Raspberry and Chocolate Crumble Bars
Happy Monday everyone! To start your workweek off right, I thought I’d share with you a fun dessert recipe. Because raspberries, chocolate and a crumbly oat topping will obviously make your day better. Well, at least it always makes my day better : ) And we can all use that on a Monday.
My first two attempts at making this dessert did not go so hot – I should have known better when the recipe just didn’t seem quite right. But I powered through thinking maybe I was missing something. Nope, I should have trusted my instincts. Lesson learned. One of my tries at least tasted great, but crumbled the second you tried to cut it. Uncool. Don’t worry though – I definitely snacked on the broken pieces for a few days.
But this version came out perfect. I should have used a trusted source to begin with. You have a buttery crust that is a solid base for the other layers. You then have a raspberry filling made with both preserves and fresh raspberries, topped off with chocolate chips and an oatmeal crumb topping. Pretty great, if I do say so myself. I had no doubt though as these are fairly similar to the apple pie bars I made in the fall, which were one of my favorite desserts from last year.
So go make and then eat some raspberry chocolate crumble bars. And be happy with a belly full of sugary goodness.
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ⅔ cup granulated sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 18 tablespoons (2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons) unsalted butter, divided, cut into ½ inch pieces and at cool room temperature
- ¼ cup packed light brown sugar
- ½ cup rolled oats
- ½ cup pecans, finely chopped
- ¾ cup raspberry preserves
- ¾ cup fresh raspberries
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- ⅓ cup mini chocolate chips
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a 9 by 13 inch baking pan with aluminum foil, making sure it is long enough to hang slightly over the edges. Spray with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the flour, granulated sugar and salt. Mix on low speed for about 5 seconds, until combined. With the mixer on low, add 16 tablespoons of the butter one piece at a time. Once the pieces are added, continue mixing on low speed until the mixture resembles damp sand, about 1 to 1 ½ minutes.
- Measure out 1 ¼ cups of the flour mixture and add to a medium bowl. Set aside. Transfer the remaining flour mixture to the prepared baking pan. Using your fingers or a spatula, press the mixture firmly into the bottom of the pan in an even layer. Bake for 14 to 18 minutes, until the edges of the crust begin to brown.
- Meanwhile, add the brown sugar, oats and pecans to the reserved flour mixture. Mix until combined. Add in the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and use your fingers to work the butter into the flour mixture until it is fully incorporated. Pinch the mixture into hazelnut-size clumps and set aside.
- In a small bowl, add the preserves, fresh raspberries and lemon juice (if your fresh raspberries are very tart, only add 1 to 2 teaspoons of lemon juice). Use a fork to mash together the ingredients until combined, leaving some small chunks of fresh raspberries.
- When the crust is done baking, carefully spread the raspberry filling over the hot crust. Evenly sprinkle the chocolate chips over the filling. Next, evenly sprinkle the streusel topping over the raspberry/chocolate filling (do not press the streusel into the filling). Return the pan to the oven and bake for another 22 to 25 minutes, until the topping is deep golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Transfer the pan to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, use the foil overhang to lift the bars from the pan. Cut into squares to serve.
Slightly adapted from The Way the Cookie Crumbles. Originally from Cook’s Illustrated.