My family doesn’t agree about much, but the vote was unanimous on this one. This is the best dessert I’ve made in recent memory. These apple bars are ultra-gooey with buttery butterscotch goodness. I’m talking 3 sticks of butter buttery-goodness. Paula Deen has nothing on this recipe.
A combination of butter, dark brown sugar, finely diced apple chunks, and butterscotch morsels make a sinfully rich fall dessert. I dressed these apple bars up with some vanilla ice cream, an easy caramel sauce, and some delicious Caramelized Apple Chips I made recently.
But I’ll be honest. These Butterscotch Apple Bars are stars all on their own. You could totally skip the apple chips. And the caramel sauce. And the ice cream. OK, maybe you want a little ice cream. Any kind of baked apple dessert does call out for some vanilla ice cream. Anyway you serve them, these bars are absolute heaven.
Make sure you finely dice the apples or they will be crunchy. If you want larger apple chunks without the crunch, place the diced apple in a microwave-safe bowl, loosely cover with plastic wrap and microwave in 20 second intervals until slightly softened.
The caramel sauce is a slightly adapted recipe from The Pioneer Woman. It is not a true caramel sauce, but it is super easy (no candy thermometer needed) and delicious.
Butterscotch Apple Bars with Caramel Sauce
- 3 sticks butter
- 2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3 large eggs
- 2 cups dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup peeled and finely diced apple
- 1 1/2 cups butterscotch morsels
- Vanilla ice cream
- Apple Chips, optional
- 1 packed cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup half-and-half
- 4 tablespoons butter
- Pinch salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter and line a 9-inch pan with parchment paper. Let the sides of the paper extend over the edges so you can lift the bars out of the pan.
- Place butter in a medium microwave-safe bowl and microwave for 20 second increments until melted. Let cool slightly.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, and vanilla for a good 1-2 minutes. Whisk in melted butter.
- In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt.
- Fold dry ingredients into wet just until incorporated. Fold in apples and butterscotch morsels.
- Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for about 40 minutes. They should still be a little gooey in the middle. Let cool before cutting into squares.
- For the caramel sauce, place brown sugar, half and half, and butter in a small saucepan. Heat over medium-low heat, whisking gently for 6 to 8 minutes, or until gets thicker. Remove from heat and add in vanilla extract and salt. Cool slightly before using.
- To serve, top an apple bar with ice cream, drizzle with caramel sauce and add a few apple chips on top if desired.