Old School Caramel Square

Makes 16 Squares. 30 minutes Active, 3 hours Cooling.

Just like your grandma made - only gluten free. (Um, should that be my slogan from now on...?) Caramel Square/Slice looks a lot like Millionaires shortbread, but the difference being that there is no shortbread in Caramel Square. The bottom layer is a soft coconut biscuit, the middle layer, a chewy caramel, and the top can be either be soft or hard chocolate. For this recipe I'm going with a soft chocolate, like my grandma used to make.

While this slice isn't strictly a New Zealand specialty, it is still part 3 of my baking my way round NZ challenge, purely because I had a lot of it growing up.... in New Zealand. It's all about the nostalgia, you know? If you haven't checked out my other NZ baking, take a look at my Lamingtons, or my Lolly Cake recipes.

Right let's dive into the Caramel Square.

Base Layer


Base Layer

  • 1 Cup Sself raising gluten free flour

  • 1 Cup of desiccated coconut

  • 125 grams butter

  • 1/2 cup brown sugar

  • 1/4 tsp xanthan gum

Caramel Layer

  • 1 tin of light condensed milk (400 grams)

  • 2 TBSP golden syrup

  • 30 grams of butter

Chocolate Layer

  • 100 grams of milk chocolate

  • 50 grams of dark chocolate

  • 20 grams of butter


  1. Base Layer: Preheat oven to 180° Celsius Bake. Line a baking tin with paper. I use a square tin 20cm x 20cm.

  2. Combine softened butter and sugar in a large bowl.

  3. Add in the flour, coconut, and xanthan gum, and mix using hands until no flour is left unmixed.

  4. Press the mixture into the lined tin, making sure it's spread as evenly as possible.

  5. Bake the base layer in the oven for 15 minutes, or until it's golden.

  6. Once cooked, remove from oven but leave in the tin.

  7. Caramel Layer: Add condensed milk, golden syrup, and butter to saucepan at medium heat. Consistently stir - don't let it burn on the bottom.

  8. When it starts to boil and turn golden, turn heat down and stir for another 5 minutes until you have a thick golden brown caramel.

  9. Pour the Caramel on top of the base layer, and return to oven for 15 minutes or until the edges have caramelised and browned.

  10. Remove slice from the oven and let it cool completely!

  11. Chocolate Layer: When the slice has completely cooled, boil a pot of water and place a glass bowl over the top. Melt the chocolates and the butter in the glass bowl- this will insure that you don't over cook the chocolate.

  12. Once everything is melted, evenly spread the chocolate over the cooled slice. Place in fridge for 2 hours to set.

  13. When ready to cut, gently remove slice from the tin and cut into 16 squares with a sharp knife. Enjoy!