Rich and decadent layers of shortbread, caramel, and chocolate make this irresistible millionaire shortbread. Learn how to make each indulgent layer in this easy-to-follow recipe. With all of the flavor of a Twix bar, only better, these shortbread cookies are sure to please!

A stack of Millionaire's shortbread bars on a piece of parchment paper with the top bar missing a bite and a jug of milk in the back.

This millionaire shortbread recipe is actually very similar to the Twix tart that I made a while ago – tastes just like the candy bar! If you like Twix, you’ll love these bars!

Usually, a dessert that involves multiple components will throw off a little red flag to most folks as too complicated or time-consuming. I was pleasantly surprised at how relatively easy and quick these bars were to make. From start to finish, they only took a little over an hour, which is awesome when you’re assembling three layers!

What is Millionaire Shortbread?

Made with layers of shortbread crust, gooey caramel, and a thick chocolate ganache, many people believe it got the name millionaire shortbread because it is so rich.

This Scottish dessert was originally referred to as caramel shortbread but the name millionaire shortbread had a better ring to it and stuck.

Top down photo of shortbread bars on a cooling rack topped with parchment paper and a glass of milk in the top right corner.

What You’ll Need

This decadent dessert breaks down into 3 main parts, the tender shortbread crust, the thick and gooey caramel, and the rich chocolate ganache.

Ingredients for the Shortbread Crust

The ingredients for the shortbread crust in bowls with purple labels naming each ingredient.
  • Flour: I used an all-purpose flour to give structure to the shortbread.
  • Brown Sugar: To sweeten while also giving a chewy finish to the crust.
  • Cornstarch: Helps keep the crust soft.
  • Salt: For flavor.
  • Water: Ice water binds the dough together.
  • Butter: Gives flavor to the crust and also helps make it flaky.
  • Egg Yolk: Binds the crust together while also giving structure and flavor.

Ingredients for the Caramel Filling

Ingredients for the caramel filling with labels for each ingredient in purple.
  • Sweetened condensed milk: Keeps the cramel filling sweet and rich.
  • Brown sugar: The molasses in brown sugar gives this caramel a deeper flavor.
  • Unsalted butter: Prevents the caramel from fully hardening, giving it a gooey finish.
  • Lyle’s Golden Syrup: Adds a rich flavor to the caramel filling.
  • Vanilla + Salt: Flavor, flavor, flavor.

Ingredients for Chocolate Ganache

  • Chocolate: Use a semi-sweet chocolate that was finely chopped, which makes it easier for melting.
  • Heavy Cream: Only heavy cream allows the ganache to set properly.

How to Make Millionaire Shortbread

Let’s discuss how to make each layer of this divine dessert.

Step #1: Make the Shortbread Crust

  • Preheat the oven to 350°F
  • Prepare the baking pan: Line a 9-inch square pan with aluminum foil, allowing at least an inch over-hang on all sides. Spray with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
  • Whisk dry ingredients (#1) : In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar, cornstarch and salt, making sure there are no lumps of brown sugar remaining.
  • Cut in the butter (#2): Add the butter and cut into the flour mixture using a pastry blender or two knives until a coarse meal forms.
Two side by side photos of the steps for making the crust.
  • Bind dough together (#3-4) : Add the ice water and egg yolk and blend with a fork until moist clumps form.
  • Transfer to pan (#5) : Dump the dough into the prepared pan and press into an even layer.
  • Bake until golden brown, about 20 mintues.
Three side by side photos of adding the egg yolk on the left, binding the crust in the middle, and pressing the crust into the pan on the right.

Step #2: Prepare Caramel Filling

  • Melt ingredients together (#6): Whisk the sweetened condensed milk, brown sugar, butter, golden syrup, and salt together in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, the butter melts, and the mixture comes to a boil.
  • Cook to thicken: Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan and boil, whisking constantly, until the caramel is thick and the temperature registers 225°F, about 6 minutes.
  • Add vanilla and spread on bars (#7): Quickly whisk in the vanilla extract and pour the caramel over the prepared crust; cool for about 15 minutes, or until the caramel is set.
Two side by side photos of the steps for making the caramel sauce with the melting of the sauce in the pan on the left and pouring the sauce on the shortbread on the right.

Step 3: Make Chocolate Ganache

  • Melt chocolate and cream (#8-#9): Place chocolate and cream in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second intervals on 50% power, stirring between each until the chocolate is melted and smooth.
  • Pour the ganache on top (#10): Spread the chocolate over the caramel layer.
  • Cool to set (#11): Refrigerate bars until the chocolate is set, at least 1 hour.
  • Cut and enjoy: Lift the bars out of the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into even squares and serve.
Two side by side photos of how to make the chocolate ganache with the unmelted ganache on the left and the melted ganache on the right.
Two side by side photos of topping the millionaire's shortbread with the ganache poured on the left and the ganache spread over the bars on the right.

Additional Topping Ideas

Chocolate, caramel, and cookie are truly the ultimate trifecta! If you are looking to level up your millionaire shortbread here are a few additional toppings to try.

  • Peanut Butter: You can either swirl the peanut butter in with the chocolate ganache or make a layer of peanut butter between the caramel and the ganache.
  • Marshmallow Cream: Spread marshamllow cream over the shortbread before pouring the caramel on top for a s’mores-like twist to the bars.
  • Chopped Nuts: Mix in your favorite chopped nut like peanut, pecan, or almond in with the chocolate ganache before pouring over the caramel.
  • Crumbled Heath bar: Sprinkle a layer of crumbled Heath bar over the chocolate ganache.
  • Sprinkles: Add a healthy topping of rainbow sprinkles over the chocolate ganache.
A wire cooling rack with a sheet of parchment paper and 16 cut squares of Millionaire's shortbread with a towel to the left and a jar of milk to the top right.

Storing, Freezing, and Shelf-Life

  • Storing: Keep millionaire shortbread bars stores in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Freezing: For longer storage, I suggest freezing. Store the bars pre-sliced in a freezer-safe, air-tight container for up to 3 months.
  • Shelf-Life: These delicious shortbread cookie bars will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or up to 3 months in the freezer.

Millionaire Shortbread FAQs

Why do you poke holes in the shortbread?

Holes are typically poked into shortbread cookies to help evenly bake the dough. The shortbread layer on this millionaire shortbread evenly bakes and does not need holes poked before baking.

What is the difference between millionaire and billionaire shortbread?

Billionaire shortbread takes this layered cookie up a notch and adds a layer of chocolate chip cookie dough to the bars.

Try These Delicious Desserts Next

Millionaire bars cut into squares on parchment paper with one stacked on another in the front.

These millionaire bars feature layers of tender shortbread, gooey homemade caramel, and a thick chocolate ganache. Decadent and absolutely divine, these shortbread bars are worthy of a spot in your “tried and true” recipe box!

If you make this recipe and love it, remember to stop back and give it a 5-star rating – it helps others find the recipe! ❤️️

A stack of three millionaire's shortbread bars on parchment paper with the top one missing a bite.

Millionaire’s Shortbread

Rich and decadent, these Millionaire Shortbread bars feature layers of shortbread cookie, gooey caramel, and thick chocolate ganache for the ultimate dessert.
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Ingredients

For the Crust:

  • 1 cup (125 g) all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup (55 g) dark brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoon (0.25 teaspoon) salt
  • ½ cup (113.5 g) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon ice water
  • 1 egg yolk

For the Caramel:

  • 14 ounce (396.89 ml) can sweetened condensed milk
  • ½ cup (110 g) dark brown sugar
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons Lyle’s Golden Syrup, or dark corn syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Pinch of salt

For the Ganache Topping:

  • 6 ounces (170.1 g) semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream

Instructions 

  • Make the Crust: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 9-inch square pan with aluminum foil, allowing at least an inch overhang on all sides. Spray with nonstick cooking spray).
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, brown sugar, cornstarch and salt, making sure there are no lumps of brown sugar remaining. Add the butter and cut into the flour mixture using a pastry blender or two knives until a coarse meal forms. Add the ice water and egg yolk and blend with a fork until moist clumps form. Dump the dough into the prepared pan and press into an even layer. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
  • Make the Caramel: Whisk the sweetened condensed milk, brown sugar, butter, golden syrup and salt together in a medium saucepan over medium heat until the sugar dissolves, the butter melts and the mixture comes to a boil. Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan and boil, whisking constantly, until the caramel is thick and the temperature registers 225 degrees F, about 6 minutes. Quickly whisk in the vanilla extract and pour the caramel over the prepared crust; cool for about 15 minutes, or until the caramel is set.
  • For Chocolate Ganache: Place the chocolate and cream in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave in 30 second intervals on 50% power, stirring between each, until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Spread the chocolate over the caramel layer. Refrigerate the bars until the chocolate is set, at least 1 hour.
  • Lift the bars out of the pan and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into squares and serve. Leftovers should be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Notes

  • Storing: Keep millionaire shortbread bars stores in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • Freezing: For longer storage, I suggest freezing. Store the bars pre-sliced in a freezer-safe, air-tight container for up to 3 months.
  • Shelf-Life: These delicious shortbread cookie bars will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator or up to 3 months in the freezer.
Nutritional values are based on one serving
Calories: 321kcal, Carbohydrates: 37g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 17g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Cholesterol: 51mg, Sodium: 76mg, Potassium: 174mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 29g, Vitamin A: 440IU, Vitamin C: 0.7mg, Calcium: 93mg, Iron: 1.2mg

Did you make this recipe?

Leave a review below, then snap a picture and tag @thebrowneyedbaker on Instagram so I can see it!

Photography by Dee Frances.