Golden raisins, walnuts and spices reminiscent of apple pie make these light and airy Fresh Apple Spice Bars the perfect sweet treat. Make these during apple season or anytime you are craving a apple treat.
Fresh Apple Bars Recipe
If you love celebrating the fall season, these Fresh Apple Spice Bars might be the perfect treat for you. However, don’t restrict making this lovely apple dessert to only September and October. These bars have been enjoyed by so many throughout the year. They are light, airy and fill the house with the aroma of freshly ripened apples.
When I think of the perfect accompaniment to an afternoon session of coffee or tea, these Fresh Apple Spice Bars come to mind (so do mini crumbles, but that’s another story). But let’s not forget about the holidays. These bars are perfect for a holiday dessert buffet because not everyone likes pies! If I’m entertaining, I like to place a walnut on top of each bar as a way to alert anyone with allergies that nuts are part of this recipe.
Looking For More Fresh Apple Recipes? Try These:
- Individual Puff Pastry Apple Tarts with Almond and Cinnamon
- Cinnamon Apple Bundt Cake
- Chunky Apple Snack Cake
- Upside Down Apple Pie
- Baked Apples with Maple-Walnut Sauce
How To Line A Baking Pan With Parchment
- With a pencil, trace the bottom of your baking pan onto a sheet of parchment paper.
- Cut the parchment paper about six inches longer on each side so it hangs over the sides of your pan. It should only hang over on one side, as seen in the above picture.
- Press the paper in the pan, making a crease at the edges, making sure it fits tightly into the bottom. Remove the paper.
- Spray nonstick cooking spray onto the sides and bottom of the pan and place parchment on top. The cooking spray helps the parchment stick to the pan and helps keep the parchment from moving when adding the batter to the pan. Using clothespins to hold the parchment in place during batter addition is also really helpful.
How To Make Fresh Apple Spice Bars
- Prepare your baking pan with parchment (instructions above)
- Whisk together dry ingredients, making sure they are fully combined
- Blend together butter, sugar and other wet ingredients. Gradually mix in flour, making sure to not overmix
- Stir in apples, raisins and walnuts
- Bake in a 350 degree F oven for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean
- Cool in the pan for 15 minutes before removing
- Cool completely before dusting with confectioners’ sugar
Tips For Making Fresh Apple Spice Bars
- Measure and prepare all ingredients before getting started
- The recipe calls for a 9 x 13 pan and the Magic Pan is my favorite for baking. It has excellent heat conduction, gives the perfect angles and the sides of your bars/cakes will be edge-less and not over baked. I use it for everything.
- Use parchment to line your pan (directions are above)
- The batter is thick so hold down your parchment with clothespins
- Use a small, offset icing spatula to smooth your batter into place
- Do not overmix the batter once you add the flour
- Start checking bars with a toothpick after 25 minutes in the oven to see if they are done
- Let cool for 15 minutes in the pan before removing to a wire rack.
- If you want perfectly clean cut edges, cover bars tightly once cooled and refrigerate them overnight.
- Use a ruler to measure bars before cutting for uniformity of squares
- Dust with several layers of powdered sugar right before serving.
More Fresh Apple Recipes:
- Classic Apple Pie with Maple Whipped Cream
- Apple Cheese Crisp
- Butterscotch Apple Cake
- Apple Chai Cake with Maple-Cream Cheese Drizzle
- Slow Cooker Apple Pie Spiced Pear Applesauce
Make a batch for yourself and pack up at least a dozen of these bars and run them over to a friend’s house. You know they will truly appreciate it!
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Fresh Apple Spice Bars
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 tsps baking powder
- 1 tsp apple pie spice*
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp table salt
- 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
- 2 cups packed golden brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1-1/2 cups chopped Granny Smith apples, peeled, diced (about 2-3 apples)
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/4 cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a medium sized bowl, Whisk together flour, baking powder, apple pie spice, cinnamon and salt. Set aside.
- With a stand or electric mixer, blend butter and brown sugar; about 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla, blending until smooth. Gradually add flour mixture and blend only until incorporated (do not overmix). Stir in apples, raisins and walnuts. The batter will be very thick.
- Prepare a 9 x 13 pan (my favorite is the magic pan) by either liberally coating it with cooking spray or lining it with parchment, which is the preferred method. (See instructions in the post on how to line a baking pan with parchment paper.) Spread apple batter into the prepared pan and bake in the oven for about 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- If you lined your pan with parchment, let the bars cool for 15 minutes in the pan on a wire rack. Lift them out of the pan with the overhanging parchment on each side, otherwise wait until the bars are completely cool before cutting them into squares before removing.
- Sprinkle squares with powdered sugar when they are completely cool.
[email protected] Cutting Edge of Ordinary says
As long as it’s great food…the season doesn’t matter to me! Looks great!
Man, I need to just spend about a week going back through all the recipes I’ve been drooling over and start making them!
I know how to fix that looming big butt problem though…just start inviting us out like P-Dub does! ;o)
I do the same thing. I crave fall foods all year round. I think it is because they are most comforting. Chili, pumpkin bread, anything that is spicy cinnamon-y sounds good to me any time. Those bars look great, but I’d have to remove those sneaky blonde raisins. They scare me.
Apple bar crack – that was awesome.
These look amazing! We’ve still got the spring weather going on back here in MA, which is similar to fall weather, so these bars would be perfect!
I always love fall flavors. I’ll drink apple cinnamon tea all year long. If I could find them, I’d eat pomegranates all year long. But that’s an addiction all unto itself. 🙂
I could eat a half dozen of these right now. They look so tempting.
I feel weird if at least a couple times a month I do not make my normal fall/winter dishes. The same way I feel weird if I do not grill out a burger every now and then in the winter time.
Looks amazing and still a good treat here since our weather is Spring screwy.
Yes, apple-y is a word! Yes, golden raisins are sublime! With one minor adjustment (Cough *pecans* cough) these would be perfect!
Looks de-lish to me. Whatcha got in pumpkin, I just opened a big can the other day and only used 1/2 c.
cathy I crave a TON of pasta salad in the heat. I don’t know why.
But your bars with a ton of stuff on them is PERFECT anytime of year. Damn those look good!
Wonderful! I haven’t had my breakfast yet and I could so see myself eating one of those bars with my coffee!
I made a very fall like pot of chili for dinner yesterday, so yes I understand craving for “fall” food!
Stacey Snacks says
Great minds think alike.
Did you see my post today?
I made a fall apple cake, when I should be making rhubarb crumbles!
You’re talking to a huge apple fan here, these look amazing! There is nothing like an apple dessert, nothing!!
Barbie with a T says
Those look absolutely moist and delicious. So you are addicted to crack! lol
Auds at Barking Mad says
I was sure, after picking more than 25lbs of apples this past autumn that I’d never want to see another one again. I was up to my elbows in apple everything. But I could very well be tempted to make these. They sound so yummy and they look divine.
I love apple crack too, LOL! These look delicious and i love apple anything any time of year. I love the golden raisins and nuts in here…yum!
Natasha - 5 Star Foodie says
Those are looking delish, love the apples and raisins and nuts!
These look great. I am in Seattle and we are experiencing some extremely fall-like weather (I assume you are too.) When I walk outside and can see my breath in morning, apple starts to sound really great.
Culinary Wannabe says
Oh I bet these would be so good with a big scoop of ice cream! And I think it always works out that way that we want what’s not in season. I see it as helping the economy, since you end up forking over a boatload for strawberries in the dead of winter.
Very scrumptious looking bars, I like apple anytime of the year. Love the spices in there too, make the house smell wonderful when you bake this.
Oh Cathy – you have me craving one of these. Yet another recipe of yours I want to try.
tom | tall clover farm says
Another winner, but I think I’ll modify it one little bit to add a few more needed calories: maple glazed icing.
Rachel (S[d]OC) says
I definitely crave off-season foods all year long. That does kind of mean buying non-local produce, which is supposed to be the wrong thing to do, but sometimes the craving just hits you. I’d eat these apple bars happily in the middle of July.
Not that I would know anything about hot spring and summer weather. Warmth seems to be a foreign concept here in NY.
Your egg photo is excellent. It reminds me either of googly eyes or breasts!
Falling backwards just looking at them Cathy. They’re a bit like the blondies I make, but they tasted better! I will be making these again and again.
Yummy! And good any season!
Mental P Mama says
Oh how wonderful!
The Duo Dishes says
Oh yes, treats like these in the house will expand your bum! They look good enough to eat the entire pan. Yum!
Cathy- These were wonderful. I like to eat out of season so to speak, otherwise I get sick of the same things. I am not a raisin lover either, but the golden ones in this recipe were amazing. The bars were just ridiculously delicious, your pictures are gorgeous which made me make them like now. And thanks for the apple pie spice recipe, didn’t have one:)
wow these look great , pam
Yummy, and these are healthy, so I can cancel that gym membership as well.
Dallas from Bitchin' Lifestyle says
Having just celebrated the arrival of spring here in Montreal (finally), I can’t say I’m craving anything about fall. I try to forget that any seasons besides spring and summer exist. BUT I do love me some apples. Those creations look fantastic. And, I know this may sound weird, but your mixing photos (dough, batter etc) always get me. They are so striking and they make me really hungry.
“I love me some apple bar crack.”
I laughed out loud when I read this!
These look fantastic!
Well it looks like spring but feels like fall so I would say that it wouldn’t be abnormal to want these now!
Fun House Jennifer says
Mmmmm! No–I don’t mind apples and pumpkin year round either!
Blond Duck says
I would definately eat these in the 100 degree SA heat!
Mmmm! Apples, walnuts and spice are nice anytime!
Funny you should mention this as I keep thinking about homemade applesauce and a pork roast. But who would eat that with me in SoCal in May?
these look delicious! i made pumpkin scones on mother’s day and will be making pumpkin muffins to use up the rest of the can. they were yummy… even if they’re out of season : )
If, like me, you’re too lazy to dice your apples, you can quarter them, feed the quarters through the shredder blade of your food processor, and, voila! Little apple pieces! and most of the skin will stay on top of the blade; that which ends up shredded helps you meet your fiber requirements for the day. And now I want apple crack, too!
Season doesn’t matter too much to me in terms of food! I crave for weird things at weird times =) Looks sooo yummy!
So beautiful… the apple bars and the photos! I love the way you lay it all out. Nice blog.
I just came across your site from The Hungry Housewife… I will have to keep up with it!
I’ve been known to make a pumpkin pie in July, just because. You know. My mom always kept some sliced apples in the freezer so we could make apple cake in the summer. Smart. Sometimes you have to feed the craving! I can’t wait to try these bars!
These apple bars were amazing! I make apple and pumpkin recipes all year long, just because they are my favorites and I really crave them! These turned out divine!
Apple spice bars are right anytime of the year…there is nothing better. I’ve made these twice already. They were so moist and delightful with my afternoon tea.
Woman in a window says
Tell me you are 978pounds. How can you make all of this delicious stuff and not be? (Thanks for the how to on the apple spice, too.)
Cathy at Wives with Knives says
I Loved this dessert. I kept nibbling until I ate the whole batch. Oops.
gfe-gluten free easily says
Ah, we’ve both been in a apple frame of mind. 🙂 I’m crazy about pumpkin, too, so I’ll eat that any time. Sometimes I have frozen pumpkin (from cooking a fresh pumpkin), but otherwise, I’ll make do with canned. All our family loves these treats all year long.
When you move, you’ll start feeding all your workers and making new friends with your goodies when you go into “town.” I just know it. 😉
WOW, such a treat…would love to try it! Love your pictures…
I made pumpkin bread over the weekend even though it was wildly out of season! Then I put these bars in the oven and oh my gosh…they are amazing! Thank you.
I love apple baked goods 365 days of the year. No seasons need apply.
And I’m pretty sure with all the yum you’re cooking up, you will find some new friends to share your bounty with really quickly.
Yum..love those chunky apples and raisins in there. Fall is my favorite season (in areas where they have seasons) so I’m all for eating autumny foods year round!
Do you EVER sleep???? Moving and baking and blogging and being a mom and wife….you put me to shame….but I love you…I want to be you when I grow up…but if truth be told…I am probably old enough to be your mom…those look de-lish…I love the picture of all of the goodies ready to be mixed in….yummmmmmmmmmmmmm
I had this exact kind of craving and made some apple muffins. Then I saw your post and made these too! They ware so good!
first of all, i’m so glad you used golden raisins instead of red. bleck. secondly, although apple pie is probably my favorite dessert, this will definitely do in a pinch, like when i’m too lazy to make a pie…which is most of the time. 🙂
Cathy, these were so good. I love apple “anything” so you have an appreciative reader here, but these were exceptional.
Lovely looking bars! I think they’re perfect for any season
You’ll be so busy, you will work off all the calories you eat. But, if end up with chickens or dogs, you can always share extra food with them. My chickens and dogs love scraps. The dogs only get meat scraps now because they are all so fat. That makes the chickens happy cause they get fed more.
These are perfect for any time of year, I would think. I know my husband would love them. I am always tempted to buy that apple pie spice you have pictured. I will have to grab one next time and give these bars a go.
Hi Cathy .. I have to comment .. I love the picture of the egg yolks = fantastic!!
Just visiting San Diego from the UK .. one day I’ll make the trip up the coast and find your little valley ..
Go well – Hilary Melton-Butcher
Those were yummy. And yes I have that problem too. I live in Phoenix and I’m always wanting to make stews and foods that just aren’t great for 115 degree days, but I make them anyway. My whole family loved these.
Can’t say that I do, but now you’re got me thinking. I could never say no to any slow braised meats regardless of season.
We (well, mostly hubby) crave apple desserts all year round. Lucky thing that apples are available all year round. These bars were absolutely delightful. Thank you so much for the recipe.
Imagine scroll down slowly and those two bright yellow eggs come into view and I burst out laughing. Don’t ask. These bars look super yummy though!
I just finished baking these bars and I had my doubts as the batter was so sticky and thick. I was wondering what I did wrong, but it has come out fantastic the kids love them. thank you
These were amazing! I love making anything baked anytime of year. Just do.
Ya know… in all your baking, have you ever come across a muffin recipe with carrots, zucchini and ginger? There a local nursery with a small rustic coffee shop that makes carrot zucchini ginger muffins. Oh how I want to make my own. If anyone knows of something like that (or could create it) it’s you! They were so delightful!
I made these last night….FANTASTIC! I prepped more apples than I originally needed, which is fine as they are so popular I’m making a 2nd batch tonight. This recipe is stuck in our family cookbook from this moment on!
This looks scrumptious!
Becky Todd says
Have you tried this with any other flour rather than the all purpose white flour?
I’m sorry I have not.
this sounds AMAZING! thanks for sharing
Thank you, they are so good.
Lauren Kelly says
My family LOVES these! The flavors and all of the spices are delicious!
Absolutely delicious! These were perfect for my fall party!
So glad to hear that!
Loved these yummy bars! A perfect blend of Fall flavors!
They really are!
These were really good! Everyone at my house loved them!
That makes me so happy to hear.
I make this every apple season and throughout fall, they are so good. Everyone loves them.
We totally loved these.
They are good.