Last month my sweet friend Bonnie, City Home / Country Home, posted this recipe for Cherry Bars for her 12 weeks of Christmas Cookies. She adapted the recipe from one her mother makes. It’s a not too sweet bar cookie that is topped with pie filling. The batter puffs up around the pie filling creating a pretty almost stain glass look (especially Bonnie’s beautiful cookies.)
Lucky Leaf recently sent me several of their pie fillings to review, including their Premium Cherry Pie Filling. I decided Bonnie’s recipe would be a perfect way to highlight and test out the cherry pie filling. I think it’s a great pie filling. It has a bit more of a citrus flavor than other brands I’ve used in the past, which I liked. I also liked that it has 30% more fruit, which is especially important in this recipe because you dollop a little bit in 24 squares across the batter.
This is a really easy recipe to make. It’s fun to watch the cookie puff up around the filling. I think I may have used more filling than Bonnie and hers look prettier, but I did love having a bit of fruit in each bite. Thanks Bonnie for sharing the recipe. I can see why it’s a family favorite.
I made a couple of changes to the recipe to suit our tastes. Below is my adapted recipe. I’m not crazy about almond extract, so I substituted extra vanilla. I’ve also reduced the amount and type of salt in the recipe.
- 8 oz. of butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 4 large lightly beaten eggs
- 2 cups of flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 can cherry pie filling (I used Lucky Leaf Premium Cherry)
- Preheat the oven to 350º F. Butter a 17"x12"x1" sheet cake pan.
- Cream the butter and the sugar. Add the eggs one at a time and mix just until blended. Add vanilla.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the flour and salt together. Stir into the creamed mixture just until blended. Spread into the prepared pan.
- Mark the batter into 24 squares by pressing lightly into the top of the batter with a sharp knife. Spoon 1 tablespoon of fruit filling into the center of each square. Do not press it into the batter (the batter will puff up around the filling as it bakes).
- Bake for 35-40 minutes or until the batter is golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the middle of the batter comes out clean. Let cool on a wire rack.
- Cut into bars and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
This post is part of a 12 Weeks of Christmas Cookies blog hog. Be sure and check out all of the fabulous cookies the other 12 weeks of Christmas Cookies bakers baked up this week.