Gooey pecan dream bars are the perfect mix of soft and gooey with a little bit of pecan crunch. They use a box cake mix, toffee bits, and sweetened condensed milk to make an easy but memorable dessert.
If you like gooey butter cake and pecan pie, you are going to love these tasty gooey pecan dream bars. They have a texture and flavor that will remind you a little bit of both in a super simple to make recipe.
These yummy bars were an instant hit when we tried them. My little sister liked them so much she went home and made a batch for her friends.
Of course pecans make me think of Thanksgiving, but they don’t need to be saved for the holidays. They are so quick to put together you can really enjoy them any time.
Whenever your sweet tooth is acting up, you can pull a handful of simple ingredients out of the pantry and have a wonderful treat in no time. You will have to make a batch to see how good they are for yourself.
Making These Easy Bars
The base is a lot like you would make for a gooey butter cake. You just take softened butter, an egg and a cake mix and stir it together.
It may seem a bit crumbly at first, but it should press into a nice crust on the bottom of a 9×13-inch pan. Just trust the process and get it spread evenly.
Then mix together some toffee bits (like the Heath ones you find in the baking aisle), pecans and a can of sweetened condensed milk. Pour that mixture over the crust and bake until the top is golden and bubbly.
The toffee bits melt into the condensed milk adding rich depth of flavor. They also help set the mixture up and hold everything together.
Make sure your bars are good and cool before you cut and serve them. They will taste amazing warm, but will look quite messy if you don’t give them a chance to set up.
Tips and Tricks
A number of different cake mixes work for this recipe. Try using white, yellow, butter or even chocolate.
Be sure to use sweetened condensed milk not evaporated milk.
English Toffee Bits are found in the baking aisle by the chocolate chips. Get the ones without chocolate on them.
Do not over bake, you want the center to be a bit gooey. The bars will continue to set up as they cool.
How do you store caramel pecan dream bars?
Store your pecan bars in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days. Or freeze for up to 3 months.
What to do With the Rest of the English Toffee Bits:
- Use them to make a peanut butter toffee cheesecake
- Or make butterscotch toffee cookies
- Stir some into your favorite chocolate chip cookies
- Sprinkle them over ice cream
- Stir them into your coffee or hot chocolate
More Pecan Dessert Recipes:
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Caramel Pecan Dream Bars
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- ⅓ cup butter softened
- 1 large egg
- 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- ½ cup toffee bits
- Preheat oven to 350°F and grease a 9×13-inch pan.
- Mix together cake mix, softened butter and the egg. The mixture may be a little bit crumbly.1 box yellow cake mix, ⅓ cup butter, 1 large egg
- Press the crust into the bottom of the greased pan.
- Stir together the condensed milk, pecans and toffee bits. Spread over the crust.14 ounces sweetened condensed milk, 1 cup chopped pecans, ½ cup toffee bits
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the filling is golden brown and bubbly.
- Cool completely before cutting and serving.