These bars are easily whipped up by using a jar of dulce de leche sauce. Dulce de leche tastes like a creamy caramel sauce. It’s also possible to make dulce de leche using sweetened condensed milk, but this recipe was made with a prepared jar of dulce de leche.
This recipe can be easily customized by changing the type of chocolate and nuts used in the recipe. Butterscotch and macadamias or dark chocolate and pistachios are just a few ways you can change it up. This recipe makes a 9 x 13 dish of bars that will serve a large crowd. It’s also a definite crowd-pleaser as the combination of crispy, candied bacon, caramel, chocolate, nuts and pastry is dangerously addictive. These bars taste much better than they look. You won’t be able to eat just one, so don’t say we didn’t warn you!
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
1/4 cup sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
12 ounces bacon, chopped
½ cup brown sugar
One 8-ounce bag sweetened shredded coconut
12 ounces chocolate chips
1 cup chopped pecans, almonds or walnuts
One 14-ounce jar dulce de leche
7 ounces sweetened condensed milk
Preheat oven to 350° F. Line a 9-by-13-inch casserole dish with parchment paper. Evenly coat the paper with cooking spray.
Rub brown sugar on both sides of each bacon strip. Place on a baking sheet or casserole dish, then place in a cold oven. Turn oven to 400° F and bake for 17-20 min until bacon is crisp. You may need to flip the bacon halfway through to avoid burning on one side. Set aside and allow to cool. When cool, chop into large chunks.
In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the sugar and egg yolk at medium speed until blended. Add the flour and mix until crumbs form, being careful not to over mix. Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the casserole dish. Bake for 20-25 min. until crust is golden brown.
In a bowl, add the coconut, chocolate chips, chopped nuts and bacon and gently stir. Try not to snack on it just yet. In a separate bowl, mix ½ can (7 ounces) of sweetened condensed milk with ¾ of the the dulce de leche sauce. Evenly sprinkle the coconut-bacon-nut mixture over the dulce de leche. Drizzle the remaining condensed milk/dulce de leche mixture on top.
Bake for 35 to 40 minutes until the bars are light brown on top. Remove from oven and let the bars cool, then refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. Carefully remove the bars from the pan and peel off the paper. Cut into bars and serve.