These chocolate caramel bars are easy to make and totally decadent–and bonus, they’re NO BAKE! Plus, everybody loves them!
Get ready! I’m about to introduce you to your new favorite cookie. Unless, of course, you don’t love the combination of chocolate and caramel.
Obviously I kid—who in the world could say no to that combo? Rich chocolate, sweet buttery caramel, and a crunchy graham cracker crust make these chocolate caramel bars 100% impossible to resist.
I’m telling you from experience: make sure you have people around to help you eat them because they go quickly even when you’re by yourself. Maybe especially when you’re by yourself because there’s no one to point out that you’re overdoing it. Not that I’d know anything about that. . . #oops
Why you’ll love these chocolate caramel bars:
- They’re fully NO-BAKE!
- They’re really easy to make and don’t require any special skills
- This recipe makes enough to feed a crowd (making them perfect for holiday parties, hint hint)
How to Make a Graham Cracker Crust
Quick poll: who thinks some of the best things in life start with a graham cracker crust? (Both of my hands are raised.). They’re so easy to make and they add delicious texture and flavor to everything. Paired with the smooth caramel filling in these bars you’ll looove it.
Start by combining graham cracker crumbs, granulated sugar, melted butter, and salt in a small mixing bowl. Stir until all the crumbs are evenly saturated, then press the mixture into the bottom of a 15-by 10- by 1-inch baking pan. You don’t need to grease the pan first.
Baker’s tip: Use a measuring cup to help you press the crust into the bottom of the pan. You want to press down really hard and the measuring cup can help with that; it will also help you achieve an even thickness.
Refrigerate the crust for 1 hour, then make the filling.
How to Make the Caramel Filling
Combine brown sugar, unsalted butter, sweetened condensed milk, and salt in a medium saucepan. If your butter is cold, cut it into several chunks so it melts faster.
Bring that to a boil stirring constantly, and allow it to boil for 5 minutes STILL STIRRING. If you don’t stir your caramel, it could scorch. Remove from the heat, stir in the vanilla, and pour that over the chilled crust. Smooth it into an even layer and let it sit at room temp for 15 minutes.
How to Finish Your Chocolate Caramel Bars
Combine chocolate chips, heavy cream, and light corn syrup in a medium (microwave-safe!) mixing bowl and heat in 20-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.
Melting the chocolate slowly is important because chocolate scorches easily; don’t be tempted just to put the bowl in the microwave and nuke it for 5 minutes without stirring.
Pour the chocolate over the caramel layer and use an offset spatula to spread it into an even layer. Let the bars sit at room temperature for half an hour, then refrigerate for at least 4 hours before you slice them—4 hours is the minimum; overnight is better.
OK that’s it. See how easy? You can totally (and should totally) make a batch of chocolate caramel bars even if you’re a kitchen novice. You’ll thank me, I can virtually guarantee it.
Unless you eat them all yourself—but I refuse to take responsibility for that 😉
Did you make these chocolate caramel bars? Great! Post a pic on Instagram and tag @theitsybitsykitchen so I can see your gorgeous creations!
These chocolate caramel bars are easy to make and they're totally no bake--even the most novice baker can make them successfully!
- 3 cups graham cracker crumbs
- 14 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
- Combine all crust ingredients in a medium mixing bowl and stir until crumbs are evenly moistened. Press firmly into an even layer in the bottom of a 15- by 10- by 1-inch baking pan. Refrigerate the crust for 1 hour before making the filling.
- Combine all ingredients EXCEPT vanilla in a medium saucepan set over medium heat. (If your butter is cold cut it into pieces.)
- Bring mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Boil for 5 minutes, still stirring. Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
- Pour the filling over the chilled crust and let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes.
- Combine the chocolate chips, heavy cream, and corn syrup in a medium microwave-safe bowl. Heat in 20-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.
- Pour the chocolate over the caramel layer and use an offset spatula to smooth it into an even layer. Let bars sit at room temperature for 30 minutes, then refrigerate for at least 4 hours (overnight is better) before slicing and serving.
- Bars can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 5 days.
Be sure to press the crust firmly into the pan; use the bottom of a measuring cup to help you compress the crumbs. The measuring cup will also help you achieve an even crust layer.
The bars need to chill for at least 4 hours (overnight is better) so be sure to plan for that!