These simple, 4-ingredient Salted Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bars will quickly become your new favorite sweet and salty treat!  No bake and no candy thermometer needed.

A close up of a square pretzel bar with a pretzel crust and chocolate and caramel drizzled on top.

Salted chocolate caramel seems like the latest trend, and honestly, I am completely on board!  Chocolate plus caramel with a little sea salt- i’m not sure it gets much easier, or TASTIER.  These Salted Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bars are the best homemade candy bar ever!  And the best part is that it’s only FOUR ingredients, and you don’t need a candy thermometer or any special equipment. It’s pretty much fool-proof, and fail-proof.

  How to make chocolate caramel pretzel bars step by step - spreading of chocolate, topping with pretzels and caramel sauce, drizzled chocolate, and the finished cooled final product.

How to make salted chocolate caramel pretzel bars:

First, melt your chocolate. Good quality chocolate chips are a must!  I like the ghiardelli brand of chocolate chips, for melting, or you could even melt a a couple of Hershey’s chocolate bars.  Next, Smooth the melted chocolate onto parchment paper. Throw on some pretzels (they don’t need to be in an even layer).  Then, drizzle the pretzels generously with melted caramel and top the bars with some more melted chocolate and a little sprinkle of sea salt–YUM!

The caramel is what makes everything stick together! I like to use these Kraft Caramel Bits rather than wrapped caramel cubes because you don’t have to unwrap them (thank goodness)!  The melted caramel is also the perfect texture. There’s nothing worse then hard, sticky caramel, right?! ALSO, if you prefer to make the caramel FROM SCRATCH, use this homemade caramel recipe.

An overhead image of four Salted Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bars stacked in a tower.

These are the perfect treat for pretty much any occasion. I sent them with my husband for his work cookie exchange during Christmas and his office friends went crazy for them. (Kind of embarrassing considering how EASY they are, but they didn’t need to know that 🙂 )

They’d also be perfect for Valentine’s day. But let’s be honest, you really don’t need any excuse at all–just a sweet tooth and a few minutes of your time.  Enjoy!

 

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Recipe

Prep 30 mins
Cook 5 mins
Total 35 mins
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Ingredients
  

  • 12 ounce package semi-sweet chocolate chips , good quality chocolate divided into pieces (I like ghiardelli best for melting)
  • 8 ounces mini pretzel twists , half of a regular 16-ounce bag
  • 11 ounce bags Kraft Caramel Bits , or homemade caramel
  • sea salt for sprinkling

Instructions
 

  • Line a large, rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Melt 8 ounces of the chocolate chips gently in the microwave (on low heat, stirring every 15 seconds) until smooth. 
  • Spread the chocolate evenly over the parchment. Immediately add the pretzel twists over the top (it's ok if they overlap!) and gently press them into the chocolate. 
  • Add caramel bits to a microwave safe bowl with 2 tablespoons water and melt according to package instructions (on high for 2 minutes). Stir well and drizzle the melted caramel over the top of all of the pretzels.
  • Melt remaining 4 ounces of chocolate and drizzle over the caramel. Sprinkle with sea salt.
  • Refrigerate until hardened.
  • Cut or tear into pieces, Enjoy!

Notes

Next time try quick and easy Caramel Crunch Bars.

Nutrition

Calories: 268kcalCarbohydrates: 39gProtein: 3gFat: 10gSaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 2mgSodium: 244mgPotassium: 193mgFiber: 2gSugar: 22gVitamin A: 20IUVitamin C: 0.1mgCalcium: 45mgIron: 2.3mg

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These simple, 4-ingredient Salted Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bars will quickly become your new favorite sweet and salty treat! No bake and no candy thermometer needed. | Tastes Better From Scratch

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Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Absolutely incredible!
    Made two batches and had no problem with them!! Cut them pretty and they are ready for my sisters Christmas Eve party.

    A+! Thank you for sharing!!

  2. Do you have to spray parchment paper before putting melted chocolate on it? I wondered if the chocolate would stick to the paper.

    1. You can to ensure things don’t stick but I haven’t found it necessary as long as you use parchment paper!

  3. 5 stars
    I live in Canada. Couldn’t find Kraft Caramel Bits so ordered from Amazon. These bars are really delicious. Wanted to make more so substituted Hershey’s Caramel Chips cuz I didn’t want to wait for delivery. No comparison. Definitely use the Kraft Bits.

    1. Cindy, I found the Kraft Caramel Bits at my local Walmart SuperStore. Much, much cheaper than the ones I almost bought on Amazon. Hope you can find them locally!

  4. If I want to give this to neighbors do I keep refrigerated until I make up their packages? Can I stack this in a holiday tin or does it need to be a single layer?

    1. Yes, once its cold and set it can be stacked in holiday tins and stored in the fridge until ready to deliver.

  5. 5 stars
    It was very yummy. I had white chocolate chips on hand, so I melted them also and drizzled it on top of the semi sweet chocolate.

  6. 5 stars
    These were a big hit with hubby and guests. I used the Kraft caramels (the ones you need to unwrap) and melted according their pkg directions. Followed recipe except didn’t add the sea salt at the end because the pretzels I used were salty enough. Had no problems with the caramel getting too hard to eat. This is a keep recipe!

  7. 5 stars
    I made these this evening. They are awesome! I made one batch per the directions and the other using gluten-free pretzels and almond milk instead of heavy cream in the caramel. Both turned out equally delicious. I added gold star sprinkles to the top because these are going on Christmas cookie trays.

  8. 5 stars
    I have made these twice now, and will keep making them for parties or gifts for neighbors, etc. They are simple and SO delicious!

    1. Marci, it surprised me today when I shopped for them and did not find them in the baking aisle, but in the candy aisle. Hope that might help.

  9. I will soon make this but in a vegan form since my one daughter has been vegan for sometime and now all my Christmas desserts are now vegan but not all diabetic friendly which I would need. Will let you know how it turns out. Looking forward to trying this.

  10. Can’t wait to try these! How many 11 oz bags of the Kraft Caramel Bits do I need? It says ‘bags’ but doesn’t say how many.

  11. 5 stars
    This pretzel bark has been a hit!! I discovered this two years ago and OH My… the recipients of my gifts have fall in love with this dessert.
    THANK YOU for sharing!!

  12. I was so looking forward to these but they weren’t a hit at all. Easy to do, but turned out so hard you couldn’t even eat without breaking a tooth or choking. I’m wondering if its because I used the wrapped caramel? Does using the bits make it softer and easier to eat? I cannot imagine anyone wanting to eat these how they turned out for me.

    1. Dear MK, Did you make sure to add the 2 Tb. of water to the melted caramel? Thins it out a bit so caramel doesn’t get so hard.

  13. 5 stars
    I had never used the caramel bits before this recipe, but what a time saver! I added chopped walnuts on top of half of the final layer for the part of the family who likes nuts. This was a hit. Easy to make.

    1. I live in Canada and caramel bits are not available near me. I use caramel sauce. Yes they’re sticky but still delicious! After breading into pieces I layer between parchment paper. Everyone still requests these!

  14. I tried these on a rather warm day in June. The room temp was about 77 when I tried to cut them. What a mess! They melted faster than I could cut them! These tasted delicious, however. I wonder if using candy melt discs would work better than chocolate chips. I will try these again in winter!

  15. 5 stars
    Delicious! I love salty/sweet combos. I used a candy thermometer and I’m glad I did. I had to keep turning up my burner until it eventually was on high in order to reach the proper temp. I tried the ice water trick while it was on med-hi and I could tell it wasn’t there yet. It’s probably just my cooktop but having the thermometer definitely prevented a caramel disaster! I cut them into small squares once I cooled they tray in the refrigerator and they turned out perfect!

  16. What dimensions are a “large” baking sheet? I used a 10 ” X 15″ pan and the pretzels did not adhere to the chocolate. I measured (and weighed) all ingredients correctly. The pan size seems to be the only variable. I would love to try it again and to get the great results others have had.

  17. 5 stars
    I am hooked on this recipe!!!!! It’s so easy and satisfies your goodie craving!!! I will put this in my Christmas candies that I send to my kids this year. I know they will love them!!

  18. 4 stars
    I wanted to love these but found that the semi sweet chocolate wasn’t quite sweet enough to give that good sweet and salty taste….perhaps the water added to the caramel could be reduced more than the instructions on the packaging too? I’ll try a different brand of chocolate chips next time and maybe use less water in the caramel. Otherwise, I didn’t have trouble with anything sticking or cutting these!

  19. 5 stars
    I loved this recipe, so easy and tasty. Using premium chocolate definitely makes a difference. I layered mine and cut into thick pieces right after chilling then I got a little creative and used Oreos instead of pretzels.

  20. I did leave a question but it seems to have been lost. I cannot find Krafts carael bits? Can I use skor bits or Hersheys sea salt caramel chips?

    1. Skor bits would not work to melt. I’d grab wrapped caramel candy squares if you can. The Hershey’s sea salt caramel chips don’t see like real “caramel” but would be fine.

  21. 5 stars
    These are excellent! I thought they may be hard to cut into nice pieces but I took them out of the fridge for about 20 minutes and they cut with no problem. I will definitely be adding them to my Christmas goodies list.❤️

  22. Is there a way to have the chocolate not melt at room temp? I keep them in the refrigerator but when I put them out for Thanksgiving on our dessert table once they were out for 30 minutes or so they were messy to try and eat because of the chocolate sort of being “melty”. Can I add something when I melt the chocolate? I used the Hershey bars melted because my son has nut allergies so can’t use Ghirardelli brand. These were delicious by the way and even completely worth the mess.

    1. Hi Carol, yes, you can temper the chocolate, which will help. Reserve a little of the whole chocolate off to the side. Melt the rest of the chocolate and then once it’s warm and melted, stir in the whole chocolate pieces and allow the warm chocolate to melt them. That will temper it and help it to hold up better at room temperature.

      1. 5 stars
        I made these last year for the first time and fell in love with them. We decided to make it our Christmas thing. Such an easy and yummy recipe. I do prefer the whole caramels though. I feel like the ones we made using the bits the caramel got hard and biting into them wasn’t as pleasant. But using the wrapped square caramels it was like a soft caramel that you could pull. So good.

    1. Yes you can. Follow the package directions for melting caramels. This may include diluting with a bit of water or milk.

  23. Does anyone know how long these keep for? I was hoping to make them a week ahead of time and just wondering if they will still be good and not stale. Thank you!

    1. Alexa, I made these last year and this year both using tin foil and it worked perfectly. I don’t remember if I did this last year or not, but this year I sprayed the foil with a teeny bit of cooking spray. I never have wax or parchment paper on hand.

  24. I have a bag of wrapped caramels I would like to use…..how many would I use ? Thank you! Want to make these for holiday treat bags!

  25. Has anyone tried to freeze the Pretzel Bark? I want to do some early Christmas baking but don’t want soggy bark!

  26. I want to make the caramels for myself. How long do they keep and should it be kept in the frig. I won’t make one of the recipes with pretzels until I am ready to give them.

  27. Going to try this recipe with Gluten free pretzels as my Granddaughter has Celiac disease. Think she will love these. Will let you know.

  28. I accidently got the Ghirardelli baking bars….will those melt like the chocolate chips would? I would assume I just use less?

  29. I had problems with choc melting also, stirred in a tsp of shortening to make it workable. Next time it’s Ghirardelli for me.

  30. 5 stars
    These turned out really good. I had no problem with anything sticking to the parchment paper and I used Kraft caramel chips with sea salt. Thank you for sharing!

  31. 5 stars
    These are fantastic! I thought I should double it just in case…it made a ton 😉 But I don’t have any doubt they’ll be the hit of my holiday treat selection. Thanks for sharing. Will definitely make again next year!

  32. Hi, making these today….after reading all of these comments, and problems with sticking, have you ever tried making
    these with a Silpat lined cookie sheet? I’m thinking of using that to prevent any problems, and also drizzling the candies from ziploc bags. I’m making these for gifts and want them to look pretty!

    1. Hi Val,
      I haven’t tried silpat mat but I’d love to know if those worked well for you. I have not had problems with sticking as long as parchment paper (not wax paper) is used. You could also spray the parchment paper before adding the chocolate.
      I hope they turn out beautiful for your party

    1. I’m sorry–that’s probably either because the brand of chocolate chips wasn’t good (too waxy) or it was melted at too hot of a temperature, so it seized. I use Ghirardelli chocolate chips.

  33. 5 stars
    These pretzel bares are AMAZING❤️❤️ the were the perfect Christmas treat to pass our to friends and neighbors!

  34. 5 stars
    Holy buckets amazing!!!! I used the whole package of chocolate chips for the bottom and a whole bag for the top drizzle. I put Christmas sprinkles on top to make it festive. Hubby loves it and so do I, thanks for sharing this fantastic recipe!!!

  35. 5 stars
    I couldn’t get caramel bits at the supermarket in my rural Australian town but found Reese’s Peanut Butter Chips (go figure!) and used them instead – YUM! This recipe was an absolute hit at my daughter’s baby shower and has become my new favourite! My husband is gluten-free so next time I’ll look for a GF substitute for the pretzels. Thanks so much for sharing 🙂

    1. Hello from Australia! I’m so happy you liked them, and found a good substitute for the caramel. Thanks so much for your comment and for following TBFS!

  36. 5 stars
    Made these for Christmas and everybody loved them! They are SO addicting and delicious and perfect. Thanks for such an easy, delicious recipe!

  37. 5 stars
    Hi Lauren! Thank you so much for this super easy & extremely tasty snack!! I just have one question, I made this yesterday & really had a hard time cutting it & it also stuck to the parchment paper. So, we have been just trying to break chunks off to eat it. Is there an easy way to cut it & keep it from sticking to the parchment paper? Thanks so much in advance. Merry Christmas.

    1. Hi Julie, so happy you liked them. I’ve never had the parchment paper issue–is it because some of the caramel got stuck on the paper? Maybe try doing a thicker base layer of melted chocolate next time. Or you could even spray a really light layer of non-stick cooking spray, or grease the parchment really lightly with butter before pouring the chocolate on. After they refrigerate and set up, I usually put the whole thing on a big cutting board and chop it into squares with a knife. Hope that helps!

    1. Hi Jess. You would probably only need about 1/4 of the recipe. Also be sure you cook the caramel barely to the soft ball stage so that it doesn’t hard too much once it’s on the pretzel bars!

  38. I’m wondering how long these typically take to set up? I’m wanting to make them during my Life Skills class at school, but only have a given amount of time. Could they set up in the freezer to make it go faster? Thank you!

  39. Tried this recipe for the first time. It was not complicated in any way. My problem was the chocolate drizzle was more like a storm. Much of the chocolate blobbed on instead of a finer drizzle. We haven’t tried them yet, I’m sure they will be wonderful, however I wondered what is a better way to drizzle the chocolate. I was using a teaspoon. Or is it that the chocolate was not melted enough, it looked smooth.

    1. Hi Casey,
      The chocolate should be runny enough to drizzle over the bars. I like to put it in a plastic zip lock, cut off the very corner and then drizzle it on top!

    1. Hi Katie,
      My homemade caramel recipe will make roughly 3-4 batches of these caramel pretzel bars!

  40. Hi.
    I am going to attempt these tomorrow! So excited! But I was wondering if caramel chips would work? I can’t ever find caramel candies in any of my stores. But I just found some caramel chips(like chocolate chips but caramel) 🙂

    1. Hi Sarah, I have never tried those so I can’t say for sure…but if the package has melting instructions then they should work!

        1. Thanks for letting us know–sorry those didn’t work. Hopefully you can use the real deal next time 🙂

  41. Fantistic…made a batch for Thanksgiving…thought it would be enough for the whole family… two boys ate the whole thing except for the 2 pieces I got. Guess it was a hit as they both wanted the recipe!!! Thanks

  42. Thinking about making these and shipping them xmas gifts. I’d put them in mason jars with a typical jelly lid. Would they keep for a few weeks or just go stale?

  43. Can’t find the caramel squares what can I use instead
    I found Hershey’s sea salt caramel baking chi ps can I use these?
    Thanks

    1. Hi Diane, I wouldn’t use the caramel baking chips–those wont melt like caramel.
      Most standard grocery stores carry the Kraft caramel bits…they are in an orange bag, in the same area as the chocolate chips. They look like this: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B005I570GE/ref=as_li_qf_sp_asin_il_tl?ie=UTF8&tag=taste03e-20&camp=1789&creative=9325&linkCode=as2&creativeASIN=B005I570GE&linkId=df75a35e9fd389431965747236d37482
      Let me know if you can’t find those. You’re other option would be to make the caramel homemade.

  44. I checked out your caramels made from scratch, and am disappointed, because I’m allergic the protein in milk (so butter is OK–it’s 100% fat), so that rules out the evaporated milk called for in that recipe. I can’t use store-bought caramels because they include both milk products and corn syrup, to which I’m also allergic. What can I substitute for these ingredients? (I already have to use gluten-free pretzels, as I’m also a celiac!)

    Thank you!

    1. 5 stars
      Yes the pretzels have gluten but you can find gluten free varieties pretty easily that taste just as good as regular pretzels and substitute them!

  45. OMG OMG OMG…..these are sooo good. Made first batch with dark chocolate, family liked but wanted me to try with milk chocolate. So much better! Thanks for sharing this.

    1. 5 stars
      Made these for my coworkers as a Friday treat. They looked like a mess but they tasted AWESOME! I made them with milk chocolate and used the freezer to set them quicker. They are verrry addicting.

  46. I attempted to make this recipe again. Is there a secret to getting the caramel to pour better over the pretzels? Mine was thick and I had to spread it with a spatula and disturbed the pretzels. 🙁

  47. Your blog is called taste better from scratch. surprise to find the caramel is store bought. I was looking forward to real caramel made from scratch.

    1. 5 stars
      Why do people have to be so bitchy? This recipe is fabulous and , for those of us busy working mom losers who choose not to make caramel from scratch, perfection.

  48. Wait, wait, wait — these are NO bake? I think I died and went to heaven — all my favorite things in one tasty treat.

    Will be rushing out to buy the ingredients for these today. Thanks!! You made my weekend 🙂

    1. Hi Desiree, that totally depends on your climate and temperature. If you live in a dry climate they should be fine at room temp.

  49. I’d like to make these for my church ladies retreat. Appromately how many servings do you get out of this recipe? Thank you for sharing.

  50. Wow these are fantastic! Since I am gluten free, I modified this just a touch, using Glutino pretzel twists. I also used Hickory smoked sea salt which added a slight smokey flavor. Thank you for sharing this recipe!

    1. Thank you for trying with Gluten free pretzels!! My husband has Celiac disease- and finding some Christmas treats for him can be somewhat challenging… def giving this a shot!

  51. How long do these keep, specially if kept in the fridge? I would like to makes these tomorrow for a friend’s birthday on Wednesday (so 4 days), do you think this will work?

    1. Hi Pam, caramel sauce wont work because it’s too soft/runny. It wont set up. It needs to be melted caramel candies, or the caramels bits 🙂

      1. hi I have made these with homemade caramel which was a lot runnier than the candy ones, but they did set really well, and had a nice crunch to them.

    1. I haven’t tried freezing these. I’m not sure how the pretzel would hold up… but let me know if you try it 🙂

    1. I do store mine in the fridge–but I’m also in a very warm and humid climate…It keeps really well in the fridge!

  52. Trying this recipe tonight. Having trouble getting the caramel on. Melted in a measuring cup and drizzle/pouring on the pretzels. Mine looks like a hot mess too, but I’m sure it will still taste yummy! Thanks for sharing!

  53. Trying this recipe tonight. Having trouble getting the caramel on. Melted in a measuring cup and drizzle/pouring on the pretzels. Mine looks like a hot mess too, but I’m sure it will still taste yummy! Thanks for sharing!

  54. Kudos on how awesome yours looks! Mine looks like a hot mess, but I know it’s going to taste delicious! Thanks for an easy recipe.

    1. 5 stars
      Usually it’s the “Hot Mess” that tastes the best! That’s usually the first thing that I grab at a party or gathering is the mess because when it’s prim and proper most people forget something important and it’s usually the the thing that makes it taste good. LOL!

  55. There’s just little ole me and a little leftover is okay but some things are just better the first time. So, do you have any recipes for 1 or 2 persons?

    1. Hi Sandy, I would just cut this recipe in half! Most of my recipes serve 4 people and can easily be cut in half to make just 2 servings.

  56. I LOVED this! This recipe is simple and quick to put together. I love the combination of chocolate, caramel, and pretzels. I actually didn’t use a full 8 ounces of pretzels. I felt my chocolate was sufficiently covered with pretzels. I don’t like melting chocolate without a little shortening or peanut butter in it, so I DID end up adding 2 Tbsp creamy peanut butter to the 8 ounces of chocolate, and then 1 Tbsp for the chocolate drizzle on top. This is a keeper! My family loved this. Thanks for sharing the recipe!

    1. One more thing… I poured the caramel sauce into a Ziploc baggie, and cut off the corner of the bag to drizzle it over the pretzels. I felt doing it in this way helped spread the caramel over the bark more evenly.