Cranberry Bliss Bars~Two Versions


Let me start by letting you know I’ve never had a Starbucks’ Cranberry Bliss Bar, but the web is full of copy cat recipes.  I had my second holiday cookie exchange this week, so I thought I’d test a couple to see which was closer to my idea of cranberry bliss.

They were both wonderful…the first more cheesecake-like and the second more cakey.  You won’t go wrong with either. And nothing says holiday more than cranberries!

I’d made these before…also known as “Better than Bliss Bars”:

Cranberry Bliss Bars…Version #1 via Cheezz at eat.at

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups uncooked quick cooking oats
3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon firmly packed brown sugar, divided
1 cup butter, at room temperature
8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1 can (14 ounce) sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 (16 ounce) can whole berry cranberry sauce

Preheat oven 350°. Lightly grease a 13 x 9 baking pan. 

In large bowl combine flour, oats, 3/4 cup sugar and butter; mix until crumbly. Reserve 1 1/2 cups crumb mixture for topping, and press the rest into the greased pan. Bake 15 minutes. Cool completely.

In large bowl beat cream cheese until fluffy, gradually mix in condensed milk, lemon juice, and vanilla until smooth. Pour evenly over crust. In small bowl combine remaining sugar, cornstarch and cranberry sauce. Spoon over cream cheese mixture. Sprinkle reserved crumb mixture over top. 

Bake 40 minutes. Cool at room temperature, refrigerate before cutting. Store in refrigerator.

This second recipe is supposed to be closer to the original bars: 


Cranberry Bliss Bars…Version #2…adapted from Good Eats ‘n Sweet Treats


Cake
1 cup butter, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups light brown sugar, packed
3 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 cup diced dried cranberries
6 ounces white chocolate, cut into chunks
2 tablespoons crystallized ginger, chopped

Frosting
4 ounces cream cheese at room temperature
3 cups powdered sugar 

2 teaspoons orange extract

2 teaspoons water
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup diced dried cranberries

Drizzled Icing
2 ounces chopped white chocolate melted with 1/4 teaspoon vegetable oil

Preheat oven to 350º.

Beat butter and brown sugar with an electric mixer until smooth. Add eggs, vanilla, ginger, and salt; beat well. Gradually mix in flour until smooth.

Mix 3/4 cup diced dried cranberries, crystallized ginger and white chocolate into the batter by hand.

Pour batter into a well-greased 9 x 13 baking pan and spread evenly. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until cake is light brown on the edges. Let cool.

Frosting: Combine cream cheese, powdered sugar,orange extract, water, and vanilla with an electric mixer until smooth.

When the cake has cooled, spread frosting over the top of cake. Sprinkle top with diced cranberries.

For drizzle, melt white chocolate gently in microwave.  Stir in oil.  Let cool slightly and scrape into small ziplock bag.  Snip small whole in corner and drizzle over bars.

Allow cake to sit several hours, then slice.


Print

 I just LOVE my neighbors…so fun celebrating Christmas with you all!
The second recipe is my Weekend Blog Showcase entry.  This is where I get a chance to share a recipe found on another favorite blog.  This week, I’m introducing: Good Eats ‘n Sweet Treats. Jaime tweaked the copy-cat cranberry bliss bar recipe to perfection…her additions orange extract and crystallized ginger make a truly exceptional bar.  Please check out her fabulous blog!

 

Comments

  1. I make Version 1 of these Cranberry Bliss Bars, Lizzy. Alex and I like them very much!

    Just look at the cookie table at your cookie exchange – YUM!!

  2. Sandra, I’m so impressed that Alex will eat these…Bill claims to be allergic to cranberries…yeah, sure. I’m very lucky to have such fun friends who can bake!

  3. Fantastic food styling & photos, as always, Liz.

  4. Gosh, you’re so nice, Carole!

  5. I love the look of them both. The crumble topped ones look like a great twist on the Starbucks version.

  6. Lizzy, thanks for vetting the cranberry bliss bars! All those sweets look beautiful. I love the presentation. Hi to your puppy!

  7. Thank you, both!

    Carolyn, I was surprised that I liked the cakey one as much or better than the other…both good!

    Anne Marie, I’ll give Lambeau a scratch from you!

  8. Thank you for the inspiration. I’ve never made these but now I will. They sound delicious.
    Beautiful photos!

  9. From someone who takes such incredible photos, that’s a huge compliment! Thanks, Haniela!!!

  10. Your bars and photos of them are beautiful! Both these recipes sound absolutely amazing…I would love one of these this morning :)!

  11. Thanks, Amy…looks like you’ve been busy in the kitchen, too :)

  12. Lizzy, you had me with the cream cheese and condensed milk. Can’t wait to give these a try.

    Thanks for participating again this week in the Weekend Blog Showcase.

    Ann

  13. You are welcome, Ann!

  14. glad you enjoyed the recipe! they look great!

  15. PS – would you mind including a link to the recipe on my blog? thanks!

  16. Thank YOU for sharing, Jaime…I will definitely link to your blog….I thought I already had!

Speak Your Mind

*