Have you ever had a Hello Dolly Bar? It is a super Southern dessert that is made with a graham cracker crust, pecans, chocolate, sweetened condensed milk and shredded coconut. It is literally one of the greatest things you will put in your mouth! I made a vegan version of the famous Hello Dolly Bars, and I have to say, they may be better than the original!
Hello Dolly Bars originated in the 60’s when Hello, Dolly was popular on Broadway. An 11 year old girl had made a Hello Dolly cake that was published in a magazine in the countries first food column! It became really popular and then was turned into a dessert bar. The little girl came up with the name Hello Dolly, because she loved the musical.
Anyways, there is a little bit of history for you! It quickly became a Southern staple, and my grandma and her sisters could throw down some Hello Dolly bars! I miss them, and recently asked my grandma about the recipe, and she said they were definitely not vegan. So, here we are. With a vegan version. The easiest and most damn delicious thing in the world!
I made my own sweetened condensed coconut milk which is crazy easy! It takes about 30 minutes, but, it is 2 ingredients, and no work. Also, you can just get the rest if the bar situation ready while it is simmering. So, it is mostly inactive time. The bottom is the most delicious crust of graham crackers, vegan butter and brown sugar. Then, that is baked, then topped with pecans, chocolate, then the sweetened condensed coconut milk and then coconut.
All that is baked to perfection. It is so ooey gooey, crispy, toasty, melty. Literally everything you could want in a dessert! These are perfect for any get together, and make enough for sharing, but you may not want to! I hope you enjoy this look at the childhood of Lauren! They are so badass!
Vegan Hello Dolly Bars
Sweetened Condensed Coconut Milk
- 1 Can Full fat coconut milk, 13-14oz.
- 4 Tbsp. Maple syrup
For the bars
- 3 C. Graham cracker crumbs, vegan
- 1/4 C. Brown sugar
- 3/4 C. Vegan butter, melted (I used Earth Balance)
- 1 C. Pecans, chopped
- 1 C. Dark chocolate chips, vegan
- 1 1/2 C. Shredded coconut
- Sweetened condensed coconut milk
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Start by making the sweetened condensed coconut milk, add the entire can of full fat coconut milk to a small sauce pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and whisk in the maple syrup. Simmer for 25-30 minutes or until reduced by about 1/4th or so and is thick.
- While the coconut milk is cooking, in a medium mixing bowl, combine the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and melted vegan butter. Stir until fully combined and crumbs hold together.
- Press the graham cracker crust into a 9x13 inch baking dish lined with parchment paper. Make sure to press down firmly, I recommend using a cup. Make sure it is even throughout the dish. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 minutes until the crust is pretty firm.
- Once the crust is out of the oven and the condensed milk is done, layer everything. Top the crust with chocolate chips, then pecans, then all of the sweetened condensed coconut milk, then the shredded coconut. Make sure all the toppings are spread evenly.
- Bake at 375 degrees for 10-15 more minutes until the coconut on top is brown and toasty. Let cool completely, then cut and serve!