These simple shortbread bars are packed with holiday flavor thanks to candy canes. Candy Cane Crumble Bars make a fabulous addition to your holiday cookie platters!
(This recipe for Candy Cane Crumble Bars was originally posted in December 2012, but was updated with new photos in 2018).
Can I get a show of hands of people who are unreasonably excited for Les Miserables to come to theaters? And maybe even who get teary-eyed every time a commercial comes on TV? If you know me, you know it is very rare I get excited about movies… very rare. But like I said, I cry basically every time the commercial comes on. And break into song. It's at the point, I think my husband is ready to kill me… Or else learn all the lyrics himself so we can duet. I prefer the second option.
Fun fact. The first time I met my now brother-in-law, I was visiting my sister in Chicago. We came back from the bar and spent about an hour sitting in her living room at 2:00 a.m. singing the entire Les Miserables soundtrack at the top of our lungs. Until her roommate came out of her room asking what the heck we were doing. We had no idea she was home. Embarrassing, but worth it. And that's partly how I instantly knew I liked Adam. A man who knows all the words to every Les Mis song is OK by me. I really think Chris needs to learn so we can have a whole family sing-off. We could go door-to-door singing Les Mis songs instead of Christmas Carols. The neighbors would love that, right?
Or we could just sing in the kitchen while making candy cane crumble bars. Either way. I love a good dessert bar on a cookie platter and these candy cane crumble bars ended up being a fabulous alternative to a Christmas cookie. Clearly I'm obsessed with peppermint this season and I'm going to be crazy sad when candy canes leave stores. Do people even just eat candy canes out of the package anymore? I'm pretty sure they're only used for baking. And tree decorating.
CANDY CANE CRUMBLE BARS RECIPE
These candy cane bars are pretty simple to make and consist of two parts- a shortbread crust and a white chocolate topping. The shortbread crust dough will be nice and crumbly and you'll want to set about ¾ cup of it aside to add to the candy cane topping. Press the rest of it into the bottom of a greased 9x9 pan.
The topping is simply condensed milk and white chocolate chips all melted together! After the shortbread crust bakes for a bit, you'll pour the white chocolate mixture over the top. And then sprinkle the crushed candy canes mixed with the rest of the shortbread crumbles over the top. And pop back into the oven to bak some more.
The most important thing. Wait until these are cooled absolutely completely before cutting into them. You can do it! I have faith in you. If you don't, the candy cane crumbles will be all gooey and sticky and your knife will not be very happy.
But I promise that the wait is worth it for this totally 100% holiday treat. Candy cane crumble bars are kind of like a fruity crumble bar, but also kind of like a blondie with white chocolate filling. Basically, just the best ever holiday treats.
And so deliciously festive, it might even make you sing. But probably Les Miserables tunes instead of holiday songs. 'Tis the season for show tunes.
I cannot even believe there are only about 12 days until Christmas. I feel like I haven't even begun to scratch the surface of what I wanted to do with holiday recipes. Which clearly means that I'll have to get started in September next year. Hope you don't mind. I'm already creating my holidays 2013 list. Or should I say Pinterest boards? But for now, I'm just going to sit on my couch and gobble up these candy cane crumble bars while watching cheesy Christmas movies and staring at my Christmas tree. Hey, gotta enjoy the season while we're in it, right?
I have a couple more fun posts coming up, including some fun giveaways, so keep an eye out. In the meantime, I hope you're all having a glorious holiday season and are getting all prepared for the holidays. And making sure to sing every change you get! And snacking on candy canes... or at least these candy cane bars!
How prepared are you for the holidays?
Candy Cane Crumble Bars
- ¾ cup (12 Tbsp) unsalted butter, room temperature
- ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 can (14 oz.) condensed milk
- 1 cup white chocolate chips
- 1 cup crushed candy canes (about 7-8 candy canes)
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9″x9″ baking pan.
- In a stand mixer (or large mixing bowl with a hand mixer), cream together butter and brown sugar, until fluffy.
- Add flour to the mixer and mix gently until it comes together and turns into coarse crumbs.
- Press the dough mixture onto bottom of the prepared pan, reserving about ¾ cup of the crumbs to use for the topping. Bake shortbread crust for 9 minutes.
- When crust is almost done baking, make filling. In a medium saucepan, heat condensed milk and white chocolate chips over medium heat until melted and smooth.
- Take crust out of oven and pour white chocolate mixture over the shortbread.
- Mix together the remaining crumbs and crushed candy canes together. Sprinkle mixture on top of the white chocolate layer and bake for another 18-20 minutes, until top is set.
- Let cool completely before slicing.