This Ultimate Nanaimo Bar Recipe is the perfect no bake chocolate pie that looks gorgeous, tastes amazing and you can make ahead of time to keep in the fridge or freeze!  

How perfect is that?

This post was originally published on January 24, 2017 and updated on March 30, 2018. 

Some of my favorite Nanaimo Bar recipes include Anna Olson’s on Food Network Canada, and the City of Nanaimo, British Columbia has a great recipe too!

nanaimo bars pie in clear glass pie plate, slice cut from pie with yellow tulips in background white lettering on a pink arrow

Where do Nanaimo Bars come from? Well, Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada in about 1953 and we’ve been in love with them ever since.  

Mom’s recipe card actually says Chocolate Squares, and that makes sense because that was the original name for Nanaimo Bars!  And it’s a no-bake recipe, just like our Maple Fudge Toffee Bars! 

 

 

This delicious concoction of chocolate, coconut, walnuts and butter cream is often served up in Diners and Coffee Shops everywhere to enjoy with that special latte.

Potlucks are another popular event where my Ultimate Nanaimo Bar Recipe will make an appearance!

 

 

 

And let’s not forget Starbucks, where you can get your Nanaimo bar fix with your favorite cup of Joe.

Starbucks Nanaimo Bar ingredients are good, but they have all of those nasty preservatives in them, like sulfites, which are a big NO NO for many people including me!

nanaimo bar in a glass pie plate with slices removed shows layers of bars

This recipe was given to my Mom by the organist at our Church.  We loved them so much and would beg Mom to make them.

We didn’t know they were called Nanaimo Bars back then, so we just called them ‘Miss Hume Squares’ cause that was her name!  Crazy, right?

 

To this day I just can’t resist one, and they are often included on the dessert tray at meetings and conferences.  

They are often cut into really large squares, and really, you only need a small piece to enjoy that amazing sweetness.

chocolate, coconut cream filled nanaimo bar pie on a white dessert plate with yellow tulips in a glass vase

And you don’t bite into a Nanaimo bar, you put the whole thing in your mouth and bite down!  All of that crunchy base and creamy custard and chocolate topping just kind of explode inside, with a nice little sugar rush to boot!

This recipe doesn’t use custard powder, but everything else is the same, including cocoa, graham cracker crumbs, coconut and confectioner’s sugar.  

I like how you make the recipe in layers, the bottom layer includes all the crunchy chocolate-y goodness, and includes rolled oats, graham crackers, walnuts and coconuts.

 The custard filling layer is full of sweet butter and confectioners sugar and then there’s that delicious layer of dark melted chocolate!

closeup image of nanaimo bar slice of pie with chocolate glaze on top and decorated with chocolate buttons

This is also a great recipe that is very easy to convert to vegan or gluten free nanaimo bars!

Just thinking about biting into that chocolate glaze, and creamy butter frosting, well my mouth is watering!

The classic Nanaimo Bar recipe has a creamy yellow custard filling, but the mint green fillings are very popular too, especially during the holidays, like Christmas or St. Patrick’s Day! Just a few drops of green food colouring and you’re all set.

I love the ease of cookie bar recipes too, but this time I wanted to make a very fancy dessert, so I used a pyrex pie plate instead of a baking pan.  

And when I was finished, I topped the nanaimo bars with some delicious dark and white chocolate buttons!

overhead image of nanaimo bar pie decorated with dark and white chocolates, and milk chocolate buttons around the edge of the pie plate

We’re having some of our family over for brunch tomorrow, and I always make something sweet for the gang, it’s kind of expected!   

So I’m serving this Ultimate Nanaimo Bar recipe as an elegant chocolate pie, and just in time for National Pie Day on January 23rd!

I’m so excited to bake this with you, so let’s get out all of the ingredients you will need, and your baking equipment.  If you aren’t sure about what baking equipment you might need, please check out my post How To Set Up A Baker’s Pantry.  

You will love it and there’s a great printable checklist inside just for you!

 

What you Need for your Ultimate Nanaimo Bar Recipe:

 

Bottom Layer:
1/2 cup butter
2 squares semi-sweet chocolate
1/3 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
1 cup rolled oats
1 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1/2 cup walnuts

 

Custard Filling:

3 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
2 cups icing sugar
2 – 2 1/2 tbsp whole milk

 

Chocolate Topping:
2 squares semi-sweet chocolate
1 tbsp butter

 

Let’s Make It!

  Bottom Layer:


  1. Butter or Grease a 9″ pie plate
    2. Melt butter and chocolate in a saucepan over hot water
    3. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, vanilla, egg, rolled oats, coconut and walnuts
  2. Let the mixture cool for about 10 minutes, until it’s ok for you to touch it
    4. Butter your fingers and press the mixture into a 9″ greased pie plate
    5. Cover and put it in the refrigerator while mixing the next two steps.

Custard Filling:

  1. Mix softened butter, vanilla, and salt until smooth and creamy
    2. Blend in icing sugar alternatively with the cream until everything is blended and the icing is very smooth and
    spreading consistency.
    3. Chill the custard while getting the Chocolate Topping ready.

Chocolate Topping:

  1. Melt semi-sweet chocolate and butter, stir until smooth

Putting it all together

  1. Spread the custard evenly over the bottom layer mixture.
    2. Smooth with a spatula
    3. Spread the Chocolate Topping over the Icing.
    4. Cover with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve (at least 2 hours)

When you are ready to serve your Nanaimo Bar Pie, I would suggest you make the slices very small, because it is incredibly sweet!

 

Now wasn’t that an easy recipe to make?  I really enjoyed baking this ultimate sweet treat with you, and look forward to spending more time together here on the blog!

 

I would love to hear about your Nanaimo Bars so please let me know in the comments, rate the recipe if you like, and send me a picture!  

 

I’m sure your friends will ask you for the recipe when you serve these amazing bars to them, so make sure you pin it for later!

 

Easy Nanaimo Bars Recipe | The Ultimate Chocolate Pie!

Easy Nanaimo Bars Recipe | The Ultimate Chocolate Pie!

Yield: 10
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Additional Time: 2 hours
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Ingredients

Base Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup butter, unsalted
  • 2 squares semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped

Icing

  • 3 tbsp butter, softened, unsalted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract, or mint extract!
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups icing sugar, sifted
  • 2 - 2 1/2 tbsp whole milk, warm

Topping

  • 2 squares semi-sweet chocolate
  • 1 tbsp butter, melted

Instructions

Base Instructions

  1. Butter or Grease a 9" pie plate
  2. Melt butter and chocolate in a saucepan over hot water
  3. Remove from heat and stir in sugar, vanilla, egg, rolled oats, coconut and walnuts
  4. Press mixture into a 9" greased pie plate
  5. Cover and chill while mixing the next step.

Icing

  1. Mix softened butter, vanilla, and salt until smooth and creamy
  2. Blend in icing sugar alternatively with the cream until everything is blended and the icing is very smooth and spreading consistency.
  3. Chill the frosting while getting the Topping ready.

Topping

  1. Melt semi-sweet chocolate and butter, stir until smooth

Putting it all together

  1. Spread the Icing evenly over the Base Mixture.
  2. Smooth with a spatula
  3. Spread the Topping over the Icing.
  4. Cover and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve (at least 2 hours)

two images of nanaimo bar pie in white lettering on a green background shows yellow tulips in background

 

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