Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Frankensteining Caramel Oatmeal Bars

When I was young, my mom would buy these box mixes of caramel oatmeal bars that were so yummy. She and I both loved them, and they were probably one of the first things I learned to bake. I've looked and looked, but they just don't make them anymore. Lemon squares, yeah, and chocolate peanutbutter I've seen, but no more Caramel Oatmeal.

Recently, Ree, over at Pioneer Woman, posted a recipe for Oatmeal Bars with an apricot jam filling. I was immediately reminded of the bars we used to make from the mix, so I thought I might try using the bar recipe and filling with caramel instead of apricot. I used the caramel sauce recipe from Tammy's Recipes (awesome site for tons and tons of good recipes).


The caramel sauce recipe makes quite a lot. I used about half of it to fill the bars, which is maybe slightly more than the 12 oz of preserves Pioneer Woman calls for.


Here are the bars before baking, with the top sprinkled on.


A side view before baking of the caramel and bar layers.


Here is the all the leftover caramel sauce. That recipe does make a ton. I didn't seal this jar, it just for storage. I figured storing it in glass made the most sense since it can be reheated right in the jar for topping things.


The finished bars cooling off. They took forever to cool, and I had to wait till they were completely cool before cutting them.

I did get to taste them last night, and I have to admit, I can't really give them a raving review. It's mostly my fault though, since the caramel was so delicious, and I messed up the bars. I ran out of brown sugar and so had to substitute more than half with cane juice crystals instead. I think this made them more dry and crumbly than they should have turned out. I also used more caramel than I needed, so the crumbly bars coupled with the weight of the caramel made them really messy and hard to eat. And the caramel overpowered the bar part in taste, as well. I may try again, with the right ingredients and less caramel next time.

My quest for Caramel Oatmeal Bars continues.

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3 comments:

Julie said...

LOL! I'm not sure why this struck me so funny, but it cracked me up when you said you substituted can juice crystals for brown sugar, because I've never even heard of cane juice crystals, and had I seen it on a recipe I would probably have Googled it and thought to myself, "maybe I'll just use a little brown sugar..."

Liz said...

The recipe looks yummy great blog

CastoCreations said...

Um...what's wrong with caramel overwhelming the bar part? LOL That'd be my favorite part anyway!!!

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