Carroll Taylor's Nanaimo Bars

Nanaimo Bars / Kate Martens (p)

Jackie Cameron
Carroll Taylor’s Nanaimo Bars are so tantalising that I couldn’t resist a second. These tasty treats are of Canadian of origin, popular across North America. It is a bar dessert that requires no baking and is named after the west coast city of Nanaimo in British Columbia. It comprises a wafer crumb base topped with a layer of custard-flavoured butter icing that is covered with melted chocolate, made from chocolate squares and has been voted Canada’s Favourite Confection in a National Post reader survey. There are many varieties of the Nanaimo bar. They offer different types of crumb, different flavours of icing (eg mint, peanut butter, coconut, mocha) and different types of chocolate.
— Jackie Cameron

Nanaimo Bars

First Layer

Yield: 12 pieces


  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 4 tbsp. cocoa


1. Melt the above ingredients in a double boiler and add to:

  • 2 cups crushed (fine) whole wheat digestive biscuits
  • 1/2 cup medium coconut or fine
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts

2. Place in small square pan 8x8 and press down evenly.

Next Layer


  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 2 tbsp. custard powder
  • 2 cups icing sugar
  • 3 tbsp milk or more - enough to make it easy to spread but not too runny


1. Beat together and spread over first layer above.

Last Layer


  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 250g -500g dark chocolate (in the photo I used white this really depends on you, brown chocolate is more common) - sometimes I use a little more so it is a thicker top.


1. I put it in the fridge until the chocolate hardens a little and then I score through to yellow layer so it will cut easily without the chocolate top breaking.