These Easy Apple Pie Bars are a sweet and delicious fall dessert made with apple pie filling layer and cinnamon streusel topping.
Whether it's apple season or not, you can make quick and easy apple bars that taste like the best apple pie with a streusel topping. The crust and topping are made in one bowl and the apple filling is spiced with cinnamon, cloves, ginger and sweetened with brown sugar. These Apple Pie Bars are irresistible and so delicious served with a generous scoop of ice cream!
- apples (I used Golden Delicious)
- unsalted butter
- brown sugar
- all-purpose flour
- baking soda
- baking powder
- ground ginger
- lemon juice
These pie bars are so easy to make, all thanks to the fact that the crust and the crumb topping are made from one mixture. The apple layer is just like in the classic apple pie, because we saute the apple slices before baking the bars.
Step 1: Prepare the apples
Toss apple slices with cornstarch, lemon juice and spices. Melt butter in a skillet and saute apples for 3 to 4 minutes, just long enough to soften them.
Step 2: Make crust and topping
In a bowl, whisk dry ingredients for the crust and topping mixture. Melt butter and let it cool completely. Stir both with a fork until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Step 3: Assembly
Reserve 3/4 cup of the crumb mixture and press the rest into the bottom of your baking pan. Spread the apple layer over the crust. Sprinkle the crumb topping over apples.
Step 4: Bake
Bake the apple pie bars until the topping is golden brown. Cool before cutting. Serve warm with caramel sauce or caramel ice cream.
Any leftovers should be stored in a closed container, in the fridge. You can warm up each piece in a microwave or let it come to room temperature.
You can prepare the crust and topping mixture and place it in a container or a ziploc bag. Store in the fridge and use within a few days or freeze for up to 3 months. You can make the apple filling up to 2 days in advance and store it in the fridge.
My favorite topping for apple desserts is caramel ice cream. It's vanilla ice cream with a caramel swirl. Perfection! You can make my Microwave Caramel Sauce and drizzle over each bar and top it with plain ice cream.
Expert Tips for the Best Apple Pie Bars:
- butter: use unsalted butter to control the amount of salt (that goes for all desserts); melt it in the microwave and let it cool completely. If it's hot, it will "cook" the flour mixture so you really need to let it cool. Touch the outside of the bowl with melted butter. If it doesn't feel hot or warm, the butter is ready.
- apples: I like to slice the apples into thin slices (just like for the classic apple pie) and saute them for a few minutes to soften because the bars do not bake as long as the pie. If you are using soft apples to start with, you can skip this step. Granny Smith apples are denser, so I recommend sauteing the slices.
More pie bars recipes:
- Cherry Pie Crumb Bars
- Pumpkin Pie Bars
- Pineapple Coconut Crumb Bars
- Strawberry Pie Sour Cream Crumb Bars
If you like this recipe and make it, snap a photo and share it on INSTAGRAM! Tag me @crunchycreamysweet so I can check it out and leave a comment! 😀
Easy Apple Pie Bars
for the apple filling:
- 3 cups sliced apples I used Golden Delicious
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
- 1 tablespoon butter
for crust and topping:
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
- Line a square 8" baking pan with parchment paper. You can use a round pan as well.
- Wash, core and peel apples. Slice into 1/4" thick slices.
- In a large bowl, toss apple slices with cornstarch, cinnamon, ginger and cloves. Add brown sugar and lemon juice and toss gently. Set aside.
- Melt butter in skillet. Add apples and saute on medium low heat for 3 to 4 minutes, or until softened. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Melt butter in microwave, in 15 second increments. Stir and let cool completely.
- In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, baking soda, baking powder, cinnamon, salt and cloves.
- Add cooled butter to flour mixture and stir with a fork. The mixture should resemble coarse crumbs.
- Reserve 3/4 cup of crumb mixture. Press the remaining mixture into the bottom of prepared pan.
- Spread apple slices over crust into an even layer. Make sure to Pour the brown sugar sauce from the pan over the apples.
- Sprinkle crumb topping mixture over apples.
- Bake bars for 23 to 25 minutes OR until the top is golden brown.
- Cool for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Serve warm with caramel sauce or caramel ice cream.