Lemon Blueberry Crumb Bars

I adore blueberries…fresh out of a bowl, in my cereal and especially baked into yummy desserts…throw in some lemon and I am one happy girl. Although I love some blueberry goodness, I refuse to pay the crazy high prices I have been seeing at the market. I improvised a bit and used frozen berries in this recipe and they worked just beautifully. Moral of the story, if you find a deal or don’t mind the price tag, use fresh, but frozen berries work just fine.

I was actually pleasantly surprised to see blueberries on sale today at Whole Foods and picked up two pints. I have no idea what I am going to do with them yet, but I am thinking scones because scones equal bliss in my book or maybe blueberry ice cream, such a tough decision. Whatever I choose to make, I will definitely post here on MBA.

I came across these Blueberry Crumble Bars on allrecipes and knew they would be amazing. I kicked the flavor up a bit by using butter instead of shortening, adding in a bunch of lemon zest and a splash my homemade vanilla extract. The lemon-blueberry flavor is great for summer and the texture of the topping is absolute perfection. Honestly they are delish for breakfast with a cup of coffee, as dessert witha nice scoop of vanilla ice cream or as a snack…it’s truly an anytime of the day baked good. These also travel pretty well, so if they strike your fancy, be sure to bookmark them for a future summer barbeque.  If you decide to make these, definitely come back and leave a comment letting us know you liked them. Have a fantastic and delicious weekend!
Looking for more blueberry deliciousness? Check out these posts:
Blueberry-Lemon Bundt Cake from My Baking Addiction
Blueberry Zucchini Bread from My Baking Addiction
Blueberry Cornmeal Cake from Vino Luci Style
Blueberry Lemon Cream Cheese Muffins from Two Peas and Their Pod
Low Sugar Double Blueberry Parfaits from Kalyn’s Kitchen

Blueberry Crumb Bars

1 cup white granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup unsalted butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
zest of two lemons

4 cups fresh or frozen blueberries
1/2 cup white sugar
3 teaspoons cornstarch

1.Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Line a 9×13 inch pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
2.In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup sugar, 3 cups flour, salt, lemon zest and baking powder.
3. In a small bowl, whisk the egg and vanilla together until combined.
4. Use pastry cutter or your food processor (see not below for alternative method) to blend the flour mixture with the butter and egg/vanilla mixture. Dough will be crumbly. Pat half of dough into the prepared pan.
5. In another bowl, stir together 1/2 sugar and cornstarch. Gently mix in the blueberries. Sprinkle the blueberry mixture evenly over the crust. Crumble remaining dough over the berry layer.
6. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until top is slightly brown. Cool completely before cutting into squares.

Note: If you do not have a pastry cutter or a food processor, simply freeze your butter and use a box grated to grate the butter into the flour mixture. Use two forks or your fingers to fully incorporate.

79 Responses to “Lemon Blueberry Crumb Bars”

  1. Maria — June 17, 2010 at 11:47 pm

    I love it when blueberries are on sale. Great recipe!


  2. Lol. While you were at your local Whole Foods, I was at mine. For $67.14, I bought morels, 5 different kinds of cheeses, some jumbo scallops and spring onions. I couldn’t make blueberry crumb bars with these, but I did make a mean scallop dinner (post soon).

    These blueberry bars, though… wow, they look delicious. Will prob. have to buy some more soon and make for Mr. RGBistro. :)

    As always, thank you for the beautiful photos and scrumptious post!



    • Jamie — June 17, 2010 at 11:56 pm

      Thanks so much, Kim! I actually spent less than $50 which is a record for me at Whole Foods! Can’t wait to see the scallop post!!

  3. Looks like we both had the same flavor combinations in mind for our baking this week…lemons & blueberries = YUM! Luckily I hit the jackpot with super cheap blueberries over the weekend when my husband and I went to a local berry farm. We got over 6 lbs of blueberries for $1.50 per pound, not too bad!

    Your lemon blueberry bars look amazing. I’ll have to give this recipe a try b/c I’ve still got quite a few berries I need to use up soon!


  4. Anh — June 18, 2010 at 12:19 am

    That bar looks incredible. I’ve been wanting to make something similar for some time. This is so inspiring


  5. jacquie — June 18, 2010 at 12:30 am

    that looks very good. but … i don’t have any blueberries – do you think sweet or sour cherries would work?


    • Jamie — June 18, 2010 at 12:30 pm

      I think cherries would be amazing!!! Definitely report back if you decide to go this route!

  6. Eliana — June 18, 2010 at 2:19 am

    Really like the idea of using frozen strawberries here as even when fresh ones are on sale I find that it is always hit or miss for flavor. With frozen, they are usually right every time. Can’t wait to try these bars for myself.


  7. Kaitlin — June 18, 2010 at 6:23 am

    They look great! I love blueberries soooo much.

    I’m happy too because they’re on sale right now (along with raspberries and blackberries) for just a dollar a pint! I have never seen them so cheap before!

    Allrecipes is one of my favorite resources for recipes. I love the reviews :)


  8. Katrina — June 18, 2010 at 6:51 am

    These blueberry bars look absolutely wonderful! I adore blueberries in ANYTHING. I can’t wait to make these.


  9. The Teacher Cooks — June 18, 2010 at 7:52 am

    Lemon and blueberries are so good together and your bars look divine. I will have to try these when the local blueberries hit the market.


  10. SnoWhite — June 18, 2010 at 8:43 am

    those look delicious! I love blueberries :)


  11. Krystle — June 18, 2010 at 9:25 am

    These are two of my boyfriends favorite flavors and I actually have fresh blueberries at home that need to be eaten up. I think Ill make these this weekend! Thanks for sharing :)


  12. hannah @ thepastrykook — June 18, 2010 at 12:03 pm

    i know, what’s with the exorbitant prices of berries these days? anyway, i think your blueberry crumb bars look really good! so good that i’d want to stick my hand in through the screen… ow!


  13. Prerna — June 18, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    Why do u do this to me?? I’m trying to diet in here!
    That looks sooooo yummy and inviting!! and awesome pictures!


    • Jamie — June 18, 2010 at 12:48 pm

      Make them and then eat one or five…then pass the rest along to friends and fam!

  14. Joanne — June 18, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    I have a serious love of blueberries in desserts…especially when combined with lemon. And so these bars totally appeal to me. Thankfully here in NYC we have fruit vendors on the street who sell berries at super cheap prices!


  15. shelly (cookies and cups) — June 18, 2010 at 7:59 pm

    yay for blueberries! making these now. or in a little bit, well…this weekend for sure!


  16. ali {gimme some oven} — June 18, 2010 at 8:59 pm

    These look beautiful! So perfect for summer. :-)


  17. June g. — June 19, 2010 at 11:30 am

    Mine are baking right now! Yummy! I must be going blind, the lemon zest? I added it with the blueberries, is that right?


    • Jamie — June 19, 2010 at 11:42 am

      You are not blind! I totallly missed it in the directions. I have added it to the crumb dough once and to the berries once; I prefer it in the crumbd dough. Thanks so much for pointing out that error, it is now fixed! Have a delish day and weekend!

    • June g. — June 19, 2010 at 1:14 pm

      Thanks for answering! They are now cooling, my fingers drumming:)

    • Jamie — June 19, 2010 at 1:39 pm

      Definitely let me know how you like them! I found they tasted better the following when the flavors had a chance to meld a little!

  18. Lisa Small — June 19, 2010 at 3:20 pm

    My husband doesn’t eat blueberries, but I do have some fresh blackberries (pesticide free, I believe) right from a farm that I can use.


    • Jamie — June 19, 2010 at 3:37 pm

      I bet that will be amazing, definitely report back!

  19. Naomi — June 20, 2010 at 11:18 am

    Beautifully made. They look delish! I’m with you on the butter, shortening kinda frightens me.


  20. joudie's Mood Food — June 20, 2010 at 1:25 pm

    Wow, This looks so good. I cant wait to try it. Do you think it would work well with raspberries? If so then this may be the dish of the year for me…..


  21. CaSaundra — June 20, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    I have blueberries in my cereal usually every morning so I love when the fresh ones start hitting shelves!! But blueberries in ice cream is a very close second!


  22. Memoria — June 20, 2010 at 11:00 pm

    Oh my goodness! These bars look amazing!! I just bought a bunch of blueberries at Costco that would love to be used in these bars.


  23. Megan — June 21, 2010 at 10:58 am

    These look killer! Now when I see blueberries, I’ll want these!


  24. Kelly G in ATX — June 21, 2010 at 11:08 am

    Dangnabbit…wish I’d had this the day before you posted! This would have been waaaaaay yummier than the blueberry breakfast crumble I created from Joy of Cooking (which was not that delicious to me anyway…although my husband and cousin thought it was yummy). I can’t wait to try this!


  25. Marinda — June 21, 2010 at 1:48 pm

    Thanks for this recipe, cut it in half, used an 8 by 8 baking pan and they were wonderful. Used up the fresh and frozen and it worked out just fine. Thanks for a wonderful first day of summer dessert bar.


  26. Barbara @ VinoLuciStyle — June 21, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    Perfect…I need a dessert for a lunch tweetup I’m hosting this week and I have a bunch of blueberries I need to use. I don’t think I’ve ever used them in a bar recipe before (why not?) so this is perfect; sort of coffee caked out right now!


  27. Mary — June 24, 2010 at 1:38 am

    This both sounds and looks delicious! Yum! This has been bookmarked; love your blog!

    Delightful Bitefuls


  28. Patty — June 24, 2010 at 3:55 pm

    Hooray for blueberries! I’ll have to do my blueberry baking vicariously through you as we don’t have any here in southern Mexico. Love them here in a citrusy crumble bar, mmm…


  29. Anna — June 26, 2010 at 10:20 am

    These look great and the recipe sounds delicious! My sister is obsessed with blueberries and loves them so much, I’ll have to make these for her sometime. Thanks for the recipe, I love your blog!


  30. Taryn — June 27, 2010 at 7:09 am

    I made these bars last weekend for my family, and they were great. What a perfect way to use blueberries, and a delightful summer treat!


  31. Ashley — June 29, 2010 at 10:57 am

    Oh my these look good! I’m not a big fan of fruit desserts but when there’s lots of yummy crust and streusel, I can’t resist!


  32. allison — July 1, 2010 at 1:50 am

    I made these for a party this past weekend. They turned out really well! Very yummy recipe, great for summer time!
    Just a side note, I froze & grated the butter & it worked great! Also, I used frozen blue berries & they tasted really good, but I imagine fresh berries would have been even better!
    Thanks again for another great recipe!!!


  33. EM — August 3, 2010 at 12:46 am

    Hello! I am desperate to make this ASAP as I have had to clean drool off my keyboard :) hehe
    I love your blog and I am so glad I stumbled upon it!
    Quick question – I am in Australia and I don’t know where to find kosher salt. Can I use just table salt? Or sea salt? Please help! Anyone who can help me I would be so grateful :) I am itching to make these as I have heaps of blueberries in the freezer!


    • Jamie — August 3, 2010 at 11:09 am


      You can definitely sub in table salt or sea salt, Kosher is just my personal preference.


    • EM — August 5, 2010 at 7:41 pm

      Thank you! :) I will try them this weekend!

  34. pk — August 6, 2010 at 3:36 am

    Thank you so much for putting the instructions on what to do if we didn’t have a pastry cutter. Mine are in the oven baking away and my apartment smells divine! I forgot to crumble the top layer and just kind of packed it on (grrr!! absentminded me) so I’ll miss out on the great color contrast, I hope nothing else is affected. Taking them in as a thank you for my summer internship. So a huge thank you for posting this.
    PS. I found the post on foodgawker.com


  35. Jess M — August 21, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    Thank you for the recipe! I’m using these for my “blueberry dessert” for my daughter’s Strawberry Shortcake Party!!


  36. Meredith — August 24, 2010 at 6:27 pm

    I just found your site, and it is wonderful. I just took this recipe and the Lip Smacking Lemon Bar recipe, and made a hybrid of the two. The crust and topping are this crumb. Next I added blueberries (and some raspberries because they’re my favorite). Then I made the lemon bar filling, poured it over, and topped with the rest of the crumb crust. I haven’t taken it out of the oven just yet, but it looks AMAZING so far. Can’t wait to eat it!!!!!


  37. Daniela — October 1, 2010 at 10:09 am

    I made them yesterday. They are awesome! I’m having a square right now for breakfast, with coffee and home made hummus on toast.
    It’s a sunny, chilly, beautiful fall morning in Toronto…


  38. Jenn — December 31, 2010 at 3:25 am

    is white sugar powdered sugar or granulated sugar??


    • Jamie — December 31, 2010 at 6:32 pm

      White is simply granulated sugar. Thanks so much for stopping by!

  39. ashley — February 6, 2011 at 2:05 pm

    This recipe is AMAZING!! I combined fresh and frozen blueberries and it turned out great. It was a little more tart than I thought it would be so I may increase the amount of sugar I mix with the berries next time. I loved the zest in the crumble as well. It’s a very light and fresh taste. Thank you for posting this recipe! =D


  40. Sofia — March 31, 2011 at 11:41 am

    Do the frozen blueberries need to be thawed before mixing in the sugar and the cornstarch?


    • Jamie — March 31, 2011 at 2:25 pm


      I would make sure that they were at least partially thawed, but completely thawed won’t be necessary. Happy Baking!


  41. AEC — July 20, 2011 at 11:25 pm

    I just made these tonight and they’re fantastic! The only change I made was to make a batch of lemon curd and put that on top of the crust prior to adding the blueberry layer. Very yummy!


  42. Diane — November 25, 2011 at 4:56 am

    These are absolutey delicious!! I needed one more dessert for Thanksgiving and I had all the ingredients on hand, so I whipped these up in the morning before I put the turkey in the oven.(( I used frozen blueberries)) They were a big hit!! Great with a cup of coffee or a glass of cold milk!! I will definitely be making these again :)Thanks for sharing the recipe!!


  43. Stephanie — December 1, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    I made these earlier this week and they turned out wonderfully using frozen wild blueberries! Thanks for the great recipe, I already have a request to make them again tomorrow night.


  44. C — December 23, 2011 at 12:26 am

    I haven’t made these bars, but the recipe is nearly verbatim like one on the Smitten Kitchen website that I’ve made several times. Those bars are are amazing – my absolute favorite way to eat blueberries!


  45. Valerie — March 4, 2012 at 9:36 pm

    Made these tonight, they’re in the oven now! On the top I melted some lemon curd and red raspberry jam (and a touch of homemade grape jelly for the pectin/thickening!) It smells SOO good! I love your recipes and they’re easy for a cake-mix baker like me!


  46. Lisa Wright — March 6, 2012 at 3:38 am

    These were sooooo delicious. Thanks for sharing.

    As variety I might switch out some flour and sugar for ground almonds and try cherries. Also probably didn’t need the sugar with the blueberries as the ones I used were sweet enough.

    Mouth is still watering at the thought… and there’s a few slices left downstairs…. but not for long!!



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