Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No-Bake Cookies

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These Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No Bake Cookies couldn’t be easier to make, and everyone absolutely loves them! They’re the perfect allergy friendly treat to make for pretty much every occasion. And even better, you can make them ahead, and freeze them as well!

Wooden spatula scooping up a Chocolate Chip Salted Caramel Cookie from a gold cookie sheet.

Oh wow! That was what I heard after a friend took her first bite of these cookies. So if find yourself in need of a ‘go-to’ dessert this is a good one. It’s really allergy friendly, (since it’s gluten free, dairy free, egg free, nut free, paleo & vegan).

But you’re not going to feel like these are a ‘health food dessert’ if you know what I mean. In fact, fights have actually been know to break out over these cookies! Friendly fights of course, but nonetheless you’ve been warned, these will go fast. And everyone will probably beg you to make some more.

Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No Bake Cookies on a gold baking sheet.

Recipe Inspiration: When I made my Healthier No-Bake Cookies, I wondered what would happened if I left out the cocoa powder and turned them to a caramel version. So… here we are with a caramel version! And (dare I say it?) are better than the originals because chocolate + caramel = better than just chocolate!

Ok… let’s jump in and talk about the ingredients for these Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No Bake Cookies!

  • Coconut sugar – is the perfect natural sweetener for these cookies because it tastes like caramel when it’s boiled together with the coconut oil and coconut milk.
  • Coconut oil – if my preferred dairy free substitute for the butter called for in the classic recipe. But you can definitely use butter as well, (see substitutions below).
  • Sea salt – Just a touch of sea salt is so important to the flavor of the caramel base of these cookies. And if you want to go one step further, try a sprinkling of flaked sea salt over the tops of these cookies!
  • Coconut milk is my favorite milk to use in these cookies. I use coconut milk from the can for the richest flavor. But you can also use coconut milk or almond milk from the carton as well as regular milk.
  • Vanilla – just rounds out the caramel flavor and enhances the whole cookie!
  • Big flake coconut – Both coconuts used in this recipe are unsweetened. This is important since we’re folding the coconut flakes into caramel. Sweetened coconut would be way too sweet! I use a bit of big flake coconut to add a nice texture to these cookies, but you can use just fine shred as well.
  • Fine shred coconut – unsweetened finely shredded coconut is what makes up the bulk of these cookies. It takes the place of oats from the classic recipe, and it’s what makes these cookies grain free and paleo. However feel free to use the optional oats instead. Or you can use a mixture of both if you’d like!
  • Chocolate chunks – for the chocolate chunks you can roughly chop up a chocolate bar. Or I’ve been using the chocolate chunks from Enjoy Life and it’s what you see pictured below. Be sure to check the labels on whatever you choose to use for chocolate if you have dietary concerns. Not all chocolate is dairy free, nut free, or vegan.
  • Nut butter or chopped nuts – These are entirely optional, and honestly most times I leave them out. But once in a while we really enjoy adding a few chopped roasted pecans, walnuts, or cashews. Also any kind of nut butter is delicious in these cookies, but my favorites are cashew butter followed by almond butter. I have tried peanut butter in these, but the flavor overwhelms the caramel in my opinion. That’s why we choose to go nut free with these cookies most of the time – more caramel flavor!

And some questions & substitutions!

  1. What if I’m allergic to coconut? You can make this recipe just like a classic no bake cookie recipe using the milk of your choice, butter, and brown sugar. Then use the oats listed as an option in the recipe in place of the coconut flakes. That way there’s no coconut at all!
  2. Can I use a different kind of milk? Yes for sure, I know that regular milk and almond milk work.
  3. What if I don’t like coconut? I would follow the instructions for how to make this if you’re allergic to coconut, (see above). But I would recommend using coconut sugar if you’re not allergic because it gives the best caramel flavor to these cookies. These do taste like coconut as written. So if you’re not a fan, I would recommend using the milk of your choice, coconut sugar, butter subbed in for the coconut oil, and oats in place of the coconut flakes.

Now let’s make these Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel Cookies step by step!

The caramel simmered down in the pan with the coconut and chocolate chunks near the white pan.

Steps 1 & 2:

  • We’re going to start by measuring out all the ingredients.
  • Next we’ll boil the sugar, coconut oil, and coconut milk together to form a caramel base.
The coconut mixed into the caramel mixture with the chocolate chunks sitting on top.

Steps 3 & 4:

  • Once the caramel mixture has boiled for 2 minutes, add the coconut flakes or rolled oats. Mix to combine over low heat and allow the caramel to absorb.
  • Finally add the chocolate chunks and mix just to combine. You don’t want to over mix or the chocolate chunks won’t remain separate. Then portion the cookies out onto a cookie sheet and allow them to set up for 3-4 hours.

Tips: These cookies take longer to set up than the classic no bakes at around 3-4 hours. But you don’t have to wait, dive right in while they’re warm and gooey. Or you can even use the warm cookie mixture as an ice cream topping!

And I sure hope you enjoy these Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No Bake Cookies. If you do get a chance to make them, I hope you’ll leave me a comment/rating below. I always love hearing from you here!

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Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No-Bake Cookies


Description

The classic no bakes made caramel with gooey chunks of chocolate throughout!


Ingredients

Scale

1 1/2 cups coconut sugar

1/2 cup coconut oil

1/2 cup coconut milk, (from the can)

2 Teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 Teaspoon sea salt

2 1/2 cups finely shredded coconut

1 cup big flake coconut

2/3 cup dark chocolate chunks

Optional: 1/2 cup almond or cashew butter


Instructions

In a large saucepan, combine the coconut sugar, coconut oil, and coconut milk. Bring the mixture to a boil, and boil for 2 minutes until the caramel thickens. Stirring occasionally to keep the mixture from sticking.

Remove the caramel from the heat and add the vanilla, sea salt, and coconut or oats. Stir to combine. If you’re using the almond or cashew butter, mix it in thoroughly.

Finally, add the chocolate chunks and combine, stirring as little as possible to keep the chunks intact.

Portion the cookies on a parchment lined or non-stick baking sheet and let cool.

This version of no-bakes takes a full 3-4 hours to fully set up, but you don’t have to wait that long because they’re really good warm and gooey.

Notes

To keep this recipe 100% dairy free, vegan, and allergy friendly check the label on your choice of chocolate. 

  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 5 mins
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: Caramel No Bake Cookies, No Bake Cookies Caramel, Coconut and Caramel No Bakes, Non Chocolate No Bake Cookies

This post was originally published on October 25, 2013 and was updated in 2021 with more information, nutritional facts, and new photos.

60 thoughts on “Chocolate Chunk Salted Caramel No-Bake Cookies”

  1. Tastes pretty good, but way too much sugar for my taste. Plugged the ingredients into myfitnesspal to see how “healthy” these are…..not even close.

    Reply
    • Sorry you didn’t like the sweetness level, no bakes are known to be super sweet! And I’d agree with you that these are only healthy in that they’re made with whole food ingredients, and there’s no processed sugar, but it’s still quite decadent!

      Reply
  2. Hi there Kari~First off, big huge kudos AND thanks for the delicious recipe! I’ve made a version with oats and coconut, but never all coconut and with the coconut milk and oil. My question is if you used natural, unsweetened coconut? it looks like it in the photos of the two bags of coconut, but cannot quite read the label….it almost looks like I can see where it says”ingredients” and there seems to be just one word, which I assume is “coconut”? Thanks, in advance~ Samantha in AZ

    Reply
    • I’m so glad you enjoyed these cookies, and yes it’s unsweetened coconut milk. It never occurred to me to list that in the recipe because they don’t sell anything other than unsweetened coconut milk here!

      Reply
    • Yes these are gluten free, as long as each of your ingredients is gluten free/processed in a gluten free facility. Definitely look out for the chocolate, I make mine with the Enjoy Life brand which is gluten free. Just be sure the brands you use are actually gluten free, all these ingredients should be gluten free, but if you have a severe gluten allergy/celiacs you need to make sure of each of your ingredients. I hope this helps, and be sure to let me know how it goes, or if you have anymore questions!

      Reply
  3. These look amazing but am I missing something? Where’s the caramel in the ingredients? Is it a mixture of the coconut sugar, oil, and milk?

    1½ cups coconut sugar
    ½ cup coconut oil
    ½ cup coconut milk, (from the can)
    2 Teaspoons vanilla extract
    ¼ Teaspoon sea salt
    2½ cups finely shredded coconut
    1 cup big flake coconut
    ⅔ cup dark chocolate chunks or Enjoy Life chocolate chips (I used 80% dark chocolate)
    Optional: ½ cup almond or cashew butter

    Reply
    • You’re definitely not missing anything, the caramel flavor comes from boiling together the coconut sugar, coconut oil, and milk – coconut sugar has a distinct caramel taste to it. I hope you enjoy the recipe, and be sure to let me know how it goes, or if you have anymore questions! 🙂

      Reply
  4. Thanks Kari, sounds great will definitely try it soon. I’m always looking for no bake recipesand this one has both my favs chocolate and coconut 🙂

    Reply
    • I think it would work with canned coconut cream instead, but I might reduce the coconut oil by 1-2 Tablespoons because of the increased fat content of the coconut cream. The nut butter is totally optional as just a variation so you will definitely be fine without it. I hope you enjoy the recipe, and be sure to let me know how it goes, or if you have anymore questions!

      Reply
  5. I’ve made these about three times now, and they are amazing!
    I made two batches for an Easter party I’m attending, and I hope everyone feels the same way. Thanks for this awesome recipe! (:

    Reply
    • I’m so glad you enjoyed them, I hope they’re a hit at your Easter party too, they’ve always been a hit when I take them to any get together so I think you’ll be fine! 🙂

      Reply
  6. I’m not completely inept in the kitchen, but for some reason when I combined all the ingredients at the end, it was very dry. I hesitated adding all of the coconut, in fact. I’ve gone ahead and tried to make compressed cookies, but I fear even after they have set they will crumble. Did I cook the caramel sauce too long? I did stir until it reached a medium color (5 min) because up until then, it looked too thin. Thanks for any advice you can give b/c I really, really want these to work for me! : ))

    Reply
    • I think you might have cooked the caramel sauce for too long because I’ve never had these come out dry before, in fact they’re the softest no-bakes I make taking up to 4 hours to set up. I would try simmering the caramel for just 2-3 minutes, (I put a timer on to keep from forgetting it) and I’m sure they will turn out. I don’t know if you still have the dry batch, but you could try melting a bit of coconut milk in a pan and stirring in the dry cookies to rehydrate. I don’t know if it would totally fix the dry texture, but at least they’d be moist (nothing worse than dry cookies). I hope this helps and that you give these another try because they are unbelievable! Be sure to let me know if you have anymore questions.

      Reply
  7. Hi Kari,

    Thank you so much for this recipe! I’m planning to make these caramel delights for a Christmas party. However, I’m having trouble finding coconut sugar in Canada…when I search for it online, all I get is ‘coconut palm sugar’ – is that the same thing or different?

    Thanks for your help! 🙂

    Reply
    • Coconut sugar and palm sugar are technically 2 different kinds of sugar, but there’s often a lot of mislabeling on packages. My coconut sugar says coconut palm sugar on the package, so I’m guessing that whatever you’ve found is probably the same thing, but I’ll leave you a link with the exact brand that I use just in case there’s some kind of difference. I hope you enjoy these, and be sure to let me know if you have anymore questions! 🙂
      http://www.iherb.com/Big-Tree-Farms-Organic-Coconut-Palm-Sugar-Blonde-16-oz-454-g/34435?gclid=CMqvobvms8kCFdKGfgodbfQM1Q

      Reply
    • I’m sorry but I don’t know which types of sugar are better for diabetics. I hope you get to enjoy the recipe, and hopefully if you have anymore questions I’ll be able to answer them!

      Reply
  8. Can i substitute whote sugar for the coconut sugar? I boughtallthe i grediants but missed that it was coconut sugar. Making them with some kids tomorrow at a bible camp. Thx

    Reply
    • You can substitute regular sugar for the coconut sugar but it won’t have the deep caramel flavor. You could try making my Healthier No Bake Cookies which are similar but rely on cocoa powder more for flavor, that way you wouldn’t miss the caramel flavor from the coconut sugar. I’ll include a link, and be sure to let me know if you have anymore questions! 🙂
      https://getinspiredeveryday.com/healthier-no-bake-cookies/

      Reply
  9. Hi Karl
    I want to make these for company. Can I find the coconut sugar at Walmart, local grocery store, or must I go to a health food store? The recipe sounds great! Can’t wait to try it. Thanks for posting it.

    Reply
    • I don’t know if you can find coconut sugar at Walmart, but I know Super 1 Foods carries it and so does Natural Grocers. I’m not sure if you have either of these grocery stores in your area, but most health food stores do carry it these days if your grocery store doesn’t. Let me know how you like the cookies! 🙂

      Reply

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