Since it’s autumn and we have a jar full of this homemade caramel sauce, we’re going to make caramel apple pie bars today. You didn’t make some caramel sauce like I suggested? Okay, I’ll wait 10 minutes for you to do it. Go ahead.
Okay, back to caramel apple pie bars. These beauties just scream fall. Picture apple pie on a buttery shortbread crust, topped with a crisp oat streusel, drizzled with rich caramel.
Also, no messing with pie crust! I personally have an 85% fail rate with every pie crust I attempt, so I welcome this way easier version.
Have them with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream for a delicious dessert. Ours disappeared way too quickly, so I may bake a double batch next time.
Caramel Apple Pie Bars
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
2 apples, peeled and sliced (1/4 inch thick)
2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup butter, chilled and cubed
homemade caramel sauce
Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, leaving an overhang on the sides. Set aside.
Make the crust by stirring melted butter, sugar, vanilla, and salt together in a medium bowl. Add flour, and stir until combined. Press the mixture evenly into the prepared pan. Bake for 15 minutes while you prepare the filling and streusel.
Make the apple filling by combining all filling ingredients in a large bowl until apples are evenly coated. Set aside.
Make the streusel by whisking the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and flour together in a medium bowl. Cut in the chilled butter with a two knives (or your hands) until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside.
Remove the crust from the oven, and turn the oven temperature up to 350 degrees. Layer the apples evenly and tightly on top of the warm crust. Sprinkle the streusel on top of the apples, and bake for 30-35 minutes until the top is golden brown.
Remove from oven, and allow to cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours. Lift the foil out of the pan, and cut into squares. Drizzle caramel sauce over the bars, and serve either warm or chilled.
Makes 16 bars.