Caramel Layer Bars

4.88 from 8 votes
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Caramel Layer Bars – rich and chocolate brownie filled with chocolate chips and gooey caramel. You will not be able to stay away from them!

chocolate caramel brownies stacked on a plate

I think that desserts that you grew up with are probably the best. My mom always made me chocolate cream cake for my birthday dessert as a kid. I still ask for it today. And when you went to grandma’s house and always had Fudge Nut bars or something else there. You have fond memories of it. Well today, these caramel layer bars are straight from my grandma.
My grandma baked a few desserts that I can remember always being at her house. In the fall it was Apple Bars. The rest of the year, it was these caramel layer bars. They were a huge hit, and my mom made them at home too. When I had my first apartment in college, I remember making them often as well.
chocolate caramel brownies stacked on a plate
My husband, who doesn’t like chocolate, has always liked these. He used to request them when we were first married. That gooey caramel layer will sucker just about anyone in! These caramel layer bars were one of the first recipes I shared on the blog when I started, and today I am updating the pictures and sharing them with you again. They are just too good to miss.
chocolate caramel brownies stacked on a plate
The base is a box cake mix. I am sure you could make a homemade brownie or something, but sometimes you just have to trust Grandma, and use the box mix.  Plus, it makes it so easy to make! The recipe calls for a German chocolate cake mix. I am sure others would work, I would just be careful with the ones that have added chocolate chips, or say they have pudding in the mix. I would worry they might be too moist or gooey to stand up to the caramel.
I have noticed that over the years, they have shrunk the size of a bag of caramels. When I first started making this, a 14 oz bag was standard. Now, it is 11 oz. Up to you what you want to do there. I opted to buy a 2nd bag and use some of it. It really isn’t an exact science, so if you don’t want the 2nd bag, 11 oz will work just fine!
chocolate caramel brownies stacked on a plate
I have seen these caramel layer bars around with many names, but I am sticking with the one I grew up with. If you grew up in the Mid West, hopefully these will bring back fond memories for you too!


Caramel Layer Bars - rich and chocolate brownie filled with chocolate chips and gooey caramel. You will not be able to stay away from them!
4.88 from 8 votes

Caramel Layer Bars

By Erin
Caramel Layer Bars - rich and chocolate brownie filled with chocolate chips and gooey caramel. You will not be able to stay away from them!
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Servings: 24


  • 14 oz caramels, unwrapped
  • 2/3 cup evaporated milk
  • 1 box German Chocolate Cake Mix
  • 3/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/3 cup evaportated milk
  • 1 cup chocolate chips


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spary a 13x9 inch baking sheet with non-stick spray, or line with foil.
  • Melt caramel and 2/3 cup evaporated milk, let cool slightly.
  • Combine Cake mix, ¾ cup butter, and 1/3 cup milk. Mix well. Put half of mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 6 minutes.
  • Sprinkle evenly with 1 cup chocolate chips.
  • Spread caramel mixture of the chocolate chips.
  • Crumble the remaining dough over the caramel.
  • Bake for 25 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before serving.


Serving: 1g | Calories: 177kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Cholesterol: 21mg | Sodium: 102mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 17g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Author: Erin
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Course: Dessert Recipes
Cuisine: American
Servings: 24
Calories: 177
Keyword: caramel layer bars
Like this recipe? Leave a comment below!





About Erin S

Welcome to Dinners, Dishes, & Desserts where my love of food meets my busy life. My name is Erin and I’m a casual home cook who loves to feed people. On this blog, you’ll find hundreds of quick and easy recipes made mostly from scratch. My days are spent in the kitchen, creating new recipes to share with family and friends.

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  1. 5 stars
    My aunt has made these since I was a kid and they are the BEST. I recently asked her to send the recipe but I was curious to see if I could find it online- and here it is! The only difference is she has 1/3 c evaporated milk with the caramels. I’m making these for a family reunion for my husbands family tomorrow. I’m sure it’ll be a hit!

  2. Yay! I have lived this recipe for years. Life has been made easier since Kraft now makes 11oz bags of Caramel Bits. No more unwrapping of caramel candies needed!