This Christmas Bark utilizes vanilla wafers and other delicious ingredients to make a simple but impressive and delicious holiday treat!
👩🏻🍳 Why You'll Love This Christmas Bark Recipe
I have a great recipe for you! This festive dessert is easy to make and SOOOOO delicious. It makes a great gift for coworkers or your kids' teachers, or take it to your next holiday party as a hostess gift.
Better yet, keep it for yourself and your family and enjoy the crunchy decadent treat beside the crackling fire and twinkling Christmas tree along with a creamy cup of hot chocolate!
My favorite thing about making bark is that it is so customizable. I made three different kinds of bark for this post, one with yogurt covered pretzels, one with dried cranberries, and one with seasonal sprinkles.
If you're looking for more Christmas bark recipes, check out this post from Crazy for Crust or look further down in this post for some additional ideas and variations on this recipe!
🥘 Ingredients Needed
- vanilla wafers - make for a sweet and crumbly base for your bark.
- chocolate chips - what kind of bark would be complete without chocolate?
- peppermint chips - add a refreshing wintry twist.
- brown sugar - while sweet, brown sugar will also add some depth of flavor.
- butter - melted and mixed with the brown sugar, the butter will give your bark a great texture and flavor.
- yogurt covered pretzels - adds some extra crunch and creaminess from the yogurt!
- Line a pan with aluminum foil and line the vanilla wafers up so they cover the surface as best as possible (you may have to break them in half or into smaller pieces).
- Melt the butter in a saucepan then combine with the brown sugar. Bring to a boil.
- Pour the brown sugar and butter mixture over the top of the wafers.
- Bake until bubbly.
- Remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle chocolate chips on top, spreading them with a knife or spatula once they soften.
- While the chocolate is still soft, press your desired toppings into the surface. Refrigerate, then remove and break or cut your bark into pieces.
Because this dessert is relatively flat and crunchy, it somewhat resembles tree bark (though I don't think that kind of bark would be as good to eat)!
If you let your bark refrigerate just until hardened, it's possible you can actually break it into pieces with your bare hands. If you want neater and crisper lines, you can also take a large knife and chop it that way.
For maximum shelf life, store your bark in a cool, dry place either wrapped in plastic, in a sealable bag, or in an airtight container. At room temperature or in the fridge, it should last at least 2 weeks or so.
Definitely! It will last a couple of months in the freezer.
💭 Top Tips
- If you have Hershey's or other chocolate bars around the house, you can break those up and use them instead of chocolate chips!
- To ensure your chocolate doesn't melt, make sure you store the bark in a cool place. It might also be smart to keep it in the fridge or freezer until you need to serve it, in which case you can leave it out until it comes almost up to room temperature (or eat it cold)!
Christmas bark recipes like this one are perfect for holiday parties, for easy treats to serve throughout the day on Christmas, or even as homemade gifts for teachers or coworkers!
- There are a number of things you can use instead of vanilla wafers. Shortbread cookies, graham cracker crumbs, or any kind of butter or sugar cookie would be delicious.
- If you want to kick up the chocolate in this recipe, you could also use chocolate cookies like Oreos. Leave the cream for some extra sweetness!
- For more topping ideas, try crushed nuts (peanuts, hazelnuts, or whatever you like), peppermint candies, dried cranberries, pretzels, chocolate candies, sprinkles, toffee, or peanut butter chips. This recipe is so customizable!
🎁 More Festive Recipes
If you're looking for more wintry recipes and Christmas bark recipes, look no further!
🍫 Additional Chocolate Recipes
Here are a few more chocolate dessert ideas for you!
Vanilla Wafer Christmas Bark Recipe
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📋 Recipe Card
Vanilla Wafer Christmas Bark
For the bark:
- Non-stick cooking spray
- 1 box vanilla wafers
- 2 sticks butter
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 ½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
For the toppings:
- 1 package yogurt covered pretzels and/or
- 1 package dried cranberries and/or
- Seasonal sprinkles
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
- Line a jelly roll pan with aluminum foil and spray with non-stick cooking spray.Non-stick cooking spray
- Place the vanilla wafers on the sheet in rows, touching each other. (When I reached the edges, I cut a few of the cookies so that they would fit.)1 box vanilla wafers
- In a small saucepan, melt the butter and combine with the brown sugar. Bring to a boil and stir for about 5 minutes while boiling on low heat.2 sticks butter, 1 cup brown sugar
- Pour the butter and brown sugar mixture evenly over the vanilla wafers.
- Bake 3-5 minutes until bubbly.
- Take the pan out of the oven and sprinkle the chocolate chips on top.1 ½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- When the chips soften, spread them with a knife.
- Add desired toppings and gently press into the chocolate.1 package yogurt covered pretzels and/or, 1 package dried cranberries and/or, Seasonal sprinkles
- Place the pan in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes or until cooled.
- When cool, remove from the refrigerator and cut or break the bark into pieces.
- Hershey's bars or other chocolate can be substituted for chocolate chips.
- Store your bark in a cool dry place to prevent melting. If you don't mind eating it cold, serving it right out of the fridge or freezer will also help avoid melty chocolate.
Nutritional information is an estimate. The nutritional values for your final dish may vary based on measuring differences and products used.
Update Notes: This post was originally published in December 2013, but was republished with tips, step by step photos, and a recipe change in December 2020.
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I love how simple yet impressive this simple holiday bark is. I can't wait to make this and have the kiddos help and deliver to the neighbors.
Yum! I am going to be adding these to my cookie gifts this year. And keeping a few for me!
We love making any kind of bark! This is a new one on our list!
OMG why haven't I ever thought of using vanilla wafers?? That is genius!