Vanilla Blackberry Oatmeal Bars

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These vanilla blackberry oatmeal bars are a simple treat that comes together really quickly with your basic pantry staples. I make these or a similar version a lot. It’s a perfect treat for house guests or for a hostess or really, pretty much any situation. Most importantly, they’re really good.

These bars were adapted from this strawberry oatmeal bar recipe from Ree Drummond with just a few modifications:

  1. More butter. I found Ree’s recipe just a little bit too crumbly. The addition of a little bit more butter seems to hold the crust together better and makes for an overall cleaner looking treat.
  2. More oat mixture. I increased all of the ingredients for the oat mixture by 25%. Ree’s recipe calls for splitting the oat mixture equally between the top and bottom. I always seemed to have difficulty with this distribution. Sometimes the bottom was too thin and not strong enough to carry the jam and the top half. Other times, I’d have the inverse issue where there wasn’t enough topping to hold the bar together. It’s a little sad to admit, but it would seriously stress me out! My solution? Make more. Now, I put roughly 2/3 of the oatmeal/flour mixture on the bottom and 1/3 on top and no issues.
  3. Vanilla extract. You will need 2tbsp (which is quite a bit) to even really taste the vanilla in these bars. If you’re a fan, you understand because vanilla is awesome. 🙂 If you’re not, there’s really no need for it.

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4c butter
  • 2c all purpose flour
  • 2c oats
  • 1 1/4c brown sugar
  • 1 1/4tsp baking powder
  • 1/4tsp salt
  • 1 jar (10-12oz) blackberry preserves

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF
  2. Grease a 9-by-13-inch rectangular pan (love this stuff)
  3. Mix together the butter, flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder and salt
  4. Press 2/3 of the oat mixture into the prepared pan
  5. Spread with the blackberry preserves
  6. Sprinkle the remaining 1/3 oat mixture over the top and pat lightly
  7. Bake until light brown, 30 to 40 minutes
  8. Let cool completely before cutting
  9. Enjoy 🙂

 

 

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