Yep, I still had more apples left after the apple pie cake, the apple dumplings batch 1 and 2, and just from eating apples! I wanted to make something easy again, yet use a lot of apples. So I was very happy to come across this recipe for apple pie BARS! Tastes like the inside of an apple pie, but with the shortbread crust of a bar cookie, and a little extra vanilla almond glaze on top. Yum…
I found this recipe from Lovin’ From The Oven and changed a few things.
Apple Pie Bars
Adapted from Lovin’ From The Oven
Yield: 9×13” Pan of Bars
Shortbread Crust (consider increasing recipe by double or 1/3, see notes in directions below)
- 2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 egg, beaten
Apple Pie Filling
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/4 cup flour
- 3 teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon nutmeg – I added this
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt (non kosher is fine) – I added this
- 4 cup sliced, peeled baking apples (about 3-5 apples depending on the size, I used 6 since I wanted to get rid of more apples and it was fine, just more apple filled!)
Icing Glaze (consider reducing recipe by half, see notes in directions section below)
- 2 cup powdered sugar
- About 3 Tablespoon milk (whole milk is best)
- ½ teaspoon almond extract
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract – I reduced the almond extract above and used half vanilla
For the shortbread crust
- Mix flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or two knives until you have pea-sized crumbles. Gently mix in beaten egg. (I cheated, I just put everything in a food processor! Worked for me and I don’t have a pastry cutter so I think it was the easiest for me)
- Spray a 9×13 baking dish (I used a 9×9) with non-stick cooking spray. Gently pat about 2/3 of the crumb mixture onto the bottom of the dish. (The crumb layer on the bottom seemed really thin to me, but it ended up being enough crust on the bottom. I may consider doubling the crust recipe next time and have a thicker bottom shortbread crust and more shortbread on top)Reserve the 1/3 crumb mixture for the top. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and set aside.
For the apple pie filling
- Combine flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Toss with apples and spread apples out on prepared crust.
- Sprinkle reserved crust mixture over apples evenly and bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes. When finished, allow to cool completely.
For the glaze
- Whisk together powdered sugar, almond and vanilla extract, and enough milk to achieve desired consistency.
- Place glaze in a Ziploc bag and cut off a very small portion of one of the corners or use a spoon to drizzle the glaze over a completely cooled pastry. Allow glaze to harden. Cut into bars and serve. (I think there was too much glaze, but I wanted to use it all so I wouldn’t waste, but next time I would reduce the glaze recipe in half)
I really liked this recipe and will definitely make again – maybe with different fruit fillings too!
Look at all the apple layers: