Blueberry Crumb Bars

So, a few weeks ago my friend Laura from Tide & Thyme posted these blueberry crumb bars. They looked so crazy good I wanted to make them immediately! I picked up some blueberries when I was grocery shopping the next day and set out to make it happen.

As I read the recipe more carefully though, I started to get the nagging feeling that I’d already made the blueberry crumb bars. And sure enough, I went and dug through my archives only to discover that I had not only made the recipe, but blogged it way back in 2009. This happens more frequently than I’d care to admit; I can’t tell you how many recipes I’ve pinned only to subsequently figure out they weren’t actually new-to-me. I guess that’s what happens when you’ve been blogging for nearly six(!!) years and have the worst memory ever…

Blueberry Crumb Bars

I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to update that old post, this time with photos that didn’t totally make me cringe and also with updated directions that were more clear. I hope to do this every now and then going forward with recipes from the archives. Some of our favorites are hiding out in the posts from the early days of this blog! There’s a very good chance most of you guys haven’t seen them since I’m pretty sure the only readers at that time were were my mom, Shane, and his parents :)

Blueberry Crumb Bars

Blueberries are still readily available here, so hopefully you can get your hands on some too. These blueberry crumb bars are a can’t-miss summer dessert! I’ve made quite a few fruit bars like this, but this recipe is definitely among my favorites. The crust is buttery and rich, the perfect base for the thick layer of sweet blueberries sitting on top of it. The final layer is a streusel topping, and I think we can all agree a streusel topping is never a bad thing! These blueberry crumb bars can be thrown together in no time with just a few bowls and spoons, they’re so simple. And they’re good keepers too – just pop them in the fridge and they’ll be delicious all week, though I doubt they’ll last more than a day or two.

Blueberry Crumb Bars
adapted from AllRecipes via Smitten Kitchen

Crust/Topping
1 cup granulated sugar
zest of one lemon
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
1 large egg, lightly beaten

Filling
juice of one lemon
1/2 cup granulated sugar
4 teaspoons cornstarch
4 cups fresh blueberries

Preheat oven to 375 F. Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray. Line the pan with parchment paper leaving an overhang on opposite sides to lift the bars out after baking. Spray the parchment with nonstick cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine the sugar and lemon zest. Rub the zest into the sugar until the sugar is moist and fragrant. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt to the bowl and whisk to combine. Add the butter and egg to the bowl, and use a pastry cutter to cut them in until the pieces of butter are no larger than small peas – the mixture should look like coarse meal. Transfer half of the mixture to the prepared pan and pat into an even layer to form the crust.

In a medium bowl, stir together the lemon juice, sugar, and cornstarch. Add the blueberries, and toss gently to coat them evenly. Pour the blueberry mixture over the crust and spread evenly. Crumble the remaining crust/topping mixture over the blueberries to cover.

Bake for 40-45 minutes, or until topping is golden brown and the filling bubbles around the edges. Remove the pan to a wire rack and allow the bars to cool completely in the pan. Once cool, use the parchment “handles” to lift the bars out and cut into squares (I actually like to refrigerate them for an hour or two before cutting – it makes for neater squares). Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.