As always, I’m convinced to make your summer the most delicious one you’ve ever had. I’ve got you covered on all of the basics: fresh summer salads, easy side dishes, and of course, plenty of wonderful desserts. In the spirit of summer, we’re throwing it back to the most incredible gluten free raspberry bars, AKA raspberry pie bars, baby.
Almost 5 years ago I remember testing these bars countless times to get the crumble perfect and the inside just sweet enough. Finally, I got to a place where I felt like fresh raspberries were than anything Smucker’s ever bottled up.
To me, they taste like a Nutri-grain bar (remember those?). I think you’re going to LOVE them as an afternoon snack with a cup of coffee or a glass of almond milk. And the best part? They’re easy to make with more nutritious ingredients than traditional raspberry bars. Trust me when I say this is the dessert of summer.
Ingredients in these healthy raspberry bars
These lovely raspberry pie bars are made with wholesome gluten free ingredients, making them a perfect bar to bring to any party. The crumble part is easy to make and the filling is SO simple, yet so GOOD. Here’s what you’ll need:
- Oat flour & rolled oats: using both oat flour and rolled oats give the base and topping of the bars the perfect texture. See below for more flour options.
- Brown sugar: we’ll be sweetening the crust and topping with some brown sugar. You can use coconut sugar if you’d like but you may not get the best “crumble.”
- Butter: feel free to use regular or vegan butter to give the crust and topping the right amount of moisture.
- Baking staples: you’ll also need baking soda, salt, vanilla extract, and almond extract. The almond extract really brings out the delicious raspberry pie flavor, so don’t skip it!
- Raspberries: the star of the show in this dessert! Feel free to use fresh or frozen raspberries in this recipe.
- Maple syrup: the filling is naturally sweetened with pure maple syrup.
- Tapioca flour: a little tapioca flour, cornstarch, or arrowroot starch will help thicken the filling.
Customize your raspberry bars
Not only are these bars easy to make but they’re also super easy to customize! Here’s what I can recommend:
- Try a new berry. Feel free to use blueberries, blackberries, or strawberries in the filling if you’d like to try a different berry flavor, or try my Blueberry Pie Bars or Strawberry Crumble Bars!
- Brighten them up. I love to add lemon zest to the crust and topping, plus a little fresh lemon juice and zest to the filling for an even brighter flavor.
- Get a little indulgent. A drizzle of melted white chocolate would be amazing over these raspberry crumble bars.
Can I use regular flour?
Sure! Feel free to mix all purpose flour or 1:1 gluten free flour with the rolled oats instead of using oat flour. However, you can easily make your own oat flour right at home using rolled oats — see below!
How to make your own oat flour
You can easily make your own gluten free oat flour by simply placing gluten free oats into a blender and blending/pulsing until they’re smooth and resemble a fine flour. This is probably the cheapest option. Check out my tutorial with all of my best tips & tricks. Always measure the oat flour after you blend to ensure that you’re using the proper amount called for in the recipe.
How to make healthy raspberry pie bars
- Prep your pan. Line an 8×8 inch square baking pan with parchment paper and generously spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- Make the base & topping. In a large bowl, mix together all of the “crust” ingredients until well combined. Add in the coconut oil and stir with a fork until clumps begin to form and resemble a wet sand look.
Form the crust. Place 1 ¾ cup of mixture into your pan and use your hands to evenly press the dough to the bottom. Place the remaining dough for the topping in the fridge.
- Make the filling. Add the filling ingredients to a pot over medium heat and use a wooden spoon to press down and break apart the raspberries. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce heat and cook for a couple of minutes until the mixture thickens up and no large raspberry pieces remain.
- Assemble & bake. Pour the mixture over the crust layer and use a spoon to evenly spread. Then sprinkle the remaining crumb mixture evenly over the raspberry filling. Bake it up until the filling is bubbly and the topping is golden.
- Cool, slice & serve. Allow bars to cool completely on a wire rack before transferring to the fridge to chill. Use a sharp knife to cut into 12 bars and serve!
How to store raspberry crumble bars
- In the fridge: I recommend storing these healthy raspberry crumble bars covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- In the freezer: yes, these raspberry pie bars are freezer-friendly! Once they’re completely cooled, simply place them in an airtight container and pop them in the freezer for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to enjoy one, just let it thaw a bit in the fridge before eating.
More fresh fruit desserts
I hope you love these raspberry crumble bars as much as I did. If you make this recipe, be sure to tag #ambitiouskitchen on Instagram or leave a comment and rate the recipe below to let us know how you liked them. xo!
Raspberry Bars with Oatmeal Cookie Crumble
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 35 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Incredible raspberry bars made with an oatmeal cookie crumble and a fresh raspberry jam filling. These gluten free raspberry pie bars are easy to make and perfect for using up fresh or frozen raspberries! Enjoy them at room temp or straight from the fridge for a wonderful summertime treat.
- For the base + topping:
- 1 1/2 cups gluten free oat flour (or sub all purpose flour or 1:1 gf all purpose flour)
- 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats, gluten free if desired
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar (or sub coconut sugar but you may not get the best ‘crumble’)
- ¼ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- Optional to make it lemon flavored: zest from 1 lemon
- 8 tablespoons butter or vegan butter stick, melted
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon almond extract
- For the raspberry filling:
- 3 heaping cups fresh or frozen raspberries
- 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon tapioca flour or arrowroot starch (can also use cornstarch)
- Optional to make the with a hint of lemon flavor: zest from 1 lemon and 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- Pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8×8 inch pan with parchment paper and generously spray with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
Make the base + topping: In a large bowl, use a fork to mix together the oat flour (or flour), oats, coconut or brown sugar, baking soda, salt and lemon zest, if using. Add in melted butter, vanilla extract and almond extract and stir until a nice crumble forms and dough begins to clump together.
Place 1 3/4 cups of the mixture into the prepared pan and place the remaining mixture into the fridge (the remaining mixture will be used for the topping). Use your hands to evenly press the dough to the bottom of the pan.
Next make your raspberry filling: place a medium pot over medium heat. Add in raspberries, maple syrup, vanilla extract, tapioca flour or arrowroot, lemon zest and juice, if using, and salt. Use a wooden spoon to press down and break down the raspberries just a bit.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 3-5 more minutes until mixture is thickened up and nicely coats the back of a wooden spoon. Pour mixture over the crust and use a spoon to spread evenly over the base.
Take the remaining topping out of the fridge. By now there should be some nice crumbles that have clumped together. Sprinkle the topping over the filling.
Bake for 30 minutes or until the filling is bubbly and the topping is golden. Allow bars to cool completely on a wire rack before transferring to the fridge to chill. Bars are delicious served at room temperature or straight out of the fridge. Use a sharp knife to cut into 12 or 16 bars before serving.
Feel free to use blueberries or strawberries instead of raspberries.
See the full post for tips, tricks, storing instructions and ways to customize these bars!
Servings: 12 bars
Serving size: 1 bar
Saturated fat: 4.1g
Recipe by: Monique Volz // Ambitious Kitchen | Photography by Eat Love Eats
This post was originally published on June 12th, 2018, and republished on May 17th, 2023.