Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Apricot Oat Bars

Oh boy are these babies good.  I could eat them for breakfast.  I could eat them for dessert.  I could eat them in a box.  I could eat them with a fox.  I could eat them standing in my kitchen in my pajamas wearing a facial mask and freshly pedicured toes... or something more normal.   
These bars are great for two reasons:  1. They're easy to assemble and 2. they're SUPER customizable. Oh and also, they taste amazing.  So three reasons.  It's a trifecta, if you will.  A delicious trifecta.  
What I was particularly drawn to with this recipe was the melted butter.  Aside from obvious reasons, melted butter is appealing because it's so easy to work with.  It acts like glue for the crust and all you need is one bowl and a wooden spoon.  And when it's 95 degrees out, I'd like to do as little work as possible.     
And can we talk about the endless options with this recipe?  Raspberry maybe?  Blackberry?  Blueberry?  Triple berry?  Berry berry?  Boo berry?  I'm just saying words at this point.  Just go with it.    

Here's the recipe!


  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 packed cup light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 3/4 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 cup sliced almonds
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 egg, at room temperature, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Filling
    • 1 1/4 cups apricot jam or preserves 
    • 8 dried apricots (about 1/3 cup), chopped 
    • 1 Tbsp water (optional)

    1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9 by 13 by 2-inch metal pan with vegetable oil cooking spray. 
    2.  Prepare the filling in a small bowl.  Mix together the jam and the apricots.  If the jam needs help to loosen, add the water. Set aside.
    3.  In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt and baking soda. Stir in the oats and almonds to combine. Add the butter, egg and vanilla and stir until all dry ingredients are moistened.
    4.  Lightly press half of the crust mixture onto the bottom of the prepared pan to make an even layer. Using a spatula, spread the filling over the crust.  Cover the filling with the remaining crust mixture and gently press to flatten. Bake 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown.  Allow to cool completely before cutting into bars.  


    Recipe adapted from Giada De Laurentiis

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