Turtle Dream Bars

Posted: May 12

Time: 3 hours

Yield: 9 servings

recipe image

Sometimes dreams are dull and unmemorable, but you can rest assured knowing you'll never forget the deliciousness of Turtle Dream Bars. The crunchy, chocolate sandwich cookie crust alone starts it off right. It gets even better with a creamy, tart cheesecake filling layered with rich caramel sauce, delectable chocolate sauce, and sprinkles of nutty pecan pieces. But the part that makes Turtle Dream Bars a real dream come true is that no oven is needed–you'll be dreaming with your eyes open while your tastebuds indulge!


• 4 tablespoons butter, melted • 20 chocolate sandwich cookies with cream filling • 1 (3.9-ounce) package of instant chocolate pudding • 1 1/2 cups milk • 1 (6-ounce) container cream cheese, room temperature • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract • 1 (8-ounce) container of stabilized whipped cream, divided • 1 cup pecans, chopped, divided • 1/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons caramel sauce, divided • chocolate sauce, to taste, for drizzling


Step 1

Line an 8x8-inch baking dish with parchment paper.

Step 2

Melt the butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl.

Step 3

Place the chocolate sandwich cookies with cream into a blender, food processor, or resealable plastic bag to crush into fine crumbs.

Step 4

Add the cookie crumbs to the butter and mix well.

Step 5

Place the cookie mixture into the prepared pan.

Step 6

Use a spatula to spread the cookie mixture to the sides and pat it down to ensure it is even.

Step 7

Place the pan in the freezer to set for at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.

Step 8

In a medium bowl, mix the instant chocolate pudding with 1 1/2 cups of milk. Do not use the full 2 cups of milk called for on the package directions (this will prevent the pudding from becoming runny).

Step 9

Place the pudding into the fridge to set for about 1 hour.

Step 10

In a mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese with a hand mixer until it is smooth.

Step 11

Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula and add the confectioners' sugar and the vanilla extract.

Step 12

Beat the cream cheese mix again until it is thoroughly combined.

Step 13

With a spatula, add 1 1/2 cups stabilized whipped cream to the cream cheese mixture and mix well.

Step 14

Remove the cookie crumb crust from the freezer.

Step 15

Place dollops of the cream cheese filling on the crust.

Step 16

Using an offset spatula, spread the cream cheese filling evenly to all sides of the pan.

Step 17

Place dollops of the chocolate pudding on top of the cream cheese filling, gently spreading it to the edges of the pan.

Step 18

Drizzle 1/3 cup caramel sauce all over the pudding.

Step 19

Sprinkle 3/4 cup of the pecan pieces over the caramel sauce.

Step 20

Place dollops of the remaining stabilized whipped cream on top of the caramel.

Step 21

Cover the bars with a lid or plastic wrap and freeze for a minimum of 2 hours and up to overnight. After freezing, it's not unusual for the caramel sauce to be runny.

Step 22

Transfer the bars from the pan by lifting up the sides of the parchment paper.

Step 23

Drizzle the bars with the remaining caramel sauce and chocolate sauce.

Step 24

Sprinkle the bars with the remaining pecan pieces.

Step 25

Slice into bars and serve.

Explore More Favorites