Warning: The recipe I’m about to share is not healthy or balanced, but it is amazing. I’m not sure where my mother came across this recipe but for as long as I can remember when it was her turn to bring a snack for whatever sport, dance or music event we had going on she whipped up a batch of crack bars. To be fair, my mother didn’t call them crack bars although I think that would have been hilarious and she would have been popular at PTO meetings. She calls them “homemade granola bars”, but like crack from your first bite, you are hooked. Now that I have been making the “homemade granola bars” for many, many years I understand why they were SusieQ’s go-to snack/dessert, because they are freakin easy.
– 1 package of yellow cake mix
– 3 cups of rolled oats or quick oats
– 1 jar of preserves (13oz)
– 1 stick of butter (melted)
Combine the first 2 ingredients (dry), mix well then add the melted butter. This recipe is going to require that you get a little dirty, mix these ingredients with your (clean) hands. The mixture shouldn’t be too wet but it should stick together, if that makes any sense.
Next, you’ll need a 13×9 casserole dish. Use about 2/3 of the mixture and coat the bottom of the dish, you want to pack the mixture either using an open hand or wax paper. Then spread the entire jar of preserves over the first oat layer mixture, to make this easier I usually heat up the preserves. Sprinkled the remaining 1/3 of the oat mixture on-top of the jar allowing enough space that the jar peeks through this layer.
Bake at 350 for about 20 minutes, but it will depend on your oven. You will know it is done when the jam starts to bubble and the top layer looks golden. Some prefer these straight from the oven, while I think they are best when allowed to cool and firm over night.
Wondering about the side of booyah? In an effort to multi-task, I hopped on the tready with my school books and decided I would get my sweat on for 20 minutes and then walk while reading for the remaining 40 minutes. Guess what? I ran 2 miles in 17:14 and that included a 1:30 warm-up. I couldn’t believe it. I’m so thrilled that I’m almost back to my old running pace.
Now I’m off to help my husband fold and put away our mountain of laundry. Nighty night!