Old Fashioned Raisin Bars

Old fashioned raisin bars are thin, cake-like spice bars loaded with raisins and topped with a creamy frosting.

Cut raisin bars on a wooden cutting board.

When I came across this retro recipe, I decided we had to try it.

They are moist, with a tender crumb, plump raisins, and perfectly spiced. They are easy to make and are a great snack or even breakfast.

I couldn’t keep my husband away from them. Needless to say, these did not last long at our house.

Try our Bread Pudding!

Old Fashioned Raisin Bars

Old fashioned Raisin Bars - raisins soaked in water butter mixture

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

For easy removal from the sheet pan, line it with parchment paper. Mix all the ingredients, pour into the pan and bake.

In a saucepan bring the water to a boil over medium heat.

Combine the raisins and the boiling water. Remove from the heat, add the butter and cool to lukewarm.

Whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and salt together in a medium-size bowl.

Old fashioned Raisin Bars batter in a parchment lined baking pan

Pour the raisin mixture in large mixing bowl. Add the sugar, egg and dry ingredients. With an electric mixer, beat until thoroughly blended.

Pour into the prepared baking pan and bake at 350 for about 25 minutes.

Old fashioned Raisin Bars cut into serving pieces

Cool completely on a wire rack.

To Frost: In a medium bowl, mix together the butter, vanilla, confectioners’ sugar, and 1 tablespoon at a time of milk to the desired consistency.

I enjoyed the frosting but I think the next time I make these spiced raisin bars, I will just dust with powdered sugar. Or maybe a simple powdered sugar glaze.

a closeup of a slice of the Old fashioned Raisin Bars

Cut into bars or slice however you like. I sliced in the typical bar form. Enjoy!

Try our Cinnamon Raisin Bread.

Cut raisin bars on a wooden cutting board.

Old Fashioned Raisin Bars

Old fashioned Raisin Bars – Let these moist, flavorful bites take you back in time!
4.59 from 17 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Brownies / Bars, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bars, old fashioned, raisin
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Servings: 36
Calories: 110kcal
Author: Don’t Sweat The Recipe

Ingredients
 

  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. allspice
  • 1/2 tsp. cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. salt

Frosting:

  • 2 Tbsp. butter melted
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • enough milk for spreading consistency desired

Instructions

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  • Combine raisins and water in a small saucepan; bring to a boil.
    1 cup raisins, 1 cup water
  • Remove from heat, add butter; cool to lukewarm.
    1/2 cup butter
  • Whisk the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, and salt together in a medium-size bowl.
    1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. allspice, 1/2 tsp. cloves, 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Pour the raisin mixture in large mixing bowl; add sugar, egg and dry ingredients.
    1 cup sugar, 1 large egg
  • With an electric mixer, beat until thoroughly blended.
  • Pour into greased and floured sheet pan (15½x10½x1-inch) and bake about 25 minutes.
  • Cool.
  • To frost:
  • In a medium bowl, mix together the butter, vanilla, confectioners’ sugar and 1 tablespoon at a time of milk to the desired consistency.
    2 Tbsp. butter, 1 tsp. vanilla, 1 3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar, enough milk for spreading consistency desired

Notes

**The yield amount will depend on how you slice them.
Storing – Place in an air-tight container and store at room temperature for up to 4 days.
Freezing – I would recommend freezing these raisin bars without the frosting for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight, frost as directed.

Nutrition

Calories: 110kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 3g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 14mg | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 43mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 11g | Vitamin A: 108IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg

Recipe source RecipeCurio.com

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16 Comments

  1. Made the Old Fashioned Raisin Bars the day I got the recipe. It was easy to make and taste delicious.5 stars

  2. I found this searching for a raisin bar recipe. Last time I made raisin bars I was 12 nearly 50 years ago. My mom gave me her recipe card and I got at it solo (I’d been baking for a couple years by then). She had an abbreviation in the ingredients list of “1 tsp B.P.” I added black pepper and after tasting the finished product learned to my chagrin it should have been baking powder.

  3. My mother made these the day of Kennedys inauguration, though I have no idea where she got the recipe. The only difference is Crisco instead of butter, and lemon juice mixed with confectioners sugar. Thereafter, she always referred to them as ‘Kennedy Cookies’ – they’ve stood the test of time in our family!5 stars

  4. I remember my mother use to make these for us for packed lunch and during the summer she would freeze them and that them out about 20mins before giving them to us as a cold treat and I remember when I would help make them it called for Crisco also so if someone has it that way please help me out I can ask my mom she is with the lord5 stars

    1. These bars are not very “tall”. They are a bar, not a cake. The recipe calls for baking soda. I hope this helps you.

    1. Hi, Glenda. Hmmm, it’s never been dry for us. Remember all ovens are different. Try lowering the oven temp to 325 degrees F or bake a little less time.

  5. I got this recipe in 1966 as a new bride. The only difference is instead of the water was a cup of strongly brewed coffee. A perfect companion to an epic recipe.5 stars

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