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Sandy's Bars

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Ingredients

  • 1/2 Cup + 2 Tablespoons, divided Butter
  • 2 Tablespoons Sugar
  • 1 Cup + 1 Tablespoon, divided All Purpose Flour
  • 1/2 Cup, Shredded Coconut
  • 1 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Cup, Chopped Nuts (Pecans)
  • 1/4 Teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons Orange Juice
  • 1 Teaspoon (ish) Lemon Juice

Sandy’s Bars

A crowd pleasing bar that features three layers of delicious flavors!

60 minutes + cooling time

Serves: 12-16

Easy

A great short bread base with a chewy, caramel like middle layer with nuts and coconut and topped with a bright citrus frosting.

Sandy's Bars Ingredients

These “Sandy’s Bars” are a real treat! These bars feature three layers of sugary goodness. The first layer is a pretty easy-to-make take on a shortbread cookie. That’s followed by a layer made of a caramely mixture of pecans and coconut. Then, it’s all topped off with a citrusy frosting. This vintage recipe makes a full 13″ x 9″ tray so it can feed a ground. And it’s a crowd pleaser for sure—even if your name isn’t Sandy!

These bars seem pretty complex with three layers and all, but they’re surprisingly easy to make. The basics are: preheat oven, mix first layer, bake, mix second layer, bake, mix frosting, bake. Easy! The biggest things to keep in mind to set yourself up for success are:

  • Preheat the oven a good 20-30 minutes before you plan on baking
  • Set out the butter at least 30 minutes before baking so it can really soften
  • Allow each layer to cool before adding the next
  • As always, use the freshest ingredients you can

This is also a recipe that you certainly don’t need a stand mixer for and might even better if you do it all by hand. The shortbread layer (layer one) has butter, sugar and flour and you don’t want it super tough – so you’ll want to mix it as little as possible. Basically, mix it until there are no dry spots and all the flour and sugar is incorporated into the butter. Over mixing can cause the end result to become very tough. Layer two is the ooey-gooey layer and is super easy to just mix by hand with a rubber spatular. The frosting can be whisked by hand as well, it might be a workout, but you can do it. Plus, doing it by hand will certainly make sure you don’t start to fast and explode powdered sugar all over your kitchen.

Once the bars are done, allow them to sit for a while before serving so the frosting has time to set up. They will keep on the counter in an airtight container for 5-7 days. They probably won’t last that long, though. If you give these Sandy’s Bars a try, I’d love to hear what you think in the comments below or share a picture with me on Instagram (@bdhbakes).

Steps:

  • Preheat oven to 350º 
  • Mix Dough for First Layer 

    In the bowl of a stand mixer, or a medium sized mixing bowl, add the 1/2 Cup of butter, 2 T sugar and 1 Cup flour. Mix on low until just combined.

    Sandy's Bars Layer One Ingredients
    Sandy's Bars Layer One Dough
  • Press First Layer into Baking Pan 

    Spray a 13" x 9" baking pan with cooking spray (or coat it in a thin layer of butter). Next, dump the layer one dough from Step 2 into the pan and press into an even layer over the bottom of the pan.

    Sandy's Bars Layer One Pressed Into Pan
  • Bake Layer One 

    Bake this first layer in the preheated oven for 20 minutes. Allow to cool.

    Sandy's Bars Layer One Baked
  • Mix Layer 2 

    When layer one comes out of the oven and is cooling. Mix the ingredients for layer 2. In another bowl of a stand mixer (or medium sized mixing bowl) place the ingredients for layer 2: 1/2 Cup Coconut, 1 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, 1 Cup chopped nuts, 2 T Flour, 1/4 t baking powder, 1/2 t salt, 2 eggs, 1 t vanilla. Mix on low until all ingredients are mixed and evenly distributed.

    Sandy's Bars Layer 2 Ingredients
    Sandy's Bars Layer 2 Mixed
  • Spread Layer 2 and Bake 

    Spread layer 2 over the baked layer 1 in an even layer. Bake in the oven (still at 350º) for another 20 minutes.

    Sandy's Bars 2nd Layer
    Sandy's Bars Layer 2 Baked
  • Make Frosting 

    When layer 2 is done baking, allow it to cool completely. At least 30 minutes. After it's completely cool, it's time to make the frosting. In a clean bowl of a stand mixer (or large mixing bowl) add the frosting ingredients: 1 1/2 Cup powdered sugar, 2 T butter, 2 T orange juice, 1 T lemon juice. Mix on low or hand whisk until all the ingredients form a very smooth frosting. Spread over the cooled layers and allow to set before serving.

    Sandy's Bars Frosting

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