Apple Crumble Fruit Bars

Featuring an irresistibably buttery crust that doubles as a crumb topping these bars are just sweet enough for kids to gobble up, while also giving them their daily fruit serving from apples, pears, and Juicy Juice 100% apple juice.

INGREDIENTS
Serves: 24

Apple Filling
1 cup Juicy Juice 100% apple juice item #17895
2 large sweet apples, peeled cored and diced into 1/2 inch pieces (about 2 cups)
1 ripe pear, preferably Bartlett, peeled, cored and diced (about 1 cup)
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons corn starch
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Crust and Topping
2 cups + 1/4 tablespoons of Juicy Juice 100% apple juice
2 cups all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1/2 cup old fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
3 tablespoons sugar

DIRECTIONS

Apple Filling
1. Preheat oven to 350˚F. Coat a 9”x13” baking pan with cooking spray.
2. Stir 1 cup apple juice, apples, pears, 1/2 cup sugar, corn starch and cinnamon together in a large saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and stir constantly. Remove from heat when mixture bubbles and thickens.

Crust and Topping
1. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a good processor fitted with the steel blade attachment. Pulse several times to combine. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal.
2. Drizzle 1/4 cup apple juice over the crumbly mixture, and pulse again to moisten. Open lid and squeeze a handful of the mixture together. If it holds together it is moist enough, if it doesn’t hold together repeat drizzling and pulsing with the remaining 2 tablespoons of apple juice.
3. Transfer 1/2 cup of the crumbly mixture to a small bowl and set aside. Transfer the remaining crumbly mixture to the prepared baking dish and press into the bottom to form a smooth surface with the back of your fingers.
4. Top the crust with the apple and pear mixture, spreading it out evenly. Stir oats, walnuts (optional) and 3 tablespoons sugar into the 1/2 cup of crumbly mixture to make topping.
5. Sprinkle topping over the apple mixture, bake until the fruit bubbles along the edges and the topping is golden (42-50 minutes).
6. Let cool and then chill completely. Cut into 24 bars for serving.

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