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Chocolate Chip Coconut ‘Awesome’ Bars

I was kind of half joking on Twitter when I said that I would call these ‘Awesome Bars’.

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

It turns out they are really quite awesome so I felt no qualms about adding it to the title.  So, what are ‘Awesome Bars,’ you might ask?.  Well, they are a dense, buttery cake bottom with a VERY rich cream cheese topping loaded with coconut, chocolate chips, and some crisp rice cereal.  The cereal does not really add any texture as far as I can tell, but it adds just a bit of toasty flavor to the tangy topping, and it firms things up a bit.  Imagine if a cheesecake and a blondie had some babies, who then rolled around in chocolate chips and coconut.   That is the easiest way to explain these bars.

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

When I was developing this recipe I made a calculation error in the topping and accidentally doubled the cream cheese while cutting the quantity of flour in half.  In the great tradition of mistakes that turn out to be fantastic, I loved the resulting bar.  The only issue was the looseness of the cheese topping.  I did not want to add more flour, I did not want these to be too firm, so I added some crisp rice to the second batch.  At best it would absorb some of the moisture without making things too cakey, and at worst they would make no difference.  Well, it worked the way I anticipated.  These are good slightly warm, at room temperature, or even chilled.  I like them best with a cup of coffee that has been generously spiked with some brandy.  Hey, it’s the Holidays!

Chocolate Chip Coconut ‘Awesome’ Bars      Yield 18 bars

For the base:
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup sugar
4 tablespoons butter, softened
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 cup chocolate chips

For the topping:
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 tablespoons butter
1 egg
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 cup crisp rice cereal
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chocolate chips

Heat the oven to 350 F and spray an 8×8-inch baking pan with non-stick spray.

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

In the work bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, sugar, butter, egg, egg yolk, and vanilla.  Mix until it just forms a cohesive mass then add the chocolate chips and stir until they are evenly distributed.   Press this mixture evenly into the prepared pan.

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

In the same bowl combine the cream cheese, butter, egg, flour, vanilla, and powdered sugar.  Mix until very smooth and creamy, then stir in the crisp rice cereal, coconut, and chocolate chips until well mixed.

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' BarsChocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

Spread the cream cheese mixture evenly over the base then bake for 25 to 35 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown all over, puffed, and just set at the edges while the center is still just a little wobbly.  Cool completely in the pan then chill for at least two hours.  Once chilled run a thin knife around the edges of the bars and turn out of the pan.   Cut into squares.

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

Enjoy!

Chocolate Chip Coconut 'Awesome' Bars

© 2011, Evil Shenanigans – Baking & Cooking Blog. All rights reserved.

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21 Responses to “Chocolate Chip Coconut ‘Awesome’ Bars”

  1. Jamie says:

    Mmmm that topping may be loose but it looks so creamy and good! I love this combo and I’d not be able to stop at one.

  2. Julia says:

    I appreciate that you GENEROUSLY spike your coffee with brandy :)

  3. Holy crap, these look ah-mazing! I’m drooling…can’t wait to make these, pinned!!

  4. Kris says:

    These look amazing! But when I bake, I need to make large quantities because I am the “Baking Fairy” for family and friends and I like to share (if I share, I can’t eat them all myself). Can I safely double the recipe for a larger pan?

  5. I believe awesome is perfect for these bars; I love the addition of coconut and that does make them awesome!

  6. These are inanity. Love them!

  7. Paula says:

    I’m betting awesome is an understatement :)

  8. Alta says:

    I think awesome would be an understatement here. Yum.

  9. Wow, these bars are beyond awesome! I’m definitely saving this and trying it soon!

    Cheers,
    Tammy

  10. i’m always looking for ways to use rice krispies (besides the usual)–so I can’t wait to try this!

  11. Christine says:

    Hey Kelly, your Awesome Bar is a Recipe Guessing Game on Knapkins. Think your friends can win? http://www.knapkins.com/guess_games/1045?source=fb

    Show your foodie love and vote here
    http://www.knapkins.com/duel?dish=15673

  12. They look like the qualify as “awesome bars” to me!! Yum yum!

  13. Kathleen says:

    Um…excuse my ignorance. Where exactly do you add the 2C of powdered sugar listed in the topping ingredients since it is not listed anywhere in the instructions for putting the topping together…?

  14. Dezarae says:

    I just made these. Followed your recipe exactly. They are amazingly delicious and my house smells wonderful!

  15. Maureen says:

    These look amazing! I’m glad I am not the only one who “generously” spikes their coffee with adult beverages {my go-to is Bailey’s}.

  16. Brenda says:

    Evilshenanigans, what a name. I love it.

    These bars do look awesome or as we say in Ireland, savage.Looking forward to trying them out !

  17. Pat says:

    This delicious looking and sounding recipe was sent by my son…perhaps he will make a batch so I get more than just a recipe…Matthew are you reading this???

  18. Hilywatson says:

    This is truely YUMMY one…as talking about me anything with combination of chocolate is just my favorite as I found of SWEET.

    Thanks alot for this. Surely gonna try this today only..

  19. Kate says:

    I made these for my boyfriend for Valentine’s Day, since this is basically an amalgamation of all of his favorite things. If he didn’t love me before he sure does now, and it’s not without reason, because these really do live up to their name. I only tweaked it a bit by cutting back on the sugar for the topping, cause it’s a lot of sugar, and adding cocoa powder to bottom so it’s a chocolate cake instead. But thank you for this recipe, because I’m pretty sure I’ll be making these every other weekend. Everyone that has one seems to fall in love with them!

  20. Katie says:

    I have been wanting to make these for quite sometime and finally got to them today. I am not sure what happened, I baked them for 40 minutes and they were light golden, inside still quite wobbly but the edges were set when I touched them so I pulled them out. I was so worried about over baking them! when they cooled the inside sank and I *knew* they were not quite done but they were super raw in the middle :( the whole inside oozed out when I cut them. The edge was pretty good- though holy cow, they are SWEET (and I looove sweet) I think the sugar could stand to be reduced by half in the topping and I added a bit more coconut which I will do again since I love it. I will try again though!

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