Raspberry oatmeal bars. They pretty much taste like oatmeal cookies slathered with your favorite preserves. And get this, they’re actually healthy. Um, well, sorta healthy. Yum.
Raspberry Oatmeal Bars
- Quick Glance
- Quick Glance
- 20 M
- 1 H, 35 M
- Makes 16 bars
Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Place the oven rack in the center of the oven and butter the inside of a 9-inch (23-cm) square baking pan.
With an electric mixer on medium speed, beat the butter and the brown and white sugars in a large bowl until light, creamy, and fluffy, occasionally scraping down the bowl, up to 3 minutes. Beat in the egg white and mix until smooth, about 1 minute more.
Add the flour, oats, almonds, cinnamon, and salt to the butter mixture, reduce the speed to low, and beat just until a crumbly, grainy dough forms with no white streaks of flour, 1 to 2 minutes.
Using the back of a spatula, press 2/3 of the dough into the prepared pan to create an even crust that rises about 1/2-inch (12-mm) up the sides. Spread the jam over this mixture and then crumble the remaining dough evenly over the jam to create a crust. If your jam is very thick or difficult to spread, pop it in the microwave for 60 seconds and then give it a thorough stir. Gently press on the topping to flatten it slightly but be careful not to cause the jam to squish into the crumble topping.
Bake the raspberry oatmeal bars until browned and set, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool in the baking pan on a wire rack for at least 30 minutes or until room temperature. Cut into 16 bars. (You can keep any extra bars between sheets of wax paper or parchment paper in a sealed container at room temperature for up to 2 days.)
Recipe Testers' Tips
These raspberry oatmeal bars are a fabulously crunchy-chewy-sweet-tart cookie that will outperform any of the dry, crumbly, overly doughy bar cookie offerings at the local coffee shop. The oatmeal cookie-like crust was pressed thinly enough to allow the raspberry flavor to shine through without it being too sweet. The dough itself was crunchy at the edges yet tender into it, the sweet nuttiness pairing wonderfully with the sweet-tart raspberry jam. The bars would do equally well as a quick snack in the morning or with after-dinner coffee. I stirred the jam in the jar first to loosen it first before spreading it over the crust. I flattened pieces of dough in my hands slightly before placing them on top of the jam. Again, there was plenty of dough to cover the surface. The crust was a deep golden brown and the edges were darker brown from some caramelization, which added the slightest yet most delicious crunch. I made the bars the night before serving and the next day the jam had made the crunchy crust just a hair softer.
What a delicious dessert! If you love raspberries these raspberry oatmeal bars will be a favorite. It’s an old-fashioned, homestyle recipe that’s so easy to put together. I used an 8-inch glass baking dish, which is the only one that I had, and the bars came out a bit thick but with no complaints from my eaters. I cut them into 16 2-inch bars. The crust was crisp and tasted like a buttery oatmeal cookie. I used a French raspberry jam for the filling. A helpful hint—warm up the jam in the microwave for 60 seconds or so to loosen it for easy spreading. I had no problem with spreading it on the crust. I baked them for 35 minutes and had a difficult time waiting for them to cool but they really need to rest for at least 30 minutes. Rave reviews from my friends. Two days later the consistency was a softer bar but still delicious. My husband is not big on sweets but asked when I would make them again. That says a lot. Great dessert to bring to a cookout this summer.
These rich, buttery raspberry oatmeal bars bake up beautifully and are quite simple to prepare. The bars would make a great gift or would also be nice served with a cup of afternoon tea or coffee. I baked them in the morning and my family loved them served for breakfast with a bit of espresso served alongside. I accidentally picked up raspberry preserves from my local market instead raspberry jam. If making them again I would use jam as the recipe suggests. The preserves were an acceptable substitute but jam is "stickier" and more solidified than preserves, which means the jam will stay in place a tiny bit better than the preserves. Assembly was simple with the use of a stand mixer. The dough was quite heavy and dense so it took a minute or two for me to press and smooth out the layer of crust. I used the back of my thick rubber spatula to spread the dough in the pan which worked well for me. The jam spread on easily and for the top layer I broke up the dough into small pieces with my fingers and then gently pressed the dots of dough down with the back of my spatula once again, being careful not to press too hard or have my spatula press into the jam layer. The baking time is accurate. I pulled the bars out at 45 minutes and they were perfectly done and lightly brown on top. The bars are buttery and dense—a little bite of these bars goes a long way to satisfy that sweet tooth craving.
These easy-to-prepare raspberry oatmeal bars were a nice on-the-go treat for my busy family. The oats and nuts made the bars hearty and the raspberry jam was just the right amount of sweetness. I've made similar recipes in the past but the addition of the almonds and cinnamon gave this recipe a nice twist from others I have had.
The flavor of these raspberry oatmeal bars is great. The batter was very moist and it was a little difficult to spread it into the pan. It was also a little difficult to spread the jam.