Triple Berry Crumb Bars is a sweet and easy gluten-free dessert recipe that’s packed with fresh, juicy berries. Made with fridge and pantry staples, this recipe comes together in minutes.
Hello, hello – I hope you had a wonderful week! School is still in session though the boys and I have easily and unknowingly slipped into a summer state of mind. I thought it was Friday starting on Tuesday – which usually makes for a tortuously long week – but it’s simply because each day has felt more carefree then the previous. The little boys and I have been outside as much as possible blowing bubbles, going on walks, drawing with chalk, and playing in the sand (volleyball court not beach #midwestproblems.) Dinners have been made on the fly when we’re too hungry to stay outside any longer, and running through the sprinkler has passed for evening baths on more then one occasion (though definitely not on “beach” day – I’m not that chill.) Here in the Midwest, spring is really just a word, as we seem to go straight from winter into summer with a few thunderstorms in between. And, although this winter was one of the longest I can remember, it now feels like a distant memory. Viva summer!!!
Speaking of seasons I don’t get angry thinking about, today I’m sharing the recipe for Triple Berry Crumb Bars, aka summer in dessert form! I made these as a sweet and easy Mother’s Day dessert idea but we’ll be making them all season long as they’re packed with three of summer’s juiciest berries – blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries – sandwiched between a simple crumb mixture that acts as both the crust and crumb topping. I am completely attached to each berry in this recipe, by the way, as you can really individually taste them all!
Growing up I had a huge soft spot in my heart for the Triple Berry Pie from Perkins (or was it Village Inn?) which these bars were inspired by. Pie in bar form – how bad could that be?! Well, better, because they are so much easier to make. No rolling, crimping and feverish praying required (all steps to making gluten-free pie, in my experience.)
I tested this recipe a couple different ways, with varying amounts of berries and different kinds of sugars, and what I landed on is a real winner. That’s what Ben said anyway, as he shoveled bar after bar into his mouth warning me that he might just eat the whole dang pan. My in-laws are also in town for a visit and my MIL taste-tested a couple options then chose the recipe she liked best, which I’m sharing here. I guess you could say this was a collaborative dessert effort!
As I mentioned, I plan on making a batch of these Triple Berry Crumb Bars for the Mother’s Day BBQ we’re hosting this weekend – the recipe makes enough for a crowd – though I’ll definitely be whipping them up as often as possible over the next few months when berries are at their most delicious. As written, the Triple Berry Crumb Bars are gluten-free, easily made dairy-free (I used vegan butter so Lincoln could have some,) and get better as they sit and soften so feel free to bake a day ahead of time.
Ok, ok – let’s get on with it!
Start with a near bushel of fresh berries – you’ll need 1 pint blueberries plus 6oz each blackberries and raspberries.
Add the berries to a bowl then gently stir together with 1/2 cup white sugar and 1 heaping Tablespoon gluten-free flour (I use King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure Flour for all my baking.) Set the berries aside.
In a large bowl, stir together 1/2 cup each white and brown sugar, 1 teaspoon each baking powder and cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 3 cups gluten-free flour. Again, I used King Arthur Gluten-Free Measure for Measure flour but no matter which blend you use be sure it includes a binder, versus a plain gluten-free flour like almond flour, coconut flour, etc.
Add 1 cup (2 sticks) cold butter or vegan butter cut into cubes plus 1 large egg whisked with 1 teaspoon vanilla then stir to incorporate the egg. Switch to a pastry cutter or your fingers then start crumbling the mixture until only small pieces of butter remain. You could probably do this by pulsing in a food processor too.
Scoop a little more then half the mixture into a nonstick-sprayed 9×13″ baking dish then press down firmly with your hands or the back of a measuring cup to form the crust.
Spread the berry mixture on top, then squeeze handfuls of the remaining crumb mixture in your hands to make big clumps and crumble evenly over the berries. Last stop – oven! Bake for 38-40 minutes at 375 degrees, or until the topping is light golden brown, rotating the pan 180 degrees halfway through.
Let the bars cool completely before slicing into squares and devouring. It’s tempting to eat these bars warm but truly they get better and better as they sit, cool and slightly soften. YUM!!! Think I’ll go snag a square right now. ;) Hope you love this sweet and easy berry-packed recipe – enjoy!
Triple Berry Crumb Bars
Triple Berry Crumb Bars is a sweet and easy gluten-free dessert recipe that's packed with fresh, juicy berries. Made with fridge and pantry staples, this recipe comes together in minutes.
- 3 cups + 1 heaping Tablespoon gluten-free “measure for measure” or “all-purpose" flour, divided (could use regular all-purpose flour if you don’t need to eat GF)
- 1 cup white sugar, divided
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) cold butter or vegan butter, cubed
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 pint blueberries
- 6oz raspberries
- 6oz blackberries
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees then spray a 9x13” baking pan with nonstick spray and set aside.
- In a medium-sized bowl add berries, 1/2 cup white sugar and heaping Tablespoon gluten-free flour then gently stir to combine and set aside.
- In a large bowl, stir together remaining 3 cups gluten-free flour, remaining 1/2 cup white sugar, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Whisk egg and vanilla together in a small dish then drizzle over the flour mixture and add cubed butter. Use a fork to stir everything together then switch to a pastry cutter or use your fingers to blend until small crumbles of butter remain. Scoop a little more then half the crumb mixture into prepared pan then firmly press into an even layer. Pour berries over crust then spread into an even layer. Squeeze handfuls of remaining crumble into clumps with your hands then crumble evenly over berries.
- Bake for 38-40 minutes or until crumble topping is light golden brown, rotating baking pan 180 degrees halfway through. Check on bars at the halfway mark then place a piece of foil on top if crumble topping is browning too quickly. Uncover for the last 8-10 mins to let crumble get golden brown. Cool bars completely before cutting into small squares and serving. Bars soften as they sit (and get better, in my opinion!) so store in the refrigerator if not eaten within 24 hours.
This recipe is courtesy of Iowa Girl Eats, http://iowagirleats.com.