Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread with Coffee & Cashew Caramel
Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread with a decadent, dark, coffee & cashew caramel layer. A luxury twist on a classic Millionaire’s shortbread or Caramel slice depending on where you come from!
Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread with Coffee & Cashew Caramel
As lovely as a crumbly, buttery shortbread wedge with a cup of tea is, sometimes you just want something a bit more fancy. Millionaire’s shortbread or Caramel Slice, takes the traditional shortbread and elevates it from everyday tea time treat to decadent dessert. A luxury twist on a classic shortbread; perfect to treat your loved ones this Valentines Day. The dairy free caramel is infused with salted cashews, coffee and a hint of lemon for a darker, slightly savoury, caramel. Finally, a layer of dark chocolate and scattering of crushed cashews & lemon zest is added. This is definitely the grown up sibling of a traditional sweet Millionaires shortbread!
Ingredients for Millionaire’s Shortbread
As with all good Millionaire’s Shortbread, there are a good few ingredients for this recipe. Its not an everyday recipe, but its definitely worth the effort and whoever you decide to share it with (if you do) is very, very lucky!
Gluten Free, Vegan Shortbread
For this recipe you will need one quantity of my Easy Vegan Shortbread, its a great little bake that only has 3 ingredients and is absolutely delicious on its own. The original post even has instructions for a gluten free shortbread. Either way, it makes the perfect base for this Millionaire’s Shortbread as it is sturdy and holds up well to being cut – although as you can see from the pictures, it does still have some of that crumble that you want from shortbread.
Dairy Free Caramel with Cashew & Coffee
The caramel uses vegan condensed milk.
Honestly, there are a few around!
And yes, you could make your own but do you really want to? You’ll have to wait even longer for a slice of this beautiful bake. I have used the Carnation Vegan Condensed Milk, which is oat & rice based. But frustratingly, has a may contain milk warning on it, so not dairy free. There is a lovely coconut based one by Nature’s charm that is dairy, gluten, nut & soy free; so a good choice if you are catering for those allergies. The affiliate link in the recipe ingredients takes you to Vegan Kind Supermarket where there is often more than one choice, or you can currently find the Carnation version in most supermarkets.
The actual recipe for the caramel layer is adapted from Carnation’s own, with a few tweaks and some yummy additions to elevate it into a dark, almost bitter caramel that goes so well with an espresso after dinner. The addition of cashews gives a nice, creamy, crunch to the caramel & the lemon zest just makes it a little bit brighter
Do you need a sugar thermometer to make caramel?
The ingredients need to be heated to 116c, so the original recipe recommends using a sugar thermometer, and while it is not essential, it will help a lot. They are fairly cheap to pick up either online or in the supermarkets.
But don’t panic – if you don’t have one you just are looking for the mixture to thicken. It takes around 5 minutes and you will see the bubbly caramel rise up the pan, then fall back again and darken considerably in colour as it nears the right temperature.
How to cut Dairy Free Caramel Slice neatly
Ok so if you look at the pictures, you can see I didn’t quite manage to cut the Shortbread into beautiful squares, partly because the chocolate wasn’t thick enough and partly because my knife wasn’t sharp enough but mostly because I forgot I’d heated the knife on the gas hob and burnt my hand.
You definitely need to wait until the caramel is completely set and I would even go as far as to suggest putting the Millionaire’s Shortbread in the freezer for a short time before slicing. Then (carefully!) use a heated & sharp knife to slice the chocolate & caramel layer. Then cut straight down through the shortbread.
I have to honest, with the addition of the crushed cashews in the caramel & sprinkled on top it is going to be hard to get the perfect slice. But if you have a little more patience than I do, and you are not rushing to get it cut to take photos before the rains rolls in, I reckon you will be ok!
Storing Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread
It will store in an airtight container for a good few days, although I have noticed the caramel layer slowly becoming more grainy as it sits. You don’t lose anything in taste, infact the longer you leave it, the more the lemon infuses and coffee flavour develops. This is definitely not your average sickly, sweet Millionaire’s Shortbread Square!
A quick nose on google suggests that some people have found you can freeze it successfully for a few months. I really wouldn’t, I can’t see how you wouldn’t lose a little texture and run the risk of soggy shortbread. And lets face it who wants soggy shortbread!!
So there you have it, a grown up Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread with a dark caramel infused with coffee & lemon and with a hidden crunchy cashew surprise!
Pin Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread for Later
Recipe for Vegan Millionaire’s Shortbread
Vegan Millionaires Shortbread with Coffee & Cashew Caramel
For the Shortbread
- 250 g Self Raising Flour
- 125 g Dairy Free Baking Block or Vegan Butter
- 50 g Granulated Sugar
For the Caramel
- 100 g Dark Chocolate
- 1 Whole Lemon (Zest)
- Salted Cashews (Rest of 125g)
- Preheat the oven to 160C (fan) and grease & line the cake tin.
- In the large mixing bowl, beat the butter until creamed & pale.
- Add the sugar and beat again until thoroughly combined.
- Very gently mix the flour in using a fork until you end up with fine breadcrumbs.
- Tip the breadcrumbs into the cake tin and press down firmly. Now bake at 160C for around 50minutes.
- Set aside until cool completely while caramel cooks.
Coffee & Cashew Caramel
- Place the vegan condensed milk, sugar and butter alternative into a heavy bottomed saucepan and gently heat until all the ingredients have melted together.
- Mix the coffee, dairy free milk and flour together into a paste and pour into the saucepan.
- Turn up the heat and boil until mixture reaches 116c. It will take around 5 minutes but could be more or less. You definitely need to keep an eye, stir all the time and be careful to keep small people out of the way as the mixture is so hot.
- Leave to cool slightly before stirring in half the crushed cashews and the zest of one lemon. then set aside for about 30minutes to thicken a little.
Assemble the Shortbread
- Once the shortbread is cold pour the cooled caramel over the top. Spread into an even layer and set aside while you melt the chocolate.
- Melt the chocolate and spread evenly over the caramel. Sprinkle on the cashews & more lemon zest.
- Leave in the fridge to set for about 4 hours or ideally overnight.
- Slice using a hot, sharp knife and enjoy! Store in an airtight container.