Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Carmelitas recipe . . . an ooey gooey filling of caramel, chocolate, and nuts sandwiched between two layers of buttery oat crumbs. Every bite is scrumptious!
A TRIED AND TESTED CARAMEL BAR RECIPE!
Happy Valentine’s Day peeps! Thanks to Pinterest, I still have a bucket load of Valentine projects and recipes I wanted to try but just didn’t have the time for. I guess they’ll just have to wait till next year. 😉
This oatmeal carmelitas recipe has been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl. We made them all the time, and I LOVE them.
These carmelita bars are loaded with chunks of chocolate and crunchy pecans. Which is surrounded by a buttery oat crumb crust. So, so yummy! The only hard part is that you have to wait for them to cool.
Right out of the oven they are a hot mess, trust me. They are good warmish, but they really are best after they cool down. And believe me, they are worth the wait!
HOW TO MAKE OATMEAL CARMELITAS
(To skip my tips and just see the full recipe, scroll to the very bottom of the post.)
- all purpose flour (I use unbleached, but that’s a matter of preference.)
- oats (I think old fashioned oats work best for this recipe, but quick oats will also do in a pinch.)
- brown sugar (Helps add a rich caramel flavor that regular sugar doesn’t have.)
- baking soda
- butter, softened to room temperature (I use regular salted butter in all my recipes.)
- semi sweet chocolate chips (Dark chocolate chips are also fine, but I think milk chocolate chips make the bars overly sweet, plus you miss out on the ooey gooey chocolate when the bars are warm.)
- pecans (walnuts are also a good option)
- caramel ice cream topping (Use your favorite brand. It will be thickened with a bit of flour, and if you forget to add it, the caramel doesn’t set up like it should. I learned that from sad experience.)
PREP WORK: Chop the nuts, preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and spray a 9×13″ pan with non stick spray. For even easier cleanup, first line the pan with foil or parchment paper.
MAKE THE CRUST: Mix up a simple buttery oatmeal crust by combining all the ingredients together and mixing till crumbly. I usually just use my hands, but a pastry cutter or fork works too. Press half of the crust into the bottom of the prepared pan.
PREBAKE THE CRUST: You are going to bake the bottom crust just for a few minutes so it will brown up before you add the filling.
THICKEN THE CARAMEL: Stir 3 tablespoons of flour into the caramel sauce so that it will thicken as the bars bake.
ADD THE FILLING: Remove the hot crust from the oven and sprinkle it with chocolate chips and nuts. Drizzle the caramel sauce over the top.
TOP WITH REMAINING CRUMBS: Crumble the rest of the oat mixture over the caramel layer. It is totally fine if some of the filling is showing, just cover it with crumbs as evenly as possible.
BAKE: Place the pan back into the hot oven and cook for 20-25 more minutes or until the filling is bubbly and the topping is lightly browned.
COOL: The caramel sauce will be really hot and still runny, so you need to let the bars cool before cutting. It is easiest to cut them after they cool completely, but you can serve them warm. They won’t be as pretty, but they will be tasty!
PRO TIP: Run a knife or metal spatula along the edges of the bars when you remove them from the oven. Then as they cool, the caramel won’t stick to the side of the pan.
HOW TO STORE CARMELITAS:
-If stored in an airtight container, these bars will last 4-5 days at room temperature.
You can also freeze them, but the oats tend to get soft, so I don’t recommend it unless you really have to. They will keep in the freezer for about 3 months. Either wrap them in two layers of plastic wrap, or place them in heavy duty freezer ziplock bags.
Any time I take these bars anywhere, they are quickly devoured! Give this carmelitas recipe a try, you won’t be sorry!
Looking for more decadent bar cookies? Here you go:
Oatmeal Carmelitas Recipe
- 1 cup flour
- 1 cup oats
- 3/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 10 Tbsp butter or margarine, melted
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
- 1 12oz jar caramel ice cream topping
- 3 Tbsp flour
- Mix together flour, oats, brown sugar, soda, salt, and melted butter in a mixing bowl till crumbly.
- Spread half of the dough in a well greased 9x13" pan. (For easier cutting and cleanup, line the pan with foil first.)
- Bake at 350° for 8 minutes.
- Meanwhile, stir together caramel and flour.
- Remove crust from oven and sprinkle with chocolate chips and nuts. Drizzle caramel mixture evenly over the top. Crumble the remaining dough over the top of the caramel. It's OK if some of the filling is showing.
- Return to the oven and bake for 20-25 more minutes or till golden brown and bubbly. Cool before cutting.
-The original recipe called for 3/4 cup butter. I always thought they were a bit greasy, so I cut it down a bit. First I tried 1/2 cup, but they were dry. With the 10 Tbsp, they taste just as rich and buttery, but aren't as greasy.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 180Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 18mgSodium: 133mgCarbohydrates: 22gFiber: 1gSugar: 14gProtein: 2g
(photos updated 12/15)
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