Cookie of the Week: Cashew Butterscotch Bars

January 31, 2011 at 9:37 pm 1 comment

Butterscotch Cashew BarsThis recipe was published in The New York Times years ago when Amy Scherber, of Amy’s Bread in New York City, was contributing to columns in the paper’s food section. Amy is also author of The Sweeter Side of Amy’s Bread. I spent a fair amount of time in New York City about 10 years ago undergoing surgery and treatments for thyroid cancer at Sloan Kettering.  Amy has a shop not far from the hospital, and her breads and cookies were a nice break from the seriousness of what I was going through.

Ms. Scherber says this was one of her favorite snacks as a child. I have seen other versions of this recipe using different amounts of flour, but here is the one I use.  These are delicious and friends have told me to sell them, but I end up giving lots of them away. These bars can be a sticky, gooey mess. Let them cool before cutting. These freeze well.


1/2 pound (2 sticks) plus 5 1/2 tablespoons
unsalted butter, softened

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar

1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt

2 1/2 cups flour

10 ounces butterscotch chips, (Hershey’s-I use the entire bag)

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons light corn syrup

2 1/2 cups salted cashew pieces

Butter 13 x 18” jelly roll pan* (can line with foil but I don’t)

Preheat oven to 350°F

Crust: In mixer with a paddle or in bowl with rubber spatula, beat 1/2 pound plus 2 tablespoons butter and all brown sugar together till smooth. Stir salt in flour, and add flour to sugar mixture. Mix until dough is well combined but crumbly. Don’t over mix or crust will be tough. Pat (don’t pack) dough evenly along bottom of buttered pan. Bake 5 minutes. Prick dough with a fork all over and return pan to oven till dough is lightly browned, about 7 minutes. Transfer to cooling rack.

Butterscotch Topping: In large saucepan, combine remaining 3 1/2 tablespoons butter, butterscotch chips, corn syrup and 1 tablespoon plus 2 1/2 teaspoons water. Place over medium heat and cook, stirring constantly, until butter and chips are melted, about 5 minutes. Pour topping over crust, using a spatula to spread evenly. Sprinkle cashews on top, pressing down lightly. Bake till topping is bubbly, about 11-13 minutes. Cool before cutting into bars.

*I use large glass baking dish sprayed with Pam, and no foil.


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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Raspberry Bars for MJ « cookiebake  |  February 4, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    […] Butterscotch bars and gingerbread cookies were requested the most in her last few months and I was more than willing to oblige. “We should all live on these butterscotch bars,” she commented. […]


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