Buttery oat crumble makes for a delightful crust and topping in these Plum Bars. They’re easy to prepare in just under 15 minutes and make a tasty bar treat that’s great as a snack or for any summer gathering.
Plums are a sweet summer fruit, especially when fully ripen. There are several varieties with most being delicious to snack on, but they also make for tasty desserts like in these easy Plum Bars. A slightly sweetened plum filling is sandwiched together between a buttery oat crumble. It’s as if you are eating a fruit crisp in a bar form.
Why this recipe works
- It has a buttery and delicious oat crumble topping.
- You can serve warm, cold, or at room temperature.
- Takes only 15 minutes to prep.
- Made with 8 simple ingredients.
Before you begin
Take out the following baking equipment.
Digital kitchen scale
9 x 9-inch baking pan
Read the recipe through from start to finish.
Oats are an essential ingredient in the crumb crust and topping. Use old-fashioned oats when possible as they are larger and add more texture than quick-cooking oats, which would become too fine in the food processor.
Use unsalted butter (I always recommend for baking), as you are better able to control the amount of salt in a recipe. It’s important to use cold butter so that you can produce a crumbly topping as opposed to a cookie dough-like texture.
Cornstarch is the thickening agent used in this plum recipe filling. It’s added directly into the mixture and does not need to be premixed with a liquid. You should wait until the filling is bubbling before removing your pan from the oven. Instead of using 6.3 g (1 tablespoon) of cornstarch, you can substitute with 9 g (2 tablespoons) of all-purpose flour.
Types of plums to use
There are a variety of plums on the market, some more readily available than others. Use your favorite plums, but here are some recommendations.
Blackamber. This variety is very popular. It has dark skin, light-yellow flesh, and sweet when ripe.
Friar. These plums have black skin with light flesh. They are most flavorful when fully ripe.
Satsuma. These sweet plums have dark red skin with red flesh and work well in this bar recipe.
Damson. This purple-skinned, yellow-fleshed variety is tart. You can use Damson plums in this recipe but I would recommend increasing the sugar amount in the filling to offset some of the tartness.
How to make plum bars
Make the crust and topping. In a food processor, pulse the oats, all-purpose flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt a few times to combine. Add the cold diced butter to the mixture and pulse until a butter crumbly mixture forms.
Bake the crust. Press half of the dough in the bottom of your baking pan and bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden brown on the edges.
Make the filling. In a medium bowl, mix the plums, sugar, cornstarch, vanilla, and salt. Pour the mixture over the warm crust and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle the remaining dough over the plums.
Bake. Transfer to the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes or until the crumble is light golden brown.
Cool. Allow your bars to cool completely before cutting.
How to serve plum bars
Here are some ideas for serving these bars.
- Room temperature. The most popular way to serve these bars is at room temperature. If you are storing these bars in the refrigerator, set them out for about 30 minutes to come to room temperature.
- Cold. These bars are also delicious cold. If you prefer a firm texture, this is the way to serve them.
- Warm. Warm these bars in the microwave for about 10 seconds and serve with a scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream.
These bars are best stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week. The cold temperature will keep the texture of these bars intact. You can store these bars in the freezer for up to 3 months. Individually wrap each bar tightly with plastic wrap and place the bars in a freezer-safe container or wrap with aluminum foil. To serve, allow the bars to thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
Tips and takeaways
- You can easily make the crumb topping ahead of time and store in the refrigerator or freezer. You can also double the recipe and keep extra in your freezer for future use.
- For a warm flavor, add some cinnamon and nutmeg to the filling. Or for a burst of flavor, add the zest of a lemon.
- Refrigerate these bars for at least an hour before cutting to get an easy and clean cut.
- You can substitute with your favorite stone fruit or use a combination. Peaches and apricots would be delicious in these bars.
Love fruit bars? Try these other recipes…
Make sure to tag me @thesweetoccasion on Instagram and leave me a review below if you make these Plum Bars. I’d love to see your creations and read your feedback. And if you would like to make this recipe later, be sure to pin this recipe using the button on any of these images. Let’s make every occasion a sweet occasion!Print