This is a delicious recipe for cranberry orange apple oat bars. It’s the perfect way to use any extra cranberries that might be lying around after the holidays! Plus, since it’s rich in oats you can use it as a tasty holiday breakfast or brunch option.

Fresh Cranberry Orange Oat Bars

This time of year, sour fruits like grapefruit and cranberries are a definite favorite. Eating fresh grapefruit on Christmas morning was a tradition my husband grew up with that we’ve adopted as a mutual Christmas tradition. 

Cranberries were common in my childhood Christmas memories too, but they were usually relegated to cranberry-popcorn chains hung on the Christmas tree. As Craisins became more popular when I was a teenager, we’d have dried cranberry white chocolate cookies or cranberry apple salads. Dried cranberries make for a tasty addition to baked goods, but let’s be honest: they are more sweet than sour. 

A few years ago, my sister-in-law made a fresh cranberry apple baked oatmeal recipe that I gladly shared on the blog. I had a craving for that earlier this week, so I made a batch recently for a lazy Saturday morning breakfast. Since it can be made the night before, I plan to make a version of this baked oatmeal or else the oat bars somewhat regularly for busier mornings in the winter. 

Since I still had fresh cranberries to use up, I decided to make some fresh cranberry oat bars with orange zest and apples. I’ll admit though that my two-year-old, who was helping me bake, ate most of the apples before I could get the mixture in the oven. I may continue to tweak this recipe using more apple and less sugar in future recipes, but I found that the amount of crumble topping was necessary to sufficiently cover the fruit. Give the recipe a try and feel free to let us know what you think! Yum!


Cranberry Oatmeal Bars
Recipe type: Dessert/Breakfast
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12 servings
 
Ingredients
  • ¾ cup flour
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ¾ cup butter, cold & cubed
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 Granny Smith (or otherwise tart) apple, peeled and diced
  • Zest of 1 orange
Crumb Topping
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ⅔ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 4 tbsp butter
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
  2. Combine the flour, brown sugar, oats, baking powder and sea salt for the oatmeal bars together in a large bowl.
  3. Add the butter and mix with your hands to form a crumbly mixture.
  4. Line a 9x13 pan with parchment paper. Press the mixture into the 9 x 13 baking dish.
  5. In a medium bowl, mix together the cranberries, peeled and diced apple and orange zest.
  6. Spread this fruit mixture over top of the oat bar mix.
  7. Combine the flour, brown sugar and cinnamon for the crumble in a small bowl.
  8. Add the remaining butter. Mix into a coarse crumble using your hands or a pastry blender and sprinkle over the mixture of cranberries, apples and orange zest.
  9. Bake at 350 for 45-50 minutes.
  10. Cool at least 30 minutes before slicing into bars.