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3 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1-1/4 cups cold butter, divided
5 to 6 cups thinly sliced peeled apples
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup cold water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Vanilla ice cream, optional
Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar and baking soda; cut in 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside 2 cups for topping. Press remaining oat mixture into a greased 13x9-in. baking pan. Arrange apples over the top.
In a small saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch, water, vanilla and remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Bring to a boil. Cook and stir until thickened, 1-2 minutes; pour over apples. Sprinkle with reserved oat mixture.
Bake until top is lightly browned, 35-45 minutes. Cool in pan on a wire rack. If desired, serve with vanilla ice cream.
Apple Crumb Bars Tips
What kind of apples should you use to make apple crumb bars?
Any baking apple available in the grocery store or farmers market will do... choose your favorite! For a little more convenience, you can even use apple pie filling or fruit jam instead of fresh fruit.
Can you use other kinds of oats to make apple crumb bars?
Instant or old-fashioned oats work well in this recipe. You can also use gluten-free oats—just be sure to avoid steel-cut oats for baking. Steel-cut oats take longer to cook and are better for making oatmeal than for baking desserts.
How should you store apple crumb bars?
Store your dessert bars the way you'd store cookies. These apple crumb bars keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for 3-5 days.