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These easy cookie bars are made with walnut shortbread that’s topped with blueberry jam and your favorite granola. I love sending these in school lunches as a treat!
I love baking on the weekends and especially enjoy making treats I can send in school lunchboxes. These easy blueberry cookie bars are one of our favorites. My kiddo calls them “Blueberry Snackers” when we use blueberry jam, but you can use any flavor you like. Sometimes these are “Strawberry Snackers,” which is my personal fav not only for the flavor but also because of the alliteration.
The bars shown here are made of a buttery walnut shortbread cookie base topped with blueberry jam and granola. If you’re looking for something sweet to pack for your child’s lunch – or heck how about for your lunch? – these simple cookie bars might be just the thing. We also love these applesauce oatmeal cookies if you want another idea to consider.
There aren’t any fancy ingredients in these cookie bars, but I do want to share a few notes because there is some room for substitutions. Here’s what’s in these bars as well as options to mix things up if you want:
- Walnuts – I liked to use walnuts for the shortbread cookie base but you could also use almonds or shelled pistachios.
- All purpose flour
- Confectioners sugar – Don’t sub for regular sugar, you need to use powdered sugar for these.
- Baking powder
- Kosher salt
- Unsalted butter – Don’t use salted butter or the cookies will be too salty.
- Vanilla Extract
- Blueberry Jam – You can use other flavors of jam as well. We like strawberry jam, peach jam and apricot jam in these cookie bars!
- Granola – Use your favorite. We pretty much always use this Nature’s Path Pumpkin Flax Granola (affiliate link).
Tips & Tricks
- Don’t skip the tin foil. I always line my baking dish with tin foil before baking the cookie base. It is much easier to cut the cooled cookies after they have baked this way because you can lift the entire thing out of the baking dish using the tin foil overhang like handles.
- Adding the granola: When you are ready to add the granola to your cookies, spread the granola evenly over the jam, then gently press it into the jam with the palms of your hands. If you don’t press it in, then the granola tends to sit on top of the jam instead of fusing with it.
- Cutting the bars: Let it cool completely before you cut the individual cookie bars. This ensures a cleaner cut and the jam won’t stick to your knife as easily.
I recommend storing these cookie bars in an airtight container in the fridge. They will keep for up to 1 week. On the counter, these cookie bars will only last for a day thanks to the moisture in the jam.
Blueberry Granola Shortbread Bars
- ½ cup walnuts
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- ¾ cup confectioners sugar
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¾ cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces
- 1 large egg
- 1 egg yolk
- ¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups blueberry jam
- 1 ½ cups granola, use your favorite kind
- Prep your tools. Line a 9×13 baking dish with tin foil, being sure to leave an overhang so that you can easily lift everything out of the pan after baking.
- Combine the dry ingredients. In a food processor, pulse the walnuts until they are finely ground. Add the flour, confectioners sugar, baking powder, and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.
- Mix wet ingredients. In a medium bowl, combine the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract. Whisk briefly with a fork to combine.
- Add wet to dry ingredients. Turn your food processor on and add the egg mixture with it running. Turn off the food processor and then pulse the mixture until clumps form.
- Chill. Press the cookie dough into the bottom of your prepared 9×13 baking dish. Use your hands to spread the cookie dough over the bottom of the dish. Chill in the fridge until the dough is firm, about 30 minutes.
- Preheat your oven to 350F. When the dough has chilled, gently prick it all over with a fork.
- Bake. Place the baking dish in the oven and bake until the edges are golden, about 25 minutes. Set aside to cool. Don't turn your oven off.
- Add toppings. Spread the blueberry jam all over the top of the cooled cookie base. Sprinkle the granola on top of the jam, gently pressing it down into the jam so that the granola sticks to it.
- Bake again. Place the baking dish back in the oven and bake a second time until the jam is bubbly, about 30 minutes. Set aside to cool.
- Lift and cut. Use the tin foil overhang to gently lift everything out of the baking dish and transfer it to a flat surface. (I recommend doing this right next to your cutting board or counter so that you don't have to move it all too far.) With a sharp knife, cut into cookie bar squares.