Boy Bakes Treats - Caramel Slice

Dark Chocolate Caramel Slice

Boy Bakes Treats - Caramel Slice

Caramel slices are so beloved and omnipresent in Australia, I think it might be borderline illegal to call yourself a bakery if you don't sell them. If you've never had the pleasure of classic caramel slice, it's a bit like the Twix bar of your dreams. With its crunchy coconut cookie base and crackly chocolate topping surrounding a layer of rich and gooey caramel, this is pretty close to treat nirvana.

What distinguishes caramel slice from its 1970s origins in the Australian Women's Weekly as caramel shortbread squares or the fantastically named millionaire's shortbread (good job by you, Scotland!) is the base. It's more biscuit than shortbread, so you get more of a crunch to contrast with the textures of the other layers. However, what I think makes a caramel slice truly Strayan is the addition of coconut in the base - who else loves dessicated coconut in its treats as much as Aussies? Not only does it really add to the flavour profile, it also lends an extra bit of chewiness.

For the caramel layer, we'll take a languid, lazy Sunday approach to get a smooth, velvety and rich result. Just get your butter/condensed milk combo going low and slow and keep the stirring consistent and frequent so it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pan as it thickens. Baking your caramel is your insurance policy for a firm layer, otherwise you'll run the risk of it squidging out the sides when you cut into your slice. If you're unable to source golden syrup, maple will do just fine.

Milk chocolate is most commonly used for the topping, however dark chocolate does cut through the overall sweetness of the other layers. Adding the oil will make the chocolate slightly softer when it sets so the topping won't crack when you slice into it. When you pour the melted chocolate over the caramel layer, it will set pretty quickly, so make sure you have a spatula at the ready to spread it out.

Leave your slice out of the fridge for about 15 minutes before serving so you can cut it up without too much trouble. A warm knife will also help out - pour some boiling water over it and dry with a towel before wielding. If you want to take your slice to another decadent level, leave it out a little bit longer so the chocolate ever-so-slightly starts to melt. That is the business right there.




35 minutes
plus resting


15 minutes



  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dessicated coconut
  • 125 grams butter, melted


  • 60 grams butter
  • 395 gram can condensed milk
  • 2 tablespoons golden syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Chocolate topping

  • 200g dark chocolate, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil


  1. Heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius/360 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a 20 x 30cm baking tin. Line base and sides with baking paper, extending the paper 2cm above the edge for easy removal later.
  2. To make the base, sift the flour and salt into a large mixing bowl, and combine with the sugar and coconut. Add the melted butter and mix well. Drop the mix into the prepared tin and use your fingers or the back of a spoon to press it out evenly. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the surface is golden. Remove from the oven and reduce the heat to 160 degrees Celsius/320 degrees Fahrenheit.
  3. For the caramel, place the butter, condensed milk, golden syrup and vanilla in a small saucepan over a low-medium heat. Stir continuously for 10-15 minutes, or until the caramel has obviously thickened. Pour it over the cooked base, tilting the pan to spread it evenly. Cook for 20-25 minutes, or until the top is golden and bubbling. Cool for about 30 minutes, then place in the fridge for at least 1 hour, or until set.
  4. To make the chocolate topping, add in the chopped chocolate pieces and oil into a heatproof bowl. Set the bowl over a saucepan with a few centimetres of simmering water, making sure the bottom of the bowl doesn't touch the water. Allow the steam to melt the chocolate, stirring occasionally. Once the chocolate is fully melted and smooth, pour it over the chilled caramel and tilt the pan to spread it evenly. Put it back in the fridge for another hour or until the chocolate sets.
  5. Remove from fridge and leave out for 10-15 minutes to take the chill out of the chocolate. Use a warm knife to cut into bars or squares to serve.

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Recipe notes