Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (2024)

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byAshlyn Edwards on November 30, 2020 442 comments »

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4.94 from 424 ratings

Cranberry Bliss Bars – a homemade version of the popular Starbucks treat! These taste just like the original, and are easy to make right at home!

This is my absolute favorite dessert to make for the holidays. They are fabulous for parties, gift-giving, and everything in between during the festive season. For even more holiday recipes, check out some of our other favorites like The Best Chocolate Pecan Pie and Candy Cookie Bark!

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (1)

Y’ALL! I am so so SO excited to share this recipe with you today!

It’s been a labor of love for the past few weeks. At this point I’d say my family is pretty cranberry-bliss-bar-d out, but I wasn’t ready to throw in the towel until I got them just right.

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (2)

With some little tweaks made to each batch, I finally did it! I even set up a side-by-side taste test with a bar purchased from my local Starbucks and these taste just the same, if not better!

I find these to be slightly more chewy in texture, which I actually prefer!

The real game changer is the orange extract. A little goes a long way, butit really gives these bars that authentic flavor. Don’t leave it out!

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (3)

With this recipe, you can have them anytime of the year, not just at Christmas anymore.They are also much cheaper to make at home and make a lot, so it’s perfect to take with you for your next holiday gathering.

Ingredients for Cranberry Bliss Bars

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unsalted butter /brown sugar /eggs

orange extract /vanilla extract / ground ginger

baking powder / salt / all purpose flour

white chocolate chips / dried cranberries / cream cheese

powdered sugar / almond bark

How to Make Starbucks Copycat Cranberry Bliss Bars – Step by Step

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (5)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 15×10 or 13×9 inch jelly roll pan or rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Beat together melted butter and brown sugar over medium speed with an electric mixer. Add in eggs, 1 tsp orange extract, and 1 tsp vanilla extract and beat until mixed well. Add in ground ginger, baking powder, salt, and flour, beating until just blended. Don’t overmix.
  3. Stir in white chocolate chips and Craisins by hand. Spread evenly into the bottom of prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 18-22 minutes until set and golden brown at the edges. Don’t overbake or bars will be hard. Remove from oven and place pan on a wire rack to cool. Allow bars to cool completely before topping with frosting.
  4. To make the frosting, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar together with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Add 1/2 tsp orange extract and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and mix well. Top cooled bars with frosting. Sprinkle with chopped Craisins and drizzle white chocolate over the top with a fork. I dip my fork into the chocolate then shake it gently over the top of the bars to create little streaks. You can either slice right away and enjoy, or place the bars in the refrigerator for about an hour (what I like to do) to help them set up before cutting. Cut into triangles as shown below.

How to Slice

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  1. Remove the bars from of the pan by gently lifting the sides of the parchment paper and placing it on a cutting board. Slice the bars lengthwise into long strips.
  2. Next, slice the bars horizontally to form squares.
  3. Finally, slice the bars crosswise to create triangles.

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Tips and Notes

  • What pan works best:I’ve made these successfully using two sizes of pans; a 15×10 jelly roll pan, or a 9×13 jelly roll pan (rimmed baking sheet.) The larger size pan will lend to thinner bars, and the smaller pan will make thicker bars which are more similar to the true Starbucks version. Either will work, but the 9×13 pan is what I prefer to use. If you don’t have a 9×13 jelly roll pan, you can also use a regular 9×13 pyrex casserole dish.
  • Line your baking pan: for easier removal and cutting of your cranberry bliss bars, line your pan with parchment paper that overhangs on the sides. This will allow you to “lift” the bars out of the pan and slice them easily.
  • Orange extract is essential! Don’t skimp on it. It really brings out the true flavor of these bars! If you don’t have orange extract or are unable to find it, you can substitute with 1 teaspoon of orange zest and 1 teaspoon of orange juice.
  • Frosting: The frosting on these is slightly thinner than the Starbucks version, but will set up well once refrigerated. If you prefer a thicker frosting, feel free to add an additional 1/2 cup of sugar.
  • Topping: You can use either white baking chocolate or almond bark for the topping. Both are easy to melt in the microwave. To make the pretty streaks on top of the bars, dip a fork into the melted chocolate then shake gently over the top over the bars.
  • How to store:once the bars are sliced, place them in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to five days.

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (8)

Can I freeze these Cranberry Bliss Bars?

Yes! Prepare and slice as directed. Place the bars in the refrigerator for at least four hours, then cover tightly in a container with both plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw the bars overnight in the refrigerator before serving.

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Can these Cranberry Bliss Bars be made gluten free?

Yes! In order to make these bars gluten free, all you need to do is swap out the all purpose flour for your favorite gluten-free flour. I would recommend one of the blends from either Bob’s Red Mill or King Arthur Flour.

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (10)

More Amazing Holiday Treats

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} (11)

4.94 from 424 ratings

Recipe: Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe}

Yield: 24 bars

Prep Time: 15 minutes mins

Cook Time: 20 minutes mins

Total Time: 35 minutes mins

Cranberry Bliss Bars – a homemade version of the popular Starbucks treat! These taste just like the original, and are easy to make right at home!

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Ingredients

Bars:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
  • 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 3/4 cup Craisins

Frosting and Topping:

  • 8 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/3 cup Craisins, roughly chopped
  • 2 squares white baking chocolate or almond bark, melted

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 15x10 or 13x9 inch jelly roll pan or rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper. *see notes

  • Beat together melted butter and brown sugar over medium speed with an electric mixer. Add in eggs, 1 tsp orange extract, and 1 tsp vanilla extract and beat until mixed well. Add in ground ginger, baking powder, salt, and flour, beating until just blended. Don't overmix.

  • Stir in white chocolate chips and Craisins by hand. Spread evenly into the bottom of prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 18-22 minutes until set and golden brown at the edges. Don't overbake or bars will be hard. Remove from oven and place pan on a wire rack to cool. Allow bars to cool completely before topping with frosting.

  • To make the frosting, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar together with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy. Add 1/2 tsp orange extract and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract and mix well. Top cooled bars with frosting. Sprinkle with chopped Craisins and drizzle white chocolate over the top with a fork. I dip my fork into the chocolate then shake it gently over the top of the bars to create little streaks. You can either slice right away and enjoy, or place the bars in the refrigerator for about an hour (what I like to do) to help them set up before cutting. Cut into triangles and enjoy!

Notes

  • What pan works best:I've made these successfully using two sizes of pans; a 15x10 jelly roll pan, or a 9x13 jelly roll pan (rimmed baking sheet.) The larger size pan will lend to thinner bars, and the smaller pan will make thicker bars which are more similar to the true Starbucks version. Either will work, but the 9x13 pan is what I prefer to use. If you don't have a 9x13 jelly roll pan, you can also use a regular 9x13 pyrex casserole dish.
  • Line your baking pan: for easier removal and cutting of your cranberry bliss bars, line your pan with parchment paper that overhangs on the sides. This will allow you to “lift” the bars out of the pan and slice them easily.
  • Orange extract is essential! Don't skimp on it. It really brings out the true flavor of these bars! If you don't have orange extract or are unable to find it, you can substitute with 1 teaspoon of orange zest and 1 teaspoon of orange juice.
  • Frosting: The frosting on these is slightly thinner than the Starbucks version, but will set up well once refrigerated. If you prefer a thicker frosting, feel free to add an additional 1/2 cup of sugar.
  • Topping: You can use either white baking chocolate or almond bark for the topping. Both are easy to melt in the microwave. To make the pretty streaks on top of the bars, dip a fork into the melted chocolate then shake gently over the top over the bars.
  • How to store:once the bars are sliced, place them in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to five days.
  • How to freeze: Prepare and slice as directed. Place the bars in the refrigerator for at least four hours, then cover tightly in a container with both plastic wrap and aluminum foil. Freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw the bars overnight in the refrigerator before serving.
  • How to make gluten free: In order to make these bars gluten free, all you need to do is swap out the all purpose flour for your favorite gluten-free flour. I would recommend one of the blends from either Bob's Red Mill or King Arthur Flour.

UPDATE 12/13/2017: I have made these using a 13x9 inch rimmed baking sheet and it is now my preferred size of pan to use. The bars bake slightly thicker, which is even more like the Starbucks version! The baking time and ingredients all remain the same. Mine are ready to come out of the oven right at 22 minutes. I did another side-by-side taste test today and they are identical, y'all!!

Cuisine: American

Course: Dessert

Author: Ashlyn Edwards | Belle of the Kitchen

Calories: 289kcal, Carbohydrates: 39g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 14g, Saturated Fat: 8g, Cholesterol: 45mg, Sodium: 163mg, Potassium: 89mg, Sugar: 29g, Vitamin A: 385IU, Calcium: 49mg, Iron: 0.8mg

Did you make this recipe?Let me know! Mention @TheBelleoftheKitchen on Instagram or tag #BelleoftheKitchen.

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Chocolate Christmas Cookies Dessert Holidays Snacks

published on Nov 30, 2020

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442 comments on “Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe}”

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  1. Lori Reply

    This is one of my family’s favorite recipe and I’m constantly asked to make it over and over all year long. There are several different version of Starbucks Cranberry Bliss bars, but i love this recipe. I make it exactly as the recipe shows, except I reduce the orange extract to about 1/8 to 1/4 tsp in the frosting. Between the orange extract in the batter and the cranberries, there is enough orange/tangy flavor. Therefore, I don’t want the orange flavor to over-powering, so I only use a hint of orange in the frosting . I have sampled Starbucks’ bliss bars and their frosting is not as tangy as this recipe’s frosting, so adjusted mine a bit. I’m sure it’s to taste how much orange you want into your bars. 5 star recipe

  2. Maribeth Kaltz Reply

    Simply delicious! Thanks for sharing!

  3. Melissa Reply

    I never leave reviews but had to share how amazing these bars were!! I have had so many complements over the holidays can’t wait to make them again!! I found a citrus/vanilla blend extract and it was perfect!!

  4. Kathryn Mazzarella Reply

    These are divine! I think they taste almost identical to the Starbucks variety. My boyfriend has will power like I’ve never seen – I made 10 different kinds of cookies for Christmas and he didn’t eat a single one! But, he couldn’t resist these – he actually had 2! I only put 1/2 teaspoon of ginger but I think the full teaspoon would be okay next time. I zested a clementine and put that in the batter and use half of the juice of it in the icing in place of the orange extract. So yummy!

  5. Sindy Reply

    Have made these many times, always a hit. Just had idea to use a second piece of parchment paper on top of base to make it easier to spread over the tray

  6. Kristen Bingel Reply

    I actually used to work at Starbucks. I would avidly count the days until the cranberry bliss bars were back in the pastry case so that I could pair it with my favorite coffees (we had mandatory coffee tastings while training new employees). It was the often the highlight of my day with such a hectic shedule. Soooo glad I can make these are gone now. I’m actually baking my second batch as i write this. I made them for Christmas had a lot of ingredients leftover. They didn’t last 2 days and I doubt they’ll last long this time around. The orange extract really really brings out the cranberry and the cream cheese icing is to die for! Thank you so much for sharing!;

  7. Sara Reply

    The taste is definitely good, but I had some trouble getting the baking timing right. The edges were done and golden at 22 min, but the middle was still fairly undercooked. I tried to trust the process and took them out of the oven then, but they were definitely undercooked when I cut into them. I’m fine eating them like this, but my mom wanted to give them to our neighbors and they were too underdone for that.

    I was using a glass pan, so maybe that was the problem.

    • tara Reply

      Had the same issue and I also use a glass pan – wondering if there’s an adjustment to baking temp/time that would work? The recipe is absolutely delicious though!!

      • Sarah Hollerman

        Has anyone tried making these with less sugar? I’m curious and would like to try making them less sweet. I’m not much of a cook or baker so I just don’t know if you can just do everything else the same but use less sugar in the frosting and the cake and how much less to use to have them still turn out and be good, just a little less sweet. Any suggestions would be so appreciated!

      • Jenna

        I made them a few days ago by following the directions the first time. They were great, but SUPER sweet. Today, I tried with half the amount of sugar, and they came out really dry. I would also like to know how to make these just as great and moist but less sweet.

  8. Deb Reply

    So many compliments at a recent Xmas cookie exchange. Will be making them for years to come!

  9. Kasey Reply

    I made these this past weekend and they were a HUGE hit! Everyone thought they were better than the OG starbucks treat, and my friends jumped in the kitchen after tasting them to make a batch for their families! Suggestions – bake in a ceramic casserole dish (9×13) – I used my trusty le crueset heritage casserole dish. Using this dish made a thicker bar which everyone loved – bake it so the middle is JUST barely done and fully chill in the fridge before frosting.

  10. Amanda Reply

    I make these for the teachers at my kids’ school and they get RAVE reviews! These bars are perfect and a Christmas tradition now!

  11. Tricia Reply

    Just frosted bars today, I think the frosting is a little thin/sticky. I sprinkled craisins over the top of frosting and will drizzle with melted white chocolate tomorrow. I haven’t made these in over 20 years, anxious to taste again after all this time

    • Judy Reply

      I just made these bars. They taste great. I followed the recipe exactly. My only complaint is the frosting seems too wet and sticky. Very messy. Should there be 4T butter in the frosting so that it sets?

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