Trail Mix Bars
Trail Mix Bars are something special. I loved how these tasty bars turned out. I started with a friend’s Congo Bars recipe. I added, dried pineapple, papaya, mango, figs, craisins, almonds, oatmeal, coconut, and lastly–M&Ms!!! Yum. This is a dense bar just filled with goodies. They are chewy in places, crunchy in places, and oh-so good. I was actually trying to come up with some kind of a breakfast bar-type cookie, but this is probably more like a dessert since it has so much sugar. 🙂
I got the idea for these, oddly enough, after making the Tropical Key Lime Bars a few weeks ago. Those bars have dried pineapple and mango in them and I loved the chewy taste of the dried fruits in those cookies. So, I thought to myself, why not make something along the line of Trail Mix cookies or bars? I would expand upon the fruits and other ingredients and try to make a bar-type cookie that’s similar to eating trail mix–albeit a little sweeter!
I was at our local H-E-B grocery store a few weeks ago when I saw a stand in the produce section with all kinds of dried fruits. I could have gotten cherries and blueberries, too. But I wanted to use more tropical fruits instead of dried berries. I was really happy with how these turned out.
If you want a marvelous bar-type cookie that tastes like Trail Mix, then make up a batch of these jewels sometime. They include everything but the kitchen sink! If you have a hard time finding dried figs, you can always substitute dates (mejool are the BEST) or golden raisins and both would certainly work fine in this recipe. I made two batches of Trail Mix Bars so my pictures reflect a lot of batter. Hope you enjoy them.
Trail Mix Bars are really chewy because of all the dried fruits inside.
The oatmeal and almonds make these bars quite hearty.
The M&Ms provide a chocolate lover’s delight! They’re nice and gooey the way a brownie-type bar should be, too!
Here’s what I did.
I used these ingredients.
Included in the recipe but not pictured, are softened butter, brown sugar, eggs, baking powder, salt, and UNBLEACHED all-purpose flour.
Place softened butter, brown sugar, eggs, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. (These ingredients are for two batches of Trail Mix Bars).
Mix ingredients with an electric mixer until smooth.
Add UNBLEACHED all-purpose flour. Bleached flour toughens baked goods. Add oatmeal, almonds and coconut.
Dice dried pineapple, mango, papaya and figs and add with craisins to bowl.
I had to transfer everything to a larger bowl in order to stir since I had two batches of dough. Stir with a wooden spoon to combine.
Spray a 9×13″ glass baking dish with cooking spray. Spread mixture into dish and pat down until smooth.
Sprinkle M&Ms on top of dough and press the M&Ms into the dough slightly.
Bake at 350 about 40-50 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
Trail Mix Bars make a delightful, if sweet, breakfast bar! I loved the crunch from the almonds, oatmeal and M&Ms. I liked the chewiness from all the dried fruits.
Ah, yes, Trail Mix Bars are loaded with M&Ms. Yum.
These dessert bars are rich, decadent and heavenly.
Here’s the recipe.
TRAIL MIX BARS
(Recipe inspired by Nena Meimaris’ Congo Bars, Baptist Convention of New England, now living in Thessaloniki, Greece)
- 2/3 cup butter, softened
- 2 ¼ cups brown sugar, packed
- 3 eggs
- 2 ½ tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 2 cups Gold Medal UNBLEACHED all-purpose flour (bleached flour toughens baked goods)
- ¾ cup old-fashioned oatmeal
- 1 cup sliced almonds
- 1 cup coconut
- ¼ cup finely diced dried papaya chunks
- ¼ cup finely diced dried pineapple rings
- ¼ cup finely diced dried sliced mangos
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- ¼ cup finely diced dried figs (stems cut off)
- ½ cup M&Ms
- Mix butter, brown sugar, eggs, baking powder, and salt with an electric mixer until smooth.
- Add flour, oatmeal, almonds, coconut, papaya, pineapple, mangos, cranberries, and figs.
- Stir with a wooden spoon to combine.
- Spray a 9×13” glass baking dish with cooking spray.
- Spread dough into prepared pan.
- Sprinkle M&Ms on top and gently press into batter.
- Bake at 350° about 40-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.
If you’re not big on figs you can substitute dates or golden raisins for a great taste as well.
Don’t Trail Mix Bars look yummy?
Trail Mix Bars are hearty, filling, satisfying, and downright delicious!