I love bars. They’re so much quicker than cookies to make; no need to scoop out individual balls of dough. Most bars freeze well, so they’re easy to have on hand even if you don’t have time to make a fresh batch. And usually once they’re baked, you’re done, unlike with cakes that so often must be frosted.
These bars were initially a disappointment. Tasted soon after they came out of the oven the shortbread base separates from the top and the flavor is bland.
Tasted the next day, after the bars have chilled overnight in the refrigerator, and the bars hold together well, and the flavor is fantastic. Slightly chewy thanks to the condensed milk, but with nice crunch from the nuts, and the shortbread turns into a delightfully crumbly base.
So, don’t make these expecting an immediate treat, but if you can plan ahead and let them thoroughly chill, they are delectable.
2 cups (240 grams) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (60 grams) powdered sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup toffee baking chips
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a 13×9″ baking pan with cooking spray.
In a large bowl, combine flour, powdered sugar, and butter. Mix until thoroughly combined, then firmly press into prepared pan to form a crust. Bake 12 – 14 minutes or until golden brown.
While crust is baking, in a medium bowl, combine condensed milk, egg, and vanilla. Pour over baked crust. Sprinkle evenly with the nuts, chips, and toffee chips.
Return to oven and bake until set and golden brown, around 25 minutes. Cool at room temperature, then cool completely in refrigerator.
Variations, Modifications, and Other Comments
I didn’t measure any of the nuts, chips, or toffee pieces that carefully, but I probably used less toffee chips and more chocolate.
Use whatever sorts of nuts you prefer. I adore pecans so that’s almost always my choice.
These bars freeze beautifully, so don’t hesitate to make the entire batch, even if you don’t need many. I almost never halve a recipe that calls for a can of condensed milk because I hate trying to measure out a half can.
I’d give credit to the original recipe source, but I don’t know it. It’s one that’s been in my recipes-to-try binder for years before I finally made it, and any original attributions were lost.