Cranberry Bars

These cranberry bars are luscious, buttery, sweet and tart, with a sweet crumble dough that doubles as a topping. A gorgeous and delicious dessert perfect for the holidays. If you are in need of some cranberry recipes then I have just the one for you. Save your leftover Christmas cranberry sauce for this recipe and my other one linked below! You won’t be able to eat just one!

Cranberry Bars

I love coming up with cranberry recipes and these cranberry bars are great to make during the holiday. So if you love cranberries or just have too much leftover, try these bars.

Quick and easy desserts like these cranberry bars or my other or  cranberry cream cheese bread pudding/french toast are my favorites to make during the holidays. Both of my cranberry recipes are simple and ridiculously good.  Golden tops with soft crumble topping and sweet but tart cranberry filling. Yum! One thing I really loved about these cranberry bars is the easy dough.  There’s no need to make a separate dough for the crumb topping. How perfect is that?


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This cranberry bar recipe actually uses the same dough for the top AND the bottom crust! Yup. The dough takes only 10 minutes to make (or less). Here’s how you make the bars.

  • In a medium bowl add all of the dough ingredients except for the egg. Whisk the ingredients well.
  • With a pastry cutter, your fingers, fork or food processor, cut the butter into the flour until pea-sized crumbs form.
  • Add the egg and combine it into the dough using your hands.

Quick tip:

If you are using your hands to cut the butter into the flour, cut the butter as if you are snapping your fingers. It works perfectly plus it’s fun.

Now let’s get to the cranberry sauce.  Use your own homemade cranberry sauce to make this cranberry recipe or my homemade cranberry sauce recipe.


To make these cranberry bars, first I start of with making the cranberry sauce. Cranberry sauce is super easy to make. Just add sugar, water, vanilla extract and fresh cranberries into a medium saucepan. Let the cranberries boil for about  7 minutes until the sauce is dark and thick then cool completely.

Once the dough is ready, divide it then press half of the dough evenly into a lightly greased baking pan.  Add the cooled cranberry sauce and spread it evenly all over the top of the dough. Lastly,  crumble the rest of the dough over the top of the cranberries. Lightly press the crumble down with a spoon or spatula. Pop the pan into the oven and that’s pretty much it!

These cranberry bars need to cool for a couple of hours. If you want to cut perfect slices chill them for a couple hours. See notes in the recipe!

Cranberry Bars


  • Mix blueberries or your choice of fruit with 1/3 cup of sugar to 1/2 cup of sugar (depending on the type of berry you use). Some berries tend to be more tart than others.
  • two teaspoons of cornstarch
  • 2.5 tablespoons of lemon juice.

Proceed with the cranberry recipe below.

Don’t forget to save/pin this cranberry bar recipe and let me know if you try it. I’d love to know!

If you love this recipe, try my cranberry cream cheese bread pudding/french toast. You can also use your leftover cranberry sauce recipe as well. If you love maple syrup, you can check out my  maple syrup cranberry sauce!

What’s your favorite cranberry recipe?

Share to save this recipe to your Facebook wall or you can save it to your dip board on Pinterest and let’s be friends I’m always pinning delicious recipes!

Luscious, buttery, sweet and tart glossy cranberry sauce crumble bars are made with a sweet crumble dough that doubles as a topping. A classic and super easy gorgeous and delicious holiday dessert. You won't be able to eat just one!

Cranberry Bars

April Boller Wright
Tart and sweet cranberries are made into a sauce then sandwiched between sweet crumble dough and baked until pale golden.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Course Dessert
Cuisine American
Servings 12


  • 1 cup plus 2 tbsp unsalted very cold butter cut into cubes
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg lightly beaten

Cranberry filling

  • 3/4 cups cranberry sauce
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla extract


  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease an 8x8 inch baking pan.
  • In a medium bowl add all of the dough ingredients except for the egg. Whisk the ingredients well.
  • With a pastry cutter or fork cut the butter into the flour until pea-sized crumbs form.  Add the egg and combine it into the crumble dough using your hands. Alternatively, you could use your food processor.
  • Pour half the crumble dough into the pan. With your hands flatten it evenly all over. Set the remaining dough to the side.

Cranberry sauce

  • Place all of the cranberry ingredients into a small saucepan over high heat and boil for 6-7 minutes or until the sauce is thick and dark stirring frequently. Place the sauce in a bowl then add the vanilla extract. Stir and set to the side to cool completely.
  • Pour the cooled cranberry mixture or your leftover cranberry sauce evenly over the bottom crust and spread it evenly. Crumble remaining dough over the cranberry sauce.
    Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, or until top is a golden pale color. Cool completely before cutting into squares.


  • To remove bars easily from the pan, line the pan with two crisscrossed pieces of parchment. Have enough parchment paper so the it overhangs on all side. 
  • The bars cut better when they are chilled I usually let mine cool for about 30 minutes then refrigerate for 2-4 hours. If you are in a hurry to eat them then cool completely (30-60 minutes) before cutting.
  • Cover tightly and store for up to 5 days.
  • Bars can be frozen up to 3 months.
Make in advance: Prepare the bars up to 4 days in advance. Cover tightly and refrigerate until you need them.
  • Read the blog post for instructions on how to make these using your favorite fresh raw berries.
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  1. I made these to use up my leftover cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving and damn! This recipe is a keeper. These are sooo tasty, I absolutely love the dough part. I was worried when they were cooking because it looked a bit wet from all the butter but they cooled and are perfect. Thanks for the winning recipe! This will be my go to for any fruit bars!5 stars

    1. Jill thank you so much for the great feedback! I’m glad you enjoyed the cranberry bars!

  2. I can see how I could get addicted to those cranberry jam bars, they look so soft and moist! I have blueberry jam at home and lingonberries jam so I think I would try it with both to see how it comes. Lingonberries after all resemble cranberries.

  3. These look delightful, a good way to get my kids interested in cranberry. thanks for sharing!