Coconut Caramel Candy Bars

makes 4–5 dozen squares

Bot­tom layer: 

1 cup milk choco­late chips
1/4 cup vanilla chips
1/4 cup creamy almond butter
1/4 cup toasted coconut + 2 table­spoons sprin­kled on top

Sec­ond layer: 

4 table­spoons butter
1 cup gran­u­lated sugar
1/4 cup evap­o­rated milk (not sweet­ened condensed)
1 1/2 cups marsh­mal­low creme
1/4 cup creamy almond butter
1 tea­spoon vanilla
1 1/2 cups chopped roasted almonds

Caramel layer: 

16 oz. caramel sauce: You can either melt 14 oz. of caramels with 1/4 cup cream or make your own home­made caramel. (10X yum­mier if you make your own!! And not that dif­fi­cult. You will need a good qual­ity candy ther­mome­ter. One with a 2 degree gauge is best.)

To make your own: 

1 1/2 cups gran­u­lated sugar
2 table­spoons light corn syrup (this is to help pre­vent crystallization)
1/2 tea­spoon kosher salt
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1 table­spoon sour cream

Choco­late layer:

1 cup choco­late chips
1/4 cup vanilla chips
1/4 cup creamy almond butter

First layer preparation: 

But­ter a 9X13 glass pyrex casse­role dish gen­er­ously, and set aside. Com­bine the choco­late chips, vanilla chips, and almond but­ter in a small saucepan and melt together over very low heat until com­bined. Take off the heat and stir in the 1/4 cup of toasted coconut. Spread evenly into the but­tered pan you have set aside. Sprin­kle the remain­ing 2 table­spoons toasted coconut over the top of this layer. Place pan into the fridge until set.

Sec­ond layer preparation: 

In another small, heavy saucepan, melt the but­ter. Add the sugar and evap­o­rated milk and bring to a low boil. Reduce the heat and boil for 5 min­utes.. Remove from the heat and stir in the marsh­mal­low creme, almond but­ter, vanilla, and chopped almonds. Spread over chilled first layer and let set in refrigerator.

Caramel layer preparation: 

In a small, heavy saucepan, com­bine the sugar, corn syrup, salt and water. Bring to a boil and cook, with­out stir­ring (this can cause sugar crys­tals to form), until the tem­per­a­ture reaches 340 degree F.** (see note at bot­tom of post) 

Pull pan off of the heat and stir in the cream, but­ter, and sour cream. It will bub­ble up furi­ously so pre­pare your self for this. Stir until every­thing comes together smoothly. This recipe should make exactly 16 oz. of caramel sauce.

Choco­late layer preparation: 

Com­bine the choco­late and vanilla chips and the almond but­ter in a small saucepan. (hope­fully you are just wash­ing out the same saucepan you used for the other lay­ers…) Pour over caramel layer. Let the whole pan set in refrig­er­a­tor sev­eral hours, covered. 

When ready to serve, take pan out of the refrig­er­a­tor and let set a few min­utes to make cut­ting eas­ier. I only cut what I’m about to serve as the caramel is still quite gooey and will start to ooze out as you can see in the photo. Bars must be stored in refrigerator.

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