Neiman Marcus Bars

by Sally
12-24 Bars
1 hr 25 min

Need a go-to dessert bar recipe that travels well and is a crowd-pleaser? Look no further, try making Neiman Marcus Bars!! Made up of three delicious layers, these dessert bars are named for the famous department store, Neiman Marcus, where they were served at the lunch-counter in the store. I found this recipe over a decade ago and have made it more times than I can count. Chances are, if you’ve been to a party at my place, you’ve had Neiman Marcus bars for dessert. This is one of my go-to recipes to make-and-take to events because it travels so well. And who doesn’t love a tasty bar? You won’t stop at one bite. Easy to make, this dessert bakes in a little over an hour in an oven preheated to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Allow me to take you through how I made this, step by step! Cake-y, chocolaty, and flaky (in a good way), this dessert bar recipe is a “go to” for entertaining!

These dessert bars are made of three delicious layers.

Neiman Marcus bars should be a nice golden color once they are fully baked!

This recipe makes 12 large bars or 24 small bars!

Recipe details
  • 12-24  Bars
  • Prep time: 20 Minutes Cook time: 65 Minutes Total time: 1 hr 25 min
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  • 1 box of yellow cake mix
  • 1 stick of butter, softened
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 12 oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 8oz cream cheese, softened to room temp
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 16oz box or 4 cups of confectioners sugar, sifted

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Prepare a 9x13 baking pan or Pyrex dish by spraying it with cooking spray. *An optional step to preparing your pan is to add two layers of parchment paper with a 2 inch overhang on each side of your pan before finally spraying your pan with cooking spray.
For the first layer
For the first layer, mix together your dry cake mix ingredients (not a fully prepared cake mix), 1 stick of softened butter, and 1 egg until a yellow play-doh consistency forms. Press your mix evenly into the bottom of your prepared 9x13 pan.
For the second layer
For the second layer, spread your chocolate chips evenly on top of the first layer. Gently press the chips into the top of the first layer. *If you would like to add 1 cup of chopped nuts to this layer you can. Just make sure to mix your chopped nuts with your chocolate chips before evenly spreading this mixture onto the first layer. Gently press this chocolate chip and chopped nut mixture into the first layer.
For the third layer
For the third layer, beat 8oz of cream cheese softened to room temp., 2 eggs, and 1 tsp of vanilla until well combined. Continue beating and slowly add in 4 cups or 1 box of sifted confectioners sugar one large spoonful at time. Mix all these ingredients together until a smooth consistency forms, leaving very little to no lumps in the batter. To avoid lumps, make sure your cream cheese is soft and your confectioners sugar is sifted. Pour this smooth batter evenly over the chocolate chip layer.

Bake these bars for 1 hour and 5 minutes at 300 degrees Fahrenheit, adding additional baking time in 5 minute increments if the top layer is not fully risen. The edges should be golden brown, and the top layer should be even on top. Remove the bars from the oven and allow them to cool for one hour before serving. Once the bars are cool, I cut them into squares.
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