These fruit bars all soooo delicious! And they are really easy to put together. Ridiculously simple. You can use any flavor of jam or preserves that you want. I made 2 pans and for one pan I used sour cherry jam and the other I used apricot preserves. They both turned out excellent. I used half whole wheat flour to add a little nutrition and that is a wonderful option but using all all-purpose flour is delicious as well. Gosh these are good for being such a simple cookie. They are also a very sturdy cookie - not delicate. These would be ideal for gift giving or packing in a picnic basket or lunch. I really suggest you try them using your favorite flavor of jam.
I actually sprinkled some walnuts on half of each pan. I normally am not a fan of nuts on my baked goods but they were sure delicious on these. They were a really nice addition.
I'm not sure which one I prefer - the apricot or the sour cherry bars. They were both so fricken good!
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla and/or almond extract
2 cups all purpose flour (or 1 cup all purpose & 1 cup whole wheat flour)
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups old fashioned oats
1 cup any flavor preserves or jam
350 degree oven
Cover a 13x9 inch pan with foil and spray with no stick cooking spray
Beat butter and brown sugar in bowl until smooth, light & fluffy. Add extract. Gradually add flour, baking powder and oats until mixture in combined and crumbly. Reserve 1 cup of the mixture for topping. Pat the remaining mixture into your pan.
Spread the jam/preserves evenly over the unbaked crust. Sprinkle with the reserved crumb mixture.
Bake about 40 minutes or until the top and sides are lightly browned. Cool on wire rack. After completely cool, lift the bars from the pan with the overhang of foil. Cut into bars.