Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Gingersnap Cranberry Bars

Well Thanksgiving sort of snuck up on me quick this year.  Actually, it's not that Thanksgiving snuck up on me, it's sort of that I forgot that Christmas comes after Thanksgiving.  And I'm NOT READY YET.  I need time to mentally prepare to enjoy the holidays.  I don't have a tree or decorations or stockings or gift ideas.    

I do this every year actually and then I decide to get REALLY ambitious and make entirely homemade gifts.  It's a nice idea in theory and I always think that I'm the crafty type but 2 hours into a project that probably should have taken 30 minutes is when the regret starts kicking in.  And the realization that I'm not as crafty as I think.  

And then I do it all again next year.  Never learn.  

So this year my go-to gift will be food.  Something I'm confident about.  And this Gingersnap Cranberry bar is a pretty perfect way to start.  The crust is a perfect combination of oats, flour, and roughly chopped gingersnaps while the filling is a tart and sweet layer of bursted cranberries.  It's the holiday-iest bar I could come up with and, best of all, you can get it in the oven in about 15 minutes.  

Now, what crafts should I mess up make this year?

Here's the recipe!

Gingersnap Cranberry Bars
makes about 16 bars


  • 1 3/4 cups flour
  • 1 3/4 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups roughly chopped gingersnap cookies
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • juice of one lemon
  • zest of one lemon
  • 3 tablespoons sugar 
1.  Preheat oven 350 degrees.  Spray a 9x13 inch pan with cooking spray and set aside.  
2.  In a medium bowl, combine flour, oats, gingersnaps, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.  Set aside.  In a another large bowl, combine butter, sugar and egg.  Whisk well until mixture is smooth and thick.  Add vanilla extract and mix to combine.  Set aside.  In a medium bowl, add cranberries, lemon juice and zest, and sugar.  Stir well so cranberries are well-coated.  Set aside.  
3.  Add dry mixture to butter/egg/sugar mixture, fold ingredients together until all is well-combined and no dry flour remains.  Take about 2/3 of the mixture and press into the bottom of the prepared pan n an even layer.  Pour cranberries on top, evenly covering the bottom crust.  Take the remaining dough and begin dotting the top of the cranberries with dough to make an even layer.  It's ok if the top dough does not fully cover the cranberries, it'll make room for some bursted cranberries to peak through.  
4.  Bake 30-35 minutes until crust is golden brown and cranberries look bursted.  Allow to cool completely before slicing into bars and serving.  


Recipe inspired by Giada De Laurentiis

1 comment:

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