Nanaimo Bars Recipe

Nanaimo Bar Recipe

The sinfully-rich Nanaimo bar takes its name from the city of Nanaimo on the east coast of Vancouver Island, Canada. This calorie-laden dessert was first mentioned in local cookbooks in the 1950s. Today the three-layer bars are kept next to the cookies and muffins in most British Columbia cafes.


Base Layer:

  • half a cup unsalted butter or margarine
  • quarter cup granulated sugar
  • five tablespoons cocoa
  • one beaten egg
  • half a cup chopped almonds or walnuts
  • one cup grated coconut
  • two cups graham wafer crumbs


  • two tablespoons vanilla custard powder
  • two to three tablespoons cream
  • half a cup softened unsalted butter or margarine
  • two cups icing sugar


  • two tablespoons unsalted butter or margarine
  • 100 grams semi-sweet chocolate


Base Layer:

  • melt the unsalted butter or margarine, sugar, and cocoa powder in a double boiler over the heat
  • add a beaten egg and mix well until it thickens
  • remove mixture from the heat
  • stir in the almonds or walnuts, grated coconut, and graham wafer crumbs
  • press the soft mixture firmly into an ungreased eight-inch square pan
  • put the pan in the refrigerator to chill


  • combine the vanilla custard powder, cream, softened unsalted butter or margarine, and icing sugar in a mixing bowl and beat until smooth
  • spread this mixture evenly over the base layer
  • place the pan back into the fridge to stand for half an hour

Nanaimo bars


  • melt the unsalted butter or margarine and semi-sweet chocolate over low heat and stir until smooth
  • allow the liquid to cool slightly and pour over the filling
  • place the pan back in the fridge to chill

Once the product has set, use a hot knife to cut the slab into 40 bars which should be stored in the fridge. This is only one Nanaimo bar recipe and there are many variations.

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