramic cooktop stove and a stainless steel pan. But you can whisk them in really nicely. If they haven’t burned black, they add a nice little toffee style crunch.


  • Jennifer Peake

    I just made these bars for a holiday cookie swap, and they are delicious! This is the first time I’ve been successful with a chewy caramel.

  • A friend made these for her holiday packages, and like most things from your blog, we swap. It’s the only way we’ll get to try everything. These were incredible! I had a hard time limiting myself to only one. I’m debating about making these (I burn caramel every time I try to make it) or asking her to make me a batch.

  • Lauren

    These are so decadent! They make a lot, so I brought half a batch to a party (where they were quickly gobbled up) and froze the rest of the batch. I found out a few weeks ago that my husband has been using them as his midnight snack for weeks and finished them off!

  • Andrea

    Just want to thank you (again) for sharing your passion with us! I have a few food blogs I follow regularly, and what I LOVE about yours is: Regardless of what I choose to make, I KNOW it’s going to be good! :) For a busy working mom, that is sooooo important! There’s simply no time for ho-hum results and do-overs!

    Hope this upcoming year is kinder to you.

  • Siffat

    I am making this right now. I just finished making the crust and it is amazing. This is definitely one of my favorite blogs, your recipes are always great!

  • Tracey

    Love the the idea of these….they’re just way too rich with so much caramel. I’ll definitely half the caramel layer next time.

  • purplecow

    All of the guests loved these, except for the shortbread crust. Too dry and crumbly. I thought the caramel was too thick (should be cut in half), and caramel instructions too “qualitative.” (How about a temperature to determine doneness?) And making the caramel takes too much time for me, since it requires constant stirring. I’m going to experiment with premade caramels and melt them directly on the shortbread.

    Salt & sweet – YUM, especially since I’m not a chocolate person.

  • Beckki 1

    These sound AMAZING! How many ounces are these cans of sweetened condensed milk that we are supposed to use?

  • Stephanie, CA

    Annie I am not someone to comment but I have to say THANK YOU – as others have said when I come to your blog I know that I can never go wrong. All my (your) food is amazing!

    These bars were super rich for me (I still ate one) but my kids (6, 4, 3) LOVED them. They remind me of a truffle. If you eat too many you will lose the joy of enjoying the first bite of just one. As for trying to perfect the carmel this was my first time and I love that it’s not perfect in carmel color, but flavor. I think it gives it that homey feel. Thank you for giving me the courage to try new and exciting flavors and recipes everyday. xo

  • Anonymous

    That has been corrected in the recipe, sorry for the confusion.

  • Elizabeth

    Annie, I love your recipes… thank you! This one was delicious! Someone may have asked this already, but would you recommend freezing them as a whole in the pan (without cutting or separating them into bars?), or cuttting them into bars and freezing in another dish (with space between bars)?

  • Anonymous

    I would make sure they are well chilled (refrigerated) before you cut them, but them freeze them after slicing.

  • Elizabeth

    Thanks for your advice, Annie! I appreciate it!

  • Picturechic1474

    sounds good

  • Mgentry48

    Sounds delicious !

  • Bjbrumbaugh

    These bars are FANTASTIC….a little intimidated when I saw the picture but actually pretty easy! I brought these to work and everyone could not stop talking about them. So so good…one thing I will do different next time is use Fleur De Sel….not sea salt…and wait for it to cool a little more before I sprinkle on the salt. So so good!!!

  • I must must must make these as a Valentine’s treat for my boys! Yummo!

  • I must must must make these for my boys for Valentine’s Day! I’m pinning them too :)

  • Kaye

    A sweet lady brought these to our Sunday School class last Sunday. They are divine:)
    Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe.

  • Heather

    I was sort of disappointed with the caramel… I followed the recipe exactly with everything, and the caramel wasn’t the ooey-gooey goodness I was hoping for. It was more along the lines of a molasses chew, which wasn’t very appetizing. The shortbread, however, was the best recipe for shortbread dough that I’ve found so far. I am going to be trying this recipe again, but this time I’m going to go with a “thinner” caramel sauce, just boiled simple syrup with cream, sort of like the caramel you would put on ice cream, but a but thicker :)

  • NRS

    Annie, do you like ghirardelli semisweet or ghirardelli bittersweet for these? My son and I are looking at the recipe and he wants me to half the layer of caramel, in case that might make a difference in the chocolate you would recommend.

  • Anonymous

    I would still use bittersweet personally, but you can do what you like. Enjoy!

  • Stephanie

    Simply divine! Just finishing making these for the 2nd time. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE these! Thanks for a fabulous recipe!

  • Neera

    Annie, do you store these in the fridge or at room temp?

  • annieseats

    We stored them in the fridge because they were a little bit soft at room temp.

  • Stacy

    My caramel layer was quite hard. What do you think I did wrong?

  • annieseats

    I would guess you overcooked it. Please see the FAQ page re: what went wrong.

  • Michal Thomas

    I made these last night and they are wonderful. I cooked the caramel to soft ball stage (240F) and it didn’t need to be chilled. Set up just right. I also added vanilla to the crust and caramel because it felt criminal not to. I used Guittard extra dark chocolate chocolate chips (the whole bag) and it was perfect.

  • annieseats

    Good to know, that’s a more exact method. Maybe I’ll try that next time and modify the instructions accordingly. Thanks for the tip!

  • Ashley Moran

    Thanks for an amazing recipe! I made these over the weekend. :) I shared a link to your recipe on my blog today!

    xo, ashley

  • Mikaela Cowles

    I recently joined Pinterest which, though fun, sometimes leaves me a little disappointed. “Where did that picture come from!” I have a trip this weekend and my gracious host is picking me up and dropping me off at the air port at ungodly hours. For a month now, I have been racking my brain for a worthy hostest gift. When I saw your salted caramel chocolate shortbread bars on Pinterest, I knew I’d found it. Except, how to get the recipe? Google of course. Long story short, you’re a life saver.

  • annieseats

    Ugh, I really don’t like when people pin things from random places and not the actual source. Glad you found them anyway!

  • Marilyn

    I had these last week at my daughter’s. Addictive!! Can’t wait to make them myself.

  • NRS

    Just cut these. They are so so so yummy!!!! Better than twix!

  • Jessica Lundahl

    These bars are nothing short of amazing. Thanks so much for sharing your recipe!! I’ve also blogged about them here

  • Sarah

    These look just like some tasty desserts I used to eat in Australian cafes all the time… I better not make them or I’d eat the entire pan in one sitting!!!

  • Alisa

    Hi Annie,

    I’ve just made my second batch and we are all enjoying them. A question for you about the chocolate layer: I followed the recipe faithfully but the chocolate appears soft and melts in the hands…not that my family minds. What can I do to have the chocolate firm up?

    Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  • annieseats

    You could chill them. We stored them in the fridge. Glad you enjoyed them!

  • Rebecca

    I have a question about the carmel part? I Followed what you said but my carmel has really dark spots through it from the bottom of the pan. Why did this happen?

  • annieseats

    Sounds like it got a bit burned. The quality of the pan can affect that, as well as the cooking time.

  • Liz

    These are divine! I’ve made 1/2 batches, full batches and double batches. All fabulous. You can make the caramel in the microwave to avoid the burned bits, or melt the butter and sugar first, then add in the sweetended condensed milk and stir constantly with a rubber spatula. No burnt bits, but it takes a while to get the caramel color. I love vanilla in everything, but made these exactly as directed, and wouldn’t change a thing!

  • Susan

    I made these and they were triple delish! I added a tiny bit of orange extract to the shortbread and a tiny bit to the chocolate – heaven!! This is the best recipe for these that I have found so far!

  • I made these – DELICIOUS! And of course, I posted it on my blog and linked back to you:

  • Elizabeth

    I just made these today after pep-talking myself into believing I could actually do it and have them look pretty when finished. I am SO glad I did! Nothing else I’ve made has left me feeling so confident in the kitchen- thank you for your great recipes and amazing instructions to help us newbies figure things out. I followed the instructions to a T and thankfully everything set up well- I did freeze each layer as I added components to make sure the layers stayed strong. I couldn’t be more pleased with the results. Thanks again!

  • made these today, they are AMAZING… yum yum

  • Ashleybre

    I made these last night and I must not have cooked my caramel long enough. They were sitting in the refrigerator all night and when I went to cut them this morning the caramel is oozing out everywhere and was not set at all. A coworker made these and brought them to work and they were delicious, so that prompted me to make them. Mine tasted just like hers, but the caramel just wasn’t the right consistency. I will have to try making these again, since they tasted fantastic. But like others that posted, I would definitely cut the caramel in half – I think it would be a better ratio to the shortbread and chocolate. Thanks for sharing this recipe!

  • Kelsie Rae

    If I wanted to use coconut flour instead what do I need to alter for the liquid ingredients?

  • annieseats

    Please see the FAQ page regarding substitutions. Thanks!

  • Pat

    OH MY! I have made these before and thought I lost the recipe. I took these to a quilt retreat and everyone went nuts. If you can get it use high quality butter. Not the usual stuff in the grocery store. It makes a delicious recipe into something way over the top. MMMMMMMMMM!

  • Erinmorehouse

    I found you through Pinterest linked up no problem…just had to search your site for these…I’m almost done with the batch, and my 3 year old and I are just cleaning up any leftover caramel from the pot…Yum!

  • Rose

    I made this recipe and they came out great! Thank you for sharing =) I must say, however, I thought 5 sticks of butter was way to much. When I got to the chocolate layer, I only used 2 tablespoons (instead of 8) and did not add any additional sugar. With my modifications, they were still very sweet and very rich. My friends raved about them. I may try it again and cut the caramel layer in half.

  • Annie

    I made these for a mom’s group potluck and three people asked me for the recipe! Everyone loved them and they were surprisingly easy to make. I also used the soft ball stage for the caramel, which was good because I probably wouldn’t have cooked it long enough, and it turned out perfect. Thanks for this amazing recipe!!

  • Dub G

    Just made this but used dulce de leche instead of cooking the sweetened condensed milk. Will try it tomorrow but it looks like I nailed it!

  • Bookreader

    I also cooked caramel to 240 degrees. Worked perfectly.

  • Emily

    Annie, I love your recipes and have made lots of them, all with great success! I’ve never tried to make caramel, but I followed your directions exactly and ended up with brown/burnt clumps of sugar in the pot (I attempted the recipe twice and it happened both times). I made sure to stir constantly the entire time, but still ended up with a mess that was definitely not caramel. Any suggestions on what this could be? I was using a regular sauce pot, maybe it wasn’t heavy-bottomed enough? Either way, I’m bummed I wasn’t able to try the bars… but I’m too cheap to waste anymore butter on failed attempts :)

  • annieseats

    I would guess the pan is probably the culprit. I used to have a kind of crappy saucepan and caramel was sometimes a little dicey with so-so results. Now that I have a good pan, I don’t think I’ve had a bad batch…well, possibly one thanks to Facebook distraction :) Sorry to hear you had trouble!

  • Lisa

    This is a very popular dessert in Australia! You can find it in lots of cafes, but it’s called caramel slice instead.

  • melanielgarrett

    Liz can you tell us more about the microwave method for the caramel? Do you just add everything at once, or melt the butter and sugar first? How long does it take with the microwave method? Many thanks!

  • Rebecca

    finished making these -they are amazing – after my caramel separated twice (I got it back by taking off the heat & stir) thanks for the recipe!

  • disqus_GvdOgORmwu

    I made these today and they turned out GREAT! I live at high altitude (5200 ft) and didn’t need to change the recipe at all. I cut them with a pizza cutter and it worked well! I will be eating them in 10 days at a party, so I sliced them today and left them in the fridge until then.

  • I have made these several times, always to rave reviews! Found the perfect salt at Penzey’s Spices, ‘Pacific Sea Salt’. I think I’ll try Michal’s technique of cooking the caramel to soft ball stage, so it doesn’t get so slooshy when it’s not chilled. Thanks, Annie!

  • mine was the same. prefer THIS for the middle layer
    1/4 cup butter
    1/4 cup packed brown sugar
    3 1/2 tablespoons evaporated fat-free milk
    1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
    1/2 cup powdered sugar

  • Pidge

    My cousin served these at a party a few weeks ago and I was hooked. I made the shortbread layer this morning and it baked up lovely. I just poured the caramel layer and have it cooling.

    For those who fear caramel:
    I combined the ingredients in my pan and set the heat on Lowest to melt the butter, Stopped by and stirred it 4 or 5 times to mix in the melting butter.

    I knew from past experience that when I started the high heat caramel process, I had to commit to standing at the stove for a while, so I set up my station with a glass of cold water, laptop and glass of wine. I brought the heat up to medium high and began stirring immediately. When the mixture began to boil, I lowered the heat to Med-Low and kept stirring constantly. I occasionally had to pull the pan off the heat a bit when the mixture would boil up, but eventually it settled down to a nice simmer. Then it was probably 15-20 minute of stir, stir, stir, sip of wine, read a few reviews of the recipe, stir, stir, stir. When it finally became a nice amber color and a bit “foamy” in texture, I dropped a few drops into a glass of cold water. The drop formed little balls, so it was time to pour.

  • Leann Finlay

    Just wondering how your bars came out using the dulce de leche ? Was thinking that might be an easy alternative!

  • Amy J

    i cannot get the recipe to print .. I made it once just looking off the laptop but its not very handy in the kitchen. :( is there any help with this?? I want to make 6 batches for a Christmas cookie exchange, and would like the recipe on paper for that! thanks.. and by the way, We LOVE these bars, they are perfection!!

  • Patti

    The secret to making caramel in a thinner pot is to cook at a lower heat and longer than you would with a thicker-bottomed pan. Takes longer but works just fine!

  • annieseats

    Unfortunately I think it is an issue with your web browser. I’ve tried it on multiple computers and it has printed fine. Good luck and have fun baking!

  • Kerri

    My Carmel never turned amber? Only slightly darker it got, I cooked it stirring constantly for almost 1/2 hour. Not sure what happened, help!

  • annieseats

    You may have just needed higher heat. You are cooking the caramel, and as it cooks, it will turn amber. Good luck!

  • CB

    These are awesome. Made them last night. Everyone at school had a fit over them. Use milk chocolate chips instead of bittersweet. AWESOME. Might add some toasted pecans next time. ??

  • Sheri

    OH MY! I can’t wait to make these! I am positive my husband will LOVE them

  • Aneeta

    These are mind blowingly awesome!!!! OMG…a friend made them and they were so delicious!!!

  • Elizabeth

    Well, I must admit that these are soooooo good. I did some math, and with the cans of condensed milk and sugar, there are almost 500 grams of sugar in this recipe! That’s the same as 12 cans of Coke. And 5 sticks of butter? Wow. That being said, I can’t stop eating these! Good thing it’s the holiday season, it’s the perfect excuse :)

  • annieseats

    Well yes, but it makes something like 60ish servings so, pretty much what I expect nutritionally from a cookie :)

  • Kirsten

    Ahhhmazing! I don’t even think I cooked the caramel long enough, but they still turned out to die for. Such a keeper recipe and a perfect one to give away for the holidays or bring to a dinner. Wow. And I never say that!

  • Now, these look AWESOME.

  • Guest

    Have made similar – Scrumptious Lumps – for many years. This year I used unsalted butter for base – which brought forth many comments – still scrumptious – but salted base preferred.

  • Natalie Cuen

    That’s look amazing. Think I’ll make some for “V” day!

  • ChefJohnsBiggestfan

    Annie……..i just made these and let me just tell you- they would make so much dinero at a bakery!!! I am IN LOVE with these and i actually made these twice. First time around i cooked the caramel a little longer than i was supposed to and they came out “crumbly” and almost had a peanut butter vibe but were STILL HEAVEN ON EARTH and the second time i didn’t do the softball 240 stage i let it start to pull away from sides a smidge THEN i poured it over and its equally as delicious!!! THANK YOU! I just NOW found your blog girl! so happy i did :)

  • dani

    look great! was the crust on these very crumbly when cutting?

  • annieseats

    Not for me. Enjoy!

  • Kristin Baird

    Oh WOW. I made these tonight for a small get together and they were spectacular! My shortbread was a little crumbly, but it looks like a baker error, not a recipe error. Anyway. Thanks so much for sharing this amazing little dessert!

  • Anita

    I made these for a dessert auction today and they fetched a pretty penny!! Of course I saved me a few bars in the freezer. These are definitely an indulgence and I will be making them again! The timing to sprinkle on the fleur de sell was more like 5-7 minutes for me. Excellent!

  • Denise Mares

    I would swear one of your images is on the front of a Yankee jar candle ( Coincidence?

  • annieseats

    Yes, you’re right. It looks like they made an illustration or painting based off of the image. Hmmm….

  • Jenny Crowley

    Someone help!! I made these but when I try to cut the chocolate breaks everywherend the caramel oozes out everywhere

  • Elizabeth

    I made these for Christmas and they were awesome!! The whole attitude of “Well it is Christmas..” came to my mind every time I reached for one but after the first bite I had no cares in the world! The caramel took about 18 minutes of stirring and I had only one small little burnt bit. I had no room left in my fridge so I left them out in a container and they were still amazing room temperature!

  • Bonny @ Clever Hen

    These look heavenly! All the best of flavors….can’t wait to try them.

  • Barbara Hill

    How well did these hold up in the freezer?

  • Jennifer Díaz

    Perfect in every way. I let them set overnight in the fridge and they tasted better after ‘setting’ properly. Caramel took the longest but was not hard to make at all. Definitely an indulgence!

  • Liz N.

    I made these for a colleague’s birthday and they were raved about (as expected). Another recipe checked off from my “to make” list from your blog!