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Apple Pie Shortbread Bars

The best of apple crumble, apple pie, and dessert bars all in one.

Apple Pie Shortbread Bars

When it comes to apple desserts there are so many wonderful ways to make these fruits into really satisfying treats. From apple crumble to classic apple pie they are all delicious. There’s no apple dessert I’d turn down! But, these apple pie shortbread bars are a fun take on these classics, with a shortbread base that resembles a pie crust and a delectable crumble topping. It’s the best of both worlds in one bar.

Apple Pie Shortbread Bars

To get started make the base for this dessert. It’s a little more moist than shortbread cookies dough, but it also gets baked twice and so needs to keep it’s buttery texture throughout the process.

Apple Pie Shortbread Bars

Then lay out your spiced apples on top of the baked shortbread base. I was pretty willy nilly with how I placed mine, but you can chop them small or lay them flat for a neater look if you like.

Apple Pie Shortbread Bars

Then add on that luscious topping, which is a simple one to make. Into the oven it goes and when it’s done baking let it cool before placing in the fridge to finish setting up. This is an important step so don’t skip it, otherwise the whole thing can fall to pieces when you go to cut it into squares.

Serve these little squares of heaven ASAP as the moisture in the apples means these bars don’t keep as well as some other desserts. It’s no matter- they won’t last long anyway. They’re too delicious!

Makes 16 squares

2h 20m prep time

45m cook time

157 calories

3.5
Rated 3.5 out of 5
Rated by 2 reviewers

Allergens: Milk, Gluten

For the base:
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
For the toppings:
  • 1 1/2 Granny Smith apples, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons all purpose flour, divided
  • 1/2 cup plus 4 tablespoons brown sugar, divided
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
For the base:
  1. Preheat oven to 300˚F. Cream together butter and sugar for base using electric mixer.Once lightened in color add vanilla. In another bowl combine dry ingredients and then add them to butter mixture.
  2. Line a 9"x9" deep-sided baking dish with parchment paper, taking it up the sides. Press dough into bottom of pan and make sure it's even. Bake for 15 minutes.
For the toppings:
  1. Combine apples, 2 tablespoons flour, 4 tablespoons brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cardamom in a large bowl. Then spread out over base in an even layer.
  2. Combine remaining brown sugar with flour and butter in food processor of blender until wet, sandy mixture forms. Spread over apples. Increase over to 350˚F and bake for 30-35 minutes.
  3. Allow to cool for 2 hours in refrigerator before cutting into 16 squares to serve.

Recipe adapted from Sober Julie.

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