It’s strawberry season! This is my first of many strawberry recipes, and it’s a good one. Strawberries and Cream Almond Crumble Bars are an easy recipe to share at your next picnic or barbecue. The crust is dense and buttery and the strawberries and cream filling is rich and sweet. The almonds provide the perfect amount of crunch on top.
Don’t be intimidated by the length of the ingredient list and the steps. You will have a few extra dirty bowls, but the ingredients are simple and each layer only takes a minute or two to bring together. It will surprise you how quick these bars go in the oven.
If you don’t have ground almonds/almond flour lying around (I didn’t!), here’s an easy fix. I bought my sliced almonds for the topping, then tossed a heaping 1/4 cup into the food processor and ground them into a powder consistency. Make sure not to grind them too long, or they’ll turn into almond butter.
You’ll want to keep an eye on your bars in the oven, since you can’t do a ‘toothpick test’ to determine when they’re done. The edges should be browned, but not burnt. The middle should be very lightly browning, and your bars shouldn’t jiggle when you move the pan.
After I took my bars out of the oven, I allowed them to cool completely on a wire rack. Once your bars reach room temperature, they are ready to be sliced and served. I placed my pan into the refrigerator for another 2 hours until the bars were completely chilled (this is optional). I wanted to allow the flavors some extra time to meld and I wanted to serve them cold. With it being summer and all, I will take all the cold desserts I can get!
This is a great recipe to make ahead for an event or get together. I think they taste just as great, if not better, the next day.
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup almonds ground
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup unsalted butter melted
- 8 ounces cream cheese room temperature
- 1 large egg room temperature
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 cups strawberries cored and quartered
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/4 cup almonds sliced
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x9 square baking pan with parchment paper, leaving some overhang on each side for easy removal after baking.
In a large bowl, combine the flour, granulated sugar, brown sugar, ground almonds*, and salt. Pour in melted butter and stir to combine until entire mixture is wet and crumbly. Measure one cup of mixture and reserve for crumble topping later.
Pour remaining flour mixture into the bottom of the parchment lined 9x9 pan. Press down firmly using a spatula or your hands, creating a level, solid crust.
Next, mix the cream cheese, egg, granulated sugar, and vanilla extract in a bowl with a hand mixer for about one minute, or until fully incorporated. Pour cream filling mixture over the crust and spread evenly to the edges of the pan.
In a separate bowl, stir to combine the strawberries, granulated sugar, and cornstarch. Spoon strawberry filling across your cream filling and spread gently to the edges of the pan.
Sprinkle reserved crumble topping over the strawberry layer along with 1/4 cup of sliced almonds. Some strawberry filling will show through.
Bake uncovered for 35 to 40 minutes, or until edges are browned and top is lightly browned.
Allow to cool completely before lifting bars from the pan. Slice bars into squares and serve, or store in refrigerator. Bars can be served room temperature or cold.