Carmelitas - A Simple Dessert

4 chocolate, caramel oat bars on a bright blue plate.

A simple, delicious crowd pleaser! Carmelitas are a go-to dessert for potlucks, care packages, and cookouts. 


1 cup flour

1 cup old fashioned rolled oats (not steel cut oats)

¾ cup dark brown sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon baking soda

¾ cup unsalted butter, melted

1 cup bittersweet chocolate chips (semisweet works fine too)

1 bag Kraft caramels, unwrapped and melted with

2-3 tablespoons of milk


  1. Preheat your oven to 350 F. Lightly spray a 9 x 13-inch baking dish with cooking spray or lightly butter the pan.
  2. Unwrap the individual caramels and place them in a microwave safe bowl along with about 2 tablespoons of milk.  Set aside until ready to melt.
  3. Cut the butter into pieces and place in a microwave-safe bowl.  Melt and then allow to cool slightly.
  4. Place the flour, oats, dark brown sugar, salt and baking soda in a medium-size mixing bowl and mix to combine.  Add the melted butter and mix until the ingredients come together.
  5. Divide the mixture in half and put half of it in the prepared 9 x 11-inch pan.  Press the mixture into the bottom of the pan. It will be a thin layer. Place in the oven and bake for 8 - 10 minutes.
  6. While the first layer of the oat mixture is baking, place the caramels and milk you set aside earlier in the microwave and microwave 1-2 minutes at a time until melted.  Stirring after each minute or two with a heatproof spatula. You don’t want the caramel to boil or it will get too hard to eat when baked.
  7. Remove the pan with the first layer of oats from the oven.  
  8. Carefully pour the melted caramel over the baked oat mixture.  Then sprinkle on the 1 cup of chocolate chips. And last crumble the rest of the oat mixture evenly over the chocolate chips and caramel.
  9. Place in the oven and bake another 7-10 minutes or until the oat mixture begins to brown.
  10. Allow to cool for a few hours before cutting.  OR you can allow to cool about 30 minutes and then place the pan in the refrigerator for about an hour.  This makes the caramel more firm. I recommend this cooling option if you're going to a picnic and it's hot outside.
  11. Cut into bars and enjoy!

Cut into small squares and serve.  


I use a 9 x 13 inch baking pan, but the original recipe calls for a 9 x 11 inch baking pan which also works.

Keywords: carmelita, chocolate, caramel, oats