Walnut Nanaimo Bars

nanaimo bars

These rich and decadent no-bake chocolate custard bars originated in British Columbia, Canada in the 1930's. Even more sinful than our treasured butter tarts, this is yet another version of the traditional recipe. I incorporated some chopped walnuts into the bottom layer this time around for some extra texture and nutty goodness.

Never mind the guilt, as that will spoil the enjoyment of this custardy, chocolate experience that admittedly really ought to be served only on special occasions.

canadian nanaimo bars

Nanaimo BarsWalnut Nanaimo Bars
Recipe by
Cuisine: Canadian
Published on November 1, 2012

Walnut Nanaimo bars — a rich and decadent no-bake chocolate custard bar with chopped walnuts

Preparation: 30 minutes

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Bottom layer:
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs or crushed digestive biscuits
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
  • 3/4 cups fine shredded unsweetened dried coconut
Middle layer:
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons milk or plain yogurt
  • a few drops of vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla custard powder
  • 2 cups icing sugar
Top layer:
  • 1/2 cup dark chocolate
  • 1/2 cup milk chocolate
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • To make the bottom layer, melt the butter, sugar and cocoa in a heavy saucepan over medium-low heat. Add the beaten egg and stir to cook and thicken. Remove from heat and stir in the graham cracker crumbs, walnuts and coconut. Press firmly into an ungreased 9 × 9 inch baking pan.

  • Nanaimo bars bottom layer
  • To make the middle layer, cream the butter, milk or yogurt, vanilla, custard powder and icing sugar together in a mixing bowl. Beat until light. Spread over the bottom layer.

  • Nanaimo bars middle layer
  • Chill in the refrigerator while you make the third layer.

  • Melt the chocolate and butter over low heat. Remove from heat and let stand to cool. When cool but still runny, spread over the middle layer. Return the pan to the refrigerator and chill for at least 30 minutes.

  • Nanaimo bars top layer
  • Use a sharp knife to cut into squares. Store in the refrigerator covered in foil or plastic wrap. Eat these in sparing quantities.

Makes 9 three-inch squares

nanaimo bar

Other no-bake treats from my kitchen:
Classic Nanaimo Bars
Best-Ever Rum Balls
Peanut Butter Chocolate Squares
Peanut Butter Carob Balls

On the top of the reading stack: various stacks of bound goodness

Audio Accompaniment: Ostinato


Priya Suresh said...

I wont mind grabbing some,delicious bars.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Oh, terrific! What a delicious combination. Those Nanaimo Bars look so sinful.



Lisa Turner said...

Thanks for dropping by Rosa. These are decadent indeed and that I why I make them pretty much only for special occasions!