Pumpkin Spice Nanaimo Bars

Pumpkin Spice Nanaimo Bars

Pumpkin Spice Nanaimo Bars

If you’re like me when I first stumbled upon this dessert, you’re probably wondering “what the heck is a Nanaimo bar?” Well, according to Wikipedia, “The Nanaimo bar is a dessert item of Canadian origin popular across North America. It is a bar cookie which requires no baking and is named after the West Coast city of Nanaimo, British Columbia. It consists of a wafer crumb-based layer topped by a layer of light vanilla or custard flavoured butter icing which is covered with melted chocolate made from chocolate squares.”

This is the first time I’ve made this dessert, and I was pleasantly surprised at how easy it was and how quickly it came together. At first I was a little intimidated by the fact that it had three layers, but I wasn’t going to let that deter me. (it was really quite simple to make)

I decided to make my bars a little more “seasonal” by adding a bit of pumpkin pie spice to the bottom layer, and using Pumpkin Spice flavored pudding mix in the second layer.

This dessert turned out to be wonderfully delicious, and I can envision making it again in the very near future. Just don’t ask me to pronounce Nanaimo. 🙂


Pumpkin Spice Nanaimo Bars

Bottom Layer:
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Second Layer:
1/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons instant pumpkin spice pudding mix
2 cups powdered sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons milk

Third Layer:
1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips
2 tablespoons butter


Bottom Layer:
Melt butter, sugar, cocoa, and pumpkin pie spice in the top of a double boiler. Add egg and stir to cook and thicken. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla extract, graham cracker crumbs, and walnuts. Press firmly into an ungreased 8” X 8” pan.

Second Layer:
In a medium bowl, cream butter and pudding mix. Add powdered sugar and milk; beat until smooth. Spread over first layer and refrigerate until firm.

Third Layer:
Combine chocolate chips and butter in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave for approximately 30 seconds, until chips are melted. Stir until smooth. Cool slightly and pour over second layer. Place in refrigerator to chill. Cut into squares.

12 Responses

  1. The word “Nanaimo” is pronounced Nuh-Nigh’- Moe with the accent on the second vowel. But in this case, we may want to pronounce it as follows: “YUMM-Y!” I enjoy following your blog from the lower 48. Thanks for sharing! – Lori

    • Thank you so much for letting me know how to correctly pronounce Nanaimo, Lori!! I really don’t like to pronounce things incorrectly, and I’m pretty sure now that I have been slaughtering this pronunciation. 🙂

  2. They look great! I do wonder how one pronounces nanaimo!

  3. I would pronounce this one – “delicious” 🙂 In fact I’m sitting here looking at this dessert and drooling – and I just finished breakfast!!!
    I can’t wait to try this one. Thanks AK Mom!

    • You’re welcome Akgypsy! I just love finding new ways to use the Pumpkin Spice instant pudding mix. 🙂

  4. Oh, these sound yum and so quick and easy! I may have to indulge myself pretty soon!

  5. Wow, these look and sounds delicious! I love all 3 layers!

  6. This looks like a delicious dessert. The fact that no baking is required is a nice bonus.

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