Strawberry Shortcake Crumble Bars

A beautiful spring or summer dessert is Strawberry Shortcake Crumble Bars.  They remind me so much of Good Humor Strawberry Shortcake frozen bars.  You remember those, don’t you?  The bars with the strawberry ice cream in the middle, surrounded by a crunchy exterior with strawberry bits on the outside?  I was not a strawberry ice cream kind of kid (loved licorice ice cream, however…don’t ask) but something got me about these frozen treats.  I just loved them!

So, to recapture your youth and give mom something to smile about this Mother’s Day, you ought to make Strawberry Shortcake Crumble Bars!

The first thing we are doing to make this awesome dessert is make the crust and the crumble topping at the same time.  That helps to make this a quicker recipe to create.  Cream butter and brown sugar in a mixer until creamy and then add the egg, beating until it’s combined.  Next comes the flour, salt and vanilla.  Once mixed together,  firmly press 3/4 of the mixture into the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking pan.

Bake this until the edges are light brown.  Once the crust comes out of the oven to cool, take the remaining quarter of crust mixture and crumble it over a baking sheet that’s lined with parchment paper.  Bake the crumble until it is golden, about 10 minutes.  Let this cool completely.

Meanwhile, beat the cream cheese with confectioners’ sugar until it’s combined.  Move it to a large bowl and set it aside.

Clean out of the bowl of the mixer and beat the heavy cream until medium-stiff peaks form.  Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture and then fold the strawberries in.  Spread this over top of the cooled crust.

Finally, crush up the shortbread crumble over the top of the filling and sprinkle with freeze-dried crushed strawberries.  Refrigerate this for at least two hours and up to overnight.

Now tell me this doesn’t look like one of those Good Humor treats just in a bar form (and not frozen)!  Don’t eat too many of these tasty bars!

Strawberry Shortcake Crumble Bars

Makes: 12 bars

Prep Time: 25 minutes Cook Time: 25 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes plus 2 hours chilling

1 cup unsalted butter, softened

1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1 large egg, room temperature

3 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 tsp kosher salt

1 tsp vanilla extract

8 ounces cream cheese, softened

1 cup confectioners’ sugar

1 cup heavy whipping cream

3/4 cup chopped fresh strawberries

2 tbsp crushed freeze-dried strawberries

 

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with baking spray with flour. Line pan with parchment paper, letting excess extend over sides of pan.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and brown sugar at medium-high speed until creamy, 3 to 4 minutes, stopping to scrape sides of bowl. Add egg, beating until combined. Add flour, salt, and vanilla, beating until a dough forms. Firmly press three-fourths of dough into bottom of prepared pan.

Bake until edges are light golden brown, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely in pan. Leave oven on.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Crumble remaining dough onto prepared pan. Bake until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Let cool completely.

Clean bowl of stand mixer and paddle attachment. Using the paddle attachment, beat cream cheese at medium-high speed until smooth. Reduce mixer speed to medium-low, and add confectioners’ sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, beating until combined after each addition. Transfer to a large bowl, and set aside.

Clean bowl of stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, beat cream at medium-high speed until medium-stiff peaks form. By hand, fold the whipped cream into cream cheese mixture in two additions. Fold in chopped strawberries, and spread in an even layer on top of cooled crust.

Crush shortbread crumbles into smaller pieces, if necessary. Sprinkle evenly on top of filling. Sprinkle with freeze-dried strawberries and refrigerate, uncovered, for 2 hours or up to overnight.

Using excess parchment as handles, remove from pan, and cut into bars. Store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.

Recipe by Bake from Scratch

 

Ingredients

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