When it becomes seasonally appropriate I immediately start cooking and baking comfort foods. I cannot wait until it’s cool enough to cook a pot roast! This one. It’s beyond terrific. But it’s 85 in Houston today, so even though we are technically in the season of fall, it doesn’t feel like it here and the thought of having the oven on makes me uncomfortable. I know I shouldn’t complain because it’s not totally abnormal, this is what you get in Texas (certain parts of Texas at least…I miss you, Amarillo). But soon enough we’ll have highs in the 50s and I’ll be able to wear jeans without sweating and I’ll be able to make these for a party where everyone is in boots and scarves and sipping hot chocolate and frolicking in the leaves.
These bars are simply perfect with their buttery shortbread crust, sweet apple filling and crunchy oat topping. The ingredient list is basic and they aren’t at all difficult. Served with some sweetened whipped cream or vanilla ice cream this is my idea of the perfect dessert. If you have an apple pie craving but don’t have the time to make one, these are a perfect substitute. I’ve used “perfect” three times so far. And they truly are wonderful. I want one right now.
I tried them a second time with cherry filling and made a half batch. Half of them fell apart on their way from pan to plate, so I need to do some tinkering with baking time and some amounts. But they were delicious and everyone who tried them sang their praises. With the crust and topping you could use any kind of fruit filling, but the apple is nice for this time of year. Please share if you try out anything spectacular! Enjoy.
Apple Pie Bars
From More from Magnolia
- 1 cup unsalted butter, cut into small pieces and softened slightly
- 1 pinch of salt
- 2 cups flour
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 cup packed brown sugar
- 2/3 cup old fashioned rolled oats + 3 tablespoons
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, cut into small pieces, softened slightly
- 1 can (21 ounces) apple pie filling
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Make the crust: Combine the butter, flour and salt in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer until crumbly and well combined. (You can do this with a pastry blender as well.) Pat the dough into the bottom of a 9×13 inch pan so that it is even and firmly packed. Bake for 20 minutes, remove from the oven, and allow to cool for at least 30 minutes.
- Make the topping: In the same bowl, mix together the flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon and salt. Use a pastry blender to cut in the butter until mixture is crumbly and well combined, use your hands if necessary. Set aside while the crust cools.
- Place the apples on top of the cooled crust, spacing them evenly and leaving about 1/4 inch edge around. Spread any remaining sauce from the can evenly over the apples. Gently spread the crumb topping evenly over the apples, then sprinkle with the remaining 3 tablespoons of oats.
- Bake for 45 minutes, remove from the oven and allow to cool before cutting into squares.