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7 Layer Bars

Updated on May 15, 2014

It's easy as pie ~ and that's no lie!

Sometimes I like nothing better than to make complicated confectionery creations in my kitchen (of course afterward, I fantasize about someone ELSE cleaning up the mess). In reality though, I don't usually have too much time for those extravagant baking benders anymore. Because of that, I try to keep a handful of super simple (or as I call them, "idiot friendly" :o) recipes in the front of my recipe box for whipping up something that tastes wonderful but doesn't take a whole lot of time or effort. Because this is such a simple dessert, I've tried to lay out this lens in an easy to follow format so any pint-sized bakers out there can do it too (but be sure to ask Mom first!)

One thing that makes this recipe one of my favorites is that most of the ingredients have a nice long shelf life. This means you can buy them twice (and I often do) when you decide to make it and keep the second set of ingredients handy for those moments you are volunteered unexpectedly. You know, like when your child remembers to tell you you're making treats for her class at school the next day (just as she is dozing off to sleep at 9p.m.). Even better? Unlike most recipes, you will only get two things dirty; which is almost as delightful a thought as the dessert :o)

Yup, I'm a TWIT (er-er)

and I periodically tweet :o)


Here's what we need

INGREDIENTS: 1 Stick of Butter, Graham Cracker Crumbs (about 2-1/4 cups), Coconut Flakes, Chocolate Chips, Butterscotch Chips, Chopped Walnuts, 1 can of Sweetened Condensed Milk

The recipe...

First Step...

I always put my baking dish in the oven to melt the butter while I gather the other ingredients. It's usually melted most of the way by the time I'm ready). Pull it out just before it completely melts (It will finish on the counter though, so don't worry :o)

TIP: Pop your dish in the oven while it's preheating to melt your butter

TIP: Pop your dish in the oven while it's preheating to melt your butter
TIP: Pop your dish in the oven while it's preheating to melt your butter


This recipe does NOT do well in a convection oven (I tried it already and it was awful).

- Bonnie Baker

(that's me ;o)

Step Two...

Sprinkle your graham cracker crumbs until the butter is completely covered and the very top is dry. Smooth it out slightly to get rid of any major hills and valleys (don't worry, it doesn't have to be perfect!) I have seen the recipe written to mix the graham cracker crumbs and butter together and press in the bottom of the pan, but this works just as well (besides you dirty more dishes the other way, and we definitely don't want to do that! :o)

Step Three...

Add the coconut, making sure to break up any large clumps, until it completely covers all of the graham cracker crumbs.

Step Four...

Layer the chocolate chips (you can use large or small chips but I don't recommend using the chunks; they don't melt at the same rate as everything else). I had some leftover minis, so I threw them in there with the regular sized chips.

Step Five...

Add butterscotch chips; I don't usually use quite as many of the butterscotch because they are very, very rich. Ha - This from a woman that adores those Cadbury Eggs (you know, the great big ones with the cholesterol filled, sugar coma inducing cream centers?)

Step Six...

Sprinkle on the diced (or chopped) walnuts. You can leave the nuts off altogether if you'd rather (just remember then you'll have to call them "six" layer bars :o) Store any leftover ingredients.

TIP: These clothespins are my favorite bag clips

TIP: These clothespins are my favorite bag clips
TIP: These clothespins are my favorite bag clips

The best kind of "chip clips" (are in the laundry room :o)

Household Essentials 4212 12 Count Plastic Clothespins
Household Essentials 4212 12 Count Plastic Clothespins

Less expensive than traditional bag clips, these handy clothespins have rubber grips to keep them from sliding off your bags (and mine have held up a LOT longer than the regular clips too!)


Step Seven...

This is the most important step! (Yes I forgot to add it one time - and it definitely didn't turn out well :o) Pour the can of sweetened condensed milk* evenly (as best you can anyway, it's thick) over the top of your other layers. Bake for 30-45 minutes.

*Note that I used the "fat free" version - like it matters at this point...

When it's all done...

I usually let mine cool somewhere between 45 minutes to 2 hours before cutting (depending on how long I get sidetracked). The longer it cools the easier it usually is to slice. If you are going to wait past two hours, I recommend covering it with some foil until you're ready to cut it. If you're in a tearing hurry (my frequent claim to fame), try baking it in a "to go" dish like the one pictured below and let it cool off on the way. I do this all the time, and just cut them up when I get to where I'm going.

Oh NO! - time to go?? Let it cool off on the way to your destination!

Oh NO! - time to go?? Let it cool off on the way to your destination!
Oh NO! - time to go?? Let it cool off on the way to your destination!

I love my simple wooden cassarole dish stand... - ...but these come with covers!

Anchor Hocking Oven Basics 4-Piece ValuePack
Anchor Hocking Oven Basics 4-Piece ValuePack

Whether it's a family get together or a pot luck at church, these are definitely one of the handiest things to have (especially when you are ALWAYS in a tearing hurry - like me.


Cut them into bars or squares

I have a small spatula from Pampered Chef that's called a "turner". Not only is its smaller size perfect for serving bars and brownies, I can use it instead of a knife to cut them!

TIP: For cutting that's slick & quick, hit your turner with a shot of cooking spray or cake release first

TIP: For cutting that's slick & quick, hit your turner with a shot of cooking spray or cake release first
TIP: For cutting that's slick & quick, hit your turner with a shot of cooking spray or cake release first

Tiny turners are terrific!

Calphalon Stainless Small Slotted Turner
Calphalon Stainless Small Slotted Turner

I love my small spatula ~ it's the perfect size for brownies and bars (I can use mine to cut them, too!)


Are there mice at your house?

We've got some mighty big ones around here...

Here's how to make everybody happy

Trim the edges of your bars and brownies (fudge too :o) and pile them on a plate for those little (or large) mice in your house. Not only does it keep those little (and large) hands out of your confections before it's time to eat, it will make your desserts look even better!

A microscopic mess - that's it!

A microscopic mess - that's it!
A microscopic mess - that's it!

For A Dish That's REALLY Delish...

If you want a dessert that's over the top, try heating the bars and serving them with a scoop of ice cream. Whaddaya think - too much?

Pedestal plates are fabulous fun - I really love mine!

Alexandria Crystal Square Pedestal Plate Perfect Christmas Gift Idea
Alexandria Crystal Square Pedestal Plate Perfect Christmas Gift Idea

I love to put bars and brownies on these pedestal plates ~ it dresses them up beautifully for the holidays and adds a dash of pizzaz to your table :o)


Are you partial to potholders?

Now Designs Veggies Potholder
Now Designs Veggies Potholder

I am! I know it's silly, but I just love them. I change them out sometimes just for a little splash of something different around the kitchen (hey, it's a lot cheaper than painting, right? :o)


Hungry yet? I know I am! - but please say hi before you scram :o)

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    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 5 years ago from United States

      Yes I am! These 7 layer bars sound delicious!

    • rawwwwwws lm profile image

      rawwwwwws lm 5 years ago

      Your lens made me so hungry!!

    • Rosaquid profile image

      Rosaquid 5 years ago


    • captainj88 profile image

      Leah J. Hileman 5 years ago from East Berlin, PA, USA

      These look fantastic.

    • LiteraryMind profile image

      Ellen Gregory 6 years ago from Connecticut, USA

      I never had these, but they really look good. I am afraid to make them as I will eat them all

    • fugeecat lm profile image

      fugeecat lm 6 years ago

      These are fabulous and I never knew they were so easy to make.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      My sister sends me 7 layer bars now and then and I can't leave them alone, they are the perfect yummy delicious dessert and wonderful for breakfast with a cup of coffee. Very well done!

    • profile image

      JoshK47 6 years ago

      These sound pretty fantastic! Great work on this lens. :)

    • profile image

      GetSillyProduct 6 years ago

      these look absolutely delicious...awesome recipe

    • spritequeen lm profile image

      spritequeen lm 7 years ago

      This heart attack on a plate sounds GREAT! I can't WAIT! :-)

    • blue22d profile image

      blue22d 7 years ago

      Yum, easy and fun to make! ***** to you.

    • profile image

      alika2010 7 years ago

      Thanks for delicious recipe!

    • Ramkitten2000 profile image

      Deb Kingsbury 8 years ago from Flagstaff, Arizona

      If it's okay for me to leave out the coconut, I'm all over this one!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Thank you for this yummy recipe...not only does it look easy and your directions very well explained, your fun personality made clicking this page worth it :-) Thanks again

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      yum yum!

      Pass it on! Leave a Secret Squid note to another Squid!

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      I think my (__[__) got bigger just reading this lens. Now I need a snack. Thanks a lot...ha ha This is fabulous and so easy! I'm going to make these for sure. My 7 year old loves making things with me and this looks perfect. 5*****

    • LouiseKirkpatrick profile image

      LouiseKirkpatrick 8 years ago from Berkshire, United Kingdom

      Oh wow...this lens is so beautifully presented - the photographs are amazing

      ...and those bars look absolutely SCRUMMY


    • Kiwisoutback profile image

      Kiwisoutback 8 years ago from Massachusetts

      Wow these look good. My Mom used to make something like these, except they were called something different. Squid Angel blessed!

    • annetteghallowe1 profile image

      annetteghallowe1 8 years ago

      Yummy! I love the way you used the photography in this lens. I stand in awe!

    • AppalachianCoun profile image

      AppalachianCoun 8 years ago

      Great lens and great recipe. Thank-you.

    • CherylK profile image

      Cheryl Kohan 8 years ago from Minnesota

      I love this recipe and haven't made it for ages. Thanks for the nudge! My husband is an "ice-cream-a holic" so I'm sure he'd vote for the ice cream, too.

    • profile image

      Sojourn 8 years ago

      Reading this as the kids are clamoring at me for a snack. Wish I'd come hear earlier! :) This looks fantastic.

    • ArtByLinda profile image

      Linda Hoxie 8 years ago from Idaho

      Ooooh, these look delicious!

    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 8 years ago from Canada

      Hi, Jen, just a note to let you know that your lens is being featured at Culinary Favorites From A to Z, The Blog today.


    • Mickie Gee profile image

      Mickie Goad 8 years ago

      I remember making this recipe (or one similar to it) years ago when my girls were little!

    • Barkely profile image

      Barkely 8 years ago

      Thanks for adding this lens to the Fun For Kids Group:-)

    • CounselMom profile image

      CounselMom 8 years ago

      Yummy lens! It'd be an easy one to do with kiddos for sure! Welcome to the Kids and Food Headquarters group.

    • profile image

      tdove 8 years ago

      Thanks for joining G Rated Lense Factory!

    • mbgphoto profile image

      Mary Beth Granger 8 years ago from O'Fallon, Missouri, USA

      Yummy lens! 5* and lensrolled to My Favorite Brunch Menu lens.

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image

      ElizabethJeanAl 8 years ago

      My grandmother refused to make cookies claiming they were too much work, but she made some awesome bars. Your recipe will be an excellent additon to her collection.

      Thanks for sharing


    • TreasuresBrenda profile image

      Treasures By Brenda 8 years ago from Canada

      AMAZING pictures; FANTASTIC lens! BLESSED by an Angel.

      Welcome to the Culinary Favorites From A to Z group. Your lens is being featured under 'B is for...' I think I'll have to start a 'Bars' section although it is a bit complicated because some people call them 'Squares.' Hmmm. Anyway, don’t forget to come back and add your lens to the link list so that it will appear on the group page twice!

    • EpicFarms profile image

      EpicFarms 8 years ago

      [in reply to papawu] You could try either white chocolate or those mint morsels instead of the butterscotch...


    • papawu profile image

      papawu 8 years ago

      Sounds and looks utterly sinful. I could do without the betterscotch chips though. I' would just double up on the chocolate. Fantastic recipe lens.

    • verymary profile image

      Mary 8 years ago from Chicago area

      These are a fave from my childhood, and luckily my mom still makes them for the holidays. Who doesn't love these?! 5***** and love your photos, too :)

    • MsSnow4 profile image

      Carol Goss 8 years ago

      I am so hungry now

    • EpicFarms profile image

      EpicFarms 8 years ago

      [in reply to bdkz] Why thank you ma'am! *blush*

    • jimmielanley profile image

      Jimmie Lanley 8 years ago from Memphis, TN, USA

      I hereby bless this lens.

      Your kitchen is too cute! And these bars are a classic favorite. So easy, so RICH!

    • Heather426 profile image

      Heather Burns 8 years ago from Wexford, Ireland

      Love the dessert, love the lens! Beautiful job! but now I will gain more weight! oh no...

    • profile image

      anonymous 8 years ago

      Oh no you didn't! Jeez Louise I'm 5 pounds heavier just looking and I am DEFINITELY going to make those (and eat them ALL - Mwahahahaha!!)! Ooohh yummy!!

    • profile image

      bdkz 8 years ago

      Holy Cow. This is a FANTASTIC lens! 5 Stars and a Squid Angel Blessing!

    • Holley Web profile image

      Holley Web 8 years ago

      What a timer saver! Perfect! And wouldn't you know I was looking for just such confectionary excellence (and yumminess!)