Cranberry Oatmeal Bars are quickly going to become your favorite treat. These cookie bars are chewy, full of delicious flavor, and easy to make.
For fall, I decided to swap the raisins for dried cranberries. The cranberries go perfectly with the oats and cinnamon in this amazing easy dessert.
How to Make Cranberry Oatmeal Bars
- Mix together the dry ingredients. In a large bowl combine the flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
- Cream the butter and sugar. In a large bowl with a handheld mixer or in the bowl of a stand mixer, beat the butter with the white and brown sugar until it is light and fluffy.
- Add in the eggs and vanilla extract.
- Add the dry ingredients to the butter sugar mixture. Pour all the flour in at once, start the mixer on low and as soon as you can turn it up high, just long enough for it to fully combine. This should take less than a minute.
- Stir in the oats and cranberries.
- Press into a baking dish and bake for 20 minutes or until the edges just begin to turn golden brown.
Tips and Tricks for Cranberry Oatmeal Bars
- Use room temperature butter. This means that the butter will still be cold to the touch, but you can easily dent it. I do not recommend softening it in the microwave. Leave your butter, cut in one inch pieces, on the counter for 30 minutes instead.
- Measure the flour correctly. Read about this in detail below.
- Use fresh baking soda and baking powder. They should be replaced every 6 months. To determine if they are still active toss baking soda into vinegar and baking powder into water. They should react right away forming bubbles.
Measuring Flour for Baking
Whether we are baking cookies, cake, bread, or cookie bars it is important to measure the flour correctly. With these simple steps you will end up with moist and delicious baked goods.
- Use a dry measuring cup.
- With a spoon, scoop the flour from the container it is stored in into the measuring cup.
- Level off with the flat edge of a spatula.
Measuring this way will ensure that you have the right amount of flour. If you scoop with the dry measuring cup from the container you could end up with 25% more flour. That makes for some dry cookie bars.
Quick Cooking vs. Old Fashioned Oats
The main difference between quick cooking oats and old fashioned oats is the size. Quick Cooking Oats are just Old Fashioned Oats that have been chopped up to a smaller size.
I have made this recipe with Old Fashioned Oats and Quick Cooking Oats and I prefer it with the Quick Cooking Oats. I think it gives it a chewier texture. If you only have Old Fashioned Oats on hand, I would suggest just throwing them in your blender to chop them up.
Can I use fresh cranberries?
This recipe has only been tested with dry cranberries. Using fresh will add more moisture to the recipe, so I would want to test it first.
How can I make this recipe gluten free?
I am not an expert in gluten free baking. That being said, there are a lot of gluten free flour mixes on the market. They are made as a blend so that they can replace all purpose flour 1 for 1.
Other Cranberry Recipes
If you make these Cranberry Oatmeal Bars or any of my other recipes, leave me a comment to let me know what you think!
Cranberry Oatmeal Bars
- 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour see my note in the post about measuring flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 14 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups quick cooking oats
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and lightly spray a 9 x 13 inch pan with cooking spray.
- In a medium bowl whisk together the all purpose flour, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
- In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
- Beat in the eggs on at a time and then the vanilla extract.
- Add the dry ingredients. Beat on low until integrated, then increase the speed until the dry ingredients are just combined.
- Gently stir in the oats and dried cranberries. Press the batter into the prepared baking dish.
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the edges are golden brown. Allow the bars to cool, then cut and enjoy.