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Chocolate Pretzel Caramel Bars are a 3 ingredient dessert that will have your tastebuds singing with joy. Sweet, salty, and full of deliciousness.

Chocolate Caramel Pretzel bars stacked on a plate, surrounded by pretzels

Who doesn’t love the saltiness of a pretzel mixed with the sweetness of chocolate? Similar to chocolate and peanut butter, chocolate and pretzels are a classic dessert flavor combination and we are in love with this recipe. It comes together ridiculously fast, and there isn’t even any oven baking required! Perfect for a hot summer day. 

When sweetened condensed milk is caramelized it is called dulche de leche. The sugar in the sweetened condensed milk provides all the sugar that is necessary to turn it into a caramel. Pure caramel is simply melted sugar. A creamy caramel has some sort of milk added to it like heavy cream. Dulche de leche, then, is simply a Spanish name for creamy caramel.

  • Chocolate Options for Chocolate Pretzel Caramel Bars:

    Chocolate chips, chocolate wafers, semi sweet, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, oh my! There are a ton of options, but don’t let that overwhelm you. If you don’t want your chocolate too overly sweet, stick with semi sweet or dark chocolate. If you are a chocoholic and can’t get enough, milk chocolate is up your alley. You can use either wafers or chips, that’s really just personal preference and won’t interfere with the recipe either way. 
  • Do I have to include pretzels?

    I mean, pretzels are our jam so we highly recommend them. However, if you’re just looking for a basic chocolate and caramel bar, you could always leave out the pretzels.
  • Storage Instructions:

    You’ll want to store these in the fridge for up to a week to keep them from getting too soft and messy. Alternatively, you can freeze them for up to a month. Just put in an airtight bag and let thaw before biting into one!

If you like this recipe, you may be interested in these other delicious dessert recipes:

  • 2 bags chocolate chips
  • 2 handfuls pretzels
  • 2 cans sweetened condensed milk
  • Melt 1 bag chocolate chips in the microwave (15 seconds, stir, repeat until melted smooth).
  • Spread chocolate in bottom of a 9x9 pan. Layer pretzels to cover the chocolate. Let chocolate harden.
  • Pour 2 cans of sweetened condensed milk into a saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir constantly until it thickens (20-25 minutes). Remove from heat and spread over pretzels and chocolate. Let cool. 
  • Melt 1 more bag of chocolate chips. Spread on top of caramel layer. Let chocolate harden.
Course: Dessert
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Brie Watkins
August 20, 2014 3:56 am

I made these a couple months back and they were a big hit. Not only did I really like them but so did everyone else! I think maybe next time I might add a few more pretzels just for a little bit more crunch and saltiness. They were heavenly and didn't last long enough because they were so good. Will definitely be making again. Thanks for this great recipe!

December 1, 2014 3:53 am

How long does it take the chocolate to harden?

December 1, 2014 3:54 am
Reply to  Anonymous

It usually only takes about 1 hour and can be sped up by refrigerating.

DIY diva
March 14, 2014 5:19 am

Tried this recipe tonight. It tastes devine but totally stuck to the bottom of my glass dish, making it look not so presentable. I guess I will have to eat them myself! Tee Hee! Next time I will use parchment or wax paper in the bottom of the pan. Thanks for posting this great recipe!

DIY diva
March 11, 2014 4:45 am

Could you double the pretzels and give these bars 2 layers of crunch? Also, how big are your bags of chocolate chips? How many cups should I use?

March 11, 2014 5:07 am
Reply to  DIY diva

Yes, you can add another layer of pretzels. You'd have to put the extra layer on top of the caramel for it to stay together.

A standard size bag of chocolate chips is about 2 cups.

September 20, 2013 12:18 am

I think this would be yummy with peanut butter mixed in with the melted chocolate.

The directions say 9×9, but the photo looks like an 11×7 or 13×9. Hard to tell with the wide angle. Was the recipe doubled?

September 20, 2013 1:33 am
Reply to  Mary Ellen

I made these particular ones in an 11×7 pan which is an odd size, but is the equivalent of a 9×9 pan, as they are both 6 cup baking dishes. The photo was taken with a standard lens (not wide angle) so they are true to life.

August 12, 2013 2:15 pm

made half batch in 8×8 pan- my testers thought there was too much chocolate and not enough pretzel. not sure if I will try again but if so would try again just a "half batch" in a 9×9 pan-use a little less chocolate chips-break up the pretzels so there would be more pieces.

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