Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars

We were set to leave for New York in a few days, but it had been a week or so since I'd made dessert. Don't get me wrong, we had a stash of ice cream sandwiches in the freezer, but I was feeling the need to make something. Do you get that, too? The itch to have homemade dessert?

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars | gooey, sweet, salty perfection from

I had a few bags of caramel bits lying around from a Twix Brownies baking session. On the back of the bag is a recipe for no-bake bars using peanuts and marshmallows. We were low on peanuts and Mr. E doesn't like marshmallow. Also, the recipe on the bag didn't include chocolate.
Oh, the humanity.

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars | gooey, sweet, salty perfection from

So, I improvised. And Y'ALL. I sincerely hope you have these ingredients on hand because these no-bake bars are divine. Divine, I tell you.

The base is a sweet graham cracker that softens under a layer of caramel. Crushed, salty pretzels are pressed into the caramel and the whole thing is spread with a milk chocolate ganache.
The result is gooey, salty, and sweet perfection.

vanilla graham crackers...the BEST grahams!

A note on a couple of the ingredients. Really try to find the VANILLA graham crackers. They are delicious and take this to another level. (Also, eat some spread with Nutella.) Do you ever live in fear that once you find a product you love, it will be discontinued? Welcome to my world. I want these vanilla grahams to be in existence forever.

For the milk chocolate chips, I recommend Ghirardelli. I thought I didn't like milk chocolate chips...until I tried these. They're SO GOOD.

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars | gooey, sweet, salty perfection from

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars

5 vanilla graham crackers
11-ounce bag caramel bits
2 tablespoons evaporated milk
1/2 cup roughly chopped pretzel sticks
1 1/4 (heaping) cups milk chocolate chips (recommend: Ghirardelli)
1 cup cream

Line an 8x8" pan with foil. Grease the foil.

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars

Place grahams on the bottom of the pan, breaking to fit as needed. Melt the caramel bits and evaporated milk in the microwave. Heat for 1 minute on 80% power. Stir, then heat twice more in 30-second increments, stirring in between. If needed, heat a bit longer until the caramels are smooth.

caramel bits + evaporated milk

Pour the caramel over the graham crackers, spreading evenly. Lightly press the chopped pretzels on top.

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars

Place the chocolate chips in a bowl. Bring the cream to a simmer in a small saucepan. Pour over the chips and let sit for 5 minutes. Stir gently with a silicone spatula until incorporated and smooth. Pour over the top, smoothing with an offset spatula.

Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving. Cut into squares. Store in the refrigerator.

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel No-Bake Bars | gooey, sweet, salty perfection from

Make these. (Soon and often.)



  1. These look so tasty!!


  2. Holy yum! Is there any way the evaporated milk can be replaced by the cream? Just to save opening the can for such a small amount? I mean...obviously, I'd do it to get to these ridiculous bars M!

    1. Sure! That shouldn't be a problem. For some reason, when I melt caramels, I always reach for evaporated milk. :)

  3. These look so good! Perfect for a BBQ!

  4. Well these sound divine. Can't wait to make them.

  5. So, I did this magical thing: I started saving all the tiny bits and salty goodness from the bottom of pretzel bags. I figured I could sprinkle it on top of a dessert. The salt still tastes a little pretzel-y, and so saltily delicious!! I love a sprinkle of sea salt on top of chocolate chip cookies, pretzel salt is SO much yummier!!


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