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Molasses Bars with Graham Cracker Crust

Spiced Molasses Bars with a soft Graham Cracker crust - slightly gooey in the middle, these bars have a rich depth of flavors that will keep you coming back for more!

  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: one 8-inch pan, or 16 (2-inch square) bars 1x

Ingredients

Scale
  • butter, for greasing baking dish

Graham Cracker Crust

  • 5 7/8 ounces graham cracker crumbs (1 1/2 cups)
  • 1 packed tablespoon brown sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted (4 tablespoons)

Molasses "Filling"

  • 2 ounces unsalted butter, melted (4 tablespoons)
  • 1 3/4 ounces granulated sugar (1/4 cup)
  • 1 7/8 ounces brown sugar (1/4 cup, packed)
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons molasses*
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4 1/4 ounces all-purpose flour (1 cup, spoon and sweep)
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • powdered sugar, for dusting

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter an 8" square baking dish.

Prepare the Graham Cracker Crust:

  1. Whisk together the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and salt in a large bowl. Add melted butter and stir in until the crumbly mixture is evenly moist.
  2. Use a large, flat spatula to firmly press the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan, creating a flat, compact base layer. Bake for 10 minutes in the preheated oven. Allow to cool for about 15 minutes while you make the molasses filling. Keep the oven at 350° F in preparation for baking the bars with the filling.

Prepare the Molasses Filling:

  1. In the same large bowl as previously used, whisk together the melted butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking well between each addition. Whisk until smooth. Whisk in the molasses, vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger until smooth. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt and fold into the mixture until just combined and smooth.
  2. Pour the molasses batter over the slightly cooled graham cracker crust in an even layer. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the very center of the bars comes out looking clean.**
  3. Allow the bars to cool, and then dust with powdered sugar, slice, and serve. These bars are phenomenal the first day they're baked, but to keep them tasting their best in the following days, I recommend storing them in an airtight container, at room temperature if possible.

Notes

*I used blackstrap molasses, which is as dark and bitter as you can get in the molasses department, and it works perfectly here without overpowering the sweetness and flavor in the bars. You can use whatever kind of molasses you like/have on hand, but be aware that light molasses will have less of a flavor impact.

**Don't be tempted to overbake the bars! The toothpick tester might feel a little moist, but if there aren't any crumbs stuck to it, the bars are done.