When the freezer is void of those caramel, coconut, shortbread, and chocolate Girl Scout cookies, it’s time to make some Homemade Samoa Bars!

I’m a sucker for any scout or brownie who stops by to sell their cookies. It’s a must to have a stash of Samoa Cookies, Thin Mints, and Tagalongs in our freezer. But they eventually get eaten, and those cravings must be fulfilled!

Homemade samoa bars stacked on a white plate.

Why You Must Make

  • If you’re a fan of Girl Scout Somoa Cookies, these bars will give you your fix when they’re not available.
  • Coconut, caramel, and chocolate are a delicious trio!!
  • My book club gave this Samoa cookie recipe rave reviews and you will, too.

Reader Endorsement

From the comments: These are amazing. I’m making a third batch this week and they keep disappearing!

Ingredient Notes:

  • Kitchen Staples – Flour, Sugar, Butter, Vegetable Oil
  • Shredded Coconut – Toasted at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, stirring every 4-5 minutes. This will refresh the flavor and add a touch of color.
  • Caramels – Using store-bought caramels makes it easy! I prefer Werther’s Original Soft Caramels over Kraft.
  • Semisweet Chocolate Chips – I keep Ghirardelli brand chocolate chips on hand, but Hershey’s works well, too.
Homemade samoa bars on a round plate with shreds of coconut.

Recipe Tips

There’s nothing too difficult about making these Samoa bars, but some of the steps are optional for an easier recipe.

  • I like making the crust in a food processor, then pressing the crumbs into the bottom of the baking pan. If you don’t own one, use softened butter and a handheld mixer. The result will be more of a dough that easily presses into a crust.
  • I prefer the softer Werther’s Original Caramels. If you can’t find them, use Kraft caramels instead, but you may want to add another tablespoon of water when you melt them as they are much firmer.
  • Toasting the coconut is also optional. Sweetened angel flake coconut is quite moist and the toasting dries it out along with bringing out some of the natural oils and flavor. Beware that it can easily get too dark, so watch carefully when toasting.
  • The dipping of the bars in chocolate pays homage to the Samoa cookies which have both chocolate lines across the top and a chocolate-covered cookie base.
  • I dipped about 4 but then decided the drizzle would be enough for me. If you want an authentic Samoa copycat, you’ll want to dip!
  • PRO-Tip: If you don’t own piping equipment, put the melted chocolate into a quart Ziploc bag, cut a small opening on one corner, and squeeze the bag while moving it back and forth to garnish.
  • Make sure to place them on a parchment-lined baking sheet after dipping and let them cool completely before moving so the chocolate doesn’t stick to the paper.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Are Somoas?

Samoas are a Girl Scout cookie also known by the name Caramel deLites depending upon the bakery from which they originate. They differ slightly in shape, kind of chocolate, and amount of caramel, but they have the same basic components.

Why Are They Called Samoas?

No one seems to know why these coconut, caramel cookies are called Samoas, but some surmise that due to the coconut, the tropical Samoan islands in the South Pacific may have been an influence.

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Homemade Samoa Bars on a round white plate

Homemade Samoa Bars Recipe

Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Yield 16 bars

Decadent bar cookie with a shortbread crust, gooey caramel and coconut topping and chocolate drizzle like the famous Girl Scout Samoa Cookies.


Cookie Base:

  • 1 cup flour
  • ⅓ cup sugar
  • ½ cup butter (one stick), cut into small pieces


  • 2 cups shredded coconut, toasted at 350 degrees for 15 minutes, stirring every 4-5 minutes
  • 8 ounces caramels (I used an 8.1 bag of Werther's Original Soft Caramels unwrapped)
  • 1-2 tablespoon water (use 2 tablespoons if you use Kraft caramels instead of Werther's)
  • 2 tablespoons butter


  • 8 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil


  1. Preheat oven to 350º. Lightly grease a 9 × 9-inch baking pan, or line it with parchment paper or non-stick foil.
  2. Process flour, sugar, and butter in a food processor until it forms fine crumbs. Pour the crumbs into the prepared pan and press into an even layer.
  3. Bake for 15 minutes, until the base is set and the edges are lightly browned. Cool completely on a wire rack before topping.
  4. Place the caramels in a  microwave-safe bowl with the water and butter, starting and stopping to stir every 30 seconds. When smooth, fold in 1 ½ cups of the toasted coconut with a spatula.
  5. Put spoonfuls of the topping all over the shortbread base. Using an offset spatula, spread the topping into an even layer. Sprinkle with the remaining coconut and gently press into bars. Let topping set until cooled.
  6. Use the foil or parchment to assist in moving the bars to a cutting board. Cut bars into 16 squares. In a medium bowl, gently melt together the chocolate chips and oil in the microwave. Stop to stir frequently until almost completely melted. Let the residual heat finish the melting process.
  7. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Remove less than half the chocolate to a piping bag or a quart Ziploc bag for the final drizzle, and set aside.
  8. Dip the bottoms of the bars into the chocolate, removing excess on the side of the bowl, then place on the baking sheet to firm up. Repeat with all bars.
  9. Drizzle each bar with the remaining chocolate using a piping bag or Ziploc bag with the corner snipped off.
  10. Allow chocolate to cool and firm up before serving.


* Use only half the chocolate dip and drizzle ingredients if you decide to only use the drizzle and not dip the bottoms in chocolate.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 bar cookie

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 284Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 10gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 20mgSodium: 124mgCarbohydrates: 36gFiber: 2gSugar: 25gProtein: 2g


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