Hello Baking Buddies– This year for my birthday, my father-in-law wrapped up those hugs bags of walnuts and pecans from Costco for much appreciated birthday gift! I feel rich with all those nuts sitting in the cupboard, just waiting to be baked into something yummy.
So last week it was Chocolate Pecan Bars– and today I’m trying out these Caramel Pecan Oatmeal Bars. I’m heading over to my in-laws house for a little lunch in a bit, so I’ll take Stu a little plateful to show him how I’m putting his pecans to good use!
CARAMEL PECAN OATMEAL BARS
3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 stick), room temperature*
1 1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups oatmeal
1 1/2 cup flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup caramel sauce**
1 cup pecans, chopped
With an electric mixer, beat together the butter, brown sugar, eggs and vanilla until smooth. Then mix in the oatmeal flour, baking powder and salt.
Take 1 cup of the mixture out and set aside for the topping. With your fingers spread the rest of the oatmeal mixture into a 9″ x 13″ baking dish that has been sprayed with cooking spray to completely cover the bottom. Pop this into a 350 degree oven for just 12 minutes.
When the bottom layer comes out of the oven, drizzle on 1 cup of caramel sauce. Crumble up the one cup of oat mixture that you set aside into coarse crumbs over the top of the caramel. Sprinkle on the pecans.
Put the whole thing back into the 350 degree oven for 20 to 25 minutes until it’s lightly golden on top. Let the bars cool completely before cutting them into little squares.
*If you’re taking the butter from the fridge (like me), put it into the microwave for 10 seconds to soften it up.
**The recipe I worked from gave instructions for making your own caramel sauce from scratch, but I love Hershey’s caramel sauce and also saving a little time, so that’s what I used. But if you’re a caramel making whiz, you can stir up your own caramel!