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!
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 favorite 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.
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.
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. Ths time, finely ground reshly ground almonds added yet another level of great flavour to these delicious, rich cookie bar treats! Hope you like them!
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.
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Originally published Nov 16, 2012. Updated December 2017 to modify recipe, update photos and to provide the option for metric measurements if needed.
- 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.
- 1/2 cup butter
- 4 cups icing sugar i.e., powdered sugar or confectioners sugar
- 1/3 cup fresh raspberry puree
- 1 cup chocolate chips
- 2 tbsp butter
In a small saucepan, melt together the butter, sugar and cocoa over low heat.
Add the beaten egg and continue to cook, stirring constantly to fully cook the egg to a soft scrambled texture.
Remove from the heat and add the graham cracker crumbs, coconut and walnuts.
Mix together until well combined then, press into the bottom of a parchment paper lined 9x9 inch baking pan.
With an electric mixer, beat together the butter and icing sugar until combined.
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.
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.
Spread evenly over the bottom layer. Chill in the fridge for a couple of hours before adding the chocolate topping.
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.
Spread quickly over the chilled frosted layer. Return to the fridge until the chocolate sets.
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
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