The flavor of vanilla pairs well with the brightness of cranberries and the nuttiness of oats in this easy Cranberry Oatmeal Bars Recipe; it’s the perfect way to use leftover cranberry sauce!
Most people save their snowy wishes for a white Christmas, but I confess, I am desperately hoping for snow for Thanksgiving.
A Buffalo girl at heart, nothing says holiday season to me quite like a good foot or so of snow. (Not to mention eggnog or mulled cider and some kind of cranberry treat.)
Living in the DC area now, I’ve resigned myself to the fact that Thanksgiving will most likely not be welcomed in with snow (but I am surely keeping my fingers crossed for Christmas). However, that doesn’t mean I can’t make the rest of the festivities happen, right?
Bring on the cranberry treats.
Easy Cranberry Oatmeal Bars Recipe
These jam bars are so multi-purpose, they’ll have your head spinning!
Make a double batch of your favorite cranberry sauce (mine is this Easy Apple Cranberry Sauce Recipe) the day before Thanksgiving, and whip these up in the morning for Thanksgiving brunch.
Include them in the dessert buffet for Thanksgiving dinner.
Or serve them as an early morning breakfast with coffee on Black Friday before you brave the shopping crowds.
Cranberry Oatmeal Bars are the perfect use for leftover cranberry sauce!
Cranberry Oatmeal Bars FAQs
What Kind of Cranberry Sauce Can I Use to Make These Bars?
You can use any whole berry cranberry sauce to make this recipe. But because it’s much more delicious and it’s so easy to make cranberry sauce from scratch, I like to use a homemade cranberry sauce to make these Cranberry Oat Bars.
The following cranberry sauce recipes work well to make these bars:
- Easy Apple Cranberry Sauce
- Cardamom-Spiced Cranberry Pear Sauce
- Cinnamon and Ginger-Spiced Cranberry Orange Sauce
Can I Use Instant Oats in This Recipe?
This recipe was developed using old-fashioned rolled oats, and they are what I recommend using here so that the recipe works as pictured.
This is because instant oats are more finely ground and absorb liquid differently than old-fashioned rolled oats.
How Long do Cranberry Oatmeal Bars Last?
You can store these bars covered for up to 3 days at room temperature, or up to 1 week in the fridge.
More Recipes that Use Leftover Cranberry Sauce:
- Eggnog Muffins with Cranberry Filling
- Cranberry Coffee Cake
- Cranberry White Cheddar Cheese Ball with Fresh Rosemary
- Cranberry Sauce Brownies
- Grilled Cheese Thanksgiving Leftovers Sandwich
Did you make this recipe? Please rate it and leave a comment below because I love hearing from you! You can also tag @anediblemosaic on social media. To stay up-to-date FOLLOW ME on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Xoxo, Faith
Cranberry Oatmeal Bars
- 1 1/3 cups Apple Cranberry Sauce
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter chilled and diced small
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 teaspoons blackstrap molasses
- 2 large eggs
- 1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
- Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8 by 8-inch baking dish with 2 pieces of parchment paper so that the paper hangs over all 4 sides (so you can easily lift out the cookie bars).
- Taste the cranberry sauce and if it’s on the tart side, add sugar to taste (it should have a pleasantly sweet/tart flavor without making you pucker).
- Use a fork or pastry cutter to cut the cold butter into the flour until it resembles coarse meal, and then use a fork to stir in the salt, cinnamon, baking soda, and sugar. Add the vanilla and molasses, and combine with a fork until incorporated. Stir in the eggs, and then the oats.
- Press 2/3 of the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared dish (the dough will be sticky). Spread the cranberry sauce on top of the dough, and crumble the remaining 1/3 of the dough on top.
- Bake until golden, about 45 minutes, and then cool completely.
- Once cooled, whisk together all ingredients for the glaze and drizzle it on top of the bars.
- Let the glaze set before cutting and serving.
- You can store these bars covered for up to 3 days at room temperature, or up to 1 week in the fridge.
This post was first published on An Edible Mosaic on November 6, 2014. I updated it with more information on November 25, 2020.
Disclosure: This post contains Amazon affiliate links to products I believe in, which means that even though it doesn’t cost you anything extra, I will receive a small amount of money from the sale of these items. Thank you for helping to support An Edible Mosaic!