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Salted Caramel Butter Bars

INGREDIENTS

  • Crust/Topping:
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 pound (4 sticks) salted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/4 cups powdered sugar
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • Filling:
  • 50-60 caramel candies, wrappers removed (14 oz. bag)
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 350º F and lightly grease a 9×13-inch dish with non-stick spray.
  2. For the crust, cream together butter and sugars in a large bowl for 3-5 minutes, or until fluffy and lightened in color.
  3. Mix in vanilla extract, then gradually beat in flour until just incorporated, when smooth dough comes together.
  4. Take 1/3 dough and gently press it into greased baking dish, then place in oven and bake for 20 minutes.
  5. Wrap remaining dough tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate until further use.
  6. Remove crust from oven when golden brown and let cool.
  7. Place unwrapped caramels and heavy cream in a large, microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 1 minute.
  8. Stir vigorously, or until smooth. If not melted after 1 minute, microwave in 30-second increments, stirring in between, until smooth.
  9. Stir in vanilla extract, then pour caramel over cooled crust, sprinkling sea salt over the top.
  10. Remove chilled dough from fridge and crumble pieces evenly over caramel-topped crust.
  11. Once you’ve used all dough, place baking dish in oven and bake for 26-28 minutes, or until top crumble is light golden brown.
  12. Remove baking dish from oven and let cool completely, then cut into squares and enjoy!