Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Cranberry Bars

There are many different reasons to try a new recipe.  Sometimes you want to try a spin on an old favorite, sometimes you see something in a magazine that looks too yummy to pass up and other times you just want to use up ingredients that take up residence in your fridge for too long; this is one of those recipes.

Back in November cranberries were on sale for $.99 a bag at Treasure Island, "America's Most European Supermarket" according to Julia Child and my go to neighborhood produce shop.  I really had no plans for the cranberries but $.99 was too good of a deal to pass up, so into my cart they went only to come home with me and sit in my produce drawer for about 3 months. 

Luckily this is a hearty fruit. Despite other items in my produce drawer that never made it into meals the berries were ready to go when I ran across a recipe for Cranberry bars, now doesn't that sound delicious?!

This recipe was found on, a site that I love and use for recipe inspiration all the time.  A few slight changes to the original recipe made it a little healthier, a little lighter and certainly part of everyday nutrition!

Cranberry Bars


  • 1 (12 ounce) package whole cranberries
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup Splenda
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
  • 3/4 cup Smart Balance butter, melted
  • 2 egg whites
  • 3 packets of reduced sugar instant brown sugar and cinnamon oatmeal meal


In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the cranberries, white sugar, Splenda and water. Cook, stirring occasionally until all of the cranberries have popped, and the mixture is thick, about 15 minutes. Remove from heat, and set aside to cool.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

In a large bowl, mix together the cake mix, melted butter, and eggs. Stir in the oats until well combined.

Set aside about 1 1/2 cups of the mixture, and spread the rest into the bottom of a greased 9x13 inch baking dish. Pack down to form a solid crust, getting it as even as possible.

Spread the cooled cranberry mixture over the crust. Pinch off pieces of the remaining mixture and place evenly over the cranberry layer.

Bake for 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is lightly browned. Cool in the pan for about 40 minutes before slicing into bars.

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