Best of Swanky Recipes/ Breakfast/ Cookies/ Desserts/ Holiday Food/ Seasonal

Cranberry Bliss Bars

Cranberry Bliss Bars

Chewy brown butter blondies stuffed with white chocolate and cranberries then topped with a white chocolate, cream cheese frosting with cranberries and orange zest.  A Starbuck’s Cranberry Bliss Bar copycat recipe.

Cranberry Bliss Bars are a decadent fall holiday dessert served at Starbuck’s.  Once fall comes around, I love nothing more than than a Pumpkin Spice Latte and these dessert bars.  The bars have a little holiday cheer to them and I like to serve them for a party or a special day.  If you love Starbuck’s recipe, you’ll want to have this one!

Cranberry Bliss Bars

This is one of my favorite times of the year! All the gift-buying, baking and decorating and visiting with family – I just love the warm and cozy feeling I get and totally get into the spirit! The best part is all the baking while sneaking in bites of the homemade treats and the smell that comes from the kitchen.

I love walking into a warm house with a roaring fire and freshly baked cookies! The only part missing is the snow this year.  I just traveled home to be with my family in the Midwest and really, there is no snow anywhere.  I’m perfectly alright with that but we have to have snow on Christmas Eve and day!

Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars

The cranberry and orange zest topping is sooo good!  The drizzled white chocolate on top is both beautiful and helps to balance the tartness of the cranberries out.

The cookie bottom is a browned butter and browned sugar blondie.  It’s soft and chewy, just like the original recipe.

Cranberry Orange Bliss Bars

These bars smell delicious baking in the oven.  They taste just as great too, if not better.  I brought a pan of these home for the holidays and I have to say that even though we were saving for our Christmas Day family party, they are half gone already.

Bliss Bars

The bars are pretty easy to prepare and don’t take long at all.  They are perfect right out of the oven or warmed up once the topping is added.  They are great with coffee, tea, cider and hot chocolate.

I find it best to cut them into little pieces are they are very sweet and a little goes a long way.


What are some of your favorite holiday treats this time of year?  Do you have any fun memories of baking with your family as a child?

Cranberry Bliss Bars

Course Dessert
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 18
Author Jessica Knott


  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter , melted
  • 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar , packed
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries
  • 6 ounces white baking chocolate , coarsely chopped
  • [b]Frosting
  • [/b]1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups white chocolate
  • 3/4 cup - 1 cup confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)
  • splash of vanilla extract
  • Topping
  • 1 orange , zested, divided
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries , chopped


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, combine flour, baking soda, powder, salt and cinnamon then whisk; set aside. In a small bowl melt 1 1/2 cups (1 1/2 sticks) butter. Transfer butter to large bowl fit with mixer and stir in brown sugar. Allow to cool for a few minutes. Meanwhile, grease a 9 x 13 baking dish with cooking spray; set aside. Stir in eggs on medium low and add the vanilla extract, beat for about 1-2 minutes. Slowly add in dry ingredient mixture on low and continue to mix until combined. Add chopped white chocolate and dried cranberries. Batter will be thick. Spread mixture into the baking pan, gently pressing down to spread. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool down for at least 1 hour.
  • To make the frosting, melt chocolate for 6 minutes on power level 4 in the microwave. Reserve about 1/2 cup white chocolate to make the drizzle topping. Transfer the rest to a medium bowl and combine with powdered sugar and cream cheese and stir well to combine. Mix in vanilla extract and half an orange, zested. Spread over cookie bars with spatula. Top with some dried cranberries. Place chocolate in a pastry bag or zip lock bag and cut the tip off. Drizzle over the top and top with the other half of the orange zest. Cut and serve. Cover and Refrigerate in between eating.






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  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    Daniela Apostol
    12/24/2015 at 3:43 pm

    They look lovely!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    Kevin | Keviniscooking
    12/24/2015 at 4:37 pm

    Jessica I am loving these especially with the orange zest on top. Blondies are one of my fav desserts + you combined it with one of my fav fruits – the cranberry. Thanks for this one. Pinned and Merry Christmas!

    • Avatar for Jessica Knott
      Jessica Knott
      01/16/2016 at 5:43 pm

      Cranberries and white chocolate are a must this time of year. Thanks, Kevin!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    Hillary @ 918 Plate
    12/24/2015 at 5:39 pm

    Thanks for posting these! I love these so much but can’t justify buying them at Starbz. A few years ago I had found a copycat recipe but haven’t made them in awhile. I’ll use yours next time!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    12/26/2015 at 6:14 pm

    These look so good I can practically taste them! I know where to find my next sweet treat! Yum!!

    • Avatar for Jessica Knott
      Jessica Knott
      01/16/2016 at 5:42 pm

      One of my favorite winter treats currently. Thanks, Diane!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    Gloria @ Homemade & Yummy
    12/27/2015 at 11:17 am

    I ALWAYS order these at Starbucks….so yummy. Will have to make them at home…and save lots of money!!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    Christine | Vermilion Roots
    12/27/2015 at 11:48 am

    These look so amazing. I really like baking and cooking with cranberries this time of the year.

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    12/27/2015 at 1:52 pm

    These sound wonderful! I absolutely love anything and everything with cranberries this time of the year! 🙂

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    Annie @ Annie's Noms
    12/28/2015 at 11:27 am

    Hello beautiful bliss bars! These are stunning!! I love homemade cranberry bliss bars, they’re way better than shop bought!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    01/01/2016 at 1:59 am

    What an appropriately named recipe! Blissful is the word for it. Love these cranberry bars!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    01/17/2016 at 12:52 pm

    How do you make the frosting? I’m only seeing the cake bottom part of the recipe.
    They look delicious and I’d love to try making them. Please help!

    • Avatar for Jessica Knott
      Jessica Knott
      01/19/2016 at 2:04 pm

      Oh my, not the frosting! Thanks, Julie, I’ve updated it!

  • Avatar for Jessica Knott
    05/21/2016 at 2:33 pm

    these look delicious. I am loving the white chocolate and cranberries!

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