German Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars take all the flavors you love in the classic cake and turn them into gooey, irresistible bars!
German Chocolate Meets Pecan Pie
One of my childhood loves was German chocolate cake. My mother used to make it from a cake mix with store-bought frosting. And that was just fine with me.
Having an anti-coconut husband has limited my baking with coconuts over the last several years. In the spirit of “absence makes the heart grow fonder,” I think I enjoy all that German chocolate-y goodness even more because I don’t have it very often.
In this case, those nostalgic flavors are baked into pecan pie bars. If you’ve never made pecan pie bars, imagine those gooey filling and toasty pecans of pie fame filling a simple crust and baked in a big pan instead of a pie plate. Add to that a little cocoa in the crust, some melty chocolate on top of the crust, and stir in some coconut with the pecans. Now, we’re talking!
These are, without a doubt, the best pecan pie bars I’ve ever made. I am usually reluctant to throw out such accolades, but it is completely appropriate in this case. If you are a fan of German chocolate cake, then I think you’ll love them, too. If you don’t like coconut, you can just leave that out and add more pecans or maybe some chocolate chips.
Tips for Success
- Measure accurately. Use a kitchen scale to measure by weight if possible. Be especially careful when measuring the flour, as too much will make the crust dry. Spoon and sweep if you don’t have a scale.
- Use a light-colored metal baking pan. Your bars will be more evenly baked.
- Toast the pecans. Take the extra time to toast the pecans, and your taste buds will thank you!
- Shortbread crusts can be tricky. When mixed, the crust will be loose and sandy, but it should hold together when pinched. (You can see it in action in the video below.)