A cake is a must on your birthday and it simply wouldn’t be the holidays without a pie or two, but a dessert bar is a treat that can—and should—be enjoyed whenever you damn well please. (Although it’s worth knowing that these easy-to-make desserts go down particularly well at potlucks and parties.) And the best part? They’re incredible versatile. No matter what type of treat you seek—be it sugar-free, keto-friendly or just ridiculously rich—you’re sure to find a bar that fits the bill in our roundup of best dessert bar recipes.

RELATED: The 21 Types of Cookies Every Baker Should Master

Foodie Crush

1. No-Bake Cookie Bars with Chocolate, Cherries and Chia Seeds

Packed with almond butter, oats, sliced almonds, dried fruit, chia seeds and cacao nibs, these tasty bars are practically a health food. And the fact that they require zero time in the oven? Well, that just makes them even sweeter.

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Recipe Tin Eats

2. Apple Crumble Bars

Why fuss with pie crust when you can skip the hassle with a bar that boasts loads of sweet apple flavor and an irresistible crumble topping to boot? And while topping with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce is completely optional, we highly recommend it.

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Cookie and Kate

3. Chocolate Peanut Butter Crispy Bars

A fresh take on the Rice Krispies classic known as the scotcheroo, these no-bake bars boast a pleasant crunch and deep chocolate flavor with a playful salty finish.

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Butter Be Ready

4. Banana Pudding Cheesecake Bars

Silky banana cream pudding just met tangy, sweet cheesecake and we think wedding bells are ringing.

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A Classic Twist

5. Strawberry Oatmeal Bars

This sweet and chewy oatmeal cookie sandwich with strawberry filling does double duty as both breakfast bar and dessert.

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Jessica in the Kitchen

6. Vegan Lemon Bars

Coconut oil and coconut cream make excellent stand-ins for butter and eggs in this fresh and zesty vegan lemon bar recipe.

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Brown Sugar Mama

7. Snicker Toffee Butter Bars

Sweetened condensed milk, crunchy toffee and everyone’s favorite candy bar join forces to make one seriously indulgent dessert bar. File this one under “crowd pleaser.”

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Make It Dairy Free

8. Vegan Chocolate Mousse Bars

Attention, vegan friends: These decadent chocolate mousse bars require just four ingredients and 15 minutes of spare time to make, so you should probably keep the recipe on speed dial.

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It’s Raining Flour

9. Gluten-Free Raspberry Bars

Your sweet tooth is threatening to sabotage your New Year’s resolution. The solution? A healthy vegan and gluten-free treat that combines the satisfying texture of rolled oats with the palate-pleasing power of raspberry preserve.

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CarlsBad Cravings

10. Salted Apple Pie Caramel Blondies

Here, chewy, butterscotch blondies serve as a base for creamy, caramel-drenched apple pie filling and pecan streusel. Go on and ask us if we miss the pie crust.

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Snixy Kitchen

11. Gluten-Free Cocoa Cranberry Crumble Bars

Vanilla-spiked cranberry jam is a perfect companion for rich dark chocolate cookie crust in this gluten-free winner.

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Broma

12. Almond Joy Brownies

The rejects of the Halloween candy world make a comeback so sweet it could catch Hollywood’s attention.

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A Cookie Named Desire

13. Balsamic Strawberry Cheesecake Bars with Shortbread

A balsamic vinegar drizzle takes these strawberry cheesecake bars from bake sale delicious to upscale divine.

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Sally’s Baking Addiction

14. Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Bars

Pumpkin, chocolate and rolled oats combine to make an extra satisfying dessert bar that’s vegan, gluten-free and oh-so delicious.

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Plays Well With Butter

15. Tahini Scotcheroos

This Midwestern speciality is typically made with peanut butter but here, Coterie member Jesse Larson gives this rich and gooey chocolate treat an allergy-friendly upgrade by using creamy tahini instead. Oh, and did we mention that these guys are gluten-free, too?

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Minimalist Baker

16. Pecan Pie Bars

A slab of pecan pie goodness with a shortbread crust so rich, you’d never suspect it was made with a dairy-free substitute for butter.

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How Sweet Eats

17. Salted Brown Butter Peanut Butter M&M Cookie Bars

Melty peanut butter M&Ms baked into a butterscotch blondie; needless to say, this one makes dessert dreams come true.

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Half Baked Harvest

18. Buckeye Crunch Bars

The combination of smooth peanut butter mousse, rich chocolate and salty pretzels in this no-bake treat is giving Reese’s a serious run for its money.

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The Almond Eater

19. Paleo Sweet Potato Bars

These semi-sweet sweet bars with maple almond drizzle promise to satisfy your sweet tooth without weighing you down.

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The Mess is Ours

20. Gluten-Free Cherry Oat Bars

Crisp, buttery crumb with a rich cherry pie filling that’ll make you swoon.

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Damn Delicious

21. Strawberry Crumb Bars with Meyer Lemon Glaze

Strawberry jam and Meyer lemon combine to make a super sweet and tangy treat with a flavor profile that’s sure to perk up your palate.

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Saving Room for Dessert

22. Date Bars with Oats and Cinnamon

This dessert bar features naturally sweet dates nestled in a crunchy almond crust—and chances are it will impress anyone you’re sweet on.

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Vintage Kitty

23. Blueberry Grapefruit Bars

Grapefruit—an ingenious replacement for lemon—works with blueberries to maintain the perfect balance of tart and sweet.

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Well Plated by Erin

24. Banana Bars

Whether dished up with a side of Greek yogurt for breakfast or a scoop of vanilla ice cream for dessert, these sweet bars will go down a treat.

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Wholesome Yum


25. Keto Coconut Flour Brownies

Moist, rich and fudgy—you’ll never guess these brownies are also fiber-packed and keto-friendly.

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Detoxinsta

26. Vegan Chocolate Cheesecake Bars

Silky cashew cream is combined with—wait for it—zucchini to create the authentic texture of this vegan cheesecake bar…and yep, it works.

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A Pretty Life in the Suburbs

27. S’more Magic Cookie Bars

Turns out you don’t need to build a campfire to enjoy the magic of buttery graham crackers, toasted marshmallows and chunky chocolate.

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Sweet Lizzy

28. Vegan Peanut Butter Banana Blondies

Gooey peanut butter, naturally sweet bananas and rich chocolate make for an unbeatable blondie that’s easy to bake and even easier to bite into.

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The Butter Half

29. Mom’s Rocky Road Cookie Bars

These dense, decadent brownies topped with gooey frosting are best enjoyed once they’ve spent some time chilling in the fridge.

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Sugar Free Mom


30. Sugar Free Low Carb Coconut Lime Bars

Put the lime in the coconut and eat it all up.

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Grandbaby Cakes

31. Frozen S’more Cookie Bars

Your favorite camping treat has been given a frozen upgrade and it is good.

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The Sugar Free Diva

32. Sugar Free Keto Peppermint Bark

This sugar-free treat boasts a creamy chocolate bottom, white chocolate top and a layer of peppermint candy. Let’s just say it tastes like holiday magic.

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BitzNGiggles

33. Mint Chocolate Lush Dessert

Layers of fudgy brownie, creamy chocolate pudding and pillowy mint cream make for one truly luscious dessert.

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The Creative Bible

34. Pumpkin Pecan Custard Pie Bars

For when you’re craving the flavor of pumpkin pie without the hassle of making the crust (i.e., always).

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Show Me the Yummy

35. Tequila Lime Cheesecake Bars

It’s happy hour all day when you whip up a batch of these margarita-flavored bars.

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Shanna Schad/Pineapple and Coconut

36. Brown Butter Piña Colada Blondies

Because you like piña coladas (and also eating blondies straight out of the pan).

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Whitney Bond

37. Double Chocolate Brownies with Peanut Butter Chips

These extra fudgy brownies are packed with peanut butter chips and slathered with gooey chocolate. Needless to say, they don’t disappoint.

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40 Aprons

38. Paleo Cranberry Bliss Bars

Chewy blondie crust, vegan cream cheese frosting and dried cranberries come together to make a dessert you can indulge in without straying from your diet.

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5 Boys Baker

39. Confetti White Chocolate Bars

Bite into one of these buttery white chocolate blondies and you’ll be rewarded with a party in your mouth.

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This Silly Girl’s Kitchen

40. Cherry Cheesecake Bars

Why eat a regular cheesecake bar when you can have one drenched with cherry pie filling?

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