Caramel Shortbread Bars

These Caramel Shortbread Bars are an absolutely delicious blend of flavors! Shortbread topped with rice krispie filled caramel, topped with chocolate and sea salt. Definitely a new favorite around here!

Caramel Krispie Shortbread Bars - layers of shortbread, caramel filled with rice krispies and chocolate
Caramel Krispie Shortbread Bars - layers of shortbread, caramel filled with rice krispies and chocolate

So you guys, I am super pumped for tonight! A friend and I are going to see Boyz II Men and En Vogue in concert and I cannot wait! I am going to dance and sing my butt off!

I’m pretty sure the Boyz II Men “II” album was one of the very first cassette tapes I bought. And please tell me you know what a cassette tape is. Don’t make me feel old. 🙂

Speaking of old, apparently CD’s are becoming old and a thing of the past since the new Macs don’t have CD drives. Seriously, what’s up with that? I have a Boyz II Men CD that I can’t listen to on my laptop and it’s not cool. I’m trying to get even more pumped up! I know most people probably buy digital downloads now, but that doesn’t mean we don’t still own our CDs and need to use them, geez.

Caramel Krispie Shortbread Bars - layers of shortbread, caramel filled with rice krispies and chocolate

Anyways, tonight I won’t need either because I’ll have my music LIVE!

Then the hubs is playing another ProAm tournament, so I’ll be watching that. Let’s hope he wins again!

Aaaand, did you see the photo I shared on instagram last night? Guess who’s in the latest issue of Woman’s World Magazine! I’m pretty excited. 🙂

But back to these bars.

Caramel Krispie Shortbread Bars - layers of shortbread, caramel filled with rice krispies and chocolate
Caramel Krispie Shortbread Bars - layers of shortbread, caramel filled with rice krispies and chocolate

I’ve been wanting to make something like these for some time now. I love caramel and these bars are like wrapping caramel up in a beautiful, semi-baked, tasty, sweet and salty package. Yum!

The shortbread is super easy to put together. Just a few ingredients are mixed together in a food processor, then pressed into the pan.

The caramel layer is made easier by using my favorite store-bought caramels. Making your own caramel isn’t really hard, but this way is even easier. I added some rice krispies to the caramel layer to give it a little crunch. I dig variation in texture and that achieves it.

The bars are topped with chocolate and then sprinkled with sea salt. I don’t always love adding salty to my sweet, because I like the full effect of the sweet. I am a sugar lover to the core! But the salt in these is really spectacular. I might have to some salt on half next time and leave the other side without salt. Then I can alternate between totally sweet, and sweet and salty. 🙂

Caramel Krispie Shortbread Bars - layers of shortbread, caramel filled with rice krispies and chocolate

You can refrigerate the bars, or leave them at room temperature. I personally preferred them cold because they’re firmer, but both ways are delicious.

These bars were a huge hit with my taste testers – some of their favorites. It’s nice to switch it up a little too – I make so much cake, bars were a nice change.

These Caramel Shortbread Bars are perfect for taking to a party or gathering. In fact, you might want to make sure you have somewhere to take them or you just might eat the whole pan before you can say, “Where did all the bars go?”

Caramel Shortbread Bars

Yield: 9-12 bars

Ingredients

Shortbread Layer
1 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
6 tbsp butter, diced
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Caramel Layer
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
1 11 oz bag Kraft Caramels, wrappers removed
2 cups Rice Krispies cereal

Chocolate Layer
8 oz semi-sweet chocolate chips
3 tbsp heavy cream
sea salt

Instructions

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Line a 9x9 pan with parchment paper, leaving some sticking above the sides of the pan to lift the bars out later.
3. Add flour, sugar, butter and vanilla to a food processor and pulse until it comes together and forms a ball.
4. Press dough evenly into the bottom of the pan.
5. Bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned.
6. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
7. Put milk, butter and caramels into a large pot on medium heat. Allow everything to melt, stirring often so that the mixture doesn't boil.
8. Add the rice krispies and mix until incorporated.
9. Pour caramel mixture evenly over shortbread. Set pan aside.
10. Heat heavy cream and chocolate chips in the microwave at 30 second increments, stirring between increments, until melted.
11. Pour chocolate evenly over caramel layer.
12. Allow bars to cool. You can put them in the refrigerator to cool more quickly.
13. Lift bars out of the pan and cut into squares. It's easier to cut them if they are cold.
14. Serve bars cold or at room temperature.
http://www.lifeloveandsugar.com/2014/08/22/caramel-shortbread-bars/

Enjoy!

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You might also like:

Soft and Chewy Caramel Clusters
Caramel Cluster Cookies

Caramel Rolo Rice Krispie Treats
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Gingerbread Caramel Gooey Bars
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Recipes from friends:
Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Bars from Shugary Sweets
Bourbon Salted Caramel Oatmeal Cookies from Beyond Frosting
Salted Caramel Brownies from Inside BruCrew Life