Turtle Bark combines chocolate, caramel and pecans for an easy Christmas treat!
Add this 4 ingredient Christmas bark to your cookie plates!
Are you on team Christmas cookies or Christmas no bake treats?
For the past few years Ryan and I have assembled around 30-40 Christmas tins with cookies and no bake treats to give to coworkers, friends and neighbors.
I typically pick 1-2 Christmas cookies to include, but then the rest of the items are no bake because they are quicker to make, especially when assembling such large quantities.
I usually include Tiger Butter, Chocolate Peppermint Bark, and Oreo Fudge. Those are all no bake Christmas candies that everyone seems to love!
Turtles are a candy confection that’s made with chocolate, caramel and nuts.
They have been around since the 1900s and first got their name because the candy looked like turtles, with 4 pecans sticking out from the chocolate and caramel.
Turtle bark combines all those classic flavors of turtle candy, but it’s easier to make than individual little candies. It’s perfect to add to cookie plates because it requires minimal ingredients and hands on time.
This Christmas bark is easy to make because it uses chocolate almond bark. Almond bark is made to be melted and cooled. It also has a crisp snap, which makes it perfect for turtle bark.
What You’ll Need
The detailed ingredient list is below in the recipe card.
- chocolate almond bark
- caramel squares – can use caramel bits as well
- pecans – I used a combination of chopped and whole pecans
- heavy cream or water
How To Melt Almond Bark
For the most part, follow the directions on the package. I like to chop the almond bark into smaller pieces for quicker melting.
I place the chocolate in a glass bowl and microwave for 3 minutes on 50% power, stirring and then continuing to microwave on 50% power until mostly melted.
How To Melt Caramel Squares
Place the caramel squares in a microwave safe bowl. If you are using caramel bits instead of squares, use 1 & 1/4 cup caramel bits.
Add 1-2 tbsp of water or heavy cream and microwave for 1 minute on 50% power. Stir. Microwave for an additional minute on 50% power, or continue until the caramel is melted.
Toasting Pecans for Turtle Bark
To enhance the nutty flavor and to give pecans a snappy, crunchy texture, you can toast them in the oven before adding them to the bark.
How to toast pecans: Spread the pecans in an even layer on a baking sheet. Bake at 350ºF for 7-10 minutes, stirring every 2 minutes until the pecans are brown and fragrant.
How To Freeze Chocolate Turtle Bark
Break the turtle bark into pieces before putting in the freezer. Divide the bark into 4 piles and wrap each pile tightly in plastic wrap. Then cover in aluminum foil and place inside a freezer bag.
To thaw, place the entire bag or individual bundles in the fridge overnight. Once thawed, unwrap the bundles.
Line the baking sheet with either a silicone baking mat, parchment paper or wax paper.
If you want, you can sprinkle sea salt over the caramel.
Work fast, swirling the chocolate and caramel together. Add the pecans before the chocolate sets.
Reserve a small amount of chocolate to drizzle over the pecans.
Toast the pecans to enhance the nutty flavor and to give them a snappy, crunchy texture.
More Christmas Treats
- 1 package chocolate almond bark, 20-24 oz
- 25 caramel squares, equal to about 1 & 1/4 cup caramel bits
- 1-2 tbsp water or heavy cream
- whole pecans, as many as you desire, I chopped some of them
- Line a baking sheet with either a silicone baking mat, parchment paper or wax paper.
- Rough chop the almond bark into smaller pieces for quicker melting. Place in a glass bowl.
- Microwave the glass bowl for 3 minutes on 50% power, stir. Microwave for another 1-2 minutes on 50% power. Add more time in 30 second intervals if needed until melted. Continue to stir the chocolate to keep it melted while you melt the caramel.
- Place the caramel squares in a microwave safe bowl. Add 1-2 tbsp of water or heavy cream and microwave for 1 minute on 50% power. Stir. Microwave for an additional minute on 50% power, continue for 30 second intervals until the caramel is melted.
- Reserve a small amount of chocolate for drizzling, about 1/4 cup.
- Pour the melted chocolate over the silicone mat, spreading smooth with a spatula. Use a spoon or small cookie scoop and drop dollops of caramel on the bark. Swirl the chocolate and caramel together with a butter knife or spatula. Add the pecans (chopped and whole). Drizzle the remaining chocolate over the bark.
- Allow the bark to harden on the counter for 2-3 hours. Using a sharp knife, cut the bark into pieces once it’s completely set. Store in an airtight container.
Where do you buy chocolate almond bark?
Most grocery stores carry it – here’s an example of what you’re looking for https://amzn.to/3EAbF22
You can find it in the baking aisle of grocery store. I prefer Ghirardelli’s chocolate wafers. Small disks of chocolate. White, Dark. Can buy at Walmart or big bags at Sams Club. Better tasting!!
The recipe calls for 20 – 24 ounces of almond bark; however, the photo is of chocolate which doesn’t appear to contain almonds, so could you clarify whether it’s melting chocolate or almond bark (with almonds) that you use in the recipe, please? I have every intention of making this Turtle Bark as soon as I hear back from you!
Hi Heather! Almond bark is a chocolate-like confection made with vegetable fats instead of cocoa butter and with coloring and flavors added.
Hello! How long is this good for and should it go on fridge or leave it on the counter? Thanks!!
where do you find packaged chocolate almond bark in Canada?
I’m not sure if it’s sold under a different name in Canada, but here’s what you’re looking for https://amzn.to/3EAbF22
Hi Mary, the link above is for a product used to make almond bark (see the package picture). In Ontario, we can buy white, milk, semi-sweet, and dark chocolate melting wafers in Bulk Barn. I use them for candy making, ganache, truffles, and anywhere else it calls for melted chocolate. For the recipe here, you can also use chocolate chips – white, milk, semi-sweet, or dark. I prefer the wafers for white chocolate, and semi-sweet for chocolate ganache and baking. I hope this helps.
Is the caramel like Kraft caramels wrapped in cellophane or the caramel morsels that you use in cookies? Would like to try the recipe but not sure about that one thing.
I used the kraft caramel squares that are wrapped in cellophane.
Is it possible to just melt 20 – 24 oz of chocolate instead of almond bark? I have never heard of or seen almond bark in Canada. Looks so good. Thanks
Hi Deb! Chocolate almond bark is specifically made for melting. It will harden once set. Regular chocolate, once melted and cooled, will be a little softer to the touch. You can certainly use chocolate chips, the texture might be slightly different.
Do you use water or cream?
Do you think you could use Lily’s Dark choc chips and caramel chips for a Keto friendly product? Thank you – looks amazing!
So it isn’t actually Almond Bark you are using, it is a candy compound for making almond bark, correct? So this would be candy melts?
Is this cheaper than using chocolate chips?
Almond bark is similar to candy melts! They are both designed to be melted and then cooled and harden.
To substitute for almond melt any favorite chocolate over double boiled with 1T vegetable shortening. This is a quick remedy I’ve used for years.
You can also use a half block of paraffin to melt in your chocolate chips, I use it all the time so I can use milk chocolate chips. You can usually find it with the canning items.
I bought the ingredients for this and then looked at my printout of the recipe when I freaked about the SIZE difference between the packages of almond bark (Wal-Mart and Aldi) and the caramel bits (Wal-Mart). Thank goodness you now have the package SIZES included in the article. I just KNEW I had a lifetime supply of almond bark!
Why can’t everyone just make a standard package of almond bark?!
I used a silicone sheet in the bottom of a cookie sheet. Then I chopped chocolate into 1/2 inch(about) pieces. Spread the pieces on silicone. Put in 350 oven for 3 minutes. Spread easily with a rubber spatula. Easier than microwave to melt.
I love that idea!
Great recipe…I drizzled with white almond bark then, added scant/small amount of xmas sprinkles!
This looks so good. Its going in my receipt book. Thanks 😉
I Can’t wait To Make This Recipe,The Grandson’s Will all love it ,As well as The Family .Thank You For Sharing YourRecipes.God Bless You And Your Familys,You Have A Blessed Day.Merry Christmas And A Happy New Year.
Can you use whole milk instead of water or heavy cream?
Yes you can!
It’s actually chocolate for melting to make chocolate dipped candy. It isn’t actually almond bark. Almond Bark is chocolate with almonds in it – like a Hershey’s almond chocolate bar. Hope that clears up some confusion.
Going to try that