Chocolate Revel Bars

For Sunday afternoon's 8 for $10 Halloween Treats workshop, I had Chocolate Revel Bars here for a snack. There were extras, so I took them to my preschool board meeting that night. Everyone like them, so I thought I'd share the recipe. It can be found in the red and white checkered "Better Homes & Gardens" cook book if you have one--and most people do!

Chocolate Revel Bars

1 c. butter
2 c. packed brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
2 eggs
2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
3 c. quick-cooking rolled oats
1 1/2 c. semi-sweet chocolate pieces
1 14-oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 c. chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)
2 tsp. vanilla

Set aside 2 T. of the butter. In a large mixing bowl beat the remaining butter with an electric mixer on medium to high speed for 30 seconds. Add brown sugar and baking soda. Beat until combined, scraping sides of bowl occasionally. Beat in eggs and 2 tsp. vanilla until combined. Beat in as much of the flour as you can with the mixer. Stir in remaining flour. Stir in the oats. (I do all of this with my electric stand mixer.)

For filling, in a medium saucepan combine the reserved 2 T. butter, chocolate pieces, and sweetened condensed milk. Cook over low heat until chocolate melts, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat. Stir in the nuts and 2 tsp. vanilla. (I have never made these with nuts.)

Press two-thirds (approximately) of the rolled oats mixture into the bottom of an ungreased 15x10x1-inch baking pan. (To make it easy to get the bars from the pan, I line my pan with parchment paper. After baking and cooling, you can run a knife around the edge and lift the whole pan of bars out easily. Then I use a pizza cutter to cut them into bars. They look great, and cleanup is easy!) Spread filling evenly over the oat mixture. Dot remaining rolled oats mixture on filling.

Bake in a 350F oven about 25 minutes or until top is light brown (chocolate filling will look moist). Cool in pan on a wire rack. Cut into bars and serve.

Variation: Substitute 1 c. whole wheat flour and 1 1/2 c. all purpose flour for the 2 1/2 c. all-purpose flour. (I always make these this way.)
For some reason, fall seems like the best time to make these. I guess it's the oatmeal that makes them seem hearty and good cool-weather food. Thanks for stopping by!

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