Every year, just after Thanksgiving, we look forward to cranberry bliss bars showing up at Starbucks. They are one of Aaron's favorites, loaded with cranberries, white chocolate, candied ginger, and cream cheese frosting.
When I first started my previous blog (in 2009), I tried to make these as one of my first recipes. I encourage you to go and check out that post. It was my second blog post ever and wow! My food blogging has come along way! I didn't even include a recipe! The photos were horrible too. And, though I still need years of photography and styling practice, I know my photos are much better than they used to be. My cooking is too! I have learned so many tips and tricks over the years. I now know how to drizzle chocolate and even melt white chocolate without burning it.
The recipe comes together quite simply. A simple cookie, a frosting, a sprinkling of cranberries and a drizzling of white chocolate. These are best served after some time in the fridge.
NOTE: Don't skimp on the candied ginger. It might be challenging to find but it is worth the search. You can buy it online at Amazon.
Hope you love them.
Cranberry Bliss Bars
For Cake Base:
- 2 sticks butter - softened
- 1 and ¼ cups brown sugar - packed
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 1 and ½ cups all-purpose flour
- ¼ cup minced dried cranberries
- ¼ cup white chocolate chips
- ¼ cup minced candied ginger
- 4 ounce cream cheese - softened
- 1 and ½ cups powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons butter - softened
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1-2 teaspoons heavy cream if needed
- 2 Tablespoons minced dried cranberries
- ⅓ cup white chocolate chips
- ½ teaspoon coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350 and lightly grease a 9x13 pan.
- Beat butter and sugar together for the cake base, and add eggs/vanilla beating until fluffy. Sift together flour, ginger, and salt and then add to the butter/sugar mixture beating well. Fold in the cranberries, chocolate and ginger. Spread thick batter in pan and bake for about 20 to 25 minutes or until light golden. The cookie base should be fairly thin--about ½ inch to ¾ inch thick.
To make frosting:
- Mix butter, powdered sugar and vanilla together to make a slightly thick frosting. You may need to add the heavy cream to ensure it can spread easily.
- Once the cookie base is cooled, spread a thin layer of frosting over it. Sprinkle with the minced cranberries.
- Melt white chocolate chips and coconut oil in the microwave, using 10 second pulses, to ensure they don't burn. I used a Ziploc bag to drizzle the chocolate on the cookie with diagonal lines.
- Cut into bars (either rectangles or triangles) and chill for at least 30 minutes before serving.