These Cranberry Orange Blondies are a bright dessert recipe for the holidays! A cookie bar is filled with orange and dried cranberries.
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Cranberry and orange go SO well together! Both the orange and berries bring a sweetness but tartness at the same time, which is a great balance! I have loved finding new ways to use these flavors in different recipes. You can find more cranberry orange recipes here! They are one of my mom’s favorite flavor combinations at the holidays.
Blondies are somewhat like a non-chocolate brownie, or a giant soft cookie bar. They are a great alternative for chocolate heavy holidays and desserts, but still packed full of flavor and sweetness. Typically I like using fresh cranberries in a lot of recipes, but I went with dried cranberries here. Fresh would still work and they will provide more moisture but are also more tart. You can find more blondie recipes here!
This batch makes 12 very large Cranberry Orange Blondies, but you can easily cut them smaller to make them go further. I like to top them with some extra orange zest and a little dusting of powdered sugar to make them look extra pretty. The scent of the orange zest makes them smell just amazing! They also make a great option for holiday cookie exchanges because they are different but still festive! I like to trim the edges off so they all have the same, uniform look. And then the edges make great snacks (especially for the cook – got to test them out!).
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar packed
- 12 Tablespoons unsalted butter melted and cooled slightly
- 2 large eggs
- 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1 Tablespoon orange zest
- 2 Tablespoons orange juice fresh
- 1 cup dried cranberries plus more for topping if desired
- Preheat oven to 350F with rack in the middle position.
- Line a 9 by 13 inch baking dish with foil. Spray the foil with nonstick spray. Set aside.
- Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
- Whisk the brown sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla extract, orange zest, and orange juice together in a large bowl.
- Stir the flour mixture into the egg mixture until combined. Add the dried cranberries and stir to incorporate.
- Scoop the dough out of the bowl and into the prepared baking dish. Press into the bottom of the dish to reach all corners. Add some additional cranberries across the top if desired.
- Bake until cooked through, when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs, approximately 25 minutes.
- Add some additional orange zest to the top of the bars if desired.
- Cut the bars into your desired size. They can be stored in an air tight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.