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Caramelitas

Caramelitas: A Decadent Symphony of Caramel and Chocolate Bliss

Prepare your taste buds for an indulgent journey with our heavenly Caramelitas. These layered bars are a decadent combination of buttery oats, gooey caramel, and rich chocolate, creating a symphony of flavors and textures that will leave you craving more. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a kitchen novice, this recipe promises to elevate your baking skills and provide a sweet escape into a world of caramel and chocolate bliss. Join us as we embark on the delightful process of crafting these irresistible Caramelitas.

Ingredients

For the Oat Base and Topping:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt

For the Caramel Layer:

  • 1 (14 ounces) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the Chocolate Layer:

  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Instructions

Prepare the Oat Base:

  1. Preheat the Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a 9×13-inch baking pan and line it with parchment paper, leaving an overhang on the sides for easy removal.
  2. Create the Oat Mixture:
    • In a large bowl, combine melted butter, oats, flour, brown sugar, baking soda, and salt. Mix until well combined.
  3. Press Into Pan:
    • Press half of the oat mixture into the prepared baking pan to form an even base. Set aside the remaining mixture for the topping.

Make the Caramel Layer:

  1. Prepare Caramel Sauce:
    • In a saucepan over medium heat, combine sweetened condensed milk, butter, corn syrup, and vanilla extract. Stir continuously until the mixture is smooth and the butter is fully melted.
  2. Layer Caramel:
    • Pour the caramel sauce over the oat base in the baking pan, spreading it evenly.

Add the Chocolate Layer:

  1. Melt Chocolate:
    • In a microwave-safe bowl, melt the chocolate chips and butter in 30-second intervals, stirring between each interval until smooth.
  2. Layer Chocolate:
    • Pour the melted chocolate over the caramel layer, spreading it evenly with a spatula.
  3. Add Oat Topping:
    • Crumble the remaining oat mixture evenly over the chocolate layer, creating a delightful oat topping.

Bake to Perfection:

  1. Bake in the Oven:
    • Bake in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
  2. Cool and Set:
    • Allow the Caramelitas to cool in the pan for at least 2 hours to set before cutting into bars.

Cook Notes

  • Perfectly Pressed Base:
    • Ensure the oat base is firmly pressed into the pan to create a solid foundation for the layers.
  • Smooth Caramel Spreading:
    • Work quickly when spreading the caramel to ensure a smooth and even layer.
  • Chilled Chocolate Setting:
    • Let the bars cool completely to allow the chocolate to set before cutting.
  • Parchment Paper Perfection:
    • Using parchment paper in the baking pan makes it easier to lift the Caramelitas out for cutting.

Variations

Nutty Crunch:

  • Add a layer of chopped nuts, such as pecans or walnuts, to the oat mixture for extra crunch.

Salted Caramel Sensation:

  • Sprinkle a pinch of sea salt over the caramel layer for a delightful sweet and salty contrast.

Coconut Dream:

  • Mix shredded coconut into the oat mixture for a tropical twist.

Keto Versions

Almond Flour Alchemy:

  • Replace all-purpose flour with almond flour for a keto-friendly oat base.

Sugar-Free Sweetness:

  • Use a sugar-free sweetened condensed milk substitute for the caramel layer.

Dark Chocolate Delight:

  • Opt for sugar-free dark chocolate chips for the chocolate layer.

Low-Carb Versions

Flaxseed Fiber Boost:

  • Integrate ground flaxseed into the oat mixture for added fiber and a low-carb alternative.

Stevia Sweetening:

  • Substitute brown sugar with a low-carb sweetener like Stevia for the oat base.

Dark Cocoa Decadence:

  • Choose unsweetened dark cocoa for the chocolate layer to reduce overall sugar content.

A Sweet Symphony of Satisfaction

In conclusion, Caramelitas aren’t just a treat; they’re a sweet symphony of satisfaction—a melody of caramel, oats, and chocolate that harmonizes perfectly on the palate. Whether you embrace the classic recipe, experiment with variations, explore keto adaptations, or opt for a low-carb twist, these bars promise to be a delightful addition to your baking repertoire.

As you savor each layer, let the buttery oats, gooey caramel, and rich chocolate transport you to a realm of pure indulgence. The Caramelitas aren’t just bars; they’re an invitation to treat yourself, share with loved ones, and revel in the joy of baking something truly extraordinary. So, preheat that oven, gather your ingredients, and get ready to experience the irresistible allure of Caramelitas—a dessert that transcends ordinary sweetness and delivers a symphony of decadent delight to your taste buds. Enjoy every luscious bite!

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