The Caramel Pecan Bars That Remind Andrew Zimmern Of His Childhood

There are a lot of snacks that we used to eat as a child that we just don't seem to find ourselves snacking on anymore, and it's honestly a bit of a shame. Sure, a grown adult probably doesn't need to be snacking on Dunkaroos or Trix yogurt every day like they did when they were kids, but what about the simple pleasures found in some home-baked childhood classics like magic cookie bars, or a pan of a sweet and salty Rice Krispie treat recipe covered in rainbow sprinkles? 

There's something about those nostalgic recipes that just hit the spot, and you don't have to be a kid to enjoy them. Dessert bars are easy to make, easy to share with a big family or group, and are usually pretty simple. So when Andrew Zimmern recently shared that he had updated his Aunt Suzanne's "Famous Caramel Pecan Bars," (via Andrew Zimmern) turning them into a "simple, foolproof treat," we immediately wanted to check out the recipe to see if it was the type of old-fashioned sweet that speaks to anyone's palate, young or old.

A simple dessert bar

Andrew Zimmern recently took to Twitter to share his Aunt Suzanne's caramel pecan bars, which she baked "every holiday," saying that "they remind me of my childhood." The nostalgic recipe is pretty simple. The chef previously posted a version of his Aunt's caramel pecan bars to Andrew Zimmern, based on a recipe "she says she got ... off a butter box." (We found a similar recipe on the Land O'Lakes butter brand). Zimmern called that version "a stunner, and addictive." But he recently made a few changes, after he "turned her notes into a fool proof recipe" (via Andrew Zimmern).

Zimmern's updated take on his aunt's caramel pecan bars includes double the amount of pecans, and he makes more brown sugar caramel for the topping, too. The result is a nuttier, gooier caramel pecan bar that's still really easy to make. If you find yourself craving this sort of vintage, brown bag-lunch friendly dessert recipe often, there are lots of recipes to choose from. From this quick easy pecan pie bar recipe to these easy 7-layer cookie bars that taste like hanging out at your friend's house after school, dessert bars are one sweet treat you should incorporate back into your baking repertoire.