You’ll love these copycat Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars! Soft blondies, white chocolate chips, dried cranberries, and cream cheese frosting.
Get ready to make friends – these Cranberry Bliss Bars are a huge crowd favorite. If you’ve had a Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bar, then you know how great this flavor combo is – white chocolate and dried cranberries are a match made in heaven! These are a replica of the Starbucks bars, but I actually like them better! Plus, it’s way more affordable to whip these up at home.
- Blondies: Soft and chewy brown sugar blondies filled with white chocolate chips and dried cranberries. This blondie batter comes together in minutes, no mixer needed.
- Cream cheese frosting: This sweet and tangy frosting gets spread over the top of the brownies, with an option to add orange zest to bump up the flavor.
- Topping: A sprinkle of tart and chewy dried cranberries and a drizzle of melted white chocolate are the perfect finishing touch for this recipe.
Why you’ll love this recipe
- Ease: The blondie batter and frosting come together in about 5 minutes (plus 20 minutes hands off bake time). Easy peasy!
- Flavor: Brown sugar blondies, tangy cream cheese frosting, tart dried cranberries, and sweet white chocolate. This flavor combo is incredible!
- Festive: The red and white colors makes these bars perfect for the holiday season; they look fantastic on a holiday cookie plate!
- My number one tip is NOT to over-bake the blondies. The top of the bars should be dry with the center just slightly underdone when you pull them from the oven. They will continue to cook a bit as they cool. We’re going for soft and tender bars – not dry and hard.
- Allow enough time for the blondies to cool completely before topping with frosting.
- When melting white chocolate for the topping make sure that you melt the white chocolate very slowly. It can go from melted to lumpy in a matter of seconds.
- Feel free to swap the dried cranberries for dried cherries.
Serving and storage
- Serving: Serve slightly chilled or at room temperature. The colder the bars are the firmer they will be. I like to keep them at room temp for an hour or two before serving.
- Storage: Store in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. I would assume that you could freeze these, but I haven’t tried it.
More holiday desserts
Cranberry Bliss Bars
- ½ cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
- 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1 large egg
- ¾ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 ⅓ cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup dried cranberries
- ½ cup white chocolate chips
- 4 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1 ⅓ cups powdered sugar
- ¼ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- milk, to thin
- ⅛ teaspoon finely grated orange zest, optional
- ¼ cup white chocolate chips, melted (see note)
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8x11 pan with foil and grease the foil.
- In a large bowl, whisk melted butter and brown sugar until well combined, at least one full minute. Add egg and vanilla extract, whisk until combined.
- In a separate bowl, combine flour, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to butter mixture and stir with a rubber spatula until the ingredients are combined. Stir in ½ cup of dried cranberries and ½ cup of white chocolate chips.
- Scoop the batter into the prepared pan and spread into an even layer (I moisten the palm of my hand with water and gently press it in).
- Bake for 18-22 minutes. The bars are done when they have puffed slightly, are very light brown, and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. They will appear a little underdone but they will continue to cook as they cool. Be careful not to over bake them. Cool completely on a wire rack before frosting.
- Using a hand mixer or stand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until smooth. Add the powdered sugar, vanilla, and orange zest (if using) and beat until combined, scraping the sides of the bowl as needed. Add a splash of milk, if necessary, to thin the frosting. You can also thicken the frosting by adding a bit more powdered sugar, if necessary.
- Spread the bars with the frosting . Scatter the dried cranberries on top. Drizzle melted white chocolate over the cranberries.
*Recipe updated December 2020*