Bursting with fruity deliciousness from raspberries and blueberries these Red and Blue Berry Pie Cookie Bars are the perfect sweet treat for a holiday gathering or summer party! Tried and tested crowd-pleaser!
First, I need to warn you all that this kind of treat is not for the faint-hearted! 🙂 Three sticks of butter in one recipe? Is this for real? Yes, that was my initial reaction when I first read this recipe. I immediately thought of reducing the butter/fat content in half – but then I had second thoughts – how can I adjust a recipe I haven’t even tried?
So, I set on doing it as faithfully as I can based on the original recipe. I thought to myself, I’d adjust, if necessary after I have given it at least one chance to prove itself worthy of all the calories loaded in it!
It was worth every single drop of butter in it! Honestly, this is one of the most delicious dessert recipes I have ever tried.
Pie in a bar form? How can you ever go wrong? Besides, more or less 20 people agreed when I brought this yummy dessert to a friend’s birthday party!
It was gone like the wind. I thought that would be the ultimate test and it passed on all levels by 100 %.
The major plus in this super-delicious dessert is its fruit content – forget the butter – it’s all about the fruits now!
Nearly 2 lbs of fresh fruits (about 6 cups) – mega-foods blueberries and raspberries! I won’t get into the details of how nutritious berries are, for you already know that, don’t you? You see, I made this in the summer when these fruits were in season in Michigan, hence, relatively cheaper than when they are out of season.
Of course, if you cannot find the fresh ones or they are too expensive (especially during winter time) then it is fine to use the frozen ones (just thaw them and drain well before using). Shall we say then that the fat content is balanced by a tremendous amount of fruits used in making this? I leave it to you my dear friends to decide!
All I’m saying is, do not be turned off by the amount of butter here! As with anything the key to perfect enjoyment is moderation! If you do so, you’ll enjoy the food and not feel guilty afterward. Will you promise to eat just one serving of this? 🙂
Now, let’s go to the recipe itself.
The recipe is adapted from Joy the Baker (so glad to have found this!) and it was based upon the recipe in the book – The Pastry Queen by Rebecca Rather. Wow, it has really come a long way, and has now reached the Philippine Islands via Manila Spoon! Blackberries were used for the original recipe but when I went to our local grocery what I found were lots of blueberries and raspberries so I used them instead. I opted for the multi-colored effect – Red raspberries and Blueberries. I thought it would look lovelier than a monochromatic approach. See the effect below on our finished product!
I will note below what my observations were when I made these. So when you make this yourself – you’ll know more or less what to expect. Overall, I think it’s a great recipe and I will make it again for our Summer entertainment with noting the adjustments I need to make. Enjoy!
NOTES ON INGREDIENTS FOR Red and Blue Berry Pie Bars
(RECIPE CARD FOR PRINTING BELOW)
For the Crust/Topping
- All-purpose flour
- Sugar – I used white sugar.
- Unsalted chilled/cold butter – make sure the butter is properly chilled before using
- Zest of 2 Lemons – optional. I didn’t have any Lemons the first time I made this but it still came out good so it’s up to you if you wish to add these, too. I amm sure they will add some extra tangy yumminess.
For the Filling
- Eggs – bring eggs to room temperature first for better baking.
- Sour cream – You can go low-fat on this! I used the light one and it worked fine.
- Fresh or frozen berries (raspberries and/or blueberries or a combo), thawed and drained if frozen. – If you want to use fresh berries use about 4-6 cups of your choice of berry or a combo of berries. I went for the full 6 cups as I love fresh berries in summer.
Procedure – PHOTO STEP-BY-STEP INSTRUCTIONS ARE ADDED HERE.
(RECIPE CARD FOR PRINTING FOLLOWS BELOW)
For the Crust/Topping:
Preheat the oven. Combine the flour and sugar in a bowl. A stand mixer with a paddle attachment would be handy for this. Add the chilled butter cubes and beat on medium speed until the butter is evenly distributed and the mixture is crumbly.
Since I didn’t have a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, I used a pastry blender to incorporate the cold butter with the flour and sugar mixture. It was not a problem at all!
The mixture should look crumbly like this.
Set aside about 1-1/2 cups of the mixture for the topping. Press the rest into the bottom of the prepared baking dish.
For the Berry Pie Filling
Whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Add in the sugar, sour cream, flour, and salt and combine. Gently fold in the berries.
Carefully pour the mixture over the crust. Distribute the berries evenly on top.
Evenly distributed berries!
Sprinkle the reserved crust mixture on top of the filling. Distribute well.
Bake for 60-70 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned. Mine needed about a little over an hour. Oven temperature and heating capacity vary so adjust accordingly. One of our readers noted that the berries bubbled over – because the fruits are fresh and juicy this may happen so you can prevent this by using a cookie sheet for any spill-over.
I wanted a crumblier and crunchier crust so I placed it under the broiler for 1-2 minutes to achieve this. Watch out so that the top doesn’t burn!
Sophie couldn’t wait to try it!
Cool for least 2-3 hours before cutting into bars. Wait until it’s fully set so when you cut it it doesn’t drip unless you can’t wait and don’t mind that it crumbles – and that’s perfectly understandable!
I actually imagined this more like a fruity crumble (rather than a Bar cookie) reminiscent of the ones I had in England. So if you wish, you can serve it warm with ice cream on top! Pure dessert heaven! Can anything be better than this as a summer dessert? I would have to think hard ’cause for now, this is on top of my list!
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Red and Blue Berry Pie Bars
For the Crust and Topping
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1½ cups unsalted chilled/cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch-cubes
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 2 whole lemons, zested
For the Berry Pie Filling
- 4 eggs, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1 cup sour cream, light or full fat
- 3/4 cup flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 16 oz each of 2 packages of frozen berries (raspberries and/or blueberries or a combo), thawed and drained (see notes if using fresh berries)
For the Crust and Topping
- Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease a 10×15-inch jelly roll pan or shallow baking dish with butter or cooking spray. Set aside.
- Combine the flour and sugar in a bowl. A stand mixer with a paddle attachment would be handy for this. Add the chilled butter cubes, salt, and lemon zest, if using, and beat on medium speed until the butter is evenly distributed and the mixture is crumbly. Use a pastry blender to incorporate the cold butter with the flour and sugar mixture if you don't have a mixer.
- Set aside about 1-1/2 cups of the mixture for the topping. Press the rest into the bottom of the prepared baking dish or jelly roll pan. Bake the crust for 12 to 15 minutes until it is lightly browned. Take out of the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes while you make the filling.
For the Berry Pie Filling
- Whisk the eggs in a large bowl. Add in the sugar, sour cream, flour, and salt and combine. Gently fold in the berries.
- Carefully pour the mixture over the crust. Distribute the berries evenly on top.
- Sprinkle the reserved crust mixture on top of the berry pie filling. Distribute well.
- Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned. Oven temperature and heating capacity vary so adjust accordingly.
- Cool for at least 1-2 hours before cutting into bars. This way the bars would be easier to slice. Wait until it’s set so when you cut it, it doesn’t drip unless you can’t wait and don’t mind that it crumbles – and that’s perfectly understandable! So if you wish, you can serve it warm with ice cream on top! Pure dessert heaven!
NOTE: PLEASE READ! VERY IMPORTANT!The original recipe which this was adapted from called for and recommended a 9×13 pan which I used (see photos). Please note that if you do that baking time would be much longer – about 1 hour or more, depending on the heat/temperature of your oven and this can vary so adjust accordingly. The bars would be thicker than usual because of the volume of the ingredients. But it would taste really good as this is a delicious recipe. Make sure to thaw the berries first if you’re using frozen ones. If you’re using fresh berries, use about 4 cups or 2 cups each for whichever berry you want for the recipe. The original recipe also called for 2 cups sugar with the berries which is too sweet for me. I like a sweet-tangy taste and not just sugary sweetness. Feel free to use more sugar, if preferred. Now, if you don’t want thick bars – you may use a jelly roll pan as stated in the recipe.
Last updated on July 18th, 2023 at 07:33 pm