The holidays are for decadence and that’s why this vegan millionaire shortbread is the perfect rich sweet treat this time of year!
My vegan millionaire shortbread consists of a layer of shortbread cookie, a creamy caramel filling, and a chocolate ganache on top with flaked salt. Oh yes, it’s rich! And you will love it.
This recipe debuted on Food Network Canada this weekend as part of a special I was in called At Home For The Holidays with Anna Olson and Friends. Catch it on repeat on Food Network Canada on December 1, 2020 at 2 pm or on HGTV December 6 at 6 pm and December 9 at 12 pm.
I didn’t have any idea what millionaire shortbread was until I saw it on Pinterest a while back, but I’m totally buying what it’s selling. This Scottish treat is sometimes called a caramel square or caramel shortbread. I actually wanted to make the chocolate topping a little softer and easier to bite into with the other layers. I’ve seen recipes online that have a hard chocolate topping, but that’s just weird when the rest of the bar is so delicate.
You’ll have plenty of these to last all month long, depending on how many people you’re feeding. But you can cut these into 9 large squares or 18 smaller rectangles. Also feel free to freeze them and thaw in the fridge before serving.
vegan millionaire shortbread
Three rich layers of decadence is what makes this vegan millionaire shortbread such a famous treat!
- ¾ C all-purpose flour
- ⅓ C packed light brown sugar
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- ⅓ C cold and cubed salted vegan butter
- 1 C canned coconut cream
- ½ C salted vegan butter
- ½ C packed light brown sugar
- ¼ C granulated sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ¼ tsp sea salt
- 1 C semi-sweet chocolate chips or chopped baking chocolate
- ⅓ C canned coconut cream
- ¾ tsp Maldon flaked salt
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8 by 8-inch square metal baking with parchment paper. Cut 2 strips that are 8-inches wide and criss cross them in the pan so all sides are covered and there is some overhang to help lift the finished bars out of the pan.
To make the shortbread, in a large mixing bowl combine flour, sugar, and salt with your hand. Add cold and cubed butter and use your hands to pinch together the butter and dry ingredients until damp and crumbly. It should easily pinch together with no dry ingredients visible. Press into a compact even layer into the pan. Poke holes with fork prongs along the surface. Bake for 12 minutes until the edges are golden brown. Cool completely on a wire rack.
To make the caramel, in a saucepan combine coconut cream, vegan butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar over medium heat. Stir until everything is melted and well combined. Attach a candy thermometer, stop stirring, and heat until it reaches 230°F, about 14 minutes. Once the temperature is reached, turn off the heat and stir in vanilla extract and sea salt. Continue stirring to help cool caramel for about 5 minutes, it will start to thicken. It should be thick but pourable and you can pour it over the cooled shortbread crust. Even it out with a spatula and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Once chilled, make the chocolate ganache. Place chocolate chips and coconut cream in a heat-proof mixing bowl, and set the bowl over a saucepan with a bit of boiling water in it. The water should not touch the bottom of the bowl. Stir with a spatula to combine until smooth and entirely melted, about 6 to 7 minutes. Pour over the caramel layer and spread out to the edges and corners in an even layer with an offset spatula. Sprinkle with Maldon flaked salt. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before slicing and serving.