I prepared a lot of holiday cookie trays for my baking business this season, and I was somewhat surprised by the overall favorite in a very unofficial poll of my customers. You would think frosted Christmas cut out cookies, chewy molasses cookies, or mint brownies would have been tops.
But, no. Surprisingly, these raspberry bars stole the show.
After trying them, you’ll see why. Rich, buttery shortbread is topped with not-too-sweet raspberry jam, and the pièce de résistance is the granola topping. These are crazy delicious.
Plus, no one knew how easy they were. It’s criminal.
Let’s get on with how to bake them, shall we?
First, make the shortbread crust. Combine softened butter, sugar, and vanilla with an electric mixer, then add flour, lemon zest, and kosher salt to form a stiff dough.
Pat the dough into a prepared pan lined with foil and sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. Pro Tip: Wet your hands to make it easier to work with the dough and press it evenly into the pan.
Spread 12 ounces (usually one small jar) of raspberry preserves evenly on top of the crust. Top with one cup of your favorite granola (I use either store-bought or this recipe for absolutely addictive granola).
Bake at 350 F for 40-45 minutes, or until lightly browned.
Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar when cooled, and cut into even squares.
2 sticks butter, softened
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
12 ounces raspberry preserves
2/3 cup granola
1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang on two sides so you can easily remove the bars when they are baked and cut into even squares (more on this handy trick here!), and spray with non-stick cooking spray.
2. Combine butter and sugar with an electric mixer until fluffy. Add the vanilla and mix to combine.
3. Whisk together the flour, lemon zest, and salt in a small bowl and add to the butter mixture. Then, mix until just combined – it will be a dry, stiff dough.
4. Pat dough evenly into prepared pan with wet hands to make it easier to work with the dough.
5. Evenly spread the raspberry preserves on top of the crust. Sprinkle granola evenly on top of the preserves.
6. Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until lightly browned. Let cool completely before sprinkling with confectioners’ sugar and cutting into squares.
Looking for more delicious bar cookie recipes? Try these!