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These Nanaimo Bars are the richest, creamiest, most decadent dessert ever. Try one bite and you are going to be hooked!
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These Coconut Pecan Nanaimo Bars are the richest, creamiest, most decadent dessert ever — you are going to LOVE them. The bottom crust is like a thick, no bake cookie with coconut and pecan pieces, the middle layer is a creamy custard filling, and the top is a smooth chocolate ganache.
Ingredients in Nanaimo Bars
- Salted Butter
- Brown Sugar
- Cocoa Powder
- Vanilla Extract
- Graham Cracker Crumbs
- Sweetened Shredded Coconut
- Pecans – you can also use other nuts like walnuts or almonds.
- Salted Butter
- Heavy Cream
- White Chocolate Instant Pudding Mix – the original recipe uses vanilla custard powder, but pudding mix is a little easier to find. You can also use instant vanilla pudding mix.
- Powdered Sugar – also called confectioners’ sugar.
- Semisweet Chocolate Chips
- Salted Butter
Nanaimo Bars Origins
Nanaimo Bars are a traditional, no-bake, Canadian recipe. They were created in a small cafe in Nanaimo, British Columbia. I got this recipe from my friend, Shannon, who was also my roommate in college. She made these for me and our other roommates one weekend and our whole apartment was hooked! If we saw her come home from the grocery store with the ingredients for these bars, our mouths would immediately start watering. She won over not only our hearts, but the hearts of many of our friends and neighbors — she was practically famous for them, and now you can be too!
Frequently Asked Questions
Similar treats have popped up in the USA like the New York Slice, the London Fog Bar, and the Prayer Bar.
I think it comes down to the fact that this bar has a little bit of everything you want in a dessert – great smooth texture, a little crunch, some chocolate, some salty flavor, and not too cloyingly sweet.
Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge.
Other Decadent Desserts You’ll Love
If you love these Coconut Pecan Nanaimo Bars, try some of our other rich, chocolatey, and downright decadent dessert recipes!
- German Chocolate Fudge
- Better Than Sex Cake
- Avalanche Bark
- Easy Flourless Chocolate Cake
- Chocolate Satin Pie
- Oh Henry Bars
- Chocolate Malt Cake with Chocolate Malt Icing
- German Chocolate Cookie Bars
- Instant Pot Chocolate Lava Cake
How to Make Nanaimo Bars
Nanaimo Bars (no bake dessert)
- 8×8 pan
- Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Remove from heat and add in brown sugar and cocoa powder. Whisk until combined. Slowly pour in beaten egg while whisking to combine. Return to medium heat and cook for 1-2 minutes or until mixture has thickened. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Add the graham cracker crumbs, coconut, and pecans and mix until coated. Press mixture into a greased 8×8 pan. Cover with plastic wrap and freeze for 20 minutes.
- In a large bowl, mix together butter, heavy cream, and pudding mix until fluffy, about 2-3 minutes. Stir in powdered sugar and mix for about 1 minute. Spread the mixture evenly over the graham cracker base. Cover and freeze for 15 minutes.
- Melt chocolate chips and butter together in a glass bowl set over a pot of simmering water. Spread evenly over filling layer. Cover and freeze for 10 minutes.
- Cut into squares and enjoy!
- To get 18 slices, use a sharp knife to cut bars into 9 squares (three evenly spaced cuts going horizontally and then vertically). Then cut each of those squares in half.
- You can also use an 11×17 pan for thinner bars.
- Store leftovers in an airtight container in the fridge or freezer.
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