Kona Coffee Caramel-Macadamia Nut Bars

Kona Coffee Caramel-Macadamia Nut Bars
4 hrs 17 min
30 bars


2 cup
all-purpose flour
11 Tbsp
powdered sugar, divided
1/2 tsp
3 Tbsp
100% Kona Coffee, finely ground, divided
3 1/2 cup
macadamia nuts, divided
1 cup
butter, cold and cubed
1 3/4 cup
heavy cream, divided
4 Tbsp
unsalted butter, melted
3 tsp
pure vanilla extract, divided
1/2 cup
100% Kiele O Kona, strong brewed, Italian Roast Coffee
1/4 tsp
kosher salt
1 cup
granulated sugar
2 Tbsp
light corn syrup
1/4 cup
1 cup
white chocolate chips
1/4 cup
cream cheese, room temperature
chocolate covered Kona coffee beans
Prep Time:
3 hrs 35 min
Cooking Time:
42 min
Total Time:
4 hrs 17 min


For the crust, in a food processor, pulse the flour, ½ cup powdered sugar, salt, 1 tablespoon ground coffee and ½ cup of macadamia nuts until the nuts are finely chopped.  Add in the cubed butter and pulse until the flour mixture looks like course corn meal.  Add 4 tbsp. heavy cream and pulse until the dough forms.  Press into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and place in the freezer for 15 minutes or refrigerate for 1 hour.  Roll out the dough and evenly press down into a lightly greased heavy-duty aluminum foil-lined 13 x 19” pan on the bottom and up the sides of the pan.  (The foil enables the bars to be removed easily.)  Prick the bottom of the dough with a fork.  Bake the crust at 375°F for 20 minutes or until edges are lightly browned.  Cool on a wire rack 15 minutes or until completely cool.
For the filling, arrange 3 cups of coarsely chopped macadamia nuts in a single layer on a baking sheet.  Bake at 350°F for 5 to 7 minutes or until lightly toasted.  Cool on a wire rack 15 minutes or until completely cool.
Combine the melted butter, 2 tsp. vanilla, brewed coffee and kosher salt, set aside.  Combine granulated sugar, corn syrup and water in a saucepan over medium high heat and cook stirring gently until sugar is dissolved.  Continue to cook without stirring until syrup comes to a boil, occasionally washing down sides of pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent crystals form forming.  Cook until syrup is amber in color, 10 to 15 minutes.  Remove from heat.  Carefully add ½ cup of heavy cream, (caramel will steam and spatter), stir until incorporated.  Add the butter mixture, stir until incorporated.  Add white chocolate; stir until chocolate has melted and the mixture is smooth.  Add the roasted macadamia nuts; stir until combined.  Transfer mixture to the crust.  Let stand until set and cool, about 2 hours.
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Barbara Housel, Kona Coffee Recipe Contest Winner: Amateur Sweet – 1st Place