Sour Cherry Almond Bars




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Sour Cherry Almond Bars ~ these brown sugar and oatmeal cherry almond bars are officially my new favorite sweet snack!  The cherries are nice and tart, the almond scented crumble dough is chewy and butterscotch-y ~ these are a must make!

Gather ’round if you love cherries, especially sour ones…these little sour cherry almond bars are destined to become favorites.

The word ‘crumble’ features in so many of my desserts here on rvfgi.  I just love the ease of this kind of recipe, and the way it can play with so many different kinds of fruit fillings.  Here the sour cherries mingle nicely with the brown sugar and oats, which in turn make these bars extra chewy.   Once cooled they’re easy to eat right out of hand, so even though I photographed them with a fork, you won’t need one.

Because these are so sturdy, they’re ideal for grabbing and going.  Think school, work, or travel (once you’ve made these you’ll never be a slave to pricey airport food again.)  Lunch boxes, care packages…absolutely.  This recipe makes a lot ~ you’ll get 20 decent bars ~ so you’ll still have some leftover for kitchen counter snacking…my favorite kind.

Crumble recipes can be so convenient when you use the same dough for the bottom crust and the crumble topping.

The topping bakes up and spreads just enough over the jammy surface while still allowing those vibrant cherries to peek through.  Kinda perfect.

Ingredient spotlight: SOUR CHERRY JAM

You’ll need some sour cherry jam for these bars, and I’m a big fan of Stonewall Kitchen, which is the one I used today.  It’s got that extra tang that only sour cherries can give you.  And although you could certainly make these bars with regular cherry jam, the flavor won’t be the same.  The recipe calls for 12 ounces of jam, and this jar is 12.5 ounces.  It was meant to be.  Don’t throw away the jar, either, it makes a great salad dressing shaker!

What are sour cherries?

  • Sour cherries (or Montmorency) are a variety of cherry that is very tart, and has a very short growing season.  Unless you frequent a farmers market, or are part of a CSA, you probably won’t see them in their fresh form.
  • Sour cherries are usually sold dried, frozen, or juiced.  And of course you can enjoy them in jam and other preserves.
  • If you’re lucky enough to live in the right area (California, Michigan or Wisconsin for instance) you might be able to pick your own sour cherries, check for your location in the PICK YOUR OWN farm locator.
  • Sour cherries can be in season from June through August, depending on where you live.

Try my SWEET CHERRY ALMOND BARS if you’d like to try this with fresh cherries, and feel free to sub in fresh sour cherries in that recipe if you can source them.

Are you getting the message that I like the combination of cherries and almonds??  I also have this fun RAINIER CHERRY ALMOND TART which makes use of yet another variety of cherry.

*Lightly adapted from Better Homes & Gardens

Sour Cherry Almond Bars
Rate this recipe
2 ratings

Category: dessert, snack

Yield: makes 20 bars

Sour Cherry Almond Bars

Ingredients

  • 1 cup ( 2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 packed cups brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 12 ounces sour cherry jam

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F
  2. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper with long ends. The parchment is optional, but helps with lifting out the bars for easy cutting later. If you don't line the pan, spray or butter it lightly.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Scrape down the sides of the bowl.
  4. Beat in the egg, baking powder, and almond extract.
  5. With the mixer on low, beat in the flour, one cup at a time, and then the oats. Finish the mixing by hand with a big spoon, and fold in the almonds.
  6. Remove 2/3 cup of the dough and set aside for the topping. Then press the rest into the bottom of your pan. I like to crumble it all over the bottom first to distribute it, and then gently press with my fingers. Make sure to get the whole bottom surface covered.
  7. Top the dough with the jam, spreading it out into an even layer, and then crumble the remaining dough in little pieces over the top.
  8. Bake for about 35 minutes, just until the topping starts to turn golden.
  9. Let cool in the pan, on a rack, and then gently lift the bars out with the ends of the parchment paper to cut them into 20 pieces.

Make it your own ~

  • I think chopped walnuts would be a good substitute for the almonds.
  • Other jams would work, I like apricot, marmalade, or lemon curd.  Hint: you can always add a little lemon juice to jam to give it some extra zing.
  • Regular rolled oats have the best texture for these sour cherry almond bars, but if you only have quick cooking oats, use them.

 

Don’t forget to pin these Sour Cherry Almond Bars

Sour Cherry Almond Bars ~ these brown sugar and oatmeal cherry almond bars are officially my new favorite sweet snack! The cherries are nice and tart, the almond scented crumble dough is chewy and butterscotch-y ~ these are a must make! #dessert #cherries #sourcherries #cherrybars #cherrycake #sherrysquares #cherrycrumble #coffeecake #cake #sourcherryrecipe

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  • Reply
    Almond Bars recipe
    October 24, 2018 at 5:03 am

    […] sugar and oatmeal cherry almond bars are officially my new favorite sweet snack!  The cherries are nice and tart, the almond scented […]

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