Caramel Apple Cream Cheese Cookies BarsSeptember 13, 2009
I spotted this recipe two days ago and made it today – the fastest turnaround yet, I think! As per usual, I did make some changes to the recipes, mostly to avoid buying stuff that I wouldn’t use again. The recipe below includes my notes and changes, but the original is linked above, and has great photos! I took these to a get together with friends and they were a huge hit! DH and I are thrilled to have leftovers.
Caramel Apple Cream Cheese Cookie Bars
3-4 Tablespoons melted butter
1 1/2 Cups graham cracker crumbs + approximately 2 Tablespoons of sugar
1 Roll Pillsbury Sugar Cookie Dough or 2 pkgs Betty Crocker Sugar Cookie Dough Mix prepared and divided into 2 equal parts
8 oz softened cream cheese
1/4 Cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
21 oz can apple pie filling
1.5 oz package Nature Valley Oats N’ Honey Crunchy Granola Bars (2 count), crushed
Smucker’s Caramel ice cream topping
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Combine melted butter and graham cracker crumbs into a large bowl; press into an 8×8 inch baking dish lined with foil that’s been sprayed with cooking spray. Bake for 10 minutes then remove from oven. Crumble half of the cookie dough over partially baked crust.
2. Place cream cheese, sugar and vanilla into a mixer; beat until smooth. Pour over crumbled cookie dough layer. Bake for 25 minutes then remove from over. Top with the apple pie filling. Next top with remaining cookie dough, breaking off into little pieces evenly over top. Sprinkle with crushed granola bars and bake for 25-30 minutes or until toothpick comes clean from center. Let cool completely then cut into squares. Drizzle caramel sauce over each bar. Refrigerate leftovers.
1. The original recipe called for Golden Grahams cereal for the crust. We don’t eat sugary cereals and I really didn’t want to purchase a box just for this recipe, so instead I fell back on the graham cracker crumbs I keep on hand for various baking escapades. I had to fiddle with the crumbs and butter to get a good consistency – the measurements above are estimates.
2. I didn’t really want to buy a whole bag of caramels that I’d just end up inhaling later, so I got pre-made caramel sauce to save me some time. We also don’t really use half-n-half around here. The less one-trick ingredients I have to buy, the better!
3. I got the granola bars in my work’s vending machine before leaving on Friday since, again, they aren’t something we’d eat a whole box of. Worked perfectly
4. In the last round of baking I did the 30 minutes recommended in the original recipe and feel like it was a little overdone. It was still inhaled by all of us, but I’d knock the time back a bit.