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Oatmeal Brownie Bars: Why Haven't You Ever Made These Before?  I Love Them!

I recently had my son, Kyle, and some of his friends over for dinner.  I just couldn’t resist blogging about the dessert I made given the reaction from my son when he took his first bite of Oatmeal Brownie Bars.

He looked at me in disbelief and said, “Why haven’t you ever made these before?  I love them!”  I laughed and promised I would make them again soon (which I have done twice already).  I guess I found a new family favorite. 

Oatmeal Brownie Bars have a fudgy brownie layer sandwiched between crunchy oatmeal layers.  I served them with a scoop of vanilla ice cream and the boys just about licked their bowls clean.  Of course getting a good picture of Kyle is always a challenge since he is such a goof-ball, but here are Kyle, Carson and Peter enjoying their Oatmeal Brownie Bars.

The recipe calls for ingredients I always have on hand so it has become one of my “go-to” dessert recipes.  Now, I keep unsweetened baking chocolate and quick-cooking oats on hand in my cupboard but I know these may be ingredients some of you need to add to your grocery list if you plan to make these bars.  If your family loves them as much as mine I have a feeling you will be keeping these ingredients on hand from now on.

To make the bars, heat the oven to 350°F.  Combine all the ingredients for the oatmeal layer except the butter in a large bowl. 

Stir the ingredients to evenly distribute the brown sugar which tends to lump together.  Cut the 2/3 cup of cold butter into chunks and add it to the brown sugar mixture.

Cut the butter into the mixture with a pastry blender or table knives until the mixture forms coarse crumbs.  This photo shows my favorite pastry blender and what coarse crumbs should look like.

Reserve 1 ¼ cups of this coarse oat/butter crumb mixture to use for the top layer of the bars.  Just loosely fill the measuring cups; don’t pack the mixture into the cups or you will reserve too much.

Press the remaining oat/butter crumb mixture into a greased 13x9-inch baking pan to form the bottom layer or crust.

Bake for 10 minutes.  Meanwhile, prepare the brownie layer.  Combine 1/3 cup butter and the chocolate in a large microwave-safe bowl or measuring cup.  Microwave on High, stirring twice, until chocolate is melted (30 to 60 seconds).  Once melted, let the mixture cool slightly.

Combine the sugar, eggs, water and vanilla in a large bowl. 

Beat at medium speed until well mixed.

Add the melted and slightly cooled chocolate mixture.  Continue beating until well mixed.

Reduce the mixer speed to low and add 1 cup flour and the baking powder. 

Beat until well mixed.

Drop the chocolate mixture by tablespoonfuls over the warm baked crust.  It’s important to do this step so you can evenly spread the chocolate mixture over the entire crust with out tearing it up.

Once you have dropped the chocolate mixture all over the crust…

carefully spread the chocolate mixture evenly over the curst.

Top with reserved oat/butter crumb mixture by evenly sprinkling it over the brownie layer.

Bake for 15 to 18 minutes or until edges are set.  It’s important to not over bake or the brownie will be dry instead of moist.

Cool completely and then cut into bars.

My older son Ryan and his wife Amanda stopped by later the evening I made dinner for Kyle and his buddies.  They loved the bars too.  A few days later I needed to make some cookies or bars for a friend and I asked Ryan what recipe I should make.  With out any hesitation he said, “Make  Oatmeal Brownie Bars .”  So, it’s pretty clear that this recipe is a keeper at the Wahlund house.  

If you try them, let me know what you think by rating and reviewing the recipe.  I’d love to hear from you too, just send me a comment through the blog.

Becky Wahlund is the Director of the Test Kitchens for Land O'Lakes and writes for our Recipe Buzz™ Blog.


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I'm so sorry you and your family didn't like this recipe. As I mentioned it's one of my boy's favorites. I guess that's what makes recipes personal, we all like different things. What's one of your favorite bar recipes?

Posted Nov 02 2010 by Becky

No one in my family liked these. They just didn't taste very good.

Posted Nov 02 2010 by Donna

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    Hi, I'm Becky. I'm eager to share my best ideas and favorite recipes from my 20+ years in the Land O'Lakes Test Kitchen. I'm also excited to help with any questions you have about cooking and baking with Land O Lakes® products. Some of the questions and answers will be published in our newsletter, The Measuring Cup®. Please use the short form below to ask your questions, or share your tip or memory.

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