Really Good Jam Bars

I found this recipe in an old Fanny Farmer cookbook.  The bar cookies are easy to make and the flavor is wonderful.


  • 1/2 cup margarine (I like Imperial)
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1 egg
  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup jam*

*This would be a good way to use up little bits of a variety of jams.  I keep a jar in the refrigerator to put the last spoonful of jam or preserves and the resulting mixture is delicious.

Preheat oven at 400 degrees F.  Grease an 8×8 inch pan.

In a large bowl, cream together the margarine, sugar, vanilla and almond extract.  Add the egg, mixing well.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.  Add to the margarine mixture, beating until blended.

Spread half of the dough in the 8″ greased pan, using water-dampened fingertips to help spread the dough.

Spread the top evenly with jam

Drop the remaining dough in large dollops on top of the jam….

….then use water-dampened fingertips to spread the dough and cover the jam – a few bits of jam peeking out are OK.

Bake at 400 degrees F for about 25 minutes until top is golden brown.  Cool in pan on a wire rack.

While still warm, loosen the edges from the pan and cut into 16 bars.

Keep bars in pan on wire rack until completely cool.

Yield:  16 bars 

I have a note in my binder:  “First made July 12, 1995, using my homemade seedless blackberry jam.  David (my husband) ate about 1/3 of them while they were cooling in the pan.”

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Lillian Applegate Westfelt was a mother of 4, grandmother of 6, and great-grandmother of 3. She was an 86-year-old widow living in a nice little bungalow with her oldest daughter and a beagle-dachsund named Addie. She passed away in November, 2018.

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