You’re going to love strawberry crisp bars with fresh berries sandwiched between an oatmeal coconut crust. Serve warm as a strawberry crisp or let it cool for an easy to eat dessert bar. It all comes together in no time with just a few ingredients. Say hello to SUMMER!
If you’re looking for something a little different to make with fresh strawberries this spring, strawberry coconut crisp bars are just the ticket. A little thicker than a traditional fruit crisp with a yummy oatmeal layer on both the top and bottom.
With a bucket full of strawberries on hand from the farmers market, I wanted to make a dessert that wasn’t too overly indulgent but not as juicy as a cobbler. By placing an oatmeal mixture on both the top and the bottom, I created a strawberry crisp recipe that when refrigerated can be eaten with a fork. You don’t want those strawberries to go to waste as they have a short enough season. Here’s some easy tips to keep them fresh longer in the refrigerator.
If served warm, you’ll need a bowl and a scoop of ice cream. But once it cools, it’s firms up into a dessert bar.
We’ve tried it both warm and cold, and it’s delicious either way. So if you like your crisps warm with ice cream, it’s divine. Put it in the refrigerator and you have a delicious dessert bar. You get all the great fresh fruit flavor but in a bar form.
Why you’ll love it
- Super easy to make
- It’s a great way to show off fresh strawberries
- It can be served warm or cold
- It’s easier to eat than a juicy pie or cobbler
What’s the difference between a crisp and a cobbler
A cobbler will generally have a biscuit type topping like with these blueberry and strawberry recipes. Unlike a cobbler, crisps generally have an oatmeal or other type of crispy topping which I love on top of rhubarb blueberry crisp.
What you’ll need
- Fresh strawberries – if you can’t make your strawberry dessert right away, keep the strawberries fresh by this genius method using a vinegar wash. Frozen strawberries will have more liquid and will make these too juicy, so I would recommend fresh, but if they’re not available, add a little more cornstarch.
- Cornstarch – since strawberries have so much water in them, you will need to use cornstarch or potato starch to thicken them up while it bakes. I like potato starch when cooking with fruit, it tends to be less gummy and it’s gluten free.
- Oatmeal – Most crisp recipes are topped with an oatmeal topping that will get crispy while baking. I wouldn’t use quick oats as they won’t get quite as crispy, use old fashioned rolled oats.
- Coconut – I’ve tried this with both sweet and unsweetened coconut and it doesn’t make a huge difference. The coconut creates a crispier texture but since there’s only a cup, the coconut flavor is not overpowering.
- Pantry staples – flour, brown and white sugar, cinnamon and butter.
Step by step guide
Step 1: Add sugar and cornstarch to sliced strawberries and let them sit for a few minutes.
Step 2: Combine oatmeal, flour, coconut, brown sugar and butter and place half of it in the bottom of a pan. Add strawberries and top with the remaining oatmeal mixture.
Step 3: Bake until golden brown.
If serving warm, top with a scoop of ice cream
or drizzle with heavy cream.
If you want bars, let it come to room temperature and refrigerate before cutting.
FAQs and tips
After washing the strawberries, let them dry before slicing so there is no added water. If they’re very juicy, you can add a little more cornstarch.
Once cooled, store in the refrigerator and it will thicken enough to cut into bars.
Fruit crisps don’t freeze well. The topping will become soggy. It’s best eaten within a day or two.
Soak them in a vinegar wash and store in the refrigerator and they will stay fresh for two weeks.
More STRAWBERRY desserts
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Strawberry Crisp Bars
- 5 cups fresh strawberries sliced
- ½ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 ½ cups old fashioned oatmeal
- 1 cup sweetened coconut
- ¾ cup flour
- ⅔ cup brown sugar
- 1 cup butter melted
- Preheat oven to 400º. Spray a 9-10” baking pan with cooking spray.
- Place the strawberries in a large bowl and sprinkle with sugar, cinnamon, salt and cornstarch. Stir to coat and let sit on the counter while making the crust.
- Stir together the remaining ingredients. Spread half of the oat mixture in the bottom of the pan. Pour the berries over the crust and use your hands to spread the rest of the mixture on top of the berries.
- Bake for 30 minutes, until the crust has browned and the fruit is bubbly. Serve warm or let cool completely, refrigerate and then cut into bars.
Barbara’s Tips + Notes
- You can use sweetened or unsweetened coconut.
- Fresh strawberries are best for this if you want to serve it as bars. If using frozen, it will have more liquid but will still be a delicious crisp.
- To avoid a runny crisp, let the strawberries dry after washing.
- This is best eaten within a day of making it, after that the crust will get soggy.
- To get nice bars, you will need to refrigerate it once it has cooled.