Sunday, June 08, 2008

Fun BBQ Treat: S'mores Bars

Yesterday we hosted an end-of-the-school-year cookout for our boys. I just counted them up and it turns out we only had a total of 10 pre-teens and teens (ranging from 9-14) here, but it sure seemed like a lot more! We were lucky as far as rain goes, but it was so hot that they ended up being inside a lot anyway.

Shopping for this cookout was quite the experience. I tend to cook pretty healthfully and my cart is generally pretty devoid of junk, but when you're throwing a party for teens, you're not likely to be buying a lot of Brussels sprouts and tofu. As I walked through the grocery store, I tried to hold my head high as I loaded the cart with Doritos, chips, soda, white hamburger and hot dog buns, hot dogs, ice cream sandwiches, and even a box of Froot Loops. (The Froot Loops were for my son's birthday. The boys are borderline neglected and abused because they are not allowed to eat the crappy, sugary cereals, so we treat them once a year.)

So, as you can see, we kept the cookout simple and teen-friendly. I did make two things: baked beans and S'mores Bars. Of course the beans didn't get eaten - except for my boys who love them - but the S'mores Bars seemed to go over pretty well. Though I did have one of the boys ask me if we were going to heat them up. Hmmm...that's an idea, but a messy one!

S'mores Bars
There are quite a few variations on these bars out there and you can find quite a few good ones on this CLBB post. I've tried this version, but I found that they were a bit messy to cut so I decided to try one with an actual graham cracker crust. And as good as this version was, I really didn't think that something as sweet as S'mores really needed so much extra sugar.

This second version turned out a little more "orderly". The crust crumbled off the bars a bit as you cut them/ate them, but that seems to happen with lots of graham cracker crusts. I did line the pan with foil so that I could easily lift the bars out before cutting - otherwise I'm guessing it would really have been a mess to cut. I don't think I used the full amount of marshmallows - I just added enough to cover the top in a single layer. As you can see from the photo, I forgot to reserve some of the crumbs for sprinkling on top, and though it might have added some visual interest, forgetting that part really didn't alter the overall outcome of these bars one bit.

Since it was so hot and humid, these definitely benefited from a stay in the refrigerator before cutting and serving and I would recommend doing this no matter what the weather unless you have quite a bit of time to let them set up properly. Be careful not to chill them too long before cutting though (like I did), the chocolate hardens and makes it harder to cut them nicely without doing a number on the crust.

I was lucky to get a picture of these! I had to sneak around and grab a shot when none of the kids were looking. I didn't want the boys to have to explain why their mom goes around taking pictures of food!

Anyway, if you're every looking for a treat to bring to a cookout or picnic, these are just the ticket.


  1. Yum! What a great way to get the flavor of a s'more without the woodsmoke and mosquitoes!

  2. Country Gal - We love to have outdoor fires, but yes, it's nice to have a recipe that you can do any time.