Spiced cranberry bars

    1 hour 10 min

    A traybake showcasing fresh ruby-red cranberries, perfect for late autumn and to have to hand round Christmas.

    274 people made this

    Makes: 1 20x30cm tin

    • 340g whole cranberries
    • 200g caster sugar
    • 175ml water
    • 520g sponge cake mix
    • 175g butter, melted
    • 2 eggs
    • 80g porridge oats
    • 175g light brown soft sugar
    • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
    • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

    Prep:30min  ›  Cook:40min  ›  Ready in:1hr10min 

    1. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the cranberries, caster sugar 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.
    2. Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
    3. In a large bowl, mix together the sponge cake mix, melted butter and eggs. Stir in the oats, dark brown soft sugar, ginger and cinnamon. Set aside about 185g of the mixture and spread the rest into the bottom of a 20x30cm baking tin. Pack down to form a solid base, getting it as even as possible. Spread the cooled cranberry mixture over the base. Pinch off pieces of the remaining mixture and place evenly over the cranberry layer.
    4. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven, until the top is lightly browned. Cool in the tin for about 40 minutes before slicing into bars.

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    Reviews & ratings
    Average global rating:

    Reviews in English (302)


    This IS a great recipe! I read some of the other reviews, and the trick to getting the bars out of the pan without them turning into a gooey mess is to LET THEM COOL for at LEAST an hour! The cranberry mixture needs to "jell". My husband and kids REALLY loved these...even my picky four year old~!  -  03 Jan 2003  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Some important tips for this recipe: 1) use the real deal rolled oats, not the instant kind, 2) I used frozen cranberries and dropped the water down to 1/2 cup . . . you absolutely must cook the cranberries down until it's thick in the pan, keep mushing the berries as it cooks down, 3) you're better off making the cranberry part either the day before or wayyyy earlier than when you mix the cake part b/c it's better if the cranberry jam is fully cool, 4) don't even think about cutting these bars for at least 2-3 hrs after coming out of the oven . . . waiting will ensure lovely cut bars. I gave this a 4 and not a 5 because I only liked these the day I made them. The next day they had gotten soft (of course b/c of the amount of butter and the cranberry spread), which isn't bad, just a preference thing. And heck, throw some ice cream on top and I'll be saying texture smexture ;-). I will make these again, but will reduce the sugar to 3/4 cup.  -  05 Jan 2006  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    Very good and easy too. I didn't have any whole cranberries on hand, so instead of making the craberry filling I actually used canned whole cranberry sauce. It worked just fine. This is a great one to add to your baking gifts for the holidays.  -  29 Dec 2002  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)