Cranberry Oat Bars Recipe -
Cranberry Oat Bars Recipe
  • READY IN 45 mins

Cranberry Oat Bars

Recipe by  

"These little bars are great to snack on, are perfect at holiday time, and would be excellent for a cookie exchange. If you have leftover dough after forming the bars, don't worry, I find that the thinner the crust, the better."

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Ingredients Edit and Save

Original recipe makes 16 bars Change Servings
  • PREP

    15 mins
  • COOK

    15 mins

    45 mins


  1. In a small saucepan over medium high heat, combine the cranberries, white sugar and orange zest. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cook until the mixture has reduced to about 1 cup.
  2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9x9 inch baking pan, line with foil, then grease the foil.
  3. In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, oats, brown sugar, baking powder and salt. Cut in the butter using your hands or a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press half of this mixture firmly into the prepared pan. Spread the cranberry sauce evenly over the base, then crumble the remaining oat mixture over the top.
  4. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is golden brown. Cool completely before cutting into bars.
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Reviews More Reviews

Most Helpful Positive Review
Jan 04, 2010

I have made this recipe twice. First I made it with the changes suggested by some readers: 1 cup unsweetened applesauce, 3 cups cranberries, 1 cup sugar and a 9 X 13 pan. But the applesauce diluted the intense cranberry flavor, and the crust wasn't substantial enough (the bars were too flimsy). So the second time, I used the following ingredients, also in a 9 X 13 pan: 4 cups cranberries 1 1/3 cups white sugar 3 tablespoons orange zest 2 cups rolled oats 1 1/2 cups flour 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 1/2 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup packed light-brown sugar 1 teaspoon cinnamon 2 sticks butter I baked it for about 35 minutes at 370 degrees. The cranberry filling had the intense flavor I wanted, and the crust was substantial, making for a firm bar.

Most Helpful Critical Review
Dec 14, 2007

I carefully followed the instructions for the crust, though I was leery of the amounts. Even though I increased the amount of butter called for to 1 cup, the crust was very dry and it tasted "floury". AND, what is the baking powder for? There are no ingredients to activate its leavening action, so it does nothing. I will probably make these again, but will use common sense in making the crust: less flour, more butter, a bit more salt and definitely no baking powder.

May 24, 2006

I doubled this for a 9x13" pan, with a few modifications to the filling only. Instead of doubling the cranberries, I added the directed 2 cups of cranberries, then I added 2 cups of peeled, chopped, apple and cooked till tender and reduced. Then I added 1/4 cup of apple juice with 1 Tbsp. cornstarch stirred in to thicken filling. The end result was an awesome filling without the bite that often accompanies cranberry recipes. Everybody at my picnic loved it!

Oct 31, 2007

These are dangerously delicious. I make them in a 9 x 13 pan, increasing the amount of filling by adding unsweetened applesauce to the cranberry mixture. I use whole wheat flour.

Oct 13, 2003

This bar has everything a person wants in a desserty bar. Crunchy,Tart,Chewy,Sweet! All rolled up in one delicious bar! If you like cranberry treats, then this one is for you! I made it in a 9x13 instead of a 9x9(didn't own one). And increased the cranberries to 2 cups, and increased the sugar to 1c. Other than that the recipie is wonderful!! Putting it in a foil lined pan makes removing this dessert a snap, as well as cutting them into squares. A+ Nicely done!

Jan 18, 2011

This recipe is GREAT! I work at a coffee shop and we order cranberry walnut bars from somewhere else. I tried them and wanted to find a recipe so that I could make them at home. This recipe looked like it was the closest match so I tested it out. I added about 1/2 a cup more oatmeal, 1/2 cup of coarsely chopped walnuts, as well as some allspice, cinnamon and cloves to the dry mixture and used 1 (16 oz) can of whole berrry cranberry sauce as the middle spread instead of making the cranberry sauce myself. They turned out amazing and almost the exact flavor of the ones we sell at the coffee shop! One more thing, I did use a 9x9 pan put I had no extra because I make a very thick bottom layer and also worked the bottom layer up the side of the pan halfway. I saved just enough of the mixture to cover the top of the cranberry sauce.

Feb 05, 2006

I've made thi recipe for my husband's lunches for the last three weeks. The first week was with the cranberries. Last week I used blueberries. This week it is raspberries with a few cranberries thrown in. He loves them! I think I have figured out the problem with the left over dry ingredients. Usually I increase the recipe for a 9x13 baking dish. This week, I made the recipe as shown for a 9x9 baking dish and still used a 9x13 baking dish. It was just the correct amount of dry ingredients with not a ton left over.

Dec 10, 2003

Really yummy! I only had a 9 x 13 pan, so I increased all of the ingredients by 1.5 and baked about 25 minutes. I then broiled for just about 2 minutes to give it an extra crispness. I substituted lemon zest for orange zest, and added just a dash of lemon juice to the cranberry mixture. The only thing I'd do differently is add a tiny bit more brown sugar to the crust next time. A really great snack on its own, or downright divine warmed up, drizzled with caramel and served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream! Even the kids loved it.


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  • Calories
  • 243 kcal
  • 12%
  • Carbohydrates
  • 38.6 g
  • 12%
  • Cholesterol
  • 23 mg
  • 8%
  • Fat
  • 9.3 g
  • 14%
  • Fiber
  • 1.7 g
  • 7%
  • Protein
  • 2.4 g
  • 5%
  • Sodium
  • 161 mg
  • 6%

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

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