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Salted Caramel Butter Bars

These Salted Caramel Butter bars are one of my most requested recipes ever! The buttery cookie is filled with a creamy, salted caramel that is so rich and beyond delicious.

Salted Caramel Butter Bars are THE BEST Cookie Bar of ALL TIME!

I can’t begin to explain to you how much I love these Salted Caramel Butter Bars…I make them ALL THE TIME. They are one of my most requested desserts to bring to parties and there is never one left! And might I add, if you happen to be entering a cookie contest, these will guarantee you victory. Unequivocally.

The base is a buttery shortbread that comes together very easily and the filling is simply caramels, milk or cream, and a little salt! You can use pre-made caramels, or even a thick caramel sauce. I do recommend using caramels over sauce, because I think the texture is more chewy and hold up better than sauce, but so many of you who have made this recipe let me know that you have used caramel sauce and it’s worked out well!

These cookie bars are really super simple and can be adapted in different ways…I even made a Salted Nutella Butter bar based on this recipe. The buttery crust, the chewy caramel and the omg deliciousness of it all has never disappointed. Salted caramel runs through my veins at this point. Oh and there is even an APPLE version in my book!
These are a must in my house at the holidays…or whenever I am looking to make people fall in love with me 🙂

How To Make Salted Caramel Butter Bars

How To Make Salted Caramel Butter Bars

It’s all a pretty easy process, just a few steps, honestly: you make dough, you divide dough, you bake some of the dough, you chill some of the dough…

THEN
You melt caramel, you spread caramel, you sprinkle salt on the caramel, then you sprinkle more dough.
Then finish baking.
It’s easy and oh so delicious!!

Salted Caramel Butter Bars

I will tell you that these cookie bars are next level. Yes, there is a lot of butter, yes there are a lot of calories, BUT I urge you not to eat the whole pan. I actually don’t think that is physically possible! ha! Have one, savor it, love it, and SHARE them!
I might go as far to say that they are one of the best things that I have made in a while.
I know you will love them..that is if you like butter, sugar and delicious caramel filling.  Yeah, that’s what I thought.
They sure won’t help your fat jean/skinny jean dilemma, but they are guaranteed to make you happy while you’re wearing elastic 🙂

Looking For More Caramel Recipes? Try These:

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Salted Caramel Butter Bars

Salted Caramel Butter Bars

  • Author: Cookies & Cups
  • Prep Time: 30
  • Cook Time: 50
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 24 bars 1x
  • Category: Cookie Bars
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: Dessert

Description

Salted Caramel Butter Bars are a buttery shortbread filled with creamy salted caramel! A MUST MAKE!


Ingredients

Scale

For the Crust:

  • 2 cups salted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1½ cups powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • 4 cups all purpose flour

For the Filling:

  • 14 ounces soft caramel candies (about 50 individual caramels), unwrapped
  • 1/3 cup milk or cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • optional – 1 tablespoon coarse sea salt

Instructions

To Make the Crust:
  1. Preheat oven to 325°. Coat a 9×13 baking dish with nonstick spray. Set aside.
  2. In the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mix the butter, granulated sugar, and powdered sugar together on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the vanilla and mix until combined. Turn the mixer to low and add in the flour, mixing until a soft dough forms.
  3. Press one-third of the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Wrap the remaining dough in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator.
  4. Bake for 20 minutes, or until the edges are a pale golden brown. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool about 15 minutes.

To Make the Filling:

  1. While the bottom crust is baking and the remaining dough is chilling, make the caramel filling. Place the unwrapped caramels in a microwave-safe bowl. Add the milk or cream. Microwave on high for 1 minute. Remove from the microwave and stir until smooth. If caramels are not completely melted, microwave on high for 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval, until smooth.
  2. Once the caramel is melted add in your ½ teaspoon of vanilla and stir until combined.
  3. Pour the caramel filling over the cooled crust. If you are going to salt the caramel sprinkle it on caramel layer now.
  4. Remove the remaining chilled dough from the refrigerator and crumble it evenly over the caramel.
  5. Return the pan to the oven and bake until the filling is bubbly and the crumbled shortbread topping is firm and lightly golden, about 25 – 30 minutes.
  6. Let cool completely before cutting into squares.

Notes

  • Store airtight for up to 5 days

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 bar
  • Calories: 423
  • Sugar: 39.9 g
  • Sodium: 515.9 mg
  • Fat: 18.9 g
  • Carbohydrates: 60.6 g
  • Protein: 4.3 g
  • Cholesterol: 43.6 mg

Keywords: salted caramel, cookie bar, butter, butter bars, cookie recipe, cookies and cups

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463 comments on “Salted Caramel Butter Bars”

  1. I modified this recipe a little ( hope you dont mind?). I substituted the butter content for cannabutter. It worked a treat! Thank you for the inspiration.

  2. Quick question, how do you think these would do if i made them, packaged them individually and froze them? I love this recipe and im making them for a fundraiser / bake sale and would love to make them ahead of time, but only if they’ll be just as tasty when they thaw

    1. Annaleisa Hiett

      Agreed! I made a batch but didn’t want to be tempted by the whole thing so I froze them up and even weeks later were just as delicious after I popped them in the microwave for 10 seconds or so.

  3. I made the recipe as is, and these are amazing. They keep for several days, and I think they even improve after a couple of days. Two things: 1) I made the caramel sauce from the link in the recipe and it came out SUPER salty. In this recipe it actually was not a problem – I was worried at first. But if you think you’ll use the leftover caramel sauce over ice cream or something, think again. The next time I make the sauce, I’ll halve the salt and see what happens. 2) On my second batch (to use up the super-salty caramel sauce!), I sprinkled a handful of chocolate chips over the top of the bars after baking, turned off the heat and put the pan back into the oven to soften the chips. I spread them haphazardly over the top, (not a full layer of chocolate). That little bit of added chocolate was excellent and I’ll be doing that from now on.

  4. This are a big hit wherever the party is, old and young alike , always a positive remark,

  5. Is it really two cups of butter? Four sticks? I’ve made these or something similar before, but today they came out swimming in butter. Could not get them to set. I started in a ceramic baking dish (made for “magic cookie bars”) then pulled the parchment out and plopped then into a regular metal 9×13 and practically baked again. So greasy! I can’t figure out what I did wrong this time.

    1. Yup! 2 cups of butter and they turn out perfect. Make sure you use room temp butter and they should set just fine (:

  6. Holy heck these are good! Just discovered Kraft caramel bits. They are small caramel bits unwrapped for easy melting. Saves a lot of unwrapping. Comes in an 11 oz bag. Great recipe. I find myself reaching for dog eared copies of your recipes again and again! Thank you

  7. Salted Carmel Butter Bars.
    Wondering when making it, what if I didn’t put shortbread crumbled on top and put chocolate icing? Think be good?? Love your recipes!
    Thanks!!

    1. I’ve never tried that! I might use all the shortbread as a crust..and obviously add the icing after it’s baked and cooled. If you try it let us know!

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