Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
Feb 18, 2013 12:16 PM

ISO-Dream Bar recipe-not cake mix, not chocolate chips

Growing up (In SW Ontario) Dream Bars seemed to be everywhere, certainly in retail bakeries like Woman's Bakery or Hot Oven or The Little Pie Shoppe (Toronto, Etobicoke).

This is a bar cookie: with chopped cherries (glace? maraschino?), coconut (flaked?) and nuts (walnuts?pecans?). They sat on a (shortbread?) crust. Some places frosted their Dream Bars with pink frosting. But they were plenty sweet without.

I have a real hankering for this treat of yesteryear. But all my Google searches end in one of two choices: adulterated cake mix or something with chocolate chips.MY dream bars do not contain chocolate!

I know, I know, I could just leave that ingredient out, but that would clearly leave the rest of the proportions wrong.

Anybody know this bar and can supply me with the recipe? Thanks in advance!

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I know exactly what you mean. My mom used to make them for bridge nights and she used the pink frosting. I'm at work right now, but I'm certain they are in the Women's Institute cookbook that I have at home. I will post later on tonight.

    2 Replies
    1. re: IsobelT

      IsobelT: Wanted to say a BIG thank-you. I made these for my daughter who is Celiac (requires gluten free diet)..I had to substitute only the flour and I used the amazing William Sonoma Cup4Cup. Despite the exchange, they still tasted just like what I remembered and DD was thrilled as I had gone on about the recipe for ages. Next time, I will 'up' the YUM factor by adding a bit more coconut and brown sugar...but thats just my family's sweet tooth!

      1. re: LJS

        I'm happy they turned out to be what you remembered. It's cool that you were able to share the memory of your daughter and that they were easy to convert to GF. I haven't had cause to do any GF baking, but I'm sure it presents a lot of challenges.

    2. As soon as I posted, I had a thought. We always called them Dream Squares, not Bars and sure enough, the first link to pop up for Dream Squares was a Chatelaine article on them:

      1 Reply
      1. re: IsobelT

        Thank you SO much-in a weird co-incidence, I actually worked for Chatelaine Magazine. I guess Dream Squares must be a Canadian thing, like butter tarts and Nanaimo bars...funny how very regional tastes in sweets can be.

        In any case, I am going to try this recipe and satisfy the craving I have had for several years now!