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Easy Almond Joy Bars (Doctored Cake Mix)

If you love the rich chocolate and coconut flavors of an Almond Joy bar, have I got a treat for you! In this post I’m going to show you how to make a sweet treat with those same flavors. . .and it all starts with a box of cake mix! 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

For the Love of Coconut

I love coconut, which you’ve probably already guessed if you’ve followed this blog for any length of time. I’m particularly partial to my Italian Cream Cake, and I love my Coconut Cream Pie

Today, however, I was in the mood for coconut and chocolate. Oh, trust me. . .I’ve merged these flavors before. My German chocolate cake pairs chocolate and coconut. 

And so does my German Chocolate bars. I even used this pairing in my German Chocolate Pound Cake, which has a can of coconut pecan frosting in the mix! I was particularly proud of my Almond Joy Truffles.

Today, however, I wanted something different. I wanted Almond Joy! 

The History of the Almond Joy Bar

I don’t know about you, but Almond Joy is one of my favorite treats! Until today I’ve never done a doctored cake mix with this particular candy bar in Mind. It was time to change that! 

So, let’s talk the candy bar—where it came from and how it got its name. 

The Almond Joy bar was introduced by the Peter Paul Candy Manufacturing Company in 1946. (Long before I was even thought of!) Back in those days, it was marketed as a companion product to the Mounds bar, which was introduced earlier and contained just coconut filling, but without almonds. This is a favorite candy bar for hundreds of thousands of people around the globe.

To Almond. . .or Not to Almond

The candy bar was acquired by Hershey’s in 1978 (when I was just a teen). 

The center of the bar consists of a sweetened coconut mixture, which is then topped with whole almonds. Then the whole bar is coated in chocolate. It’s much like the Mounds bar, which doesn’t have almonds. 

I remember the fun slogan for the two candy bars: Sometimes you feel like a nut, sometimes you don’t.” 

Today. . .I felt like a nut. So I tossed in half a cup of slivered almonds and some other fun ingredients, besides! 

Almond Joy Bars Ingredients

Almond Joy Brownies from Out of the Box Baking

You will find a full printable recipe card for this delicious treat at the bottom of the post but here’s a quick peek at what you’ll need. These are simple ingredients you might already have on hand.  

FOR THE BOTTOM LAYER:

  • chocolate cake mix (any brand)
  • butter
  • egg

FOR THE COCONUT TOPPING: 

  • cream of coconut 
  • whole milk or heavy cream (not pictured)
  • egg
  • shredded sweetened coconut
  • slivered almonds

How to Make Easy Almond Joy Bars

This is a simple but tasty recipe that you can whip up in no time! It will require some patience at the end because you have to allow the bars to fully cool for an hour and then chill for another hour in the fridge. 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Prepare a 9 x 13-inch baking dish by spraying with non-stick spray. Place a piece of parchment paper into the dish. Spray the paper lightly. 

Almond Joy Brownies from Out of the Box Baking

OPTIONAL: Toast slivered almonds: Place half a cup of slivered almonds in a skillet and set over medium heat, stirring repeatedly, for 3 – 4 minutes or until you begin to see and smell the change in the nuts. Set aside to cool. 

Make the Crust: 

Place (1) egg, cake mix, and room temperature butter into large mixing bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Mix at low speed until it comes together. You will have a cookie dough consistency. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Press chocolate mixture in the bottom of the prepared pan. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Place in preheated oven and bake for ten minutes. 

Make Your Filling

While crust is baking, make your filling. 

Place egg in mixing bowl and beat. Add the cream of coconut and mix on low speed. 

Almond Joy Brownies from Out of the Box Baking

Add a half cup of milk, two cups of shredded sweetened coconut flakes, and the slivered almonds. 

Almond Joy Brownies from Out of the Box Baking

What you’ll end up with is a luscious creamy filling. 

Almond Joy Brownies from Out of the Box Baking

Put it Together

Once the crust has baked ten minutes, it’s time to put the bars together. 

Remove partially baked crust from the oven. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Pour creamy coconut filling on top. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Spread in an even layer, being careful not to tear up the partially baked crust below. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

That’s it! (Simple, right?) 

Place back in the 350 degree oven and bake for 30 minutes or until coconut layer is set. You don’t want to over bake this one. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Remove and place on wire rack to cool for a full hour. 

Transfer to refrigerator and allow to chill for at least an hour. You want to make sure these are “set” before you attempt to cut them. 

Once they’re cooled, cut into bars. I cut mine into 24 bars. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

Serve and enjoy!

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

These bars can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will stay good 4 – 5 days. You can freeze these bars (in ziplock bags or tightly wrapped) up to two months. 

What to Expect from This Delicious Recipe

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

The Almond Joy flavors come shining through, folks! (And that’s a good thing!)

It hasn’t been terribly long since I made my Delicious Lemon Coconut Bars and I was crazy about those. I duplicated that recipe here, swapping out a chocolate cake mix for the white one in that recipe. 

So, I already knew I would love these bars. I felt sure of it. 

And boy, did it! The dark chocolate bottom layer merged with the creamy sweetness of the coconut was divine. And those crunchy almonds? They were absolutely perfect! I’m so glad I decided to add them. 

Almond Joy Bars from Out of the Box Baking

There’s something about gooey coconut that gets me every time. Maybe that’s why I love Almond Joy candy bars (and Mounds, too). It’s that gooey middle! 

These bars have a different texture to that, obviously, but the flavors are all there. And I’m absolutely sure if you’re a coconut lover you’re going to flip over this one! I know I did! 

If you’re an Almond Joy fan, you’re going to love these. And best of all, this is one of those simple recipes you can switch up to make it your own.

Variations to this Recipe

I’m tempted not to add an variations because this one is so perfect! But if you’re not a fan of almonds, you could try: 

Almond Joy Brownies: Use a boxed brownie mix on bottom (as directed on the box) and add the coconut mixture on top, then finish baking. You’ll end up with luscious decadent brownies. (Next time I plan to do this! I think fudgy brownies sound delicious!)

Almond Joy Brownie Bites: Bake these in a mini muffin pan to make almond joy brownie bites. (Yum!)

Pecans: This would be the obvious switch. Get rid of the almonds and add half a cup (or more) of chopped pecans. You’ll end up with something akin to the Coconut Pecan frosting you buy from the store. 

Coconut Pecan Frosting in place of the recipe’s topping. This would be a simple way to end up with a similar taste profile, only with pecans in place of almonds. 

Chocolate chips: You can sprinkle chocolate chips on top of these vars once they come out of the oven for even more chocolate. 

If you like, you can sprinkle a few more toasted almonds on top. Press them into the top while it’s still warm, straight from the oven.

If you’re a chocolate lover, you might opt to add a drizzle of chocolate ganache.

Other Almond Recipes from Out of the Box Baking: 

Easy Cherry Almond Bars: If you love the flavor of a traditional cherry pie but prefer the simplicity of a cookie bar, then this is the recipe for you! 

Almond Tea Cakes: These tea cakes are rich in almond flavor with the crunch of slivered almonds on top. They’re so easy to make because they start with a simple white cake mix. They’re perfect for an afternoon tea party or any time of day!

Easy Italian Wedding Cookies: If you love the simplicity and taste of a great Mexican Wedding Cookie but you’re looking for something packed full of a rich almond flavor, this is the recipe for you! These tender, flaky Italian Wedding Cookies have a pie crust consistency but the flavor of an amazing almond shortbread.


Follow this link for a comprehensive post listing more of my fall cookies and bars, perfect for autumn!


That’s it for this post, friends! I hope you enjoyed this delicious Almond Joy Bars recipe. 

See this recipe at

Full Plate Thursday 

Weekend Potluck

The Lazy Gastronome

Busy Monday


About the Author

Janice Thompson is an author, baker, and all-around mischief maker! She has overcome a host of baking catastrophes, including a toppled wedding cake, to learn more about the baking process. Janice has published over 150 books for the Christian market but particularly enjoys writing recipes and baking devotions. To learn more about Janice or to drop her a note, visit her About the Author page.

Easy Almond Joy Bars

Easy Almond Joy Bars

Yield: 24
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

If you love the rich chocolate and coconut flavors of an Almond Joy bar, have I got a treat for you! In this post I’m going to show you how to make a sweet treat with those same flavors. . .and it all starts with a box of cake mix!

Ingredients

  • FOR THE BOTTOM LAYER:
  • 1 box chocolate cake mix (any brand)
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup) butter
  • 1 large egg
  • FOR THE FILLING:
  • 1 1/2 cups cream of coconut
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 cups shredded sweetened coconut
  • 1/2 cup slivered almonds

Instructions

    How to Make Easy Almond Joy Bars
    This is a simple but tasty recipe that you can whip up in no time! It will require some patience at the end because you have to allow the bars to fully cool for an hour and then chill for another hour in the fridge.

    Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
    Prepare a 9 x 13-inch baking dish by spraying with non-stick spray.
    Place a piece of parchment paper into the dish.
    Spray the paper lightly.

    Toast slivered almonds: Place half a cup of slivered almonds in a skillet and set over medium heat, stirring repeatedly, for 3 - 4 minutes or until you begin to see and smell the change in the nuts. Set aside to cool.

    Make the Crust:
    Place (1) egg, cake mix, and room temperature butter into large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer with paddle attachment.

    Mix at low speed until it comes together.

    You will have a cookie dough consistency.

    Spread in the bottom of the prepared pan.

    Place in preheated oven and bake for ten minutes.

    Make Your Filling
    While crust is baking, make your filling.

    Place egg in mixing bowl and beat.
    Add the cream of coconut.
    Add two cups of shredded coconut flakes.
    Add the cooled, toasted slivered almonds.
    What you’ll end up with is a thick, creamy filling.

    Put it Together
    Once the crust has baked ten minutes, it’s time to put the bars together.
    Remove partially baked crust from the oven.
    Pour filling on top.
    Spread evenly, being careful not to tear up the partially baked crust below.
    That’s it! (Simple, right?)
    Place back in the 350 degree oven and bake for 30 - 35 minutes or until coconut layer turns golden brown.
    Remove and place on wire rack to cool for a full hour.
    Transfer to refrigerator and allow to chill for at least an hour. You want to make sure these are “set” before you attempt to cut them.
    Once they’re cooled, cut into bars. I cut mine into 24 bars.
    These bars can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. They will stay good 4 - 5 days. You can freeze these bars (in ziplock bags or tightly wrapped) up to two months.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 24 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 122Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 32mgSodium: 49mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 1gSugar: 5gProtein: 2g

The nutrition information is a product of online calculators. I try to provide true and accurate information, but these numbers are estimates.

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