Fruit-Filled Oatmeal Bars

Total Time
30 mins
30 mins

Hearty, yummy, and even fairly healthy (if you want it to be!). These are not like granola bars but more like a brownie with a nice crust. Originally taken from BH&G "New Cook Book", 1989--now that I live overseas, I love these older cookbooks because so many of the recipes are still "from scratch" and don't use convenience products that are too expensive or haven't come here yet. Thanks to my Grams for sending it to me when I moved! :)

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  1. In mixing bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, and baking soda.
  2. Cut in margarine/butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
  3. Reserve 1/2 cup of the flour mixture.
  4. Press remaining flour mixture into the bottom of an ungreased 9x9x2 baking pan.
  5. Spread with desired filling.
  6. Sprinkle with reserved flour mixture.
  7. Bake at 350F for 30-35 minutes or until the top is golden.
  8. Cool in pan on wire rack.
  9. Cut into bars.
  11. ***Following cookbook's 'shortcut' suggestion of substituting 10 oz jar of preserves in place of homemade filling, I used a store-bought, very dense, low-moisture apple butter (like a thick jam). I have also tried it with blueberry preserves but the preserves were too moist--it made the bars sticky not good.***.
  13. In medium saucepan, combine 1/2 cup water, 2 tablespoons sugar, and 2 teaspoons cornstarch. Add 1 cup raisins. Cook & stir until thickened & bubbly.
  15. Peel/core/chop 2 medium apples. In medium saucepan, combine apples, 2 tablespoons sugar, 2 tablespoons water, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and a dash of ground cloves. Bring apple mixture to a boil; reduce heat & simmer 8-10 minutes or until apples are very tender.
  17. In medium saucepan, combine 1 cup diced dried apricots and 3/4 cup water. Bring apricot mixture to boil; reduce heat. Cover and simmer 5 minutes. Meanwhile, combine 1/4 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon all purpose flour. Stir into apricot mixture. Cook and stir 1 minute more or until mixture is very thick. Stir in 1/2 cup coconut.
Most Helpful

5 5

Very good! I somehow ended up with several opened jars of jams and preserves residing in my refrigerator, and this was a tasty way to make use of some. I used an organic mixed berry spread that included blackberries, strawberries, blueberries and raspberries. I just tossed the dry ingredients and cold butter (cut into small pieces) into the food processor and pulsed until it was the proper texture. I used an 8-inch pan, so mine were slightly thicker than they would have been in a 9-inch, but we liked them that way. Thanks for posting the recipe!

5 5

So easy & so good. I made my usual subs of whole wheat pastry flour for the white & canola oil for the butter. I sprayed the bottom & sides of the pan with Pam, cut a circle of parchment paper to fit the pan & placed it bottom & sprayed with Pam again. Tasted buttery & flaky. I used an 8 oz jar of Blueberry Jam I had made. My husband loved these!

When using preserves for the filling, put some Italian unseasoned bread crumbs to thicken the preserves and the filling will not run. Will cook and blend well. I use this technique all the time.
NOTE: Mix breadcrumbs well into the preserves until you get the consistency you like. Practice makes perfect, GOOD LUCK...........Anthony444