butterscotch cashew bars

butterscotch cashew bars

I like to think that I’m relatively level-headed when it comes to sweets. Sure, I love baking but I don’t really go overboard with recipes that use a ton of butter or cream. Or butterscotch chips. But I happened to read this post on Just Cook NYC and I couldn’t get those orange-hued cashew bars out of my head. Luckily, my local grocery store must have been conspiring because there was a super sale on butterscotch chips! My fate was sealed.

butterscotch, yum!

The only problem was that there was no recipe in Justin’s post. No matter, that’s what Google is for (uh, or a bookstore where I could purchase the cookbook) and I found a kind of cockamamie recipe over at Serious Eats. It’s cockamamie because it isn’t complete – one entire step regarding the bottom cookie layer is gone and the rest of the recipe seems a bit off. So I just used my skills honed from the cranberry lemon bars and it worked out just fine. Making the butterscotch topping couldn’t have been simpler. Melt the chips with some butter and water and corn syrup before adding in the cashews.


And can I mention that every time I use corn syrup, I squee! Seriously, look at the little red elephant spout on my bottle of Korean corn syrup! Too cute. I guess it’s a good thing, that I only use corn syrup about once a year.

Recently I mentioned that I rarely make layered squares or bar cookies because they seem like to much work. Many people disagreed with me and I guess it just took a little practice to get comfortable. These squares were easy to make, they were easy to cut and totally easy to share with friends. And they go perfectly with a cup of coffee. Even my butterscotch-hating husband couldn’t help but grab seconds.

Please note that the bars were a bit gooey in the very middle which wasn’t a bad thing. If you wanted a firmer centre, you could bake them for another 5 minutes or so – but watch them closely because I’m guessing that they could burn quickly around the edges.

elsewhere: It’s feeling like spring here in Vancouver, so why not get festive and celebrate the longer days! Over at Poppytalk, I make some creamy green salsa. It’s unusual and full of flavour and totally vegan, so get your dip on.

butterscotch cashew squares

30 comments to “butterscotch cashew bars”

  1. 1
    vanillasugarblog   March 16, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    Mmmmm. now this is comfort food. i must have some now….they look so mouthwatering good.

  2. 2
    VeggieGirl   March 16, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    Fabulous bars! And cute corn syrup bottle ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. 3
    Renee   March 16, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    You had me at cashew! Love butterscotch!

  4. 4
    Kim Petersen   March 16, 2011 at 5:08 pm

    I so often go for chocolate, but these bars are making me rethink that! Will try them soon. Thanks for an interesting and fun website.

  5. 5
    Chihiro   March 16, 2011 at 5:10 pm

    this looks so bad for my teeth, but I love the caramel and cookie base!!

  6. 6
    Rachel (Olalliberry)   March 16, 2011 at 5:40 pm

    Wow this look so good! I just got a huge container of salted cashews, too ๐Ÿ™‚

  7. 7
    Nessa   March 16, 2011 at 5:55 pm

    ok so you caused me to go break in to our girl scout cookie stash and it didn’t cure the need to have some butterscotch cashew somethings… recipe bookmarked for next grocery store visit.

  8. 8
    Bijoux   March 16, 2011 at 8:27 pm

    I love cashew nuts! Oh, and they’re salted too! Even better. And butterscotch chips to boot! These look sinfully sweet and delicious and gooey – I like gooey! I can see myself developing warm, fuzzy feelings towards these bars. Yes, very cute Korean corn syrup dispenser!

  9. 9
    Joanne   March 17, 2011 at 3:19 am

    If butterscotch chips went on sale at my grocery store, I would totally take it as a sign. These sound amazing! Butterscotch is one of my FAVORITE dessert flavors.

  10. 10
    Rivki Locker (Ordinary Blogger)   March 17, 2011 at 4:43 am

    These look amazing, and you did pretty good for someone without a recipe. When there’s a will, there’s a way!!

  11. 11
    Maddie   March 17, 2011 at 11:30 am

    Good call on using butterscotch chips hereโ€”I made some awesome bourbon butterscotch sauce to ladle over ice cream, but it was definitely a lot of work to get the sauce to the right consistency (you add liquid to the melted sugar, then the sauce seizes up, etc. etc.). These bars sound like half the work and all the deliciousness!

  12. 12
    Kimberley   March 17, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    Oh my gosh, yum. I love butterscotch and I love cashews. Or any salty, crunchy, sweet combo.

  13. 13
    kickpleat   March 17, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    Thanks Vanillasugarblog, they are totally comfort food to the max!

    Thanks VeggieGirl, it was a cute surprise to open my the corn syrup and find an elephant face ๐Ÿ™‚

    Renee, glad I could catch your fancy!

    Kim, it’s a nice change from chocolate.

    Aw, chihiro, give your teeth a good brushing right afterwards! They aren’t sticky so no worries about them sticking to your teeth. But they are packed with sugar.

    Rachel, sounds like the fates are conspiring!!

    Nessa, yes, give these a try after your cookie binge ๐Ÿ™‚

    Joanne, I think you’d like these a lot! A bit of salt to balance out all the sweetness.

    Rivki, well, there was a recipe – it was just not all there! Thanks.

    Maddie, yes, these are so much simpler than creating a caramel from scratch.

    Well Kimberley, I think these bars were made for you ๐Ÿ™‚

  14. 14
    IslandEAT   March 17, 2011 at 5:53 pm

    Jeannette, I like the idea of these, especially as they are similar to a (now defunct) Chicago confection, Lanzi Nut Chews, which though cashew-and-butterscotchy, were more similar to a Rice Krispie treat)…yet both seem very tempting right now.



  15. 15
    Sues   March 17, 2011 at 7:20 pm

    I LOVE butterscotch and these look awesome ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m saving them for my next party treat!

  16. 16
    Eva   March 18, 2011 at 8:07 am

    Um YUM! I think that is all that needs to be said.

  17. 17
    kickpleat   March 18, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Dan, how about this butterscotch-cashew topping OVER at rice krispie square!! OMG.

    Sues, they are so delicious – well-loved by everyone who snagged a bite.

    Indeed, Eva.

  18. 18
    Megan   March 18, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Oh wow, those look amazing- YUM!

  19. 19
    Rayna   March 18, 2011 at 8:40 pm

    These look so good, I love cashews ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll definitely be saving this and making them myself! Love your blog by the way; I just started my own too!

  20. 20
    lo   March 20, 2011 at 1:59 pm

    You’ve totally got me. Gooey, salty, sweet and nutty? Sounds like the perfect way to get my sugar fix. And yes, I also think I’m pretty level-headed when it comes to sweets.

  21. 21
    Lucy @ Lucy eats   March 20, 2011 at 6:04 pm

    How delicious! I wish butterscotch chips were readily available in new Zealand supermarkets.. I’m really craving a slice of your cashew bar now!

  22. 22
    kickpleat   March 22, 2011 at 10:48 am

    Thanks Megan, they are super fantastico! Really ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks so much Ryna for stopping by! I’ll check out your blog.

    Yes, lo, these are everything you describe and more.

    Lucy, that is a bit of a bummer! There’s always online ordering for such butterscotch-chip-craving occasions!

  23. 23
    The Candy Crusader   March 23, 2011 at 4:05 pm

    These look so good! Definitely going to give them a try

  24. 24
    Heather   March 24, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    Drool! These look incredible… One question – I can’t see the bottom or the side of the bar… Is the base a flour-type concoction – like a cake? Is it more of a pie crust? Does the butterscotch cashew mix melt into the base?

    Thanks in advance!!!

  25. 25
    kickpleat   March 24, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    Thanks Candy Crusader, they’re delicious!

    Heather, good question. It’s like a shortbread cookie crust. The butterscotch sits on top of the cookie base. They are good, so please give them a try.

  26. 26
    Heather   March 24, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    Sorry – I had one more question and didn’t know it… Your recipe calls for the pan to be buttered, but did you put a layer of parchment paper down?

    Thanks for answering my last question… As you can probably tell – I’m making these!

  27. 27
    kickpleat   March 24, 2011 at 1:28 pm

    Thank you Heather! Yes, I totally forgot that I did add parchment to the bottom and have amended the recipe. Thank you, thank you!! Please let me know how they turn out ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. 28
    Kate   April 6, 2011 at 6:22 pm

    I saw your pictures of these bars and my brain said, “Squeeee!” I am not as sparing with sweets; can’t wait to make these.

  29. 29
    Sasa   April 8, 2011 at 4:50 am

    When I was in SE Asia I couldn’t indulge in my daily choc fix (melty!) so we ate something like this but with sesame seeds, bad for teeth, SO good for my tastebuds ^_^

  30. 30
    kickpleat   April 12, 2011 at 2:07 pm

    Kate, let me know if you give them a try!

    Sasa, sounds good!

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