How to make old-fashioned Nanaimo bars with cannabis

Published Jun 9, 2021 01:00 p.m. ET
iStock / TobinC

We covered a mouth-watering pumpkin Nanaimo bar recipe for Halloween, but now we're here to bring you a much more traditional variety to enjoy. Just like our last one, these Nanaimo bars are infused with the powerful potency of cannabutter, but they maintain the good old chocolate layer and cream filling that we're slightly more used to.

Don't like coconut? No problem!

Many of us revel in the refreshing texture and taste of shredded coconut that comes with traditional Nanaimo bars. However, not everyone is a fan, and that's why we wanted to offer up a few more than suitable replacements that will work just as well to fill the space without changing the rest of the bar's flavour.

  • Crushed nuts
  • Oats
  • Crushed wafer
  • Other crushed cookies

Nanaimo bar recipe

This is one of the best Christmas desserts out there, and this particular way of making it will ensure that everyone who tries one gets a good buzz that lasts all night long. Though it might have initially been a Canadian touted treat, its popularity is gaining speed, and we're pretty sure that adding some weed to the combination is only going to make that happen even faster.

Preparation: 40 minutes

Cooking: 20 minutes

Calories: 270

Servings: 9

Bottom ingredients

  • 1 ¾ cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 cup shredded coconut (or alternative)
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • ½ cup almonds
  • ¼ cup of sugar
  • 1 large egg (beaten)
  • 5 tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Middle ingredients

  • 1 ¾ cups icing sugar
  • ½ cup cannabutter
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons custard powder

Topping ingredients

  • 4 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


  • 8-inch baking dish
  • Heatproof bowls
  • Saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Food processor
  • Stand mixer
  • Silicone spatula


  1. Start by chopping up any large pieces of ingredients using a food processor. (Graham crackers, buts, etc.)

  • Now butter the baking dish, and then line it with parchment paper.

  • Add the butter to a heatproof bowl that is placed into the middle of a saucepan surrounded by a bed of water, and then turn the burner to medium heat.

  • Wait for the butter to melt completely, and once it does, it can be removed from the heat while you whisk in the sugar, cocoa powder, egg, and salt.

  • Whisk the ingredients together really well to remove any lumps and then return them to the hot burner.

  • Cook the liquid until it thickens, which may take anywhere from 3-5 minutes, and then remove it from the heat one final time.

  • Now toss in the graham cracker crumbs (or alternative) almonds and coconut and stir everything together until the pieces are evenly coated and distributed.

  • Press the freshly made mixture into the baking dish, and then let it chill in the fridge while you go ahead and prepare the filling.

  • To make the second layer, you'll need the paddle attachment on a stand mixer so that you can use it to combine the custard powder, cannabutter, icing sugar, and whipping cream. Keep beating it until it reaches a smooth velvety consistency, and if needed to thin it all out, you can add ½ teaspoon of extra cream at a time until it's perfect.

  • Once the first layer is cold to the touch, spread the cream filling across it and then put it back in the fridge to cool while you prepare the third and final layer.

  • Prepare a clean bowl in the same way as you did with the first, in a saucepan surrounded with water, then set it to medium heat, and toss in the chocolate chips and butter.

  • Frequently stir the two ingredients as they melt until they are reduced to a smooth lump-free liquid.

  • Once the mixture has melted, it can be carefully poured over the custard filling, but you aren't done just yet, as it too will need time in the cold to harden. So, place it in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before cutting the Nanaimo bars into perfect squares for even portions.

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