Jan 20
2010

Oatmeal Chocolate Fudge Layer Bars Recipe

Oatmeal & Chocolate Fudge Layer Bars Recipe

If you’re going to fall off the wagon (the diet one, that is), you might as well do it with flair. I didn’t stop at flair, however. I comfortably moved on to gusto and pizzazz. What happened to the New Year’s Recipes for Weight Loss & Healthy Living? The day started with an innocent trip to the grocery store. Make a list and stick to it, the weight-loss experts say. Well, I made a list. That’s where my good intentions ended. One does not receive credit for making a list if one walks out of the grocery store with chocolate, butter, peanut butter chips, and brown sugar. The shopping trip ignited into a full-fledge baking inferno. From Chocolate & Peanut Butter Meringue Cookies (to be posted next week) to these layer bars, my oven got the workout that I badly need.

The original recipe for these tantalizing bars comes from The America’s Test Kitchen Family Baking Book. The adaptations I made, such as adding nutmeg and changing the types of oats used, were minor. The crust and topping, golden brown once baked, are chewy and pleasantly sweet, while the filling is rich and velvety. Well worth the guilt.

Crust and Topping:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F, with rack placed in the middle of the oven. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, leaving a 2-inch overlap on the sides. Spray the foil with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine 1 cup old-fashioned oats, 1 cup packed brown sugar, 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 teaspoon baking powder, 1/4 teaspoon baking soda, 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg and 1/8 teaspoon salt.


In medium bowl, melt 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter. Stir the butter into the oat mixture.


Reserve 3/4 cup of the oatmeal mixture for the topping.

Pour the rest of the oatmeal mixture into the prepared pan and press it firmly until it forms a flat crust.


Bake the crust until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool completely on a rack, about 1 hour.

Filling:
In a medium bowl, combine 1/4 cup all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup packed brown sugar, 2 teaspoons instant espresso or instant coffee, and 1/4 teaspoon salt.

Combine 9 ounces semi-sweet chocolate chips and 2 tablespoons unsalted butter in a medium bowl.


Melt in the microwave, stirring frequently, 1 to 3 minutes. The mixture will be thick. Scrape the chocolate mixture into a large bowl and let cool for about 10 minutes.


Whisk in 1 egg until thoroughly combined. Stir in the flour mixture until just combined.

Spread the chocolate mixture over the cooled crust and crumble the reserved oatmeal mixture over top.


Bake at 325 degrees F until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached and the sides of the filling start separating from the sides of the pan, 25 to 35 minutes.

Place the pan on a cooling rack and let rest until completely cool, about 2 hours. Holding onto the foil edges, remove the bars from the pan and cut into 16 squares.


Other layered bars:

Cookin’ Canuck’s Spiked Blueberry Crumb Bars
Brown-Eyed Baker’s Seven-Layer Bars
Gluten-Free Goddess’ Gluten-Free Layers Bars: Coconut & Chocolate Nirvana
The Kitchn’s Nanaimo Bars
Baking Bites’ Homemade Girl Scout Cookies: Samoa Bars
Picky Palate’s Pumpkin Spice Magic Bar Mini’s

Oatmeal Chocolate Fudge Layer Bars
Adapted from America’s Test Kitchen

Crust and Topping:
1 cup old-fashioned oats
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
1/8 tsp salt
8 tbsp (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

FIlling:
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tsp instant espresso or instant coffee
1/4 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups (9 oz) semisweet chocolate chips
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1 large egg

Crust and Topping:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F, with rack placed in the middle of the oven. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, leaving a 2-inch overlap on the sides. Spray the foil with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine oats, brown sugar, flour, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg and salt. Stir the melted butter into the oat mixture. Reserve 3/4 cup of the oatmeal mixture for the topping. Pour the rest of the oatmeal mixture into the prepared pan and press it firmly until it forms a flat crust.

Bake the crust until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Cool completely on a rack, about 1 hour.

Filling:
In a medium bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, instant espresso or instant coffee, and salt.

Combine chocolate chips and butter in a medium bowl. Melt in the microwave, stirring frequently, 1 to 3 minutes. The mixture will be thick. Scrape the chocolate mixture into a large bowl and let cool for about 10 minutes. Whisk in egg until thoroughly combined. Stir in the flour mixture until just combined.

Spread the chocolate mixture over the cooled crust and crumble the reserved oatmeal mixture over top.

Bake at 325 degrees F until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a few crumbs attached and the sides of the filling start separating from the sides of the pan, 25 to 35 minutes.

Place the pan on a cooling rack and let rest until completely cool, about 2 hours. Holding onto the foil edges, remove the bars from the pan and cut into squares.

Makes 16 bars.

Printable recipe

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{ 18 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Pink Panda January 20, 2010 at 6:38 am

Can I just say foodgasm? So yummy these bars look.

As for falling off the wagon – everyone does that. The trick is to not stay off it. Good luck :D.

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2 Tia January 20, 2010 at 7:24 am

this must be a weird coincidence b/c this week's tuesdays with dorie was pretty much this same recipe!!! looks good!!!

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3 Cookin' Canuck January 20, 2010 at 2:00 pm

Pink Panda – Too true! I am clawing my way back onto the wagon today.

Tia – That is a complete coincidence!

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4 April Cavin January 20, 2010 at 2:06 pm

These are so worth falling off the wagon for– and staying off! Moderation is key, so I'll take one for breakfast, lunch and dinner!

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5 ValleyWriter January 20, 2010 at 2:10 pm

I'm desperately trying to get back on the wagon – and these don't HELP!! (But, I think I'll save the recipe for a day when I'm ready to jump off :-D)

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6 Maria January 20, 2010 at 2:21 pm

Oh my those look decadent! I just went into sugar overload:)

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7 Barbara Bakes January 20, 2010 at 2:23 pm

Sometimes you just gotta bake! These look delicious!

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8 Vegetable Matter January 20, 2010 at 4:02 pm

Great way to use oatmeal. Didn't think it was possible, but you've created healthy AND decadent at the same time. And a great way to try to sneak some oats into our kids.

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9 LollyChops January 20, 2010 at 10:02 pm

Your photos are gorgeous! …and these looks delish too!!!

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10 Kalyn January 21, 2010 at 2:28 am

I'm closing my eyes! (Not really, but luckily I don't have ingredients for anything like that in the house.)

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11 Gera @ SweetsFoodsBlog January 21, 2010 at 3:51 am

What a marvelous combination chocolate and oatmeal, really very tempting :)

I've an award waiting for you at my blog!

Cheers,

Gera

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12 Ruth January 21, 2010 at 9:36 am

Deadly delicious!!

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13 preventionrd January 21, 2010 at 1:09 pm

Love your recipes, and this one sounds fantastic, as well!

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14 usa casino online January 21, 2014 at 1:25 am

You’ve really impressed me with that answer!

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15 5 Star Foodie January 21, 2010 at 3:56 pm

These do sound totally tempting!

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16 Donna January 21, 2010 at 5:25 pm

Just been browsing your website…wonderful recipes…I'll be back!

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17 Chef Fresco January 22, 2010 at 2:38 am

Oh wow, these look delicious!!

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18 Big Boys Oven December 7, 2010 at 12:21 pm

lovely lovely delicious bar recipe, I want more! :)

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