Magic Eight Bars

I used to beg my mom to make Seven Layer Bars when I was growing up.  They were a staple.  We called them Seven Layer Bars, not Magic Bars, but in googling I’ve found out that Seven Layer Bars and Magic Bars are one in the same.

My new twist on an old favorite will make you do the happy dance.

I am not sure if my  mom used nuts in her bar recipe or not.  I really dislike like nuts in baked goods so I omitted them from what I’m calling Magic Eight bars.

Well, I should clarify that statement about the nuts a bit because in many of my raw or no-bake desserts balls and bites, such as High Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls, have cashews in them.  A nut. And in raw unbaking, cashews really are the cat’s meow because of their versatility and fat content and how they can create authentic and amazing raw vegan desserts.

But don’t put walnuts in my chocolate chip cookies or slivered almonds in brownies.  I despise that. And there are no nuts in these bars.

I did add white chocolate chips which Seven Layer Bars don’t have.  Now there’s eight layers.

And when you sink your teeth through each and every sweet, chewy-but-with-a-touch-of-crunch-layer from the white, dark, and butterscotch chips, you will be glad for all eight layers.

As if the can of sweetened condensed milk wasn’t enough, the addition of white chocolate chips makes the bars even sweeter.

Too bad we don’t have dental insurance for all those cavities that we’ll probably get.  But they’ll be well worth it.

Even if you don’t “love” coconut, you should try these bars.  They are not overpowering in terms of being “too coconutty”.  

Which is nice, actually, because in addition to the coconut flavor, the great flavor combos of all the chips: butterscotch, chocolate, and white shine through.  Heavenly.


Magic Eight Bars

1/2 c butter, melted

1.5 c graham cracker crumbs

1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk

1 c chocolate chips

1 c butterscotch chips

1 c white chocolate chips

1 1/3 c coconut flakes (either sweetened or unsweetened)

1/2 c Heath Bar toffee bits (or use chopped nuts)


Melt butter in microwave-safe bowl and add the graham cracker crumbs to it.  Stir to combine and press crumb mixture into a foil-lined and cooking sprayed 9 x 13 pan (foil is optional but will really save with cleanup time)

Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture.

Layer evenly with half the chips, i.e. 1/2 c of each kind of chip, then top with half the amount of coconut, i.e. about 3/4 c.  Then add the rest of the chips and rest of the coconut.   I did this so that the chips were evenly dispersed within the fluffiness of the coconut.  But you don’t have to be so precise.

After the chips and coconut are layered in, add the the toffee bits (or nuts) to the top.

Bake at 350F for 30 minutes, or until top is barely browning.  Start checking on it after 25 minutes.  Allow to cool and slice.  You can store extras in the freezer in case you want to make these ahead for unexpected company.  Or unexpected munchies.


The ingredients

Melt the butter, add the graham cracker crumbs, and stir

Press mixture into a foil-lined and cooking sprayed 9 x 13 pan

Add the sweetened condensed milk

Add everything else and bake

After 30 minutes at 350F, get ready to get your Magic on

These are the kind of bars that you bring to potlucks, baby showers, graduations, and everyone asks you for the recipe and they think they’re way more complicated than they really are.  Which is all of about 5-10 minutes of active prep time, bake them, and you’re done.

Or just make them even if you don’t have somewhere to bring a dessert if you have random bags of chips, toffee bits, and graham cracker crumbs to use up.

Chips, Bits, and Crumbs. That should be the name of a restaurant.

A restaurant where they serve these bars.  With 8 Ingredients, not 7.

And yes, they are Magic.

Even though I wished all the fathers a Happy Father’s Day in my last post, I’ll repeat that sentiment.  And it’s nice to know that many of you were able to spend the day with your dad.

I loved hearing the stories about your dads, and the stories about your husbands or partners if you have children of your own.  So much love in the air.  Fun comments to read!


1. Best thing you ate or did over the weekend?

Oh, these bars stole the show!

2. Did you celebrate Father’s Day in any way?

It was just me, Skylar, and Scott and we kept things very mellow.  A couple cards and some time at the park.   I have to work later on today and so we kept things simple.  And oh yes, I took 111 pictures of Magic Eight Bars earlier.

The weather has been gorgeous all weekend here, too, which was wonderful.

3. Have you ever had Seven Layer Bars or Magic Bars?

They were a staple growing up in my house and I think everyone should try them!  One of those life’s bucket list desserts.

The Magic Eight Bars + the Nutella & Peanut Butter Graham Bars with Chocolate Frosting (No Bake) = you will use exactly one box of Honey-Maid graham cracker crumbs.

Imagine that. Better go buy that box of graham cracker crumbs!

P.S.  Taste of Adams Avenue Giveaway is still open.

And if you’re just catching up on posts from the weekend, here are mine since Friday:



Have a great week!



120 Responses to “Magic Eight Bars”

  1. Christine — June 20, 2011 at 5:11 am (#

    Hi Averie – I know I don’t comment that often but this post is making me de-lurk. First, I LOVE Seven Layer Bars – haven’t had them in YEARS. I’m from outside of Chicago – could it be a midwest thing?!! SO YUMMY!!!!

    Second, and more importantly, your photography looks fantastic! Like a previous poster mentioned, ever since your class, your pictures just look incredible. Very professional looking! This post in particular, I really feel like I could reach in and grab one of those bars. Maybe it is the little droplets of condensation on the chips…or the texture that just pops off the screen. I’m very excited for you and glad that we get to watch as you develop this skill. I am taking a class at the end of the year but it is to photograph jewelry – it is SO DIFFICULT. I struggle so much with it – I hope that after my class I am as comfortable as you have become with food photography.

    Have a great day!!!

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) — June 20, 2011 at 12:01 pm (#

      Thanks, Christine, for the compliments.

      It’s not just “one class” that will change you (or changed me) with’s practice (I take 200+ pics a day, every day, as practice) and reading every book imaginable about photography that I can and look at tons and tons and tons of websites and try to emulate the pics of people I see…so it’s a combo of things. My class just made the lightbulb go off but it’s the follow thru and practice that is what really matters. So for you, just practice practice, read read, and have fun :)

    • Christine — June 21, 2011 at 5:37 am (#

      I’m sorry – I didn’t mean to imply that you learned everything overnight. I understand it takes a lot of study, PRACTICE and patience. I seem to be lacking in the patience category! :-)

  2. Michaela — June 20, 2011 at 5:14 am (#

    I can only agree to what other´s have said already- your photography is getting more gorgeous with every post!
    And those bars sound fanastic, so glad you finally revealed it ;) I am sure I could do a vegan version with sweetened coconut milk and vegan choc chips. Ah, I bet it´s heaven! Never tried those 7 layer bars, btw.

  3. Elizabeth@The Sweet Life — June 20, 2011 at 6:27 am (#

    Your bars are going to be the end of me! :-)

  4. Cecilia — June 20, 2011 at 7:19 am (#

    Oh my god!!!

    A side note though, is it actually possible to eat a full size one of this slice without getting a sugar buzz after? Hahaha.

  5. Amber K — June 20, 2011 at 8:36 am (#

    I have never heard of these bars, but they look delicious! Just gotta use some gluten-free “graham cracker” crumbs and I can eat and enjoy the yumminess.

    And I am soooo with you on the no nuts in my baked goods thing. I hate biting into a decadent fudgy brownie and then crunching into a nut.

  6. Erica — June 20, 2011 at 8:37 am (#

    oh my amazing! These look SO good! i don’t like nuts in bakedgoods either! I always feel like they ruin a good cookie. Graham cracker base? LOVE! Perfection.

  7. Leia — June 20, 2011 at 8:41 am (#

    I am drooling at these photos! These look amazing! But I think I’ll have to refrain from making them… the pictures themselves have made me put on 5 lbs heehee :P

  8. Crystal — June 20, 2011 at 10:38 am (#

    Oh my gosh, these bars may very well make all my dessert dreams come true. Your photos make them look absolutely delectable, and I want to make them NOW.

  9. krista — June 20, 2011 at 12:38 pm (#

    Is there something I could use in place of the coconut in this recipe? I hate coconut with a passion!!

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) — June 20, 2011 at 12:40 pm (#

      not really but i promise you will like these. if you dont, give them to a neighbor or friend you will make their day, week, month, and year. i promise they’re not a coconutty dessert.

  10. Katie @ Healthnut Foodie — June 20, 2011 at 7:56 pm (#

    These look so tasty! I am excited to try and create a version that is free from all of the commercial toxins. Thank you so much for the inspiration! You’re site is awesome! Excite the palate, heal the body, nourish the soul!!!

  11. Spike — June 21, 2011 at 5:19 am (#

    we always called them “Hello Dollys” in my house. Love your magic 8s

  12. Jacquee — June 21, 2011 at 8:47 am (#

    Love your site! Recipes in pictures. You should write a book for Amazon. I know it would sell. You are so creative. I made Magic 7 bars when I was a young girl. We bought the Honey Made Graham Crackers and made the crumbs ourselves. My mom always thought it made them have a better texture. You go go go. This is wonderful find. Found you with StumbleUpon.

    • Averie (Love Veggies and Yoga) — June 21, 2011 at 12:02 pm (#

      You are so kind! Thank you for all the great things you just said and I am glad that stumble brought you to my site! :)

  13. Jolene ( — June 22, 2011 at 5:05 pm (#

    My mother-in-law makes those bars and I LOVE them so much!!!! Yours look especially good!

  14. Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family — June 23, 2011 at 1:19 pm (#

    Averie–is it wrong that I licked the computer screen? ALL of those dessert look delicious. Now I just need to go home and check my pantry to see if I can make some tonight.

  15. Tabitha — January 16, 2012 at 3:00 pm (#

    These look absolutely amazing.


  16. Maggie — February 28, 2012 at 5:12 pm (#

    Averie, I have to say – these bars a LIFE-CHANGING. I have probably made them 20 times in the last two months — that’s not even an exaggeration. They are my most-requested treat! (And so easy, too – not to mention delicious!)

    Quick question – I’m a huge fan of the bars the way they are, but a friend of mine requested them without coconut. How do you think that would turn out? Is there anything you’d recommend substituting? Let me know what you think! Thanks!! And keep the amazingly yummy recipes comin’!! :)

    • Averie @ Love Veggies & Yoga — February 28, 2012 at 7:22 pm (#

      You could probably use oats. Now the taste is NOT going to be the same but if she doesn’t like coconut at all, and you use oats, you’ll end up with a familiar-ish dessert, but different b/c it’s the coconut that gives it that taste and the gooey factor that you’re not going to get from oats, as much. You could also use less coconut, some oats, and maybe some slivered almonds? You could probably use..don’t laugh..cooked rice because when you bake it, with the sweet cond milk, it will get rice-pudding-ish. Lots of things you could use, depending on how in love with the original you are, knowing that nothing will taste like coconut..that can be good or bad, depending on what your goals are. LMK what you do!

  17. chelsea — November 1, 2012 at 9:35 pm (#

    Its as if you read my mind, all my life, and took out my least favorite element of 7-layer bars (nuts) & added my ideal extra (white chocolate) and perfected the close -to -perfect dessert bar into my own personal idea of pure wunnerfulness and taste perfection….
    so that I had to keep shaking my head the whole time I was reading while muttering ‘why didn’t I think of that ‘ under my breath.
    Thank you so much! I cant wait to make.

  18. Alice @ Hip Foodie Mom — January 10, 2013 at 2:15 pm (#

    Hi Averie,
    I just made these today and added a couple more things. . LOVE!!! OMG! I also just put it on my blog and linked back to YOUR recipe. Hope that was ok. I will ask you in advance next time. thank you for this awesome recipe, wow!!!

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks — January 10, 2013 at 2:20 pm (#

      And I wrote you back already on your site and thanks for linking up – I appreciate that! And I love the looks of yours. It makes me crave them b/c it’s been wayyyy too long since I’ve had any!

  19. Kellie — February 24, 2014 at 8:59 am (#

    I have a question…is the butter really considered a layer?? I mean it is mixed with the graham cracker crumbs to make a layer so I’m a bit confused. I have seen the recipe using 7 ingredients or 8 ingredient…in the 7 ingredient recipes the butter is considered a layer…not sure why though lol. In the 8 layer recipes the butter is not counted as a layer. Does this make sense? lol. I guess it’s all in your preference. =)

    • Averie Sunshine — February 24, 2014 at 4:58 pm (#

      1/2 c butter, melted

      1.5 c graham cracker crumbs

      1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk

      1 c chocolate chips

      1 c butterscotch chips

      1 c white chocolate chips

      1 1/3 c coconut flakes (either sweetened or unsweetened)

      1/2 c Heath Bar toffee bits (or use chopped nuts)

      First two lines are counted as 1, then layer 2 starts with SCMilk

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