My strawberry gooey butter bars recipe has a tangy strawberry base and a sweet, creamy topping that is just right for summer. Best of all, you don’t need cake mix! Top them with fruit or leave them plain, either way they’ll disappear fast.
For this recipe you’ll need: butter, flour, almond flour, unsweetened strawberry KoolAid packets, eggs, sugar, baking powder, milk, cream cheese, and confectioner’s sugar
If you’re in a hurry click to go straight to the butter bars recipe.
The first time I ever made gooey butter bars was probably sometime in the 80s. I remember that it was in the section of Bon Appetit where readers wrote in and asked for recipes from their favorite restaurants. This was called Treebeard’s Gooey Butter Cake and as soon as I read the ingredients I knew I’d like it. Over the years I played with the recipe adjusting and changing until I finally got rid of the cake mix and was confident enough to make a variety of different flavors like the chocolate chip gooey butter bars.
For the record I will not be renewing my subscription. I just don’t like the direction Bon Appetit has headed, the new style of photography, and the lack of recipes that inspire me. So sad.
So, y’all know I’ve been playing around with unsweetened KoolAid as a flavoring agent for over a year. When I use fresh strawberries in a baked item it seems that there’s just never enough fresh berry flavor but when I use KoolAid it tastes JUST like fresh berries — go figure. I couldn’t decide whether to put the strawberry in the topping or in the base but finally decided on the base so it would be a strawberries and cream kind of experience.
I think the color is just beautiful, don’t you?
Strawberries and summer went together in my house when I was growing up. My mom would buy them at Farmer’s Market by the flat and Dad and I would sit at the table taking the stems out while mom sliced and froze them by the million. Once she determined we had enough sliced, frozen berries to get us through the bleak, strawberry-free months she’d move on to strawberry freezer jam. I used to make it often as an adult but just haven’t had time in the past several
If your parents are still alive you might not realize all of the things you will miss someday when they are gone. Stuff that you don’t even think about now, stuff that you take for granted. I never thought sitting in that kitchen, talking with my parents was a special thing. It was so mundane! But, we did it every year and we had some deep conversations about all kinds of things that we probably wouldn’t have ever talked about if it weren’t for the berries.
I’ve found with my own kids that if I sense they are having trouble with something and need to talk the best thing to do is have them help me with a chore of some sort. I know that Matt and I talked about everything in the world while we were stretching fence when he was a teenager, Erin and I talked while cooking, and it seemed like there was a certain chore that would get each one of the others to talk, too. I tried to make it a habit to just listen — it seemed that by the time the chore was done they’d come to their own conclusions without me having to say much at all. Every once in awhile one of them will ask me for advice but not very often. They’ve learned to think for themselves and talk themselves into responsible behavior without my help. That’s a parenting win.
And the method was something I learned because of hundreds of flats of strawberries.
There’s nothing difficult about these strawberry gooey butter bars! You mix the crust part up and then press it firmly into a greased 13×9 inch pan. The remaining ingredients are whipped up in your mixer until smooth and poured evenly over the top. 40 minutes later you are cooling the bars and the house smells so unbelievably good!
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Almond flour gives the base a nutty, crumbly kind of texture that I really like. If you don’t like it use regular all purpose flour but give it a try with the almond flour at least once. 🙂 …
I know a lot of you use aluminum baking pans but I have to tell you that I don’t think anything beats the pyrex baking pans. They are versatile, they are heavy so crusts brown evenly, and they last forever. I’m using 2 of my mother’s that she had for decades.
Here’s the strawberry gooey butter bars recipe. I know you are going to love it as much as I do! Also, I know not everyone is in the United States so I am going the extra mile for y’all and doing both cup measure and measure by weight… just because I love y’all so much. On the flip side of that, I can no longer add nutritional information because the calculator that I was using is no longer consistently accurate… or even close.
Strawberry Gooey Butter Bars
- 1/2 cup melted butter, 113g
- 1-1/2 cups flour, 180g
- 1/2 cup almond flour, 56g, meal
- 1 -1/2 cups sugar, 345g
- 2 teaspoons baking powder, 8g
- 2 packages unsweetened strawberry KoolAid
- 3 tablespoons whole milk, 30g
- 1 egg, beaten
Cream Cheese Topping
- 1/2 cup butter, 113g, melted
- 8 ounces cream cheese, 225g, room temp
- 1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla, 6.3g
- 2 eggs
- 1 pound confectioner's sugar, 453g
- Preheat the oven to 350F.
- Grease a 13x9-inch baking pan.
- Melt the butter but do not let it brown.
- Mix the flour, almond meal, sugar, baking powder, and KoolAid powder until well blended.
- Beat the egg and the milk together with a fork.
- Add the butter and egg mixture to the dry ingredients and stir until the mixture is firm and holds together.
- Press firmly into the bottom of the baking pan.
- Set aside.
- Beat the cream cheese and melted butter until smooth.
- Add the vanilla and the eggs.
- Scrape the sides and bottom of the mixer bowl to loosen any cream cheese that may be sticking to the bowl.
- Beat until completely smooth and well blended
- Scrape the sides and bottom again and beat just for a minute to make sure everything is blended in..
- Pour over the strawberry mixture.
- Bake at 350F for 40 minutes being careful not to overbake.
- Cool completely before cutting into bars.
If you liked this Strawberry Gooey Butter Bars you may also like…
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