Whenever I’m feeling kind of meh, I have a few options. A nap isn’t usually possible (there are small children about), so I can either try to sneak episodes of whatever TLC show is new on Netflix without the li’l ones noticing, or I can make a pie. It’s hard to hide what my iPad is doing, so I think the pie wins this one.
I sometimes get weary, people. Bone-tired. Can’t-take-it-anymore tired.
Whoops, I lost myself for a bit there. But there’s this thing that happens when you have small kids. It’s commonly known as “stomach flu,” but annoying know-it-alls will constantly tell you that this scourge has nothing to do with the flu. Thanks, smarty pants. Wanna feel what I’m feeling right now?
Okay, that sounded bitter. It’s just that I’ve had, on average, five friendly stomach viruses per year since becoming a mom. And as someone who loves to eat, I always resent the havoc these episodes wreak on my taste buds. Because for days and even weeks post-sickness, my palate reverts to childhood. All I want are chocolate chip cookies, cheese sandwiches and hot dogs. With the occasional sushi roll. Weird.
I also want anything fudgy and crumbly, which is why I made these bars right after I got over the worst of my most recent bout of illness. These are easy to make and completely crush any self-pity you might be feeling about being sick!
Just a few ingredients make up the base of these bars, including yellow cake mix. I used this same base in my Strawberry Crumb Bars. Then I filled the middle with an easy fudge (you make it in the microwave), and presto! Crumbly bars bursting with thick fudge filling. I’m having a hard time thinking of anything better.
Now my husband is the sick one, so I’m going to be a very nice wife and take care of him without pointing out that he doesn’t technically have the flu. But I’ll grab a few of these first. They really make my day!
Crumbs are the best! And I hope you can enjoy these free of any diseases or disasters.
- 1 box yellow cake mix
- 1 and 1/2 cups quick oats (do not use regular oats)
- 1/2 cup butter, melted
- 1 package semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk (I used fat-free)
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
Preheat the oven to 350. Line a 9 x 13 pan with foil, letting the foil overhang the sides of the pan for easy removal later on. Coat with cooking spray.
In a bowl, combine the yellow cake mix and oats thoroughly. Pour in the melted butter and stir until the mixture forms crumbs. Press several handfuls of the crumb mixture into the bottom of the pan to make a crust, reserving the rest.
In a microwave-safe bowl, heat the chocolate chips and condensed milk for two and a half minutes. Remove from the microwave and stir until smooth. Add the vanilla and stir again.
Pour the fudge mixture immediately onto the crumb crust, spreading it out carefully and evenly to avoid bringing up the bottom crust with the fudge. If a little comes up, it’s fine, but just exercise caution.
Crumble the remaining crust on top of the fudge filling, being sure that the crumbs vary from larger to medium-sized.
Bake for 25 minutes until the crumbs are turning golden. Remove from the oven and cool. Cut into bars or triangles. Store in an airtight container for up to one week.