Friday, January 28, 2011

Cappuccino-Caramel Oat Bars


There is just something about a cold, snowy day that gives me the urge to bake, especially something sweet.  On our most recent snow day I decided to make these cappuccinio-caramel oat bars that made my house smell so amazing.  They consist of a coffee, walnut and oat crust, topped by caramel, another layer of the coffee, walnut and oat mixture and topped off with chocolate and walnuts.  These were so simple but so very delicious.

Although it's hard to beat a good cookie, bar cookies run a close second.  Bar cookies provide the same level of enjoyment and taste but with half the effort.  With cookies you have to scoop, form and drop them and then there is the dreaded worry of the finished product and if it's going to be the right consistency or texture.  Don't worry, this doesn't mean you won't be seeing cookies anymore you'll just be seeing a lot more bars.  The next time you get the urge to bake something sweet, try these bars.  They are simple and so easy to assemble and they taste fabulous!  

Cappuccino-Caramel Oat Bars



One year ago today: Garlic Knots  
Ingredients:

3 Cups rolled oats
2 1/3 Cups all purpose flour
1 Cup chopped walnuts + 1/2 cup
1 Teaspoon baking soda
1/4 Teaspoon salt
1 Cup butter, softened
2 Cups packed brown sugar
2 Eggs
1 Heaping tablespoon instant coffee grounds
2 Teaspoons vanilla
1 Cup caramel ice cream topping
1/2 Cup chocolate chip morsels, semi-sweet

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 9x13 pan and set aside.

In a large bowl stir together the oats, flour, 1 cup chopped walnuts, baking soda and salt then set aside.  Place the butter large mixing bowl and beat with an electric mixer on medium for about 30 seconds.  Add the brown sugar and beat until well combined, scraping the sides of the bowl occasionally.  Gradually add the flour and oat mixture to the butter and sugar mixture until all is combined.  Once the mixture is combined reserve two cups for the topping.

Lightly flour hands and press the mixture in preapared 9x13 pan.  Spread the caramel topping over the oat mixture to within 1/4 inch of the edges.  Drop spoonfuls of the reserved topping over caramel mixture.  Sprinkle with 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and 1/2 cup chocolate chips. 

Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until edges are set (do not overbake). 

Recipe Source: Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens

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