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Carmelitas are soft oatmeal cookie bars with a delicious crust and topped with a chocolate and creamy caramel filling. Seriously the best cookie bars ever!

stacked Carmelitas

Layered Oatmeal Cookie Bars

These cookie bars are delicious and filled with sweet chocolate and caramel flavors. This is a recipe that will be a hit at any party. The soft yet crunchy texture is to die for and melts in your mouth with every bite.

Key Ingredients You’ll Need

Rolled Oats: Using these for your bars will give you that crispy and crumbly topping.

Soda: You will need the bicarbonate of soda for this recipe.

Chocolate: Use semi-sweet chocolate chips and chopped semi-sweet chocolate for the delicious filling.

Caramels: To make sure that the bars are not too hard or tacky, you will need soft caramel.

How To Make Carmelitas

Step 1. Set the oven to 350 degrees and use parchment paper to line an 8-inch square pan. In a large bowl, add oats, flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda, and sea salt and combine. Add in the melted butter and combine until fully coated. Pour 2/3 of the batter into the pan and press down evenly using a spatula. To make sure it is as even as possible, use clean hands to press it down. Place the baking pan into the oven for 10 minutes.

Step 2. In a small saucepan on low heat, add the caramels and heavy cream and mix repeatedly with a wooden spoon until melted. Take off the heat and transfer 2 tablespoons of melted caramel to another bowl for the drizzle on top. Place the remaining caramel aside. When the base is ready, remove it from the oven and from the pan. Top with chocolate chips and chopped chocolate and drizzle an even layer of the caramel sauce on top. Top with the rest of the oats and flour mixture and press down gently.

Step 3. Put the pan back into the oven for 15 minutes to bake until golden brown. Take out of the oven and set aside to cool for 1 hour. Flip the bars out of the pan and cut into 12 even bars and serve. Enjoy!

Stacking the Carmelitas.

How To Store Carmelitas?

Place the cookies bars in an airtight container or in a Ziploc bag for the best storage method. You can leave these bars at room temperature or store them in the fridge.

Can You Freeze Carmelitas?

Yes! You can freeze these cookie bars. Please make sure they are in a freezer-safe container before storing. These cookie bars can last for up to 3 months in the freezer.

Caramelitas with a white background.

More Cookie Bar Recipes:

A hand holding the Caramelita's.
Carmelitas Feature
5 from 1 vote


Carmelitas are soft oatmeal cookie bars with a delicious crust and topped with a chocolate and creamy caramel filling. Seriously the best cookie bars ever!
Servings: 12 bars
Prep: 15 minutes
Cook: 25 minutes
Total: 40 minutes


For The Filling


  • Preheat the oven to 350oF. Line an 8” square baking pan with baking parchment.
  • Add the oats, flour, sugar, bicarbonate of soda, and sea salt to a large bowl and mix tocombine.
  • Pour in the melted butter and mix very well until all the ingredients in the bowl are completelycoated with the butter.
  • Tip two-thirds of the mixture into the prepared baking pan. Use a spatula to press it down.Use your fingers to press the mixture into an even layer with clean hands. The warmth fromyour hands will make the process easier.
  • Put the pan into the oven for 10 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, make the caramel by putting the soft caramels and heavy cream into a smallsaucepan set over low heat. Stir continuously with a wooden spoon until the caramels havemelted. Remove from the heat and reserve 2 tablespoons of the caramel sauce in aseparate bowl (you will use this for drizzling later). Set the caramel aside for now.
  • When the base of the Carmelitas has had 10 minutes in the oven, take the pan out andsprinkle over the chocolate chips and chopped chocolate.
  • Pour the caramel in an even layer over the top.
  • Spoon the remaining oats and flour mixture on top, and press down gently.
  • Return the pan to the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until the Carmelitas are a light goldenbrown.
  • Remove from the oven and leave to set in the pan for an hour or so. Turn the Carmelitas outand use a sharp knife to cut into 12 equal squares.
  • Drizzle over the reserved caramel and serve.

Last Step:

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  • If you don’t have an 8” square baking pan you can make these Carmelitas in a 9”x13” brownie pan however you will need to double the recipe. You can also use a 9” square pan but your Carmelitas will be slightly thinner and crispier. We wouldn’t recommend altering the recipe for a 9” pan.
  • We used Werther’s soft baking caramels to make the caramel.
    Kraft soft caramels will also work well in this recipe. If you’re in the UK you can use a tin of Carnation Caramel and omit the heavy cream. Just add the caramel in a layer to the Carmelitas straight from the tin.
  • You can use quick oats to make this recipe but since they are not as chunky as rolled oats the Carmelitas will not be as chewy.
  • For an extra decadent dessert, warm with a scoop of your favorite ice cream. If left to cool overnight the caramel and chocolate will harden making the Carmelitas difficult to remove as a slab from the pan. We suggest turning them out while they are still slightly warm.
  • If you have any leftovers and the caramel and chocolate harden you can warm them up in the microwave or oven for a few minutes until you see the center starting to soften.
  • Storage: Carmelitas will last for at least 3 days stored at room temperature in an airtight container. To freeze add the Carmelitas to a zip lock bag with parchment paper in-between. They freeze well for up to one month.


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