Best Date Bars Recipe
Best Date Bars Recipe photo by Taste of Home

Best Date Bars Recipe

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I grew up in a family with eight children, and I started baking for our big family at age 10. Today, decades later, I still enjoy baking pies, cakes, strudels and bars. These date treats are very easy to bake, and one sheet of them will yield 48 good-sized bars. I sometimes add nuts, coconut or candied fruit. This dessert is great to take to a church bazaar or any group function. In the 1940s, I managed a Pittsburgh school cafeteria that fed 420 students ever day, so I can recall a thing or two about how to feed a crowd! —Dorothy DeLeske, Scottsdale, Arizona
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 35 min.
MAKES:40 servings
TOTAL TIME: Prep: 25 min. Bake: 35 min.
MAKES: 40 servings

Ingredients

  • 2-1/2 cups pitted dates, cut up
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 cups water
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped walnuts, optional
  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1-1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1 tablespoon water

Directions

  1. In a saucepan, combine dates, sugar and water. Cook, stirring frequently, until very thick. Stir in walnuts; cool.
  2. Sift the flour, salt and baking soda together in a large bowl; add oats and brown sugar. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle water over mixture; stir lightly. Pat half into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Spread with date mixture; cover with remaining oat mixture and pat lightly.
  3. Bake at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Yield: 40 bars.
If Cooking for Two: Freeze bars in serving-size portions.
Originally published as Best Date Bars in Reminisce March/April 1992, p37

Reviews for Best Date Bars

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   (5)
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MY REVIEW
Reviewed Nov. 22, 2013

A hit with my family, including mom who used to make these when we were kids, but the recipe has been long lost. We are delighted to have such a delicious sub.

MY REVIEW
Reviewed Nov. 2, 2011

Very good. Voted just as good as Mom's used to be.

MY REVIEW
Reviewed Sep. 4, 2011

Delicious. Have made many many times.

MY REVIEW
Reviewed Nov. 16, 2010

This recipe is very close to the Krusteaz Brand of Date Bar Mix, which they don't make anymore. Mom use to cook these all the time. I added a touch of cinnamon to the oatmeal mix. Sooo goood!

MY REVIEW
Reviewed Sep. 24, 2009

These look delicious!

Did you ever make those big chewy peanut butter cookies like McKeesport Vocational School's cafeteria? I'd love to have that recipe.

baking afficionado

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