Summer starts now with this tropical Piña Colada Crumb Bars ♥♥♥
We use coconut both in savory and sweet dishes and dessert in the Philippines. Although I don’t live there anymore, I haven’t outgrown my liking for coconut dishes and dessert. My cravings for coconut dessert doesn’t choose any season at all, although I crave for it more during Summer season, like today.
After a long wait and going backwards and forward, it’s finally summer here in Vancouver Canada. Summer is not just a season in Vancouver, it’s “the season” that most people wait for, including me. We only have 3 months to enjoy summer, sometimes 4 if we get lucky. So as soon as summer starts, I get so excited planning what I want to bake. We don’t get long summer so I might as well enjoy it in every possible way I can.
Since I’m feeling tropical, I thought I should finally give this Pina Colada Crumb Bars a go. This has been in my list for quite a while now and what better time to make it than now. Although I call it Pina Colada, this dessert is booze free. So no worry of getting drunk from rum, although I cannot guarantee that you will not get drunk from the deliciousness of this dessert. If you really want to add some booze, you can add it when making the pineapple filling. Setting the booze aside for a moment, coconut and pineapple for me is match made in heaven. There are ingredients that go so well together, like they are meant to be together, and coconut and pineapple are one of them.
Homemade Pineapple Filling
This dessert is simple to make. I made my own pineapple filling the quick way, you could also use store-bought pineapple jam. I encourage you to make your own filling because it taste a lot better. It is not too sugary and sticky and you get more pineapple tidbits rather than a lump of jelly sugar with slight pineapple bits. Watch the video on how I made it, so easy!
This crumb bar is insanely delicious, and it smells so good! Let me show you how to make it. Let’s get started!
For the crust and topping:
- 6 tablespoon unsalted Butter, cubed and softened (but not melted, just enough to create a dent when you push your finger in the butter)
- 3/4 cups All-Purpose Flour
- 1/4 cup granulated Sugar
- 1/3 teaspoon Salt
- 1/4 cup sweetened or unsweetened Shredded Coconut
For the filling: Checkout my Homemade Pineapple Filling post. You will need 1/3 cup + 1 tablespoon
Note: Double the recipe for a bigger batch and bake in 8 x 8-inch pan for the same baking time. Start with the suggested 350F at 35-45 minutes time and adjust baking time as needed.
- Make the Pineapple Filling: I recommend making this at least day ahead to allow enough time to thicken. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray with oil and line a 5-inch or 8-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper. Make sure to leave some overhang for easy removal. Set aside.
- Make the Crust: In a large mixing bowl, mix together butter, flour, sugar, and salt. Using a mixer, beat on low speed until you have coarse crumbs then use your hands to mix it until it forms into a dough. This shorten the process. If you use the hand mixer until the dough forms into a dough, that will take more time.
- Alternatively, you can also do this in food processor. The manual mixing is not needed if you go to this route as the food processor is strong and fast enough to make it into a cookie dough.
- Chill the Crust: Divide the dough crust into 2. Press 3/4 portion into the pan, firmly press it down into an even layer. Put in refrigerator for at least 15 minutes to harden the crust before blind baking (pre-baking) it. Reserve remaining 1/4 portion of the dough mixture for topping, keep refrigerated while you pre-bake the dough crust.
- Make the Coconut Crumble Toppings: Mix in the shredded coconut to the remaining 1/4 of the dough mixture. Using your hands, mix it and try to pick up small portions at a time and clump it into your hands. This will give you a small pieces of clump dough for better texture. Store in the fridge while you pre-bake the dough crust.
- Pre-bake the Crust: Take out the chilled crust from the refrigerator. Pre-bake the dough crust at 350°F for about 20-25 minutes or until the top is set and the edges are lightly golden brown. Take out from the oven and add the toppings.
- Add the Toppings: Spread Homemade Pineapple Filling over the pre-baked crust. Remove the remaining crumb topping from the refrigerator and sprinkle on top of pineapple filling. Return to the oven and bake at 350°F for 35-40 minutes or until lightly golden brown on the top. Check at 25 minutes mark to see if the top are already browning. Remember that the based crust has been baked already, so you only need to topping to bake. As soon as you it nicely browned and bake, you can remove it from the oven even before the 35 – 45 minutes mark.
- Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Let cool completely before slicing.
Makes 6 – 8 bars for big batch (8×8 square pan), and 4 bars for small batch (5×5-square pan)
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This crumb bar has a buttery and creamy base, like a shortbread. The center is filled with homemade pineapple filling with coconut bits and covered and topped with another layer of buttery and creamy crumbs with coconut. To seal the deal and to make it more summery and fun, I added some cherry on top. I used preserve cherry, but it would be even better if you use fresh cherry.
Try it and let me know how it goes. Feel free to share this recipe and let’s get the community baking!♥
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- Cherry Sauce
Enjoy! If you make this, share and tag me in Instagram #SweetNSpicyLiving. I would like to see your creations too.
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