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If you love tart cranberries, you’ll adore these Cranberry Crumb Bar! These bars are a cross between a cookie and a pie with plenty of tart cranberry flavor to go around.

Two cranberry crumb bars stacked on a plate and topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream

These Cranberry Crumb Bars have been a holiday favorite of mine since I first posted them way back in 2010.

When I was deciding what recipes I wanted to share with you this year, these bars made it to the top of my list because they are absolutely delicious, but the photos and text definitely needed a little updating.

The sweet crumb topping pairs perfectly with the tart cranberries. The pop of orange and hint of cinnamon makes them a festive addition to any holiday celebration.

Ingredients for cranberry crumb bars arranged on a wooden table


You all know I love a crumb bar and love an excuse to try them with different fruits.

I’ve got berry crumble bars, peach crumb bars, and for the holidays, these cranberry crumb bars!

Crust and crumble topping mixture portioned out for crumb bars

These cranberry bars are a little bit like a cookie, a little bit like a pie. It’s much easier than a pie though, because the crust and the topping are the same mixture, and no rolling is needed.

Like cranberry gooey butter bars, these use fresh cranberries to make the most deliciously tart crumble cookie bar.

Plus, they also have orange, and I just love the combination of orange and cranberry!

Crust for cranberry crumb bars pressed into the bottom of a white baking pan


These bars are a cinch to make with just a few steps.

First, grab you ingredients for the crust and topping:

  • Granulated sugar
  • Orange zest
  • All-purpose flour
  • Baking powder
  • Salt
  • Ground cinnamon
  • Cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • Egg
Wooden spoon stirring cranberry filling for crumb bars in a white mixing bowl

You also need to preheat the oven to 350°F and coat a large 9×13-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.

In a bowl, combine the sugar and zest. You can use your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar, or just whisk it together.

Then, add the flour, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Stir until well mixed.

Take your cold butter and cut it into the dry mixture until it forms coarse crumbs. A pastry blender is a handy tool for this, or you can use two knives. A food processor will also work, but be sure to only pulse the mixture to prevent over-mixing.

Cranberry filling on top of crumb bar crust in a white baking dish

Stir in the egg just until combined.

Scoop out 2 ½ cups of the mixture and press it evenly into the bottom of your prepared baking pan. The bottom of a flat measuring cup or a glass is great for forming an even crust.

Save the rest of the crumble — you’ll use it for the topping!

Now, make the filling with your ingredients:

  • Fresh cranberries
  • Granulated sugar
  • Orange juice
  • Vanilla extract
  • Cornstarch
White baking dish filled with sliced cranberry crumb bars

Be sure your cranberries are washed and patted dry. Frozen and thawed cranberries will work as well, but make sure to drain any excess juices from thawing.

In a bowl, mix together the cranberries, sugar, orange juice, vanilla, and cornstarch.

Don’t skip out on the cornstarch! It will help the juices thicken so your fruit layer isn’t too wet. Do be sure to break up any chunks so that it will dissolve in the juices without any gloppy bits.

Scoop the cranberry mixture onto the prepared crust and spread into an even layer.

Two cranberry crumb bars set next to each other on a plate

Now it’s time for the topping. Use your hands to squeeze the remaining crumble mixture into small clumps. Scatter them on top of the fruit so that they are distributed evenly.

Pop the pan into the preheated oven and bake for about 50 minutes. The topping will be golden and any visible juices will be a bit bubbly.

You’ll want to let it cool completely before slicing. I know, it will be difficult! Letting it cool will help the fruit set so you get perfect slices for the dessert table.

Once cooled, place the pan in the refrigerator to make slicing easier. Serve cold or at room temperature, or warm individual slices in the microwave.

Two cranberry crumb bars on a plate. One of the bars is topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream


Love cranberry desserts? Try my cranberry bar recipe or you can even try putting cranberries in ice cream, like in this spiced cranberry ice cream!

If you only have dried cranberries on hand, try pistachio cranberry holiday cookies or these coffee-shop-famous cranberry bliss bars.

Close up of a sliced cranberry crumb bar in a white baking dish
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Cranberry Crumb Bars

By: Jamie Lothridge
4.28 from 11 ratings
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 45 minutes
Total: 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings: 12 bars
If you love tart cranberries, you’ll adore these Cranberry Crumb Bar! These bars are a cross between a cookie and a pie with plenty of tart cranberry flavor to go around.


For the Crust and Topping

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated orange zest
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 cup cold unsalted butter cut into cubes
  • 1 large egg

For the Filling

  • 4 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch


  • Heat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside. 
  • For the Crust and Topping: In a medium bowl, combine the sugar and orange zest with your fingertips until thoroughly combined. 
  • In a large bowl, whisk together the orange sugar,  flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Cut in butter using a pastry blender or by pulling 2 table knives through the ingredients in opposite directions until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in egg and mix until combined. 
  • Press 2 ½ cups of the crumb mixture in the bottom of the pan. Set aside.
  • For the Filling: In another large bowl, stir together the filling ingredients until thoroughly combined. Pour cranberry mixture over the crust and spread into an even layer. 
  • Use your hands to gently squeeze the remaining crumbs to form small topping clusters and drop evenly onto the cranberry layer.
  • Bake in preheated oven for 45-55 minutes or until the top is light golden brown. Remove pan to a cooling rack and cool completely. Refrigerate bars to allow for easier cutting. 
  • If desired, serve with whipped cream or vanilla bean ice cream. 



Slightly adapted from Betty Crocker


Serving: 1bar, Calories: 387kcal, Carbohydrates: 59g, Protein: 4g, Fat: 16g, Saturated Fat: 10g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 56mg, Sodium: 77mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 35g

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

4.28 from 11 votes (11 ratings without comment)

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  1. Anne-Marie says:


    1. Jamie says:

      So happy to hear you enjoyed the bars, Anne-Marie! Thanks so much for stopping by and leaving your feedback!

  2. Debbie says:

    How would these be frozen? I.e. would they taste okay after defrosting?

    1. Jamie says:

      Hello! I haven’t attempted freezing this recipe, so I am not sure of the result. If you happen to give it a try, I’d love to know how they turned out. Thanks so much for stopping by.

  3. Cynthia says:

    I love fresh cranberries and I had a bag in the fridge. I just made these and we love them.

  4. Joan says:

    These bars are wonderful!! I make them all of the time. I substitute almond extract for the vanilla. The taste is so much better. The longer they sit, the better. Thank you for such a wonderful recipe!!

    1. Jamie says:


      You’re very welcome! The almond extract substitute sounds yummy. Happy Holidays and thank you so much for following MBA!


  5. Dianne says:

    I am making these for the second time tonight! They are delicious and simple! I will be sharing them with my Bible study class tomorrow morning.

  6. Kathleen says:

    I made these delicious bars which got rave reviews at our Thanksgiving feast. One thing I did “wrong” was that for some reason I thought I read 1 cup cold water….which I added to the dry ingredients. After that snafu I noticed it said 1 cup cold butter. I thought oh well I’ll bake it anyway and see what happens. Viola…..they turned out to be just like scones. Nobody noticed my mistake and ate them all. Today I made them the correct way and they are awesome too. Thanks for such a delicious recipe.

    1. MBA says:

      I’m so glad you enjoyed the recipe and everything worked out! Thanks for stopping by and providing your feedback – have a great day!

  7. Stephanie says:

    These were simply delicious. A friend of mine brought these to a party, and they were gone. I had to fight to get the last one. Yum!

    1. Jamie says:

      I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed the recipe – thanks for stopping by and leaving your feedback! Have a great day.

  8. shwetha says:

    This looks amazing! Can this be made with dried cranberries aswell? Please do let me know.

  9. Glyn says:

    These are AMAZING! I kept a bag of cranberries in the freezer so I could make them again….and today is the day! Can’t wait, they are really delicious.

  10. Hollie says:

    I made these last weekend for our family Christmas get together and they were a HUGE hit!! My brother told me I cannot come back to his house unless I bring these Cranberry Bars! Everyone wants the recipe! They are so easy to make and so delicious!! I think they are very festive with the red berries!! Thank you for the Great recipe!!!