This is day five of our 14 Days of CookKing Arthur Flour logoies blog series! Today we have a delicious layered bar recipe. On April 1st ABW Appliances will be hosting our 4th annual Kelly’s Cookie Challenge, a cookie baking competition with the goal of raising money for charity. Tickets are only $20 per person. Get yours today!

This year we are thrilled to be partnering with the King Arthur Flour company. Starting this year the OFFICAL flour of Kelly’s Cookie Challenge! All of the recipes featured in this blog series is provided courtesy of King Arthur Flour. Enjoy!

For more incredible recipes please visit the recipe section of the King Arthur Flour website. You can buy their fantastic book, The King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion, along with many other books, baking supplies, and kitchen tools at their online store. Check them out!

Nanaimo Bars

This layered bar is originally from Nanaimo (pronounced nah-NIGH-moe), a city on Vancouver Island in British Columbia. It was born in 1952, when a fund-raising cookbook from the island featured three recipes for chocolate squares. These recipes were reprinted under the name Nanaimo Bars in the Vancouver Sun. Canadian food companies adopted them as a convenient vehicle for their products, and they've been growing in popularity ever since. These bars are exceedingly rich; a little goes a long way. And while the original didn't include coconut flavor in the filling, we think its addition is absolutely perfect.
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Servings 25 squares
Author King Arthur Flour



  • 1/2cupunsalted butter8 tablespoons, melted
  • 1/4cupgranulated sugar
  • 1/3cupunsweetened cocoa powderDutch-process cocoa preferred
  • 1large egg
  • 1cupsweetened or unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2cupchopped walnuts or pecans
  • 1teaspoonvanilla extract
  • 2cupsgraham cracker crumbsmade from about 13 whole crackers


  • 1/2cupunsalted butter8 tablespoons, room temperature
  • 1/4teaspoonsaltomit if you use salted butter
  • 2cupsconfectioners' sugar or glazing sugarsifted
  • 1/2teaspoonvanilla extract or 1/8 teaspoon coconut flavor
  • 2tablespoonsPastry Cream Filling mix or instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 2tablespoonsmilk


  • 1cupchopped bittersweet chocolate or semisweet chocolate chipsBelcolade bittersweet disks are good
  • 1/4cupheavy cream or 2 tablespoons butter


  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 9" x 13" pan.
  2. To make the crust: Place all of the crust ingredients in a mixing bowl, and beat at medium speed just until thoroughly combined.
  3. Press the mixture into the prepared pan, and bake for 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, and set it aside to cool.
  4. To make the filling: In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the softened butter, 1 cup of the sugar, and the vanilla, beating until smooth.
  5. In a small bowl, combine the pastry cream filling mix or instant vanilla pudding mix with the milk, stirring until thick and smooth.
  6. Add the pudding mix to the butter/sugar mixture, stirring to combine.
  7. Add the remaining sugar, and beat until the filling is smooth. Spread it over the cooled crust, cover, and refrigerate until chilled.
  8. To make the icing: Combine the chocolate and cream (or butter) in a saucepan or microwave-safe bowl. Heat until the cream is steaming. Stir until smooth.
  9. Spread the frosting onto the bars. Refrigerate until the chocolate is set.
  10. Cut into small bars or rectangles to serve. The bars will be very stiff when cold, but will soften quickly at room temperature.
  11. Yield: 48 1" x 2" bars. Store covered, in the refrigerator, for up to 1 week. These bars also freeze well.

Recipe Notes

Tips from our bakers What to do with the instant pudding mix once you've used 2 tablespoons for these bars? Make instant pudding, reducing the milk in the recipe on the box by 3 tablespoons. Add 1 teaspoon vanilla extract for enhanced flavor.