These easy to make Apple Pie Bars are the perfect alternative to Apple Pie. A buttery shortbread base with a delicious Apple Pie filling, then topped with a buttery crumb topping, make these perfect Dessert Bar.
It’s the best time of the year. Yes, that means Fall and Apple baking time. Nothing like the aroma of cinnamon and apple baking in the oven.
There’s nothing like a shortbread base in a Cookie Bar!
And these Apple Squares have it all, they are so good on their own or dress them up for a special dessert, by adding a scoop of Vanilla ice cream and why not a drizzle of some homemade Caramel Sauce?
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, for us Canadians, it’s this weekend, these Apple Pie Bars would make the perfect substitute to Pumpkin Pie or why not serve them both!?
How to make Apple Squares
- First start by making the shortbread base, cream the butter, then add the sugar and combine, gradually add the whisked flour and combine.
- Spread the dough evenly on the prepared cake pan and bake for about five minutes.
- While the base is baking, make the apple pie filling. Mix together the chopped apples, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon.
- Spread the filling on top of the baked shortbread base.
- Then top with the crumb topping, mix together the the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon, cut in the butter to make coarse crumbs then gently stir in the chopped nuts.
- Bake the bars for about 40-45 minutes. Let cool completely at room temperature then refrigerate for an hour or two for easier cutting.
Best apples for Apple Bars?
Probably the best apple to use is the Granny Smith because it is firm and tart, although a Honeycrisp or Golden Delicious will work fine too, or why not mix a couple of the varieties together?
Best nuts to mix with apples
I used pecans in the Crumb topping for these Apple Squares, although walnuts, hazelnuts or even almonds are also a good choice.
How to store Apple Pie Squares
The bars should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge. They will last up to three to four days in the fridge.
Freeze the bars the same way in an airtight container or freezer bag. They will keep for up to three months in the freezer. Thaw the bars in the fridge.
More Apple Recipes
So if you are looking for an alternative to the usual Apple Pie, I hope you give these Apple Pie Bars a try and let me know. Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy!
Apple Pie Bars
- 8 inch square pan
- 3/4 cup butter (softened)
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 pinch salt*
*If you use unsalted butter then increase the salt to 1/4 teaspoon.
APPLE PIE FILLING
- 2-3 medium apples (chopped small)
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup cold butter
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 cup coarsely chopped nuts (pecans, walnuts or hazelnuts)
- Pre-heat oven to 325F (160C), lightly grease and flour an 8 inch (20 cm) square cake pan.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the flour and salt. Set aside.
- In a large bowl cream the butter on medium speed, then add the sugar and beat together. Add the whisked flour and combine well. Spread evenly on the prepared pan and bake for 5 mintues.
- Raise the heat to 350F (180C).
APPLE PIE FILLING
- While the base is baking, mix together the chopped apples, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. Spoon evenly on the shortbread base.
- In a medium bowl mix together the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon, cut in the cold butter until you have coarse crumbs, then gently stir in the nuts. Sprinkle evenly over the apple pie filling. Bake for approximately 40-45 minutes or until the apples are tender. If the top starts to brown too much, then cover with foil and continue to bake. Enjoy!
Nancy roman says
Just made these apple pie bars, excellent! Very easy! Since we are housebound during the Coronavirus they brightened up our day! Stay safe! Thank you
Thanks Nancy, so glad you enjoyed them. Thanks and you take care also.
Vicki Skonieczny says
I made these Apple Pie Bars for Thanksgiving and they did not disappoint. So much easier than the pie I was going to make and they are as good, if not better than pie. Everyone “gobbled” them up…..hee, hee!! They are not too sweet and have the perfect balance of flavor and texture. Absolute winner of a recipe. Thanks for sharing.
Hi Vicki, thanks so much so glad everyone enjoyed them.
I won’t lie, I made these last night and ate 1/3 of the pan😲 They were delicious, easy to follow instructions, not too sweet, a great dessert. Thank you for sharing this recipe.
Hi Elly, thanks so much, glad you enjoyed it.
??Just wondering, was the baking temperature not correct? I baked my Apple Pie bars for 45 minutes at 325 degrees, as per the instructions. No golden color at all. I’m increasing the temperature to 425 degrees with hopes of getting some brownness and bubbliness out of the apples. I’d like to make this again, but hesitate without hearing back from you. Thanks in advance.
Hi Kathy, I baked mine at 325F and it came out brown, I actually had to cover it with foil. I wouldn’t go higher than 350F for the majority of the baking and the last 5 minutes or so raise it to 400F to brown if you want. Let me know.