These outstanding Apple Bars are so easy to make with only 5 ingredients: cake mix, butter, apples, pecans, and sweetened condensed milk!
Moist, flavorful apple bars are popular year-round, but they really shine during the autumn months. These chewy, tender bars are sure to become a favorite.
What You’ll Find In This Post
This recipe has been on the blog since the fall of 2013! I love that it only uses a few ingredients. Plus, the recipe is adaptable! If I don’t have any Granny Smith apples, I use whatever I have on hand. It’s also delicious with chopped walnuts, and I’ve also shared a way to make a homemade apple spice cake mix.
I brought these bars to a friend’s house recently; she loved them so much that she planned to make them next weekend! Another lady said they were so good that she planned to have another piece for breakfast. Although they are delicious by themselves, my favorite way to eat them is with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!
Apple Bars Ingredients
- Cake Mix: Use a spice cake mix or add two teaspoons of apple pie spice to a yellow cake mix.
- Butter: Moistens the cake mix and adds flavor.
- Apples: Choose tart apples for baking.
- Pecans: For flavor and texture. You can also use chopped walnuts.
- Sweetened Condensed Milk: Adds sweetness and moisture.
How To Make Apple Bars
Mix together the spice cake mix and the melted butter. Use half of it to make the crust and set the remaining half aside for later.
Top the crust with diced, peeled Granny Smith apples and chopped pecans.
Drizzle a can of sweetened condensed milk over the apples and pecans layer. Crumble the remaining cake mix mixture and sprinkle it evenly over the top.
Bake the bars at 350˚F for 35-40 minutes. Allow the bars to cool, and then you can drizzle a powdered sugar glaze over the top!
Tips For Success
- You don’t need to add anything besides the butter to the cake mix. The cake mix is a shortcut to making a crumb topping from scratch!
- Although the dough for the crust doesn’t look like enough, it is! Sprinkle the crumbly batter around the pan and then pat it into place.
- Use a fork to break up the remaining cake mix mixture before sprinkling it over the bars.
- The powdered sugar glaze adds contrast and makes the bars look more pretty!
More Apple Recipes
- These Caramel Apple Truffles are full of delicious fall flavors in a bite-sized treat!
- Apple Bread Pudding with baked apples and caramel will make everyone happy.
- This Caramel Apple In A Jar is so much fun and makes a great fall party idea!
- Our easy homemade Applesauce Recipe tastes like apple pie without the crust.
- 15.25 oz spice cake mix see notes
- ½ cup butter, melted melted
- 1 lb Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and diced about 3 medium
- 3/4 cup chopped pecans
- 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Mix together cake mix and melted butter. Pat half of the mixture (about 1 1/2 cups) into a parchment-lined, greased 9×13″ pan. Set the remaining half aside for later.
- Top with diced apples and chopped pecans.
- Drizzle with sweetened condensed milk.
- Crumble the remaining cake mix mixture (about 1 1/2 cups) and sprinkle evenly over the top.
- Bake at 350˚F for 35-40 minutes.
- Allow the bars to cool and then drizzle with a powdered sugar glaze if desired.
Spice Cake Mix:
- Whisk 2 teaspoons of apple pie spice into a yellow cake mix.
- Or make your own spice mix using 1 1/4 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, and 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice and whisk into to a yellow cake mix.
Powdered Sugar Glaze:
- Whisk together 1 cup powdered sugar, 1-2 tablespoons whole milk, and 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
Frequently Asked Questions
I prefer using Granny Smith apples, but you can also use Empire, Pink Lady, and Honeycrisp.
Yes, they freeze well! Store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to two months.
Reheat one at a time in the microwave. Or reheat the whole pan in the oven at 350˚F for about 10 minutes.