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Nanaimo bar cake



  • Nonstick vegetable oil spray
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup good quality chocolate milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Nanaimo bars (bottom layer)

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 1/4 cup graham wafer crumbs
  • 3/4 cup toasted shredded coconut
  • 1/2 cup almonds, finely chopped

Nanaimo bars (middle layer)

  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons + 2 teaspoons whipping cream
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla custard powder
  • 2 cups icing sugar

Nanaimo bars (final layer)

  • 4 oz semi sweet chocolate
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


  • 1 1/2 cups unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 4 cups icing sugar
  • 1/3 cup custard powder
  • 2 tablespoons whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract


  • 1 recipe worth of the Nanaimo bars, cut into 1” cubes
  • 1 cup toasted coconut
  • 1 cup chopped almonds
  • 1 cup melted milk chocolate



  1. Preheat your oven to 350°F.
  2. If you want a stacked cake use two, 8” springform pans, otherwise this recipe will also work with one, 12” springform pan. Spray springform pan(s) with nonstick spray.
  3. Sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt into medium sized bowl. Sift cocoa into another medium sized bowl. Pour boiling water over cocoa and mix to combine, set aside.
  4. Beat sugar and eggs in a large bowl until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add butter to egg mixture and beat until blended. Beat in cocoa mixture. Add chocolate milk and vanilla; beat to blend. Add dry ingredients and beat to combine. Mix in chocolate chips and transfer batter to prepared pan(s).
  5. Bake cake(s) about 40 minutes, or until cake tester comes out clean. Cool cake(s) completely in pan on rack.

Nanaimo bars

Note: You will need to make this recipe twice, once for the middle layer of the cake, and once for the topping.

  1. Spray one 8” spring form pan with non stick cooking spray
  2. Over a double boiler, combine butter, cocoa and sugar. Let stand for a 2 minutes until butter starts to melt. Stir until combined and smooth. Whisk in egg. Remove from heat and mix in wafer crumbs, coconut and almonds. Mix until well combined.
  3. Pour mixture into the springform pan and press down to unsure a solid layer.
  4. Now for the middle layer. In a stand mixer, or a handheld mixer, cream together butter, cream and vanilla custard. Gradually add the icing sugar until well combined and fluffy. Spoon this over the first layer.
  5. For the final layer, in a double boiler, melt chocolate and butter. Once cool, pour over second layer. Chill bars in the fridge for at least an hour.


  1. To a stand mixer, or using a hand mixer whisk butter and slowly add 1 cup of icing sugar at a time. Once all the icing sugar is added, add the custard powder. Once this is well combined, add the whipping cream. Continue to whisk until light and fluffy. Finally add the vanilla, and beat until you get a nice smooth frosting.


  1. This is going to be fun! Begin by placing one chocolate cake on a cake stand and top that with one uncut round Nanaimo bar. Top that with the other cake.
  2. Using an offset spatula, evenly spread frosting over entire cake.
  3. Top cake with broken up Nanaimo bars, toasted coconut, chopped almonds and drizzle with melted chocolate.

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