After all, I’m only human. 😉
These treats totally deviate from the typical fare — sweet or savory — that you might normally see here. First, there’s not a lot, if any, cooking skill involved — and second, they’re not exactly made with fresh, whole foods.
(Am I doing a good job selling them, or what?)
Here’s what happened . . . .
The other day, I grabbed a quick coffee at local café, and from behind the glass in the pastry display, there were Seven Layer Bars staring at me. Looking right at me, I tell you! I had to buy one — I knew they’d be good with my coffee . . . and my sweet tooth had to be satisfied, after all. After I ate the over-the-top, outrageously sinful dessert, I could not stop thinking about employing all of the ingredients — and some more — in my own baking pan.
Never having made this dessert, I did a little research and learned that these are also called Magic Bars . . . and that there aren’t really seven layers. (Nor are they magic, FYI.) I’m not sure why I felt so compelled to make them, but as long as I was, I had to “make them my own” . . . so I used pretzels for the crust (instead of the usual graham crackers) and added a creamy layer of chocolate-peanut butter deliciousness.
The result is whole lot of crazy sweetness packed into one pan. They’re crunchy, salty, ooey, gooey, rich, and creamy — all at once! Yes, they’re a bit crazy — ridiculous, in fact. I mean when does one ever buy butterscotch chips!? It’s seriously almost like having a handful of pretzels with a variety of chocolate chips dipped in peanut butter and sprinkled with coconut and pecans. Only it’s all melted together into one organized and good looking bar.
They must be cut into small squares, as all you’ll need is one bite. One bite a day anyway.
So there you have it. Every now and then, you gotta do what you gotta do, and be human. Eat something like this, and enjoy it! I do hope you’ll indulge and see what all my fuss is about.
- 3 cups pretzels (see notes)
- ¾ cup (1½ sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- ¼ cup plus 3 tablespoons sweetened condensed milk, divided
- 1 cup pecan pieces, divided
- 1¼ sweetened coconut flakes, divided
- ½ cup creamy salted peanut butter
- ½ cup finely chopped semisweet chocolate
- 1 cup milk chocolate chips
- 1 cup peanut butter chips
- 1 cup butterscotch chips
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F, and line a square (approximately 9 X 9-inch) baking pan with parchment paper. (Use a large piece that will cover the sides and cut slits in each corner so that it will lay flat.)
- Add the pretzels to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment and blend until you have a mostly smooth powder. Pour this into a large mixing bowl and mix in the melted butter. Now press this into the parchment-lined baking pan. (It helps to flatten it out with a flat-bottomed metal spatula.)
- Drizzle the crust evenly with 3 tablespoons of the sweetened condensed milk, then use a small flat-bottomed spatula to carefully spread it out.
- Sprinkle evenly with ½ cup of the pecans and ½ cup of the coconut.
- Add the peanut butter and semisweet chocolate to a small sauce pan and place it over low-medium heat. Heat just to melt the chocolate, and then gently mix the two together. Drizzle this evenly on top of the coconut and pecans, and then gently spread it out.
- Now sprinkle evenly with ¼ cup of the pecans and ¼ cup of the coconut.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine the milk chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, and butterscotch chips with the remaining ¼ cup of the sweetened condensed milk and the remaining ½ cup of the coconut. Pour this over the last layer and then use your hands or a spoon to move it around so that it's as even as possible.
- Sprinkle with the remaining ¼ cup of pecans and then place in the preheated 375 degree F oven just until the top (mostly along the edges) is golden, about 20 minutes.
- Let the cool completely in the pan, at least for 1 hour. Then gently lift it out of the pan, carefully holding the edges of the parchment paper. Lift it onto a cutting board and then slice into approximately 20 evenly sized pieces.