Cranberry Crumble Bars Recipe

Cranberries are an unsung hero among fruit. They bring flavor and color to any dish, and they are a good source of several vitamins and antioxidants (via Medical News Today). And yet, cranberries often find themselves relegated to the "holiday" section of recipe ingredients. Newsflash: cranberries are not just for Thanksgiving! Thanks to this delicious cranberry crumble bar recipe from recipe developer and food photographer Jess Morone, you can enjoy the tart flavor of cranberries all year long.

Morone says that the flavor of these crumble bars is what makes this recipe stand out. She says, "The orange in the recipe brings out the tart cranberry flavor, and combined with the sweet crumble dough they are just really delicious." Not only are these cranberry crumble bars delicious, but they also come together quickly and easily. They only take 20 minutes to assemble before going in the oven, and the most advanced cooking technique that's required is stirring. Let's get started.

Gather your ingredients for the cranberry crumble bars

For this recipe, you'll need frozen cranberries, sugar, orange juice, and the zest of one orange. You'll also need one egg, vanilla extract, corn starch, all-purpose flour, baking powder, salt, and ground cinnamon.

And last but not least, you'll need some cold butter. And for the sake of your crumble, it's important that the butter is actually cold. "The only thing you need to be careful about is to make sure you use cold butter for the dough, otherwise it won't come together right as a crumbly dough," says Morone.

Make the cranberry filling

Preheat the oven to 375 F and line a 9x13 baking pan with parchment paper. Don't forget to preheat your oven — it's important for baked goods to go into an oven that's already hot. Add the cranberries, ¾ cup of sugar, orange juice, vanilla extract, orange zest, and corn starch to a sauce pan and simmer for 5 minutes, or until the cranberries start popping and the liquid begins to thicken. Remove the pot from the heat and let it cool.

Make the crumble mixture

Add the flour, 1 cup of sugar, baking powder, salt, butter, and cinnamon to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the mixture forms coarse crumbs. Add the egg and continue to pulse until the coarse crumbs turn into a coarse, crumbly dough. If you don't have a food processor, you can use a pastry blender.

"The food processor just makes the process quicker than using a pastry blender," says Morone. "But otherwise, there isn't much of a difference. If you don't have a food processor or a pastry blender, you could also use a fork, two butter knives, or even your hands to crumble the dough together."

Assemble the bars

Now that you have your crumble dough and your cranberry filling, it's time to assemble the bars. Press half the dough mixture into the bottom of the parchment paper-lined baking dish, then spoon the cranberry filling over the dough. Top the cranberry filling with the rest of the dough. After you've finished assembling the cranberry crumble bars, bake them in the oven for 35-45 minutes, or until the tops are golden brown.

Serve and store the bars

Remove the baking dish from the oven, let it cool, and cut the cranberry crumble bars into squares. You may choose to eat these bars right away, but if you want to enjoy them over the course of a few days, they should last covered at room temperature up to three days, in the refrigerator for up to a week, or in the freezer for up to three months. "These bars are a great dessert for pretty much any occasion," says Morone. "They are so simple to make, and since they use frozen cranberries, you can make them any time during the year."

Cranberry Crumble Bars Recipe
5 from 24 ratings
Cranberries are about to become a staple in your freezer. This cranberry crumble bars recipe is simple, and simply delicious.
Prep Time
20
minutes
Cook Time
35
minutes
Servings
18
servings
cranberry crumble bars
Total time: 55 minutes
Ingredients
  • 16 ounces frozen cranberries
  • 1 ¾ cup sugar, divided
  • 4 teaspoons orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • zest of 1 orange (about 2 tablespoons)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cold butter
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg
Directions
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F. Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with parchment paper.
  2. Add the cranberries, ¾ cup sugar, orange juice, vanilla extract, orange zest, and cornstarch to a large saucepan and bring to a simmer. Simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the cranberries start popping and the liquid thickens. Remove the saucepan from the stove and let it cool.
  3. Mix the flour, remaining 1 cup sugar, baking powder, salt, butter, and cinnamon together in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the mixture becomes coarse crumbs. Add the egg and continue pulsing until a crumbly dough forms. If you don't have a food processor, you can use a pastry blender
  4. Press half the dough into the bottom of the prepared pan until it is an even layer. Spoon the cranberry filling over the dough, and top the filling with the remaining dough mixture.
  5. Bake in the preheated oven for 35-45 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. Remove the baking dish from the oven, let it cool, then cut the crumble bars into squares.
Nutrition
Calories per Serving 247
Total Fat 10.7 g
Saturated Fat 6.6 g
Trans Fat 0.4 g
Cholesterol 36.0 mg
Total Carbohydrates 36.5 g
Dietary Fiber 1.7 g
Total Sugars 20.7 g
Sodium 58.4 mg
Protein 2.3 g
The information shown is Edamam’s estimate based on available ingredients and preparation. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice.
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