Canadian Nanaimo Bars

4.55 from 11 votes

These decadent Canadian Nanaimo Bars are one of the most delicious treats you will ever have. One of my most requested desserts.

Canadian Nanaimo Bars

Growing up, The Canadian Nanaimo Bars were one of my favorite sweets. Sweet custard sandwiched between chocolate. How can you go wrong?

Canadian Nanaimo Bars

These Nanaimo bars are probably one of my most requested desserts. I love making them for others. They are pretty easy to make but do require some time in the fridge to settle.

birds custard powder
Bird’s Custard Powder

I have shared this recipe with many and it would appear that custard powder is not that easy to locate. While I don’t have any problems finding it locally here in Southern California, you can easily find the same brand I use on Custard Powder on Amazon

nanaimo bars

As far as we can tell, Nanaimo Bars can be traced back to the Vancouver Island city of Nanaimo, British Columbia, first published around 1953. Traditional Nanaimo Bars require no baking and are super easy to make.

For coconut lovers, you can add a bit of shredded coconut to the base mixture for something a little different. And if you really love custard, you can double the ingredients for the filling.

nanaimo bars

While you are here I suggest you check out all my other delicious Canadian Recipes. Some of the recipes are new while others are well over 50 years old but they all originated in Canada.

nanaimo bars

Another of my favorite recipes I like to make similar to this one is my Golden Surprise Bars recipe. Great for those potlucks!

You will need the following ingredients to make this Canadian Nanaimo Bars recipe (see recipe card for quantities): Unsalted Butter, White Sugar, Cocoa Powder, Vanilla Extract, Eggs, Graham Cracker Crumbs, Milk, Custard Powder, Powdered Sugar and Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips.

  1. In a saucepan, combine the first 5 ingredients and cook over medium heat stirring constantly until smooth and slightly thickened. Remove from heat.
  2. Add graham cracker crumbs to the mixture and mix well. The batter should be thick at this point. Pack the mixture into a 9-inch square pan.
  3. Combine 1/4 cup butter, milk, 2 tsp vanilla, and custard powder. Beat for 5 minutes. Blend in powdered sugar. Spread custard filling over the base and chill in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes.
  4. In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate chips and 1 Tbsp butter stirring frequently. Spread the chocolate mixture over the custard filling.
  5. Let the dish cool completely in the refrigerator before cutting into squares and serving.

Printable Recipe Card

Canadian Nanaimo Bars

Canadian Nanaimo Bars

These decadent Canadian Nanaimo Bars are one of the most delicious treats you will ever have. One of my most requested desserts.
4.55 from 11 votes
Prep Time40 minutes
Cook Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 40 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine Canadian
Author Rodney
Servings 16
Calories 297 kcal

Equipment

  • Saucepan
  • Serving Dish (9-inch)

Ingredients
 

BASE INGREDIENTS
  • ½ Cup Unsalted Butter, Melted
  • Cup White Sugar
  • 5 Tbsp Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Egg, Beaten
  • 2 Cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
FILLING INGREDIENTS
  • ¼ Cup Unsalted Butter, Softened
  • 3 Tbsp Milk
  • 2 Tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Tbsp Custard Powder
  • 2 ½ Cups Powdered Sugar
TOPPING INGREDIENTS
  • 6 oz Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 1 Tbsp Unsalted Butter

Instructions
 

  • In a sauce pan, combine first 5 ingredients and cook over medium heat stirring constantly until smooth and slightly thickened. Remove from heat.
  • Add graham cracker crumbs to the mixture and mix well. The batter should be thick at this point. Pack the mixture into a 9 inch square pan.
  • Combine 1/4 cup butter, milk, 2 tsp vanilla and custard powder. Beat for 5 minutes. Blend in powdered sugar. Spread custard filling over the base and chill in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes.
  • In a small saucepan, melt the chocolate chips and 1 Tbsp butter stirring frequently. Spread the chocolate mixture over the custard filling.
  • Let dish cool completely in the refrigerator before cutting into squares and serving.

Notes

→ Add a little shredded coconut during step 2 for something a little different.

Nutrition

Calories: 297kcalCarbohydrates: 39gProtein: 2gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 40mgSodium: 163mgPotassium: 122mgFiber: 1gSugar: 29gVitamin A: 315IUCalcium: 29mgIron: 1.4mg

Nutritional information provided for this recipe is based on 1 serving. This information is an estimate and may vary based on several factors. If nutritional information is important to you and your diet, please verify this recipe with a Registered Dietitian.

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3 Comments

  1. Elena says:

    Can this be frozen?

    1. Yep. My family will cut them into pieces and stack them on wax paper and freeze them in an airtight container. Unthaw them at room temperature for about 1 hour before serving.

  2. Stephen Oschefski says:

    Always has been one of my favourite deserts

4.55 from 11 votes (10 ratings without comment)

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