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Apple Pie for the Whole Weekend

Apple Pie for the Whole Weekend

By Liz
August 30, 2010
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We just went down to Kansas to visit some relatives, including a great grandma who is 92 years old! I wanted to bring a treat that could feed 15 people, that could be made ahead, and that could withstand an 8-hour drive in the car. Apple pie is a family favorite this time of year, but making several pies and bringing them in the car didn't make sense -- until I came across a recipe for Glazed Apple Pie Bars.

This recipe serves 36 and is basically a flat apple pie baked in a 15 x1 inch pan. Perfect!

Start by making the crust. First, beat the egg yolk and milk together and set aside. Remember to save the separated egg white for later.

Next, combine the flour and salt with a fork, then add the cold butter, cut into chunks.

Cut in the butter using a pastry cutter as shown, or in a food processor. This takes only a minute or two. If you're using a cutter, scrape it off with the back side of a butter knife as it accumulates butter.

You are finished when the butter resembles coarse crumbs.

Now, simply add the egg and milk mixture and stir with a fork until the dough comes together.

Once it has come together and the dry bits are all mixed in, pick it up with your hands and form it into a ball. Then, divide into two balls. If it's too dry, you can add up to 1 Tablespoon milk, 1 teaspoon at a time. Add only the moisture that is needed to gather the dough into a ball.

Roll out the first half of the dough. It was tricky to get the square shape, so I rolled it as close as I could and then used my fingers to press it into more of a rectangle.

Now, fold the dough in half and then into quarters.

Then, carefully move it to your 10 x 15 inch pan and unfold.

Gently press the crust into the pan, getting it to the edges or as close as you can without creating holes.

Crush the cornflakes. I used a sandwich-size plastic bag and just pounded it with my fist. Be sure to get most of the air out of the bag, otherwise you'll 'pop' it when you pound it! You could be more civilized and roll over it with a rolling pin. Whatever you do, don't get too rough or you might break the bag.

Now simply sprinkle the crushed corn flakes on the bottom crust.

If you haven't already peeled and sliced the apples, put the crust in the fridge now. I went ahead and rolled out my second crust, folded it in quarters, wrapped it loosely in plastic and put it in the fridge as well.

So, now, the apples! Using a handy apple chart and also seeing what was available at my market this week, I picked granny smiths. Begin by peeling the 8-10 medium apples. I timed myself and found it took me less than 30 seconds to peel one apple. It was good to know it really doesn't take that long!

Instead of coring the apples, I just cut off half ...

... then cut off the other half. You'll end up with a couple ends to cut off, too, which will leave you with a square piece which is basically the core.

The great thing about this method is that all the pieces are in the perfect shape to cut into half moons. Just lay the pieces on their flat side and slice!

Once you have 8 cups of apples, simple pour them out and spread them around on top of the corn flakes.

Next, mix the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg together and sprinkle it over the apples.

Then, unfold the top crust and press it onto the top of the spiced apples.

I used my hands to gently press down and get the dough to the edges of the pan.

Wow! It's like a giant flat pie that cuts into 36 pieces! Next, beat the egg white with a fork until it's foamy, and then brush it on top of the crust.

The final step before baking is to sprinkle the top with a mixture of 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon and 2 tablespoons sugar. Then, pop it into the oven!

While the bars are baking, mix together the glaze ingredients. When my mixture was smooth, I drizzled a little of the glaze onto a piece of paper, to test the consistency and also for a small amount of practice. After all, I was going to see my grandma!

Be ready to be amazed when you pull your pan out of the oven.While still warm, drizzle the bars diagonally with the glaze. Beautiful!

When the bars were completely cool, I covered them with plastic loosely. Eight hours in the car later, we arrived (about 11 pm!) and placed our tempting pan of bars on the kitchen counter before heading off to bed. My uncle warned about 'gremlins' who sometimes sneak into the kitchen at night, but in the morning we found the bars in tact. My aunt had already cut them and was waiting patiently!

Though it was not my plan to eat the bars for breakfast, it seemed no one could wait, so we served them up with fresh cut fruit and cereal. They came out of the pan with amazing ease and looked fabulous.

Everyone loved the crust and the apple filling, which did seem a perfect fit for breakfast after all. They were also delicious later at lunch, and my aunt cut the final two pieces into slivers for breakfast the next morning.

It turned out to be a wonderful recipe for traveling, and we all enjoyed the time with Great Grandma, my aunt and uncle and, of course, the cousins.

If you have a family or school gathering coming up, these Glazed Apple Pie Bars are certain to be a hit. If you try them, I'd love to hear about your experience.

Check back in a few days when Becky makes stuffed pasta shells -- possibly the perfect entrée to go with your apple bars!

Liz is paid to write for the Land O'Lakes Recipe Buzz™ Blog.

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Love this recipe! I was wondering if they could be made up to just before baking. And then baking the next day. Chris Thank you

Posted February 01, 2017 by Christine Sosa
Test Kitchen Comment
Thanks for your question, Christine. If you wanted to make the bars up to just before baking, we would recommend putting them in the freezer as leaving it in the refrigerator overnight may cause the crust to become soggy (due to the juices from the fruit that will be extracted over time). Alternately, you could bake the bars to completion, refrigerate, and then reheat the next day. These bars hold very well, so baking the day of (and then holding) may be your best option. Have fun!
Posted February 19, 2017

Just finished putting the pan in the oven. The dough was a little sticky so I just rolled the ball of dough in extra flour . That worked well. But I found that it was tricky getting the dough into the bottom of the pan. I did what you said and gently spread it with my hands. The top layer of dough was easier to handle. I think when I divided the dough into balls I made the ball for the bottom crust too small. Next time I will know better. Can't wait to taste them. I plan on sharing the squares with friends so it is a better recipe for that than a pie.

Posted October 12, 2016 by Judy

I love the step by step directions to make these apple pie bars. My only question is whether or not you would need to make a few slits in the top crust for ventilation?? Can't wait to try them.

Posted September 22, 2015 by Theresa H W.
Test Kitchen Comment
From: mallory
Hi Theresa, there is no need to cut a slit in the top, but if you'd like to it certainly wouldn't hurt! Happy baking!
Posted September 22, 2015

I saw this exact recipe on another Website, and I have a question about the cornflakes. I have been making apple pies for some years and never heard of the cornflakes in the bottom. So with this recipe, what purpose do they serve? Thanks!

Posted August 30, 2015 by Sharon
Test Kitchen Comment
From: mallory
Hi Sharon - the corn flakes in the filling helps to give it some more texture. Let us what you think if you give these a try. Happy baking!
Posted September 03, 2015

These look amazing and I cannot WAIT to try them. Thanks for the step by step directions, with illustration.s You have a beautiful family :)

Posted August 27, 2015 by Cheryl

Found these on a website some years ago, and thankfully, put them into my cookbook on my IPad. We really love these, especially in the fall,but I like to make them anytime, they are that good. I would like to say a Thank You, to whoever came up with this recipe. My wife and I plan on taking them to church for our coffee hour soon...Howard

Posted February 10, 2015 by Howard
Test Kitchen Comment
From: mallory
Hi Howard, thanks for the nice comments! It is a great recipe. Happy baking!
Posted February 11, 2015

Can these apple pie bars be frozen?

Posted June 13, 2014 by MP
Test Kitchen Comment
From: mallory
Hi MP, these apple pie bars can be frozen. Cut them into squares, place in a resealable plastic food bag (separating layers of bars with parchment) and store in freezer for up to 2 months. Happy baking!
Posted June 26, 2014

Can these bars be frozen successfully, or would the crust become soggy upon thawing?

Posted October 21, 2013 by Barb
Test Kitchen Comment
From: Cindy
These bars can be frozen very successfully. This is really like an apple pie in the form of a bar.
Posted October 21, 2013

it was yummy

Posted June 30, 2013 by penny

I've been making this recipe for many years, now, and it is always such a hit!!!

Posted July 12, 2012 by Jeanne

I have a similar recipe using zucchini, it's called mock apple pie, you can fool almost everyone to think it is apple instead of zucchini

Posted July 10, 2012 by Linda

Has anyone made this with tart cherries instead of the apples? If not, would any of you kitchen wizards out there have some suggestions for how I might make cherry pie bars? Thanks

Posted June 08, 2012 by Jean
Test Kitchen Comment
From: Cindy
We have not experimented in the Test Kitchens with this recipe and using tart cherries at this point. It seems like it would be an excellent option. If any one has tried a fruit bar like the apple ones, but using tart cherries, I would like to know.
Posted July 02, 2012

We are invited to a pre-Easter brunch and I'm going to make what sounds like the most delicious apple pie bars ever that will travel over the miles to a friend's home.

Posted April 02, 2012 by Janet


Posted May 06, 2011 by jessie

This recipe comes out so good! The squares end up nice and neat. I've made this 3 times, it's great for using up apples.

Posted September 29, 2010 by Lucy W.

Helen, the cornflakes are used as a thickener and they do add a distinctive flavor to the bars, too. It's a rather different approach, I agree, but it seems to work very well. Let us know if you try the recipe as is or with any variations and how it all goes!

Posted September 28, 2010 by Liz L-G

Why the cornflakes? I think I would use golden raisins to soak up the juice if the apples proved too juicy. Of course, partly cooking the apples and straining them before adding to the slice might work too.

Posted September 24, 2010 by Helen

Kathy, I will have to try this recipe again with MacIntosh apples. I got a big bag and have extras. Thanks for the tip!

Posted September 22, 2010 by Liz G

I have been making these bars for years - by far my favorite Apple Pie - the taste is amazing! The crust is a little tricky - but your's looked just like mine. Thanks for sharing - loved the photo's. Ruth

Posted September 17, 2010 by Ruth

These bars are worth the time it takes to make them. They're delicious. MacIntosh apples are very good and bake down very well.

Posted September 14, 2010 by Kathy A.

I've been making that recipe for over 40 years. It's a family favorite and was given to me as a teenager by a woman I babysat for. We call them Apple Squares. Thanks for bring back a lot of sweet memories.

Posted September 04, 2010 by Cheryl

Lookinf forward to the new site

Posted September 02, 2010 by Connie Y.

Yes, they were delicious, and it is fun to see the picture of this great grandmother with her first two grewt graanddaughters

Posted September 02, 2010 by Helen

I love the directions and pictures to match. Can't wait to make these bars this weekend. Thank you!

Posted August 31, 2010 by Cindy L.