Blackberry Pecan Bars

blackberry pecan bars with fresh blackberries

Blackberry pecan bars are the perfect breakfast to dessert treat with a jammy berry filling in a brown sugar pecan shortbread crust.

Blackberry pecan bars, sliced, with fresh blackberries

blackberry pecan bars combine tart berries with toasty pecans in a brown sugar shortbread crumble crust

Can I just say I’m a little obsessed with crumble bars? I’ve made them every which way, from Meyer lemon and apricot to my current favorite, white peach, and I’m attached to every one of them. Today I used blackberries and pecans, because that’s what I need to use up, but feel free to experiment with other combinations of fruit and nuts. The genius of these little squares, besides the buttery nutty shortbread crust and the nubbly topping is the unexpected burst of fresh flavor that comes from using fresh fruit. I can think of so many variations of fruit, jam and nuts for these bars already. I know they’re going to become regulars at our house.

blackberry pecan bars cooling on a rack

blackberry pecan bars are the ultimate dessert for breakfast

Better than anything you’ll find in any coffee shop or bakery case, these fresh berry bars with a heavy pecan presence these go especially well with a cup of coffee, but don’t let that stop you from serving them after dinner. They make a good bake and take option for any occasion, too.

blackberry pecan bars with a glass of milk

what you’ll need

  • blackberries + blackberry jam
    • a little jam along with fresh berries makes a perfect filling. Feel free to use most any jam you have in the fridge.
  • pecans
    • pecans are a star player in these bars, they go into the crust and on top, where they toast as they bake for fabulous flavor.
  • butter
  • sugar
    • a combination of granulated and brown sugar for a hint of butterscotch flavor.
  • flour
    • I used all purpose flour. You can experiment with half whole wheat or all white whole wheat flour with good results. An all purpose gluten free baking mix should work fine, too.
  • lemon juice
    • I taste my filling and add lemon juice as necessary to brighten he flavor.
  • cornstarch
    • this thickens the filling a bit because blackberries are juicy.
  • salt
a stack of blackberry pecan bars

interchangeable berry fillings for blackberry pecan bars

Raspberries and blueberries can be used in these bars. If you happen to have the luxury of going berry picking I’m going to go out on a limb and tell you that you MUST make these. I think they’d be amazing with wild black raspberries, or tart wild blueberries. Even better if you can get your hands on more unusual varieties like huckleberries, Olallieberries, or Marionberries. Check out my Ultimate Guide to Berry Picking to find out how you can snag yourself some fabulous local berries!

blackberry pecan bats sliced into squares, with fork

“Just made a batch of these and they are FANTASTIC! I used blackberries with raspberry preserves (cause that’s what I had) and almonds. Amazingly easy and fast, but that cannot beat how darn delicious they are.”  

Christine

a blackberry pecan square on parchment paper

more summer berry desserts

blackberry pecan bars with fresh blackberries
Print
4 from 15 votes

Blackberry Pecan Bars

Blackberry pecan bars are the perfect breakfast to dessert treat with a jammy berry filling in a brown sugar pecan shortbread crust.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Yield 16 servings
Calories 174kcal
Author Sue Moran

Equipment

  • 9×9 square baking pan
  • parchment paper (optional)

Ingredients

crust

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup chopped pecans, divided
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature, cut in pieces

filling

  • 8 oz fresh blackberries
  • 1/3 cup blackberry preserves
  • 2 tsp cornstarch
  • a squeeze of fresh lemon juice

Instructions

  • Set oven to 375F.
  • Line a 9×9 baking pan with a sling of parchment paper, edges hanging off the sides for easy removal from the pan later.
  • In a food processor, pulse the flour, 1/2 cup of the pecans, sugars and salt a few times to combine. Add the softened butter and pulse until the butter is thoroughly incorporated and the mixture has a large moist crumb texture. Keep pulsing until there is no dry flour left. It will be crumbly.
  • Measure out about 1/2 cup of the mixture for the crumb topping and set aside. Crumble the rest into your lined pan. Spread it out and pat down the crust with your fingers. Flour them if necessary to prevent sticking. Try to get it evenly spread across the bottom of the pan. I like to finish the process with an offset spatula to flatten and smooth the surface.
  • Bake the crust for 15 minutes.
  • Pulse the fresh berries and the preserves along with the cornstarch in the processor briefly to break down the fruit.
  • Put the mixture in a small saucepan and heat to a boil, stirring often. Let it cook for just a minute or two until it starts to thicken. Taste and add a teaspoon of lemon juice if needed. Set aside to cool slightly while the crust finishes baking.
  • Spread out the fruit evenly over the crust.
  • Top with the remaining crumble mixture, and then the remaining 1/2 cup chopped pecans.
  • Bake for 20 minutes more.
  • Cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then loosen the edges and remove the bars from the pan using the parchment paper sling. Let them cool completely on a rack before slicing into 16 bars.

Cook’s notes

  • All kind of berries and stone fruit work well in these bars.
  • Try walnuts in place of the pecans.
  • You might try mixing and matching the fresh fruit with different types of jam for unusual flavors.
*blackberry pecan bars were first published in 2012. I’ve updated the recipe and shot new photos in 2022.

Nutrition

Calories: 174kcal | Carbohydrates: 20g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 10g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 2g | Monounsaturated Fat: 4g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 15mg | Sodium: 49mg | Potassium: 68mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 211IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 16mg | Iron: 1mg
The nutritional information for recipes on this site is provided as a courtesy and although theviewfromgreatisland.com tries to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures are only estimates.

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35 Comments

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    Please rate this recipe!




  • Reply
    A Trifle Rushed
    April 20, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    5 stars
    Wishing you a safe journey. What a delightful last bake in your present kitchen. I’ll have to wait until August for blackberries here, but will try these delectable bars then.

  • Reply
    Tricia
    April 20, 2012 at 4:23 pm

    5 stars
    Best wishes on your travels! This is a beautiful dessert. I may have to give this a try with a gluten free version 🙂 Thanks and be safe!

  • Reply
    Amy
    April 20, 2012 at 3:51 pm

    5 stars
    Ah thanks Sue for all the kind words! I feel the same way about your blog. Just on your last post I had one of those “damn, wish I thought of that” moments because I have been absolutely loving Turkish spices and flavors lately — those stuffed eggplants are on my list for the summer.

    And I’m so glad you liked these bars. I’ve been itching to try a berry/blueberry combination, it’s nice to see that they turn out great. The purple is beautiful!

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    April 20, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    5 stars
    Safe travels to CA! I live in San Diego, so here’s a welcome and a greeting from CA!

    I made some blackberry/mixed berry crumble bars last week. Yours look to die for good!

  • Reply
    Hungry Dog
    April 20, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    I’m going to make these either today or this weekend–they look amazing!

    Safe travels!!

  • Reply
    Claudia
    April 20, 2012 at 11:49 am

    I am now wishing I had some blackberries to use up – how welcoming this is! Wishing you safe and easy travels!

  • Reply
    From Beyond My Kitchen Window
    April 20, 2012 at 12:41 pm

    Oh boy do these look good. The color is gorgeous. Have a safe trip and I am looking forward to hearing about your new kitchen in California.

  • Reply
    Alyce
    April 20, 2012 at 1:13 pm

    Love anything with blackberrie!
    Safe travels.

  • Reply
    DaniBP
    April 20, 2012 at 11:49 am

    This recipe looks amazing, thanks so much.
    Safe travels to you, may it all go well and may you have fun along the way. Looking forward to your arrival in California!

  • Reply
    Ocean Breezes and Country Sneezes
    April 20, 2012 at 11:34 am

    What a delicious recipe you’ve made for your road trip! Hope to hear from you when you settle in CA! Travel safely!

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