That Skinny Chick Can Bake
A stack of 3 cranberry cheesecake bars on a square white plate

Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars

Home » 250+ Best Holiday Recipes » Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars Jump To Recipe

Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars are perfect for your Thanksgiving dessert buffet. Or wait till after the holiday, and use leftover cranberry sauce to make them for your holiday cookie exchange in December.

A stack of 3 cranberry cheesecake bars on a square white plate

Tired of the Same Ol’ Thanksgiving Leftovers?

Well, the Sunday Supper crew has you covered. Today we are sharing all sorts of incredible recipes you can make with your Thanksgiving leftovers.  At Chez Berg, turkey tetrazzini and sandwiches are a given, but by day three, I need some inspiration. If you happened to buy an extra can of whole berry cranberry sauce, though, I can help. You’ll love these cranberry cream cheese bars!

Cranberry Cheesecake Bars on a white dessert plate with fresh cranberries and mint

Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars

This is the time of year to stock up on canned pumpkin, an extra turkey for your freezer, and cranberry sauce. With sales rampant, it just makes sense. One the few fruits native to North America, the cranberry, is nearly always associated with Thanksgiving dinner.

When my parents would visit for the holiday, I’d always grab a can of cranberry sauce, my dad’s preference…while my mom and I favored the freshly ground relish, which also graced our table. But sitting on our lazy susan, behind a cupboard door, that can of  jelled cranberries would often get forgotten due to all the craziness in the kitchen. These cranberry cheesecake bars can help take care of any leftover cranberry sauce after Thanksgiving!

So if you have a memory lapse like me or spot an extra can in your pantry, I hope you’ll try this Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars dessert recipe.

An oatmeal crust is topped with a cheesecake-like layer, followed by slightly sweetened cranberry sauce and an oat streusel. Sounds divine, doesn’t it?

Cranberry Cheesecake Bars stacked on a white dessert plate

Tips for Making Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars:

I love making layered bar cookies. They’re an ideal way to serve a crowd with very little effort. One pan can serve 24 people if you cut the dessert into 4 bars across the short side, then 6 bars across the long side.

  • To make these bars easy to release from the pan, line it with non-stick aluminum foil. The foil will act like a sling and you can remove the bars to a cutting board for easier slicing.
  • PRO-Tip: Chill the bars well before cutting to make the neatest slices. Check out my post on How to Cut Perfect Cookie Bars for details.
  • To make nice even layers, I use a flat bottomed meat mallet or measuring cup to smooth out the surface after patting the crust into the pan with my fingers.
  • Then I use an offset spatula to smooth the sauce and cheesecake layers.
  • Have your butter and cream cheese at room temperature for the best results. Both will be much easier to incorporate if not cold from the refrigerator.
  • Set these cranberry cheesecake bars out on the counter at least an hour before you begin baking. If you need to help them along, gently microwave for just 15-20 seconds. Remove the foil wrap on the cream cheese first.

In addition to my cranberry cream cheese bars, here are more recipes to make with Thanksgiving leftovers:

Main Dish:

Side Dishes:



Cocktails & Drinks:

  • Cranberry Bellinis by A Kitchen Hoor’s Adventures
  • Cranberry Orange Crush by The Messy Baker

Thanksgiving Leftover Roundups:


Love this recipe? Please consider rating it in the comments below. You can also follow me on Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram.

Cranberry Cheesecake Bars #SundaySupper

Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars

A terrific bar cookie for when you have that extra can of cranberry sauce on hand after Thanksgiving! Recipe adapted from my friend, Chezz

  • Author: Liz Berg
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 40 minutes
  • Total Time: 1 hour
  • Yield: 24 bars 1x
  • Category: Dessert. Bar Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 cups quick oats
  • 3/4 cups plus 1 tablespoon brown sugar, divided
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 (16 ounces) can whole berry cranberry sauce


  1. Preheat oven 350°. Line a 13 x 9 baking pan with non-stick foil.
  2. In large bowl combine flour, oats, 3/4 cup sugar and butter; mix until crumbly. Set aside 1 1/2 cups crumbs for topping, and press the rest into the prepared pan. Bake 15 minutes. Cool completely.
  3. In large bowl beat cream cheese until fluffy, gradually mix in condensed milk, lemon juice, and vanilla until smooth. Spread over crust. In small bowl combine remaining 1 tablespoon brown sugar, cornstarch and cranberry sauce. Spoon over cream cheese mixture. Sprinkle reserved crumb mixture over top.
  4. Bake 40 minutes. Let cool completely on wire rack, then chill before cutting. Store in refrigerator.


Note: This post may contain affiliate links; view my Disclosure Policy for details. I earn a small percentage from any purchase you make by clicking on these links at no extra cost to you.

63 comments on “Cranberry Cream Cheese Bars”

  1. I need these bars in my life Liz!! OhhEmmmGeeee!!

  2. Oh my goodness, Liz! This one is a winner for sure!

  3. You’ve done it again! I love every component in this treat – the tart, the nutty, and the tang!

  4. Oatmeal and cranberry…hey sounds like a perfect breakfast treat to me!

  5. What a great idea! This would be perfect party food

  6. Oh wow, these do sound incredible!! Your pictures are beautiful too. I’d love a whole plate, thanks! 🙂

  7. I bought a can of cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving and completely forgot about it until a few days ago. Thanks for the recipe!

  8. I love using cranberries in desserts! This seems like it would have so many wonderful flavors and textures.

  9. This could be a great holiday dessert addition! Great idea, Liz.

  10. Fantastic bars! Cream cheese and cranberry – sounds wonderful
    I LIKE these bars

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.