A mom's journal of the sweet things in her life...

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Oatmeal Butterscotch Bars

Browned butter, dark brown sugar, oatmeal, butterscotch chips...that's what these bars are made of. Pure yumminess. And the best part? They're different. Something new to throw into your repertoire. And? No peanut butter. Not that I don't love the stuff, but when do you find a recipe that has all that good stuff and no peanut butter? Never, at least I haven't. And with my son's nut allergy, I find it torture to see all the great recipes out there for squares that unfailingly contain peanut butter.
And don't even get me started on peanut butter substitutes. I've tried them all. They smell good, they look just like peanut butter, but then you taste it. Gross. Bitter with a weird aftertaste that it's impossible to describe.
Anyways. I digress. These bars are a great nut free solution for a different kind of bar that isn't chocolate. And while chocolate will always reign supreme in my view, these are a nice alternative. Delicate and buttery, and speaking of butter, the browning of it adds a hint of nuttiness sans nuts. Win-win.

Recipe for Oatmeal Butterscotch Bars
(Adapted slightly from:  Mel's Kitchen Cafe)
For the bars:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups oatmeal
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup butterscotch chips
1 cup (227 grams) butter
1 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
2 tsp. vanilla
For the glaze:
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
2 Tbsp. dark brown sugar
1 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. water
1/4 tsp. kosher salt (if using regular table salt, decrease to 1/8 tsp.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. and adjust an oven rack to the middle position. Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with foil, leaving an overhang for handles on the shorter sides of the pan. Spray with non-stick cooking spray. 

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, baking soda, and salt, set aside. Place the 3/4 cup butterscotch chips in a large bowl, set aside. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat and allow butter to brown to a medium golden color. Watch it closely so it doesn't burn. Pour the hot butter over the butterscotch chips and whisk together until melted and smooth. Whisk in the brown sugar until incorporated. Then whisk in the egg and vanilla. Stir in the flour mixture, just until completely moistened - don't over-mix.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and spread until evenly distributed. I used my hands and patted it down. Bake the bars about 16-18 minutes, until golden brown.

For the glaze, place the 1/4 cup butterscotch chips, brown sugar, butter, water and salt in a small microwave-safe bowl. (Don't even think about omitting the salt - it makes the glaze!) Microwave the mixture until melted and smooth, about 2 minutes on 50% power. Whisk to combine well. The glaze is a bit stiff. If needed, microwave it for a further 10 seconds to loose it. Drizzle the glaze over the bars while they're still warm. Let the bars cool completely in the pan. Remove the bars from the pan using the foil overhang and cut into squares. 


  1. Ooh, yum! Unfortunately I don't love butterscotch...so I think I might add the peanut butter in, but having this alternative for your kiddo is great! Bookmarking :)

  2. Another delicious looking butterscotch recipe. Oh, I guess the last one was carmels. Another recipe I'm going to have to try!!


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