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Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

Raspberry Nanaimo bars. A delicious twist on a classic Canadian cookie bar treat. The have no artificial colours or flavours and they’re no-bake too!

Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

These Raspberry Nanaimo Bars are a delicious twist on a Canadian classic. One of the most popular cookie recipes during last holiday season, and a delicious contribution to my obsession with this particular flavour combination, was our new chocolate orange version.

Nanaimo Bars are a Canadian favourite cookie treat, that’s practically an institution across the nation. Nanaimo Bars are said to have originated in the early 50’s near Nanaimo British Columbia on Canada’s west coast and have continued to be popular ever since.

Overhead shot of chocolate on the finished Coconut Dream Bars

I like dark chocolate for the top layer but use any kind of chocolate chips you like.

I’ve seen several versions, including vanilla, mint, and even Bailey’s Irish Cream. Today though, we decided some fresh raspberry would go very well with the chocolate in these no-bake treats.

Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

The filling is made with a reduced raspberry concentrate that’s very easy to do. It imparts very bright, intense raspberry flavour that reminds me of the centre of a raspberry cream bonbon in a box of dark chocolates!

Lots of people ask me about switching the type of nuts in the base, which is something I often do. This time, finely ground almonds added yet another level of great flavour to these delicious, rich cookie bar treats! Hope you like them!

Raspberries Depositphotos stock image

Fresh or frozen raspberries can be used in this recipe.


Red frozen raspberries background closeup photo

Frozen Raspberries, though, make this recipe more economical without sacrificing flavour.

Looking for more no bake cookie ideas? 

If you liked this recipe you many want to check out this great collection of No Bake Cookies that was incredibly popular during our last Holiday season.

No Bake Christmas Cookies Collage with title text for Pinterest

Be sure to check out all the other flavours in our Nanaimo Bars Collection!

The Nanaimo Bar Recipe Collection

The Nanaimo Bar Recipe Collection

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Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

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Raspberry Nanaimo Bars
Yield: 24 cookie bars

Raspberry Nanaimo Bars

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

A raspberry twist on a Canadian classic cookie bar treat.


For the Base Layer

  • 3/4 cup butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 8 tbsp cocoa
  • 2 eggs lightly beaten
  • 2 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 3/4 cup fine or medium unsweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped toasted almonds, or pecans or walnuts, your choice.

For the Raspberry Frosting Filling

  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 4 cups icing sugar, i.e., powdered sugar or confectioners sugar
  • 1/3 cup fresh raspberry puree

For the Chocolate Topping

  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp butter


For the Base Layer

  1. In a small saucepan, melt together the butter, sugar and cocoa over low heat.
  2. Add the beaten egg and continue to cook, stirring constantly to fully cook the egg to a soft scrambled texture.
  3. Remove from the heat and add the graham cracker crumbs, coconut and walnuts.
  4. Mix together until well combined then, press into the bottom of a parchment paper lined 9x9 inch baking pan.

For the Raspberry Frosting Filling

  1. With an electric mixer, beat together the butter and icing sugar until combined.
  2. Beat in the raspberry puree. To make the puree, take about 1 1/4 cups fresh or frozen raspberries, crush tjhem with a fork and bring them to a slow simmer for 10 minutes or so until a thick jammy consistency. Watch carefully so it doesn't burn. Then press the raspberry concentrate through a sieve in order to remove the seeds.
  3. This frosting should be very stiff. You may need to use a little more icing sugar. Use enough icing sugar to bring it to the right consistency; very stiff but spreadable.
  4. Spread evenly over the bottom layer. Chill in the fridge for a couple of hours before adding the chocolate topping.

For the Chocolate Topping

  1. Melt together over low heat, just until the chocolate is melted, don't over heat it. A double boiler is almost always the best way to melt chocolate.
  2. Spread quickly over the chilled frosted layer. Return to the fridge until the chocolate sets.
  3. Cut into squares or bars. These freeze very well too.


To toast almonds or other nuts preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake on a cookie sheet for about 8 minutes tossing the nuts once half way through the time.

Here is  the ingredient list for the base of the original version of this recipe as originally written. The base layer is now thicker because I like that better to balance the very sweet filling but you can use these measurements if you prefer.
For the Base Layer
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup sugar
5 tbsp cocoa
one beaten egg
1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
3/4 cup fine or medium unsweetened coconut
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts

Nutrition Information



Serving Size

1 cookie bar

Amount Per Serving Calories 287Total Fat 16gSaturated Fat 9gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 6gCholesterol 43mgSodium 149mgCarbohydrates 35gFiber 2gSugar 28gProtein 3g

The nutritional information provided is automatically calculated by third party software and is meant as a guideline only. Exact accuracy is not guaranteed. For recipes where all ingredients may not be used entirely, such as those with coatings on meats, or with sauces or dressings for example, calorie & nutritional values per serving will likely be somewhat lower than indicated.

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Tuesday 19th of May 2020

In having to improvise because we did not have enough raspberries on hand, we created a slight twist on this one. I used a mixed berry bag of frozen fruit instead. The puree therefore consisted of raspberries, blackberries, blueberries and strawberries. I also drizzled a bit of the leftover puree between the filling and the chocolate for an extra flavour punch. I've made the raspberry one before and it was great, but this one might have been even better. I think the variations are limitless, just by using different purees. I'd like to try just straight blueberry, or maybe mango. And heck, maybe I will give rhubarb a try since I now have a bunch in the garden! Just a note though, the puree needs to be THICK. Mine was a bit on the thinner side, which resulted in the filling being too creamy. I had to add a good extra cup of icing sugar and it was still a bit too soft to make cutting easy.


Monday 29th of July 2019

I've tried the bailey's one, tried the kaluah one, both delicious. But oh my, this raspberry one was sooooo good. I used 3/4 dark and 1/4 milk choc chips, and used slivered almonds in base. There is nothing like raspberry and chocolate. Except orange. That is next on my nanaimo bar list! Thanks for these great twists on the standard recipie.


Wednesday 27th of March 2019

Hi Barry: Whenever I make Nanaimo bars I never seem to be able to cut them without making a mess, especially of the chocolate topping. I’ve tried waiting a bit, dipping my knife in hot water but just can’t seem to get it right. Any suggestions? Lynn

Lily J

Saturday 13th of October 2018

Is it possible to considerably shorten the fridge time between layers? I only have about 1 hour 5 mins to make the whole thing (could a freezer work)?

Barry C. Parsons

Thursday 25th of October 2018

Possibly but that's pushing it, time wise.


Friday 7th of September 2018

How do you make the purée

Barry C. Parsons

Wednesday 12th of September 2018

Instruction is included in recipe.

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