I saved this recipe to my favorites a long time ago but never made them. I think it was because it calls for store-bought caramels and I’ve always been skeptical of those. However, the other day I saw them at the store and found myself placing a bag in my cart with this recipe in mind. When I got home I couldn’t help but open the bag and taste a caramel for myself. I was expecting something sickly sweet and artificial but they were actually addicting and good.
I am SO thrilled I made these caramel-chocolate-oatmeal bars. The combination of tastes and textures is to die for. The hardest part about making these carmelitas is that they take a long time to cool and are best eaten at room temperature. THE TEMPTATION.
Taste: Heavenly. Sweet with warm caramel and brown sugar and rich chocolate. Slightly nutty with the oats.
Texture: BEST PART. The chocolate and caramel are ooey and gooey and the crust and topping holds it all together for a mouthwatering bite.
Ease: Super easy. Just don’t leave the melting caramel unattended for too long.
Appearance: The luscious caramel and chocolate filling is literally oozing out the sides of these bars.
Pros: This is a glorious dessert.
Cons: Indulgent and just slightly slightly too sweet for me. Next time I think I’ll reduce the brown sugar a bit.
Would I make this again? Yes.
Yield: about 16 squares
1 1/3 cups caramel bits or 32 caramel squares
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
6 ounces (about 1 cup) semisweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8x8-inch baking dish wish parchment paper or tin foil, leaving an overhang. Spray paper or foil with nonstick cooking spray.
In a small saucepan set over low heat cook the caramels with the heavy cream until completely smooth, stirring often.
In a large bowl combine butter, brown sugar, flour, oats, baking soda, and salt. Press half of the oatmeal mixture into the bottom of the prepared baking dish. Bake for 10 minutes.
Remove dish from oven and sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over oatmeal crust. Pour caramel evenly over chocolate chips. Crumble remaining oatmeal mixture over caramel. Return to oven and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until the edges are lightly browned.
Let carmelitas cool completely in pan on a wire rack (this may take over an hour). Cut into 16 squares and serve at room temperature.
From Lulu the Baker