Recipe and photo by Katie Olsen of Katiebird Bakes!
With a buttery, holiday-spiced base that doubles as the crumb, and a lightly sweetened cranberry filling, these cranberry crumb bars celebrate the humble fruit long after Thanksgiving ends!
- 2 c fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1/2 c apple cider
- 1/3 c sugar
- 1 tsp cornstarch
Crumb Base + Topping
- 1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
- 1/2 c granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- Pinch of allspice
- Pinch of cloves
- 1/2 c unsalted butter, cold and cubed (1 stick)
- 1 egg yolk (from 1 large egg)
- In a medium saucepan, stir together the cranberries, apple cider, sugar, and cornstarch. Bring to a boil over medium heat, and cook, stirring frequently, until mixture thickens and cranberries break down, about 5 minutes.
- Remove from heat and let cool while you make the crumb mixture.
Crumb Base + Topping
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease an 8×8 inch square pan, or line it with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, and spices.
- Add cold butter to the bowl and cut it into the flour mixture using a pastry cutter, a fork, or (my favorite method) your fingertips. Stop when the mixture resembles wet sand. There may be some larger pea-sized butter pieces.
- Mix in the egg yolk until the entire mixture is moistened. You may have to use your hands to fully incorporate it.
- Pour half the mixture into the prepared pan, and press into an even flat layer with your hands. Make sure it is compact.
- Pour the cooled filling over the base crumb layer, spreading it evenly to the edges of the pan. Sprinkle the remaining crumb mixture over top.
- Bake for 35-37 minutes, until topping is lightly browned and filling is bubbling. Let cool completely before cutting into squares and serving.
- In the somewhat unlikely event that you have leftover bars, you can store them in the fridge for up to 5 days.
- Don’t throw out your egg whites! Save them for a delicious omelet, or try making these delicious meringue cookies.