Creamy Toasted Coconut Lime Bars are like little key lime pies as a fun dessert bar! Tart and tangy lime, sweet shredded coconut and a buttery shortbread crust with macadamia nuts and lime zest make this tropical delight the perfect treat for summer cookouts, bridal and baby showers and your favorite holidays.
Let’s celebrate with the cool, creamy taste of the tropics! These coconut lime bars are so tart and refreshing, they’re like little vacation bites every time you serve them!
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Sweetened condensed milk makes the lime coconut filling easy to make and completely irresistible all at the same time! All that citrusy tartness is perfectly balanced by the easy shortbread crust which has a bit of tropical flair on its own with addition of crushed macadamia nuts and lime zest.
Are Coconut Lime Bars Gooey?
Yes and no. And you’re going to love it! The texture of these dessert bars is kind of like a silky key lime or coconut pie. The filling is firm enough to cut into squares and eat like a brownie, yet creamy enough to be absolutely indulgent!
Coconut Lime Bar Ingredients
- lime juice and zest
- sweetened flake coconut
- salted macadamia nuts
- sweetened condensed milk
- light brown sugar
- vanilla extract
How to Make the Best Coconut Lime Bars
Easy Shortbread Crust. Simply pulse flour, macadamia nuts, brown sugar and lime zest until nuts are coarsely ground. Add butter and pulse again until mixture is like wet sand. Press into bottom of 9×9 pan lined with parchment paper and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and set like a soft cookie.
Coconut Lime Filling. While the crust is baking, whisk together all the filling ingredients, except ½ cup coconut and ½ the lime zest. Toast the ½ cup of coconut and combine with zest for topping.
Bake & Cool. Pour filling over warm crust. Sprinkle topping on. Bake again for 15-20 minutes. Then cool completely before slicing and serving. Garnish with extra lime slices, if you like!
Tips for the Best Coconut Lime Bars
Why did my lime bars not set up? If the crust is not thoroughly done, the bars will not set properly. Additionally, if the bars are not completely cooled, the filling will not fully set. Chilling the coconut lime bars for at least an hour before serving is always a good idea!
How do I cleanly cut lime bars? To easily cut coconut lime bars into neat squares, make sure the filling has had a chance to firmly set up. Using a long, clean knife, begin your slice by starting at the tip of the knife and slowing pressing down to the handle in a single rocking motion. Do not drag the knife. If a second cut needs to be made pick up the knife and start the motion again. Clean the knife with warm water and wipe dry between each slice.
Can I use bottled lime juice? In a pinch, yes. But freshly squeezed lime juice has more intense flavor and will make better tasting bars.
How to Store and Freeze Lime Bars
Store covered Coconut Lime Bars in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. To stack bars in a plastic container for storage, simply place parchment paper between the layers to keep them from sticking together. A layer of parchment paper can even be placed across the top layer to keep the container lid or plastic wrap from sticking to your dessert bars.
Use the same method to stack and freeze the bars. They can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months.
Other Dessert Bar Recipes You’ll Love
More Refreshing Citrus Desserts
- Classic Lemon Drop Crinkle Cookies
- Orange Creamsicle Poke Cake
- Dreamy Coconut Pineapple Trifle
- Lemon Supreme Monkey Bread
Toasted Coconut Lime Bars
- parchment paper
Easy Shortbread Crust
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- ½ cup salted macadamia nuts, heaping
- ⅓ cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon lime zest (about 1 lime)
- 1.5 sticks butter, sliced into tablespoon-sized pats
Toasted Coconut Lime Filling
- 14 ounces sweetened condensed milk
- ⅓ cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 3-4 small limes- see notes)
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2.5 cups sweetened flaked coconut (divided into 2 cups & ½ cup)
- 1 tablespoon lime zest
- 3 large eggs, beaten
- Preheat oven to 350° Fahrenheit. Line a 9×9 baking pan with parchment paper.
- In a food processor, pulse flour, macadamia nuts, brown sugar and lime zest until nuts are coarsely ground. Add butter and pulse again until mixture is like wet sand. Press mixture evenly into bottom of lined 9×9 pan and bake for 15-20 minutes or until crust is golden brown and set like a soft cookie.
- While crust is baking, in a large bowl, whisk together condensed milk, lime juice, vanilla extract. Whisk in beaten eggs, then fold in 2 cups flaked coconut and ½ of the lime zest. Set aside. Toast the remaining ½ cup coconut.
- Pour coconut lime filling over warm crust. Top with toasted coconut and remaining lime zest. Gently press into filling. Bake again for another 15-20 minutes or until filling is set. Remove from oven and allow to cool. Filling will continue to set as the dessert cools.
- Slice into squares and serve.