Hello and welcome to The Old Summers Home and another easy recipe for busy moms! In honour of Canada Day, I wanted to do a truly Canadian recipe for all of you hence I’m choosing the Nanaimo bar.
This recipe is so Canadian that many of my friends from around the world have never even heard of it and that, my friends is truly a great sadness. Therefore I’m going to show you how to make the best Nanaimo Bars which are a true Canadian delicacy.
Once you make these, you will be making them all the time! Let’s spread the word on these delicious dessert Nanaimo bars so the rest of the world can enjoy some Canadian heritage too!
The Nanaimo Bar history
Before I share our recipe I want to share a bit of history: The Nanaimo bar originated in Canada, named after the city of Nanaimo, British Columbia which is located on Vancouver Island.
Nanaimo Bars are a no-bake dessert bar delicacy which is one of Canada’s greatest recipes of all time. This dessert is best known for its layered sweetness which includes cocoa and coconut, icing sugar and custard then topped with a thin layer of chocolate. The custard layer adds some vibrant yellow making this dessert appealing to the eye as well.
It is a true family favourite in our home and therefore made quite often. This recipe is a perfect way to celebrate Canada Day and all your favourite holidays!
The Best Nanaimo Bars Supplies
At The Old Summers Home, we provide links to products to help you find what we use, some of these links may be affiliate links. An affiliate link pays us a small commission if you make a purchase using our link. In no way will this affect the price in which you pay for your item.
- 8×8 pan
- a spatula for spreading
- a few sizes of mixing bowls
- dry measuring cups
- liquid measuring cup
- measuring spoons
Oh my gosh, I just stumbled across this set on Amazon when looking for links for supplies, and found this amazing set! I love this so much and they would look amazing in my kitchen! Ahem, Josh, if you’re reading, a certain person’s birthday is coming up… hint, hint, nudge, nudge 😉
Update yall: My husband reads my posts, woot woot, haha. Here is my beautiful set! This mint colour matches my kitchen perfectly. In fact, they are an exact match to the paint colour in our farmhouse laundry room haha!
The Best Nanaimo Bars Ingredients
- 1/2 cup butter
- 3 tbsp cocoa powder
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1 cup shredded coconut
- 2 cups graham wafer crumbs
- 1 egg
- 1 tbsp vanilla
- 2 cups icing sugar
- 1/4 cup butter
- 3 tbsp custard powder
- 1 Tbsp milk
- 4 squares semi-sweet chocolate baking squares (4oz)
- 1 tbsp butter
The Best & Easiest Nanaimo Bars Recipe
When I plan on baking I like to start with a clean kitchen, empty dish rack and a sink full of hot sudsy water. For this recipe I reuse the bowls for the different layers and because I do not want the colour to mix I give them a quick wash in between and rinse them off. Therefore, having my soapy water ready makes it a quick job and back to making the dessert.
Simple Nanaimo Bars Base
In a small bowl combine cocoa powder, sugar and melted butter. Mix well until dissolved and lump-free. Then set aside.
Mix graham wafer crumbs, coconut, egg, and vanilla in a medium-size bowl until well blended.
Combine cocoa mixture with coconut mixture then mix well.
Using a spatula press Nanaimo bar base into an 8×8 pan ensuring to spread well. Then place the pan in the refrigerator allowing to chill.
Nanaimo Bars Filling
In a medium-sized bowl soften butter and then combine with icing sugar, custard and milk. I find using a silicone spatula works the best to smash out any lumps.
Once lump free spread onto the chilled base and place back in the refrigerator.
The Best Nanaimo Bars Topping
In a small bowl melt semi-sweet chocolate with butter. Microwave at 30-second intervals being sure to stir in between until completely melted.
Mix until smooth.
Spread on top of the chilled custard layer then return to refrigerator.
Depending on your refrigerator chill for approximately 1 hour or until firm, it takes 45 minutes to set in our fridge. Then slice and serve and enjoy this delicious Canadian delicacy.
Enjoy the Best & Easiest Nanaimo Bars!
I was so excited to get some beautiful pictures of my Nanaimo bars but while I was on a phone call my family found them and started to devour them immediately! They are just that much of a hit in this old house that I can not even get a picture before they are dug into haha.
They are really quite easy to make even though a lot of people think they are quite difficult when in reality they are simpler than a cake made from scratch!
Now the best & easiest Nanaimo Bars are right at your fingertips. I hope you enjoy making these as much as I do.
Our readers voted this post as one of the Top Blog Posts of 2019! Head on over to see all the favourites and where this one made the cut!
Thanks so much for joining us for another Easy Recipe by Jenn! Be sure to check out our Rolled Sugar Cookie Recipe for another easy to make sweet tooth recipe! Bon Appétit!
Until next time;
The Old Summers Home