Toothacher Bars. The name would indicate overly sweet and decadent, however these bars are so much more than that. Chocolate, caramel, and pecans make them decadent yes, but an oatmeal crumble base and topping is what makes them spectacular!!
Once the base of oatmeal, flour, brown sugar, soda, salt and butter are combined the mixture is pressed into the bottom of a 9×13 pan, reserving about 1/3 for the top. Warm caramel is poured slowly over the mixture and then topped with chocolate chips and chopped pecans. A final crumble of the remaining mixture is sprinkled on top and then baked for 20 minutes.
When these bars come out of the oven you’ll have all you can do to hold your family back while they set up. The topping becomes crispy and buttery with a hint of salty sweet goodness.
Once fully cooled these bars cut nicely and ship beautifully. They are a wonderful holiday gift. Remember…Toothachers. Don’t feel bad about cutting them on the smaller size. You’ll find 1 1/2″ squares are just right and are sure to delight!
- 1½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1½ cups old-fashioned oats
- 1⅛ cup brown sugar
- 1⅛ cup butter (2 sticks + 2 Tbl.), melted
- ¾ tsp. baking soda
- ¾ tsp. salt
- 40 caramels
- 5 Tbl. milk
- 1¼ cups chocolate chips
- 1¼ cups chopped pecans
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- In microwave safe bowl, combine caramels with milk and microwave on high until completely melted, stirring at 30 second intervals, about 2 minutes.
- In large bowl, combine flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, butter, salt, and baking soda. Mixture will be thick and stiff.
- Press ⅔ of mixture into bottom of 9x13 pan. Pour melted caramel over top and spread evenly. Sprinkle on chocolate chips and chopped pecans.
- Crumble remaining oat mixture over top and bake for 20 minutes.
- Cool completely before cutting.
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