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Beat the Winter Blues With a Decadent Dessert

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Decadent Oatmeal Dream Bars

(Family Features) - Are frigid temperatures tempting you to stay indoors until spring?  Just because it's winter doesn't mean your taste buds need to hibernate.  Perk up your palate and bake up a batch of Decadent Oatmeal Dream Bars.

These mini bars are chock-full of whole grain oats plus chocolate, toffee bits, toasted walnuts, and caramel.  The nutty oat base is covered with a smooth cream cheese layer and sprinkled with a crumbly oat topping.  Drizzles of caramel and melted chocolate complete the delicious homemade treats.

Whether you're hiding from blustery seasonal winds, or simply craving an indulgent tidbit, whip up a batch of these dreamy bars and hang in there until spring!

Beat the winter blues this January and celebrate Oatmeal Month with additional homemade baking ideas.  Visit www.quakeroatmeal.com for details.

Decadent Oatmeal Dream Bars

  • 1-2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
  • 1-1/2 cups Quaker® Oats (quick or old fashioned, uncooked)
  • 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) toffee bits, divided
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 cup butterscotch caramel topping
  • 1/2 cup chopped, toasted walnuts
  • 3/4 cup milk chocolate chips
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, melted

    1. Heat oven to 350°F. Spray 13 x 9-inch metal baking pan with cooking spray.
    2. In large bowl, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, 1/2 cup toffee bits and walnuts; mix well with fork. Add melted butter; mix until crumbly. Reserve 1-1/2 cups oat mixture for topping; set aside. Press remaining oat mixture firmly onto bottom of prepared pan. Bake 13 to 14 minutes, until deep golden brown; cool 10 minutes on wire rack.
    3. In same bowl, beat cream cheese, sweetened condensed milk, lemon juice and vanilla with electric mixer until smooth; pour over crust, spreading to edges. Crumble reserved oat mixture over cream cheese layer. Drizzle with caramel topping and sprinkle with remaining toffee bits.
    4. Bake 32 to 38 minutes, until topping is light golden brown and filling is set. Cool to room temperature in pan on wire rack.
    5. Melt chocolate chips according to package directions. Transfer to small resealable plastic food bag; seal. Cut tip off one corner of bag. Squeeze chocolate decoratively over cooled cookies in pan. Chill until firm. Cut into bars. Store tightly covered in refrigerator.
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Preparation Time
1 hour

Bake Time
45 to 52 minutes

Chill Time
3 to 4 hours

Calories: 170g     Total Fat: 9g
Cholesterol: 20mg     Protein: 2g
Carbohydrates: 20g     Sodium: 75mg

Makes 4 Dozen Bars
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Notes, Tips & Suggestions
Baker's Notes:
  • Milk chocolate toffee bits (English toffee) may be substituted for toffee bits.
  • Caramel topping may be substituted for butterscotch caramel topping.

SOURCE: Quaker Oats

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