Gluten-Free Hello Dolly Cookies

Yes, yes, yesterday I was all about how to keep the pounds off during the holiday season and then I went and baked some Hello Dolly Bars. But I do have a good excuse. First, I bake for a bi-monthly Tea our local Hadassah group hosts for cancer patients and their caregivers at Stamford Hospital, so these will NOT wind up in my freezer where they will tempt me (or Ed). Second, I needed to bake some gluten-free cookies and experimented with these well-known bar cookies. Instead of using graham crackers I substituted almond meal and it worked out really well. I confess — I did taste! But as I mentioned yesterday, just a taste, not two or three pieces. I have no idea why these are called Hello Dolly Bars. I know people who call them Magic Bars or 7-Layer Bars. Some people have said the name has something to do with the Broadway musical, “Hello Dolly,” which opened in 1964, but recipes for similar cookies were around before then, so I don’t think so. You can use this recipe with the usual graham cracker crumbs (1-1/2 cups instead of the 2 cups of almond meal). I have also made them with chocolate cookie crumbs. Also, I use almonds because my daughter is allergic to walnuts and pecans, but you can use those. Or cashews. Gluten-Free Hello Dolly Cookies 2 cups very finely ground almonds or almond meal 1/2 cup melted butter 1 teaspoon cinnamon 1 cup chopped nuts 1 cup chocolate chips 1-1/3 cups packaged coconut shreds 14-15 ounce can condensed milk Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix the ground almonds and melted butter together and press into the bottom of a 9”x13” baking pan. Sprinkle the surface with the cinnamon. Scatter the nuts and chocolate chips evenly on top. Scatter the coconut evenly on top. Pour the milk gradually over the entire surface to evenly cover as much as possible. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool in the pan. Cut into 36 bars. Makes 36

Yes, yes, yesterday I was all about how to keep the pounds off during the holiday season and then I went and baked some Hello Dolly Bars.

But I do have a good excuse. First, I bake for a bi-monthly Tea our local Hadassah group hosts for cancer patients and their caregivers at Stamford Hospital, so these will NOT wind up in my freezer where they will tempt me (or Ed).

Second, I needed to bake some gluten-free cookies and experimented with these well-known bar cookies. Instead of using graham crackers I substituted almond meal and it worked out really well.

I confess — I did taste! But as I mentioned yesterday, just a taste, not two or three pieces.

I have no idea why these are called Hello Dolly Bars. I know people who call them Magic Bars or 7-Layer Bars. Some people have said the name has something to do with the Broadway musical, “Hello Dolly,” which opened in 1964, but recipes for similar cookies were around before then, so I don’t think so.

You can use this recipe with the usual graham cracker crumbs (1-1/2 cups instead of the 2 cups of almond meal). I have also made them with chocolate cookie crumbs. Also, I use almonds because my daughter is allergic to walnuts and pecans, but you can use those. Or cashews.


Gluten-Free Hello Dolly Cookies

2 cups very finely ground almonds or almond meal

1/2 cup melted butter

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 cup chopped nuts

1 cup chocolate chips

1-1/3 cups packaged coconut shreds

14-15 ounce can condensed milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix the ground almonds and melted butter together and press into the bottom of a 9”x13” baking pan. Sprinkle the surface with the cinnamon. Scatter the nuts and chocolate chips evenly on top. Scatter the coconut evenly on top. Pour the milk gradually over the entire surface to evenly cover as much as possible. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool in the pan. Cut into 36 bars. Makes 36