Apricot Ribbon Bars Recipe - Delicious Bars with Apricots and Oats

Apricot Ribbon Bars

Apricot Ribbon Bars Recipe - Delicious Bars with Apricots and Oats
Region / culture: USA | Preparation time: 20 minutes | Cooking time: 30 minutes | Servings: 12


Apricot Ribbon Bars
Apricot Ribbon Bars

Apricot Ribbon Bars are a delightful treat that combines the tangy sweetness of apricots with the hearty texture of oats and walnuts. This recipe is perfect for those who appreciate a dessert that's not overly sweet but is rich in flavor and texture. Whether you're looking for a delicious snack to accompany your afternoon tea or a wholesome dessert to serve at your next gathering, these bars are sure to impress.


The origin of Apricot Ribbon Bars can be traced back to traditional fruit bars that have been enjoyed for generations. Over time, bakers have experimented with various fruits and ingredients to create different versions of these bars. The apricot version became popular due to its unique flavor and the fruit's availability. This recipe is a modern take on those classic fruit bars, incorporating apricots both in dried form and as jam to create a rich, layered flavor.


How to prepare

  1. Place the apricots in a small bowl and cover them with warm water; let them soak for 10 minutes.
  2. Pour off the water and pat the apricots dry.
  3. In a mixing bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, and vanilla; beat until well blended.
  4. Add the flour and baking soda; mix well.
  5. Stir in the oats and walnuts.
  6. Set aside 1 cup of the oat mixture for the topping.
  7. Press the remaining oat mixture into an 8-inch square pan.
  8. In a separate bowl, combine the chopped apricots and jam.
  9. Spread the apricot mixture evenly, leaving a 0.5-inch border around the edges.
  10. Sprinkle the reserved oat mixture over the top and press lightly.
  11. Bake at 375°F (191°C) for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  12. Allow to cool in the pan, then cut into bars.


  • This recipe is adaptable to various tastes and dietary needs. For a gluten-free version, substitute the all-purpose flour with a gluten-free blend. If you prefer a different nut, almonds or pecans can replace walnuts. For those looking to reduce sugar intake, consider using a sugar substitute suitable for baking.

Cooking Tips & Tricks

To ensure your Apricot Ribbon Bars turn out perfectly, consider the following tips:

- Soak the dried apricots in warm water to soften them, which will enhance their flavor and texture in the bars.

- Use real butter instead of margarine for a richer flavor if dietary restrictions allow.

- When pressing the oat mixture into the pan, ensure it's compacted well to form a solid base.

- Allow the bars to cool completely in the pan before cutting them to prevent crumbling.

Serving Suggestions

Apricot Ribbon Bars are versatile and can be enjoyed in various ways. They're perfect as a standalone snack or dessert but can also be served alongside a scoop of vanilla ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream for an extra indulgent treat. For a healthier option, pair them with Greek yogurt.

Cooking Techniques

The key technique in this recipe is layering the ingredients to create the "ribbon" effect. Ensuring the base is well-pressed and the apricot layer is evenly spread will result in bars with distinct layers that are not only delicious but also visually appealing.

Ingredient Substitutions

If apricot jam is not available, peach or orange marmalade can be used as a substitute. Similarly, dried cranberries or raisins can replace dried apricots for a different flavor profile.

Make Ahead Tips

These bars can be made ahead of time and stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. This makes them a convenient option for meal prep or as a ready-to-go snack.

Presentation Ideas

For a more elegant presentation, dust the bars with powdered sugar or drizzle them with a simple glaze made from powdered sugar and milk. Serving them on a platter with fresh apricot slices can also enhance their visual appeal.

Pairing Recommendations

Apricot Ribbon Bars pair wonderfully with coffee or tea, making them an excellent choice for a brunch or afternoon tea. For a dessert pairing, consider a dessert wine such as Moscato or a light Port that complements the apricot flavors.

Storage and Reheating Instructions

Store the bars in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. These bars do not require reheating, but if you prefer them warm, a quick 10-second zap in the microwave can enhance their flavor and texture.

Nutrition Information

Calories per serving

Each serving of Apricot Ribbon Bars contains approximately 200 calories. This makes them a relatively energy-dense snack, ideal for providing a quick energy boost during the day or as a satisfying dessert option.


Each serving of Apricot Ribbon Bars contains approximately 30 grams of carbohydrates. The primary sources of carbohydrates in this recipe are the brown sugar, all-purpose flour, oats, and apricots. These ingredients provide a mix of simple and complex carbohydrates, offering both immediate energy and sustained release.


The fats in Apricot Ribbon Bars come mainly from the margarine and walnuts, contributing to the recipe's overall richness and mouthfeel. Each serving contains about 10 grams of fat, with a mix of saturated and unsaturated fats. Using margarine helps keep the saturated fat content lower than using butter.


These bars offer a modest protein content, with approximately 3 grams per serving. The protein comes from the oats and walnuts, which are natural plant-based protein sources. While not high in protein, these bars can contribute to your daily protein intake.

Vitamins and minerals

Apricot Ribbon Bars are a good source of several vitamins and minerals, particularly from the apricots and walnuts. Apricots are rich in vitamin A and potassium, while walnuts provide magnesium and omega-3 fatty acids. These nutrients contribute to overall health and well-being.


This recipe contains common allergens such as nuts (walnuts) and gluten (all-purpose flour). Those with allergies to these ingredients should avoid this dish or consider suitable substitutions.


Overall, Apricot Ribbon Bars are a delicious treat that offers a balance of flavors and textures. While they provide energy through carbohydrates and fats, they also offer nutritional benefits from the vitamins and minerals in the apricots and walnuts. However, those with specific dietary needs should be mindful of the allergens present.


Apricot Ribbon Bars are a delightful blend of sweet, tangy, and nutty flavors, making them a perfect treat for any occasion. With their rich nutritional profile and the ability to customize them to suit various dietary needs, they're a versatile recipe that's sure to become a favorite. Whether you're enjoying them as a snack, dessert, or part of a meal, these bars offer a satisfying and wholesome option.

How did I get this recipe?

The first time I saw this recipe, I was filled with a sense of wonder. It was a warm summer day, and I was visiting my dear friend Martha for a cup of tea. As we chatted in her cozy kitchen, she pulled out a worn recipe card from her recipe box and handed it to me with a smile.

"Have you ever tried these Apricot Ribbon Bars, dear? They are simply delicious," Martha said, her eyes twinkling with excitement.

I took the card in my hands and read over the ingredients and instructions. The combination of buttery shortbread crust, sweet apricot jam, and crunchy almond topping sounded like a heavenly treat. I knew right then and there that I had to learn how to make these bars.

Martha must have sensed my enthusiasm because she offered to teach me how to make them right then and there. We spent the afternoon in her kitchen, measuring, mixing, and baking until the bars emerged from the oven golden brown and irresistible. The sweet aroma filled the room, and I couldn't wait to take a bite.

As I savored the first bite of the Apricot Ribbon Bar, I knew that this recipe would become a treasured favorite in my own kitchen. Martha had passed down her knowledge and love of baking to me, and I was grateful for her guidance.

Over the years, I have made these Apricot Ribbon Bars countless times, sharing them with friends and family who always ask for the recipe. Each time I bake them, I am reminded of that special day in Martha's kitchen and the joy of learning something new.

I have since added my own twist to the recipe, experimenting with different flavors of jam and nuts to create unique variations. But no matter how many times I make them, the original Apricot Ribbon Bars will always hold a special place in my heart.

As I sit here in my own kitchen, surrounded by the warmth and aroma of baking, I am filled with gratitude for the recipes and memories that have been passed down to me over the years. Cooking and baking have always been a source of joy and connection for me, and I am grateful for the opportunity to share that with others.

So, the next time you find yourself in the kitchen with a new recipe in hand, remember to embrace the sense of wonder and excitement that comes with trying something new. You never know what delicious creations you may discover along the way.


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