Cashew Potato Bars

From by Shashi Charles
Cashew Potato Bars

Cashew Potato Bars Photo

Growing up in Sri Lanka, one of my favorite sweet “treat-snacks” was my mom’s potato toffee. Now, I refer to it as a “treat-snack” as it was a snack, but it was one of those snacks that was a special treat – in other words, it was no apple!

My mom would mix sugar, condensed milk, butter, potatoes, and vanilla extract together, wave her magic wand, and voila! We had hardened squares of sweet, creamy, delicious, potato toffee before us.

My mom always made sure to cut the squares no larger than an inch and a half or so as that’s all that was needed to satisfy us kids, and adults, alike.

Cashew Potato Bars Picture

For the past couple of years or so, I have been trying to adapt my mom’s recipe so that I could enjoy a lactose-free, lower sugar, version of that potato toffee. And, to date, I have been failing miserably – or so I thought.

This batch you see here is nothing like traditional, Sri Lankan potato toffee. While it could be touted a failure, it sure was one tasty failure. Tasty enough that I figured I needed to share it with y’all.

While so many of my kitchen failures tend to be total disasters (like a cake with salt instead of sugar-yikes!), every now and then, a supposed disaster turns into something wonderful.

Cashew Potato Bars Image

These bars are soft, dense, creamy, and simply blissful! I used sweetened coconut condensed milk instead of regular condensed milk and used a lot less sugar.

The normal process of making these is to heat the potatoes, condensed milk, sugar and butter over a stovetop, and as soon as the mixture begins to harden some, to take it off and spoon it onto a parchment lined tray where it is left to cool before being cut up.

I, however, didn’t find that my mixture was hardening – maybe it was because I used too little coconut sugar. When the mixture wouldn’t harden, I let it cool into a gloppy mess and then added an egg to it and baked it for 15 minutes and voila – these bars were born!


Cashew Potato Bars Recipe



  • 2 potatoes, boiled and mashed
  • 1 can condensed coconut milk
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom
  • 3 tablespoons coconut sugar
  • 3 tablespoons chopped cashews
  • 1 egg


  1. Place condensed milk, potatoes, vanilla, cardamom, coconut sugar in a saucepan and bring to a boil, reduce to a low flame and let cook uncovered for about 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Remove from heat and let mixture cool.
  3. Add in the cashew and egg, mixing well to combine.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  5. Bake in a parchment lined baking tray for 15 minutes.
  6. Let cool, slice and enjoy.