A date filled bar with a chewy oatmeal crust. This is my grandmother's recipe, which my whole family loves.

Recipe Summary

prep:
25 mins
cook:
25 mins
total:
50 mins
Servings:
12
Yield:
1 -9x9 inch pan
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Ingredients

12
Original recipe yields 12 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

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  • In a large bowl, combine oats, pastry flour, salt, 1 cup brown sugar, and baking soda. Mix in the butter until crumbly. Press half of the mixture into the bottom of a 9 inch square baking pan.

  • In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine the dates, water, and 1/3 cup brown sugar. Bring to a boil, and cook until thickened. Stir in lemon juice, and remove from heat. Spread the filling over the base, and pat the remaining crumb mixture on top.

  • Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in preheated oven, or until top is lightly toasted. Cool before cutting into squares.

Cook's Note:

You can use almond extract instead of lemon, if you wish.

Nutrition Facts

363 calories; protein 3.7g; carbohydrates 63.7g; fat 12.5g; cholesterol 30.5mg; sodium 217.4mg. Full Nutrition
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Reviews (354)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 5 stars
05/20/2010
10 Star!!! I make these every day in my cafe for customers who can't get enough of them. Here are some tips to make them AMAZING! I like my squares to have a "crispy" texture rather than dry and loose, so I use a full 1 cup of BUTTER. I then melt it in the microwave until it is just past the really mushy stage. some will actually be melted completely. Remember, if your mix is dry in the bowl, it will be dry on your date squares! Mix the dry ingredients with the butter as instructed. However, after placing half the mixture in your pan, bake it for 15 minutes or until golden brown! This makes them easy to cut and they hold together much better than regular bars. No need to dice the dates, but do have a "squeeze" of each one quick to ensure there aren't any pits in them! Dates are sweet already. So if you just want to taste the dates, omit the brown sugar that is called for in the date mixture. Just add your water and lemon juice. Remove your pan from the oven and you can spread your dates over top right away. Crumble the rest of your mixture over top making sure your entire mixture is mixed with the butter really well. Bake until a golden brown. THESE FREEZE PERFECTLY! I wrap 6 in plastic wrap really well and use within a week so I'm not sure how long you can leave them in the freezer for. Lastly, DOUBLE THE RECIPE! Put it in a 9x13 or 10x14 pan and share with your friends. This is an awesome recipe!!! Thanks so much Michelle. Read More
(767)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 1 stars
12/12/2011
We didn't care for these even though we love dates. There was WAY too much crumb mixture. I could have used half for the crust and the crumb top. The filling was boring and the whole bar was very crumbly. I was going to throw them out, but my husband said that he would eat them if he go desperate. Sorry.... Read More
(11)
441 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 321
  • 4 star values: 91
  • 3 star values: 13
  • 2 star values: 4
  • 1 star values: 12
Rating: 5 stars
05/19/2010
10 Star!!! I make these every day in my cafe for customers who can't get enough of them. Here are some tips to make them AMAZING! I like my squares to have a "crispy" texture rather than dry and loose, so I use a full 1 cup of BUTTER. I then melt it in the microwave until it is just past the really mushy stage. some will actually be melted completely. Remember, if your mix is dry in the bowl, it will be dry on your date squares! Mix the dry ingredients with the butter as instructed. However, after placing half the mixture in your pan, bake it for 15 minutes or until golden brown! This makes them easy to cut and they hold together much better than regular bars. No need to dice the dates, but do have a "squeeze" of each one quick to ensure there aren't any pits in them! Dates are sweet already. So if you just want to taste the dates, omit the brown sugar that is called for in the date mixture. Just add your water and lemon juice. Remove your pan from the oven and you can spread your dates over top right away. Crumble the rest of your mixture over top making sure your entire mixture is mixed with the butter really well. Bake until a golden brown. THESE FREEZE PERFECTLY! I wrap 6 in plastic wrap really well and use within a week so I'm not sure how long you can leave them in the freezer for. Lastly, DOUBLE THE RECIPE! Put it in a 9x13 or 10x14 pan and share with your friends. This is an awesome recipe!!! Thanks so much Michelle. Read More
(767)
Rating: 5 stars
08/11/2006
Wow, good recipe. I halved the sugar in the crust and put none in the filling (dates are so sweet anyway), used ½ c whole-wheat flour + ½ c all-purpose, and substituted ¼ c applesauce for some of the butter. Turned out beautiful, delicious (even better the next day) and almost guilt-free. Read More
(298)
Rating: 5 stars
02/26/2007
Update: baking the bottom layer before adding the dates/top layer works nicely! These were great as is. Moist flavorful and easy. I might bake the bottom layer of crust for 5-10 minutes next time to firm it up a bit but other than that yum! Read More
(125)
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Rating: 5 stars
11/19/2007
Great recipe just as its written!...just thought i would suggest cutting dates with scissors rather than trying to chop the sticky things. My mom kept kitchen scissors just for this job and it was my job as a lil girl to snip up the dates. Read More
(72)
Rating: 5 stars
11/21/2006
Just when I thought this recipe couldn't get any better, I made it with really fresh medjool dates instead of the dry store bought ones I normally use. It was absolutely incredible!! If you can use the fresh medjool dates, I highly recommend it! Read More
(65)
Rating: 4 stars
05/28/2003
The ingredients list says all-purpose flour, and the instructions say pastry flour, so I wasn't sure which to use! I ended up using all purpose, and they turned out ok. The second time I made this, I found that they were nicer with a little bit more of a filling and less of a "crust" (I just used 1 cup each of flour and rolled oats). Nice recipe, though! Read More
(64)
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Rating: 5 stars
07/22/2008
These are great. I substituted 1/2 of the butter for applesauce, and leaving in that little bit of butter left them crunchy yet lower in fat. I also left out the sugar in the date filling as they were plenty sweet on their own. This is somewhat unlike other date square recipes as I found that the filling was soft and creamy (probably due to leaving out the sugar). Will make again. Read More
(42)
Rating: 4 stars
04/05/2008
Would give 5 stars but made too many changes ...NO salt, NO baking soda, NO sugar with dates (added vanilla extract instead of lemon juice), HALF the sugar in flour/oat mix AND MELTED THE BUTTER with part OIL to equal 1/2 cup and it held together beautifully. YUM. Read More
(42)
Rating: 4 stars
01/25/2007
These are to die for, but omit the 1/3 c. brown sugar...dates are sugary sweet anyway; the extra sugar would be overpowering. These are addictive! Read More
(41)
Rating: 1 stars
12/12/2011
We didn't care for these even though we love dates. There was WAY too much crumb mixture. I could have used half for the crust and the crumb top. The filling was boring and the whole bar was very crumbly. I was going to throw them out, but my husband said that he would eat them if he go desperate. Sorry.... Read More
(11)
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