Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Chip Bars with Caramel Frosting

I haven't been doing a ton of baking lately (I don't even feel like myself!) because we've been traveling a lot for vacations, and weddings and things, but I finally got back in the kitchen the other day to bake up these gems. The bars themselves were really good, even without the frosting - the frosting enhances that caramel flavor and gives them more sweetness. Warning: If you don't like your bars overly sweet, leave off the frosting. (Although, keep the recipe on the hand because this frosting would be great on a cake . . . or brownies!)

The bars come together really quickly and stay nice and moist for days as long as you keep them covered. I was really happy with the way the caramel frosting turned out, too, because it's something I've wanted to try for quite a while, but have always been a little intimidated. Many of the recipes either require a candy thermometer, or say "Use immediately before it hardens!" That always scares me off because I start to think, "Well, what if I don't use it in time?! Will I have to throw it out? What a waste of time and ingredients!" Well, this recipe didn't require a thermometer, and it didn't come with a warning either. Best of all? It's delicious. I'll definitely use it again.

Caramel Toffee Chocolate Chip Bars (slightly adapted from here)
1 pkg caramel cake mix, dry
2 eggs
1/4 c. water
1/4 c. brown sugar
1/4 c. butter, softened
1 c. chocolate chips
1/2 c. toffee pieces
1. Preheat oven to 375, and grease a 9x13 pan.
2. Mix together cake mix, eggs, water, sugar, and butter until dough comes together; 1-2 minutes.
3. Stir in chocolate chips and toffee pieces.
4. Spread in prepared pan and bake 24-27 minutes, or until golden brown on the top.

Caramel Frosting (from The Cake Mix Doctor Returns)
4 Tbls. butter
1/2 c. brown sugar (if you have both light and dark on hand, use half of each)
1/8 c. milk
1 c. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1. Place butter and brown sugar in a medium saucepan on medium heat. Stir constantly while it comes to a boil.
2. Once boiling, add the milk, stir, and let it return to a boil.
3. Remove from heat and stir in powdered sugar and vanilla.
4. Use frosting while it's still warm; it will set as it cools.

Hugs and cookies,


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