These Strawberry Crumb Bars are loaded with lots of sweet, fresh strawberries sandwiched in between a buttery crust and topped with plenty of delicious brown sugar crumb topping. It’s like strawberry cobbler in bar form. Serve chilled or slightly warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream…pure summer time dessert heaven!
There are 3 parts to these yummy bars; the crust, the strawberry filling, and the crumb topping. It may seem like a lot but once you prepare the crust it goes in the oven to bake for about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, you can whip up the strawberry filling and the crumb topping so by the time the crust is done all you have to do is layer everything together and BAM, in the oven it goes to become a buttery crusted, strawberry loaded with brown sugary crumb topping sweet treat. Or something like that.
If you love strawberries this dessert is right up your alley. Strawberries are one of my favorite fruits so anytime a fruit option comes up, I usually will pick strawberry. In this recipe I used 5 cups of fresh strawberries that I cut up into small chunks. Frozen strawberries will work perfectly fine just make sure you use frozen sliced strawberries so they spread into a even layer over the crust. And then, as you can see below, we do not skimp when it comes to the crumb topping.
Let’s break down the 3 layers of these bars shall we.
The Crust: Only 3 ingredients. All purpose flour, powdered sugar, and melted butter. Simple and to the point. You’ll want to use this crust to make all sort of baked goods. It works especially well with fruity desserts like the one we’re enjoying today. All you do is combine the flour and sugar into a bowl and pour the melted butter over it. Mix it together, it comes together so easily that you don’t need to use a mixer if you don’t want too. Once the crust is prepared, line a 9×13 inch baking dish with parchment paper. I think parchment paper works best because it prevents the bars from sticking to the pan and also makes it easy to lift the bars from the pan once they’ve cooled. Pour the dough into the baking dish and use your hands (don’t be shy) to spread it out. You can always use the flat side of a spoon to help even out the crust but using your hands is quicker and more fun (at least I think so!). This crust bakes for 20 minutes so while that’s doing it’s thing in the oven we can move on to the filling and crumb topping…
The Strawberry Filling: You’ll need 5 cups of strawberries cut into smaller pieces. I used fresh strawberries but you can use frozen too, just make sure you get sliced frozen strawberries (if possible). Put your strawberries into a bowl and toss them with 1/2 cup of sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract. Toss the strawberries until everything is evenly coated. You can set the strawberries aside while you move on to the crumb topping.
The Crumb Topping: It’s debatable whether or not this is the best part of these bars. While the buttery crust and sweet strawberries certainly hold their own in this recipe, this crumb topping is definitely on point. The crumb topping is just as easy as the other layers, it’s just all purpose flour, brown sugar, melted butter and a little bit of almond extract. Combine your flour and brown sugar and then add in the melted butter and start mixing it together with a fork. Add in the almond extract and continue to mix everything together until thoroughly combined and sticky. Now your ready to put everything together.
By now your crust should be done. Or finishing up. Once the 20 minutes is up pull your crust from the oven. Luckily we don’t need to wait for it to cool, we can just start building the layers from here. Pour the strawberries over the crust and evenly spread them out so they cover the entire crust. Then, take the crumb topping mixture and break it up into crumbs with your hands and cover the strawberries with them. It may seem like too much crumb topping but you want to use all of it. Once the crumb topping is distributed over the strawberries you can pop the whole dish bake into the oven for about 45 minutes.
Allow the bars to cool before cutting, about 30-45 minutes. These bars stay moist and buttery for days, but store any leftovers in an airtight container to maintain freshness. You can either chill them in the refrigerator and serve them cool or warm them up in the microwave and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
For the Crust
- 2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 Cup Powdered Sugar
- 2 sticks 1 cup unsalted butter (melted)
For the Strawberry Filling
- 5 cups Strawberries cut into smaller pieces
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
For the Crumb Topping
- 2 cups All Purpose Flour
- 1 Cup Light Brown Sugar packed
- 10 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1 Teaspoon Almond Extract
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 inch baking dish with parchment paper and set aside. In a mixing bowl, combine flour, powdered sugar and melted butter. Mix together until thoroughly combined. Pour the mixture into the baking dish and spread the mixture out with your hands so that it forms a crust. Place the crust into the oven for 20 minutes.
- While the crust is baking you can assemble the strawberry filling and crumb topping. In another mixing bowl, combine cut up strawberries with sugar and vanilla extract. Toss strawberries until evenly coated and glossy. Set aside.
- Now prepare the crumb topping. In a mixing bowl combine flour, brown sugar and melted butter. Start mixing together and add in almond extract. Mix everything together with a fork, mixture should resemble crumbs and be sticky. You'll break the mixture up more with your hands later.
- Once the crust is done baking remove it from the oven. Pour strawberries over the crust and evenly smooth them out so they cover the entire crust. Break the crumb topping up more with your hands and distribute it evenly over the strawberries. Make sure to use all the crumb topping. Place the baking dish back into the oven for 45 minutes.
- Once the bars are done baking remove from the oven and allow them to cool for about 30-45 minutes. Cut into bars and serve.