Grandma’s Oatmeal Fudge Bars

This is a recipe my grandma used to make when I was little. It is great for family get-to-gethers, church functions, bake sales and pot lucks because these bars make a ton and are always a hit with both adults and kids.

These bars have a sweet smooth layer of chocolate-fudgey goodness is nestled between a crust and topping made with wholesome oatmeal. I find that these bars provide just the right amount of sweetness without being tooth-achey-sweet which makes these a favorites for adults and children.
My grandma always made these using a 10×15 jelly roll pan when making these bars. Using this size pan ensure even baking of crust and filling and increases the amount of bars you get out of the recipe. I did not have a jelly roll pan so I baked mine using a 9×13 pan. If you do this the crust for the bars and the fudge layer are thick and don’t cook quite as evenly as I had to bake mine for about 35 minutes for the fudge layer to set which made my crust a little dry and over done. Either way they tasted super yummy but I think I will put off making these again until I buy a jelly roll pan for even tastier results.
NOTE: This recipe is from
a hand written cookbook my grandma gave me. I am not sure where she originally got the recipe, if you know its origin let me know and I will cite it.
I rate these bars an 8 but they would be a 9 using a 10×15 pan and the amounts below
Grandma’s Oatmeal Fudge Bars
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons Vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teasponn baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
3 cups Quaker quick cooking oatmeal.
2 cups Semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 can Sweetened Condensed Milk (15 oz.)
2 Tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 teaspoons Vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts (optional, walnuts or pecans) *I did not use
Preheat oven to 325.
Grease and flour a 10×15 jelly roll pan. *I used a 9×13 pan
In a large bowl sift together flour, soda and salt. Set aside.
In large mixing bowl. , beat together softened butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
Add eggs, one at a time and beat until combined. Add vanilla and mix well.
Slowly add the sifted flour mixture and mix until combined. Stir in oatmeal.
Gently spread 2/3 crust into bottom of prepared pan. Reserve the rest for topping.
Make the filling:
Over Medium-Low heat, melt together chocolate chips, sweetened condensed milk, 2 tablespoons butter, and salt. Stir until smooth. Remove mixture from heat and stir in vanilla and nuts if using.
Evenly pour filling mixture of crust but keeping filling about a 1/4 inch away from side of pan so it does not stick to side while baking. Evenly dollup top of filling with remaining oat mixture. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until topping is light brown and fudge layer set but not solid. Don’t overbake these bars or they can become dry.

Cool in pay on rack until set. Can chill to set faster. Keep stored in airtight container either room temp or in fridge.

*I used a 9×13 pan and baked for 38 minutes for the fudgey layer to set but this caused the crust to be a little too done compared to my grandma’s bars baked in a jelly roll pan. The bars were also a little hard to cut because of the thickness of the crust and filling. They were very good though! Everyone at work raved about them and there no complaints.

Oatmeal Carmelitas

Look at those bars! Who does not love the combination of caramel and chocolate?

Wow, I had forgotten how great these bars are. I love the texture of the slighlty crisp crust with the gooey caramel layer filled with nuts and chocolate.
I have been making these since high school (one could say it was my “signature” dessert back then). The recipe comes from our dear friends at Pilsbury and is so easy I used to have it memorized.
The thing I love about these bars is that they are great warm, room temperature or even straight out of the fridge (which is where I keep them during the summer months or the caramel gets a little too gooey for eating with your hands). The oatmeal/brown sugar crust provides a nice and hearty base for these bars and keeps them from being overly-sweet.
I rate these bars a 9
Here is the recipe directly copied from the website. My changes are in red.
Oatmeal Carmelitas

2 cups Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose or Unbleached Flour (I used Gold Medal)
2 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
1 1/2 cups firmly packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups margarine or butter, softened (I used butter)

1 (12.5-oz.) jar (1 cup) caramel ice cream topping
3 tablespoons Pillsbury BEST® All Purpose or Unbleached Flour (I used Gold Medal)
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I used 1/2 cup Milk chocolate and 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips)
1/2 cup chopped nuts (I usually use Walnuts but omitted nuts this time)

Heat oven to 350°F.
Grease 13×9-inch pan.
Lightly spoon flour into measuring cup; level off. In large bowl, combine all crust ingredients; mix at low speed until crumbly. Reserve half of crumb mixture (about 3 cups) for topping. Press remaining crumb mixture in bottom of greased pan.
Bake for 10 minutes or until light brown.

Meanwhile, in small bowl, combine caramel topping and 3 tablespoons flour; blend well.

Remove partially baked crust from oven; sprinkle with chocolate chips and nuts.
Drizzle evenly with caramel mixture; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture.

Return to oven; bake an additional 18 to 22 minutes or until golden brown.

Cool 1 hour or until completely cooled. Refrigerate 1 to 2 hours or until filling is set.
Cut into bars.

Raggety Top Bars

because that is the adjective used in the title of these delicious little bars.
Raggety Top Bars.

This recipe comes from a hand written cookbook given to me by my wonderful grandma. She is the baker of all bakers. I have many childhood memories centered around her delicious baked goods (breads, chocolate chip cookies, scones and biscuits to name a few)
I loved going to her house as she always had some yummy goodies baked up for me to enjoy. I don’t remember these bars but my mom sure does. These are one of my mom’s favorite bar recipes that my grandma used to make for her. My grandma does not remember where this recipe originated so I am giving credit to her, (If someome knows who created the original, let me know and I will cite them).

Upon first looking at this recipe I thought it looked deliciously similar to my Basic Blondie recipe. It is very similar, however the base of these bars are not as ooey and toffee-like as the base of the blondies. Don’t get me wrong though, these bars are very very good and are made all the better by the sinful chocolate/coconut/nut topping that blankets the top of them. The topping is thick and gooey and oh so good. It does firm up as it cools but it still may it difficult to store as stacking the bars on top of eachother may cause the bars to stick together.

If you like the Basic Blondies and have run out of combinations of add-ins, try adding a topping to them. This recipe is a great and will definately be made again. Next time I may use butterscotch chip instead of chocolate for the topping and try toasting different nuts to stir into the topping. If desired you could also stir nuts, chips or dried fruit into the batter for the bars before baking (however, I do like that the topping is the main focus of these basic bars).

In any case, I love a recipe that has unlimited possibilites and that allows you to truly make the recipe your own!
I rate this recipe a 6.5

Raggedty Top Bars
1 3/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp baking powder
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup butter (very soft)
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla
*Raggedty Topping (recipe below)

Preheat oven to 325. Grease a foil lined 9×13 pan.
In a mixing bowl, beat together the butter, brown sugar, egg and vanilla. Slowly mix in the flour, baking powder and salt just until combined. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 27-35 minutes or until golden on top. Remove bars from oven.

Place dollups of Raggedty Topping evenly over bars using a greased spoon (do not spread).
Return bars to oven for 2 minutes or until topping is spreadable. Remove and with a buttered knife gently spread topping over bars. If desired sprinkle more coconut and nuts over top of bars. Return to oven and bake for 6-7 minutes more.

**Prepare topping with 5 minutes of baking time left on bars

Raggedty Topping
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1 cup chocolate chips (can use butterscotch chips instead) *I used 1/2 milk and 1/2 semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 TBS butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup chopped nuts
1 cup shredded coconut

In a pan over low heat, stir together the syrup, chips, butter and vanilla until chips are melted. Remove from heat and stir in coconut and nuts.

**NOTE: Next time I would double the topping recipe, it was so good and the bars could have handled more.

White Chocolate Toffee Pecan Blondies

White Chocolate Toffee Pecan Blondies

Here it is, the end all and be all of Blondies. I am a sefl proclaimed Chocoholic and this recipe rivals any brownie recipe I have made or tasted.

This recipe rocks not only because of its flavor, but also because its base uses ingredients almost everyone has on hand at all times (egg, flour, butter etc).

It is so simple to whip up because the butter is melted, you do not need to wait for it to come to room temp making these the perfect last minute dessert. Plus the recipe is super versatile; you can stir in any addition you can think of to suit your tastes making them a totally different treat each time you bake! This one recipe will literally give you a thousand different dessert options by mixing up what you use for “add ins”. I have not come across a bad combination of “add ins” yet and I have made these a hundred times or more. I dare you to see if Blondes really do have more fun.

*For the blondies pictured I used 1/2 cup white chocolate chunks, 1/4 cup toffee pieces and 1/2 cup toasted Pecan pieces.

I rate this recipe a 9

Basic Blondies
6-7 TBS butter, melted
1 cup brown sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking powder (optional, creates lighter blondie texture)

“Add in” (see below)

Preheat oven to 350.
Line an 8×8 pan with foil and lightly spray with PAM.
In a large microwave safe mixing bowl melt the butter. Allow to cool for 5 mintues. Mix the brown sugar with the melted butter and beat until smooth. Beat in egg and then vanilla. Add salt, stir in flour and baking powder (if using). Mix in any additions (some ideas below).

Pour into prepared pan and use a greased spatula to evenly spread mixture in pan and level the top. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until set in the middle. (I baked for 22 minutes)Cool on rack before cutting.

Add in ideas:
1/2 to 1 cup chocolate chips, peanut butter chips, white chocolate or butterscotch chips
1/2 cup chopped pecans, walnuts, almonds
1/2 cup M&M candies1/2 chopped Reese’s PB cups
1/4 cup toffee pieces
1/2 tsp mint extract in addition to, or in the place of vanilla extract