These Sour Cream Apple Square bars are filled with apples, a hint of cinnamon and have an amazing shortbread crust. Slice these moist apple squares warm or at room temperature into oversized squares and serve with whipped cream or ice cream. They are the most perfect fall dessert!
These sour cream apple bars taste just like a cinnamon graham cracker. They have the most amazing shortbread crust that pairs perfectly with the soft sour cream and apple topping.
While you might think these would come out creamy from the sour cream, they actually aren't creamy at all, it's more like an apple pie filling. Adding whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream to the top makes this a favorite fall dessert!
For more dessert recipes, try: Homemade Peanut Butter Rice Krispies Treats with M&M's, Salted Pretzel Scotcheroos or Simple Peanut Butter Cookies with Chocolate Chips (No Flour).
Why You Will Love These
- The shortbread crust. The buttery shortbread crust with walnuts and brown sugar is probably the best part about these delicious bars. It bakes up perfectly under the apple and sour cream mixture.
- The apples. The apples in these bars bake up nice and tender. The cinnamon and walnuts combined with the juicy apples really create a delicious layer to these bars! This is definitely one of the best desserts to make during apple season.
- They are easy. So easy to put together! You can make these in about 10 minutes and they don't require any special culinary skills!
Here is some helpful information about some of the ingredients to make this delicious dessert. For the full ingredient list, see the recipe card below.
- Flour: All-purpose flour is best for this.
- Brown sugar: You can use dark or light brown sugar.
- Butter: Unsalted, softened butter is best for this recipe. Pull the butter out of the refrigerator about an hour before you plan to use it.
- Walnuts: I prefer to use walnut chips. If you have whole walnuts or walnut pieces, you will want to be sure to coarsely chop them before adding.
- Sour cream: Full fat sour cream will work best and give you the best results in this recipe.
- Apple - I have used both Kanzi and Honeycrisp apples and thought both were a perfect choice for these bars. Fresh apples will be best for this recipe.
Step by Step Instructions
STEP 1: Preheat your oven to 350° and spray a 9x13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.
STEP 2: In a large bowl or the bowl of your mixer, combine flour, sugar and butter. Mix at a medium speed until the mixture is crumbly. Stir in the walnuts.
STEP 3: Measure 2 ¾ cups of the flour mixture into your prepared baking pan. Using your fingers or a measuring cup, press mixture into the bottom of the pan. Set this aside.
STEP 4: Add the sour cream, cinnamon, vanilla, baking soda, egg, and salt to the remaining crumb mixture in the bowl of your mixer. Mix on low just until it is combined, then stir in the apples.
STEP 5: Pour the apple mixture on top of the pressed flour mixture in the prepared pan. Spread the apple mixture in an even layer with a spoon or spatula.
STEP 6: Bake in the 350°F oven for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out mostly clean and the tops are golden brown. Let the bars cool completely in the pan.
STEP 7: Once they are cool, cut them into 24 squares and top with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
Here are some tips for how to make the apple sour cream bars perfectly every single time!
- Make a parchment paper sling for easy removal from the pan. To do this use two pieces of parchment paper, one that will fit In the pan lengthwise with some excess hanging over, and one that fits in the pan crosswise with excess hanging over. Spray your pan with cooking spray and press your two pieces of parchment into the bottoms and up the sides of your pan.
- You can fully cover the tops with whipped cream, plop a dollop on top or pipe a pretty design. You can do whatever you choose!
- Let the bars cool almost completely before cutting or removing them from the pan.
Yes! Not all apples are created equally. When baking, you typically want your apple to maintain its shape and not turn to mush. Some great apples for baking are: Kanzi, Pink Lady, Honeycrisp, Braeburn, and Granny Smith apples.
No. If you aren't a walnut fan, hazelnuts, pecans or almonds would work great too!
Yes. You can make these in a 9x9-inch square baking pan. To do this, cut the recipe in half and bake for 25-27 minutes. To use half of an egg you can weigh the cracked egg, whisk the white and yolk together and then discard half, or whisk the egg to combine the yolk and the white and then measure out 2 tablespoons to use. The other tricky measurement is when you measure out some of the flour mixture to press into the pan. You will want to use 1 ⅓ cups plus 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture to press into the pan for the crust.
Storing and Freezing
This sour cream apple squares recipe should be covered tightly and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. They are delicious cold from the fridge, at room temperature, or place them in the microwave for 20 seconds to warm them up a bit.
Alternatively, store these bars in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 3 months. Let them come to room temperature before serving.
Using Leftover Ingredients
If you have some sour cream leftover after making these bars, try one of these recipes:
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Sour Cream Apple Squares
- 2 cups flour
- 2 cups brown sugar
- ½ cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 egg
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 cups chopped apple, peeled and cored
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray 9x13-inch pan with cooking spray.
- In the bowl of your mixer, combine flour, sugar, and butter. Mix at medium speed until crumbly. Stir in walnuts.2 cups flour, 2 cups brown sugar, ½ cup unsalted butter, softened, 1 cup chopped walnuts
- Measure 2 ¾ cups of flour mixture into prepared 9x13-inch pan. Press the mixture into the pan using your fingers or a small measuring cup. Set aside.
- Add the sour cream, cinnamon, vanilla, baking soda, egg, and salt to the remaining flour mixture in the bowl of your mixer. Mix on low just until combined. Stir in apples.1 cup sour cream, 1 ½ teaspoons cinnamon, 1 teaspoon vanilla, 1 teaspoon baking soda, 1 egg, ½ teaspoon salt, 2 cups chopped apple, peeled and cored
- Pour apple mixture on top of the pressed flour mixture in your 9x13-inch pan. Spread with a spoon to create an even layer.
- Bake in 350°F oven for 35-40 minutes. Let cool in pan. Serve topped with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.