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Plate of date squares with a glass of milk.

Date Squares

Old-fashioned date squares have a delicious oatmeal crumble and chewy date filling. This recipe has the perfect balance of crumble and filling, with a hint of cinnamon and the perfect texture.
Course Dessert
Cuisine American, Canadian
Keyword Date Bars, Date Crumbles, Date Squares
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 50 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Servings 16 bars
Calories 266kcal


  • 8x8 inch pan


Date Filling

  • 3 cups pitted Medjool dates* about 400 grams
  • ¾ cup water
  • ¼ cup orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar

Oatmeal Crumble (for the base and topping)

  • 1 ½ cups quick oats*
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup unsalted butter softened, but not melted
  • 1 cup brown sugar


  • Preheat the oven to 350F (180C) degrees and position the oven rack in the center of the oven.
  • Line an 8x8 inch (20x20 cm) pan with parchment paper, leaving an overhang around the edges of the pan.

Date Layer

  • Chop the dates into pieces (they don't need to be tiny).
  • Add the dates, water, orange juice and brown sugar to a saucepan over low-medium heat. Gently stir the mixture as the dates boil down and start to soften.
  • Once the dates are soft enough that they begin to fall apart and you could mash them with a fork, the mixture is done. Remove from the heat.

Oatmeal Crumble

  • In a medium bowl stir together the oats, flour, cinnamon, baking powder and salt.
  • In a large bowl beat together the brown sugar and butter until there's no lumps.
  • Gently mix the dry ingredients into the butter - you can do this by hand or with the mixer on low speed. Stop as soon as the mixture is combined (be careful not to over mix). It should be crumbly.

Assembling & Baking

  • Reserve about 1 cup of the oatmeal crumble for the topping, press the remaining mixture into the bottom of the lined pan.
  • Spread the date filling over the base and sprinkle the reserved oatmeal mixture over the top.
  • Bake in the preheated oven for 50-60 minutes, or until the top is golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack (still in the pan) until completely cooled - about 4 hours.
  • To slice, lift the bars out of the pan using the overhang from the parchment paper and place on a cutting board. Slice with a sharp knife.


  1. A 9x9 inch pan will work for this recipe. The bars will be thinner however, and the bake time will be a bit shorter - about 40-50 minutes. I tested the bake time for this recipe using a metal pan. If using a glass or ceramic pan, the bake time may be slightly different. 
  2. Any kind of dried, pitted date will work for this recipe. I prefer Medjool because I think they have the best flavor.
  3. Old-fashioned oats (AKA large, flake oats) will work too. Do not use instant oats or steel-cut oats. 
  4. Store bars in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3-4 days, or in the fridge for up to a week. Bars can be frozen for up to 2 months, then thaw in the fridge. 
  5. Nutrition information is an estimate only and based on 1 bar, assuming the pan is sliced into 16 equal pieces. 


Calories: 266kcal | Carbohydrates: 46g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 6g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 43mg | Potassium: 268mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 33g | Vitamin A: 315IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 42mg | Iron: 1mg