Berry Crumble Pie Bars

All the goodness of a pie, in an easy, portable bar! These bars have a buttery shortbread base topped with a sweet medley of strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries. A sprinkle of shortbread dough on top ties the whole thing together. Perfect for Pi(e) day!

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HOW IS IT MID-MARCH ALREADY?!?!

Seriously, guys! When I said "peace out Girl Scout" to my job at EY three months ago, I thought my funemployment would drag on at a glacial pace, and I would be positively itching to get back into the corporate world long before starting at Accenture. Now, I'm a week and a half out from my new gig, and I can't believe how the time has flown!

So, it's mid-March. And this means a few things:
- St. Patrick's Day!!!!*
- Spring is coming!!!
- Bathing suit season is coming..... YIKES
- PI DAY, BABES!

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*Although I would argue that the best lifestyle is one where you live every day like it's St. Patrick's Day.

Now, I don't know about you, but I personally have been celebrating Pi Day since I was a wee lass. I've always been a bit of a nerd smarty pants, especially in math-related fields. I even went into college with the intention of becoming a math major! Until I took Calc 3, that is - as soon as the numbers disappeared, and my professor became a man who looked and acted exactly like Nicholas Cage, I was OUT of there. T E R R I F Y I N G.

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My first Pi Day celebration was in 8th grade - Mrs. McConnaughey's advanced geometry class - a place for all the cool kids, obvi. This was long before I discovered my passion for baking, but Mrs. McMath (as we called her) promised extra credit* to those who brought in a pie, and nerds LOVE extra credit. I was in.

*On second thought, this seems like an excellent way to procure free food. Maybe I should do this with my trivia participants? Hmmmm.

I got my dad to pick me up a lemon meringue pie from Giant (ahh, the joys of being a financially dependent middle schooler), and walked into a heavenly palace of pie the next day. We had chocolate mousse, apple, chocolate chip cookie, pecan, YOU NAME IT, WE ATE IT!

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I may no longer have the luxury of a math class full of pie-bearing students, but I DO have an oven. And a creative brain that craved a fruity pie, but with less labor and more free time to enjoy the pie. And, the pie needed to be individually portioned so I could serve it at my Rodan + Fields Business Launch party. As such, these pie bars were born!

SO EASY. SO FAST. SO GOOD. It's almost Pi Day - what are you waiting for?!

Berry Crumble Pie Bars

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To make these bars, you will need:
Shortbread
- 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 t baking powder
- Pinch salt
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, COLD
- 1/4 cup buttermilk
Filling
- 3 cups frozen berries (I used a pre-mixed pack from Giant)
- 2 T cornstarch
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 T lemon juice

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Begin by preheating your oven to 375F. Whisk together your sugar, flour, baking powder, and salt.

Use a cheese grater to grate your butter into the dry mixture. The tinier the pieces, the flakier the shortbread is! Add the buttermilk, then use a fork/your hands (playing with dough is fun!) to combine the ingredients until you have a soft, shaggy dough.

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Line a 9x13" pan with parchment paper, then press half the dough mixture into the bottom of the pan to form the shortbread crust. Now, make the filling!

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In a medium bowl, combine the lemon juice, fruit, sugar, and cornstarch. Spread this mixture on top of your dough base, then sprinkle more dough onto the fruit to form the crumble topping.

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Pop this bad boy into the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes, until the edges are golden. Chill in the freezer or fridge for at least 30 minutes to let the filling firm up, then cut and serve! IT'S THAT EASY!

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Happy pi day, my friends. I hope it is filled with endless pies of all varieties, good people, and no math homework whatsoever.

XOXO,
Jess