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Twix cookies layer super-easy soft caramel and chocolate toppings over beautiful homemade shortbread. Dress them up with googly eyes for Halloween — or, you know — absolutely do not. Here’s how to make them.

twix cookies on a plate
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Why we love this recipe

Chocolate caramel shortbread evokes childhood memories in an ever so slightly more grown-up way. Depending on your upbringing, it will remind you of Twix, a cookie version of millionaire shortbread, or — if you’re really lucky — both.

Twix cookies combine:

  • Best-in-class buttery, crumbly, not-too-sweet shortbread biscuits
  • A super-easy (to make and to eat) soft caramel layer
  • A soft-set milk chocolate layer that’s easy to work with and great to eat

I first published this recipe here in 2016. I’ve since updated the post for clarity, but the recipe (give or take the googly eyes) remains the same. If you’re a fan of old-school food blog narrative, scroll down beneath the recipe card to read excerpts from the original post.

What you’ll need

Here’s a glance at the ingredients you’ll need to make Twix cookies.

ingredients in bowls
  • Soft caramel candies mixed with a touch of heavy cream make a soft-setting caramel layer that’s easy to work with and easy to eat. Use Kraft, Werther’s, or another similar brand.
  • Coconut oil helps the chocolate retain some smoothness and softness when it sets. You can leave it out if necessary, but the chocolate layer will be firmer. Some varieties of coconut oil taste like coconut, and others (usually called refined or odorless) do not. Even though there’s only a small amount of coconut oil in the mix, you will notice the taste if you use a flavorful version. If you like coconut, it’s a nice addition — but Twix bars don’t taste like coconut, so opt for the odorless version to better replicate the original.
  • The shortbread is made from a simple mix of flour, sugar, butter, and pure vanilla extract. Nothing fancy.

How to make them

Here’s an overview of what you’ll do to make a fabulous batch of Twix cookies. You can see the steps in action in the video that accompanies this post, and get all the details in the recipe card below.

step by step
  1. First you’ll beat the butter and sugar together until creamy, and then beat in the vanilla. Add the flour all at once and mix in by hand. Shortbread wants to be tender and a bit crumbly, so you’ll mix gently until incorporated, and not more than that.
  2. Divide the dough and roll it out to 1/4 inch thickness, give or take. Stamp out circles or any shape you like. Bake for about 15 minutes.
  3. Melt the caramel topping and spread it onto the cookies.
  4. Melt the chocolate topping and spread it on. Then give the cookies some time to set. That’s it!
Homemade Twix Cookies with Googly Eyes 780 | Umami Girl

Expert tips and FAQs

Do I have to use the coconut oil?

The coconut oil helps the chocolate layer set smooth and soft, which improves with the eating experience. The softer chocolate doesn’t force the caramel layer to squish out when you bite.

That said, you can leave it out if you need to. In that case, just experiment with how thick you want the chocolate layer to be.

Got any decorating tips?

For neater, more profesh-looking cookies, you can pipe the toppings instead of swirling them on with a spoon. For the chocolate layer, you can pipe stripes or another decorative pattern rather than covering the entire caramel layer.

It’s amazing how many emotions and personality traits you can express with googly eyes, depending on how you space and orient them. Have fun playing around with different positionings.

Can I make Twix cookies in advance? What about leftovers?

Sure can. You can make these cookies up to a couple of days in advance. Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container at room temperature. Leftovers will keep well for a week.

Can you freeze shortbread?


You can freeze the shortbread biscuits after baking and before assembly. Arrange cooled cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place in the freezer until solid so they won’t stick together. Then transfer them to an airtight container with parchment between the layers of cookies. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost at room temperature before assembling.

twix cookies on a plate

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twix cookies on a plate
4.50 from 8 votes
By Carolyn Gratzer Cope
Twix cookies layer super-easy soft caramel and chocolate toppings over beautiful homemade shortbread. Dress them up with googly eyes for Halloween — or, you know — absolutely do not. Here's how to make them.
Prep: 45 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings: 36
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Ingredients 

  • 1 pound (454 grams) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons, (225 grams) sugar
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 5 cups (600 grams) all-purpose flour (see note 1)
  • 22 ounces (624 grams) Kraft or other similar caramels
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) heavy cream
  • 23 ounces (650 grams) good-quality milk chocolate chips
  • 2 teaspoons (10 grams) coconut oil
  • Various sizes of candy eyeballs, optional

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 325°F with a rack in the center.
  • Place butter and sugar in a large bowl (or the bowl of a stand mixer).
  • Beat on medium speed until lightened in color and fluffy.
  • Add the vanilla extract and beat to incorporate.
  • Add the flour and stir in gently with a spatula or wooden spoon until incorporated. You may want to mix the last bit with your hands. Don't overmix, or the cookies will be less tender.
  • Divide dough in half and shape into two discs.
  • Dust work surface and rolling pin with flour and gently roll each piece of dough into a 1/4-inch thick circle(-ish).
  • Cut into 2 1/2-inch rounds (or really any shape you like) using a cookie or biscuit cutter. You can re-roll any scraps and use them to make a few more cookies.
  • Transfer cookies to cookie sheets lined with parchment and chill in the fridge for 15 minutes to help cookies retain their shape in the oven.
  • Bake for about 15 minutes, until cooked through. You can look for light browning around the edges, though cookies this thick sometimes stay pale when baked.
  • Remove cookies from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  • When cookies have cooled completely, make the caramel layer by melting the unwrapped caramels and the cream in a large bowl in the microwave. Watch carefully, since it will begin to bubble up shortly after it's completely melted.
  • When caramel is melted, place about a tablespoon (depending on cookie size) in the center of each cookie and spread with the back of a spoon. Let caramel set before proceeding.
  • For the chocolate layer, melt the chocolate chips and coconut oil together in short bursts in the microwave, stirring between bursts.
  • Spread about a tablespoon of chocolate onto each cookie and spread it with the back of a spoon.
  • If using eyes, position them while the chocolate is still hot.

Notes

  1. The coconut oil helps the chocolate layer set smooth and soft, which helps with the eating experience. The softer chocolate doesn't force the caramel layer to squish out when you bite. That said, you can leave it out if you need to. In that case, just experiment with how thick you want the chocolate layer to be.
  2. For neater, more profesh-looking cookies, you can pipe the toppings instead of swirling them on with a spoon. For the chocolate layer, you can pipe stripes or another decorative pattern rather than covering the entire caramel layer.
  3. It's amazing how many emotions and personality traits you can express with googly eyes, depending on how you space and orient them. Have fun playing around with different positioning.
  4. You can make these cookies up to a couple of days in advance. Once completely cooled, store in an airtight container at room temperature. Leftovers will keep well for a week.
  5. You can freeze the shortbread biscuits after baking and before assembly. Arrange cooled cookies on a parchment-lined baking sheet and place in the freezer until solid so they won’t stick together. Then transfer them to an airtight container with parchment between the layers of cookies. Freeze for up to 3 months. Defrost at room temperature before assembling.
  6. Original 2016 headnote, just for fun: I made these cookies for our school's Harvest Fest last week, and man, they were DELICIOUS. (Not including the eyeballs, of which even our 8 year old said, "These eyeballs are NOT THAT GOOD.") I don't always care all that much about the sweets that come and go for such events, but I was very happy to have a few of these little faces left over to pay the mama tax.

Nutrition

Calories: 329kcal, Carbohydrates: 42.1g, Protein: 3.9g, Fat: 15.6g, Fiber: 1.6g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

Additional Info

Course: Cookies + Bars
Cuisine: American
Tried this recipe?Mention @umamigirl or tag #umamigirl!

Original 2016 post excerpts

You guys. These homemade Twix cookies. Aren’t they cute? Looking at them makes me giggle, which is easier now that they’re all gone and I’m no longer stealing away to the home office to eat them without the kids noticing. That was getting messy.

Because here’s the thing: they’re SURPRISINGLY delicious. If you grew up liking Twix, you’ll love these homemade Twix cookies made with vaguely grown-up buttery shortbread cookies, creamy caramel and milk chocolate.

Plus, they adhere to my cardinal rule that food decorating needs to be easy and make a decently big impact compared to the effort you put in. What’s not to like? Trick (or treat) question: it’s ALL to like. Unless you have braces and can’t do caramel. Then we might need to talk.

The empathy made me eat them

You all know that I’m not a huge processed foods fan or even the type to crave sweets all that much. Give me cheese over sugar any day. They don’t call me Umami Girl for nothing. (Nope, they call me that because it’s the name I chose for myself eight years ago and now intermittently and vaguely regret.) But something about these cookies — maybe the combination of nostalgia and simple, easy to love flavors — made me more than happy to invoke the mama tax and eat my share of the leftovers after we’d packaged up the bulk of these little faces for our school’s Harvest Fest last weekend.

It could also be those sweet, pleading eyes, right? It’s my EMPATHY that made me eat them, you see?

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About Carolyn Gratzer Cope

Hi there, I'm Carolyn Gratzer Cope, founder and publisher of Umami Girl. Join me in savoring life, one recipe at a time. I'm a professional recipe developer with training from the French Culinary Institute (now ICE) and a lifetime of studying, appreciating, and sharing food.

4.50 from 8 votes (8 ratings without comment)

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