Lemon-Cranberry Bars

If there is a wedding tea or baby shower scheduled anyplace in the South, you can be confident that someone will bring a cut glass tray of lemon bars for the dessert table. This is something that you can count on. This recipe was given an unexpected twist by the addition of cranberries, which brought both color and taste to the dish. Cranberries are a beloved delicacy.

A buttery and delectable shortbread serves as the foundation for the layer of cranberry jam, which is then followed by a lemon curd that is both sweet and sour, which gives the lemon bar its signature flavor. After cooling for around twelve hours, these bars will slice even better, making them an excellent dessert option for making ahead of time.

Powdered sugar may be used as a decorative element to create a vibrant show on our party table. Ensure that the food is kept at a cold temperature until it is ready to be served. Master the art of making cranberry-lemon bars, and discover a fresh approach to reimagining this time-honored favorite snack.

Components that go into making Cranberry-Lemon Bars

Lemon-Cranberry Bars

  • Frozen or fresh cranberries: Cooked down for a thick, vibrant cranberry jam. If frozen, use straight from the freezer without thawing.
  • Water: Helps the cranberries break down while cooking.
  • Granulated sugar: To sweeten all three layers of the bars.
  • Cooking spray: For an easy release from the baking dish.
  • Powdered sugar: Added to the shortbread layer for a delicate, flaky crumb.
  • Lemon zest and juice: Zest is added to the shortbread, with lemon juice baked into the curd for a double dose of fresh lemon flavor.
  • All-purpose flour: For the shortbread base and to help thicken the curd.
  • Kosher salt: Enhances the flavor and balances the sweetness of the bars.
  • Unsalted butter: Binds the shortbread crust for a tender crumb.
  • Large eggs: Binds and helps set the lemon curd.

How to Make Bars with Cranberries and Lemons

Instructions in their entirety may be found below; however, before you get started, here is a quick review:

In the first step, bring the cranberries, water, and a little bit of sugar to a boil. Turn the heat down to low and simmer the mixture, stirring it regularly, until the cranberries have fully broken down. Take away from the heat.

Step 2
Cooking spray and parchment paper should be used to line a square baking dish measuring 9 inches in diameter. Powdered sugar, lemon zest, a small amount of granulated sugar, flour, and a quarter teaspoon of salt should be mixed using a whisk. Incorporate the butter into the mixture, and then use your hands or a pastry blender to knead it until it resembles sandy crumbs. Compress into the bottom of the baking dish. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown; leave aside.

Step 3
The third step is to combine the remaining sugar, flour, and salt with the lemon juice using a whisk. After adding the eggs, mix them.

Step 4
Spread the cranberry mixture over the crust in the fourth step. Rest for a quarter of an hour. Gently add the egg mixture. Bake for approximately forty-five minutes, or until the center is completely set with just a tiny wobble. Place on a wire rack and allow it to cool off fully. Place the dish in the refrigerator for twelve hours with the lid on. Immediately before serving, sprinkle powdered sugar on top.

How to Make the Best Lemon-Cranberry Bars

Lemon-Cranberry Bars

To make the greatest cranberry-lemon bars, remember the following:

Thicken the cranberries: For a thick, sliceable texture after baking, cook the cranberries until fully broken down.

Golden brown crust: To prevent a soggy foundation, bake the crust until it turns golden brown.

Layer separation: Chilling the cranberry layer before adding the curd will help solidify the cranberry jam and maintain the separation of the two layers.

Gently spoon: To prevent inadvertently blending the layers, use a big serving spoon to pour the curd over the cranberry layer.

For a smooth, rich texture, bake the bars until they are just set, with a little give in the middle.

Chill: To ensure the cleanest cuts, chill before slicing, dipping a sharp knife into hot water in between slices.

Before serving, garnish the bars because the powdered sugar will melt into them.

Is It Possible to Premake Cranberry-Lemon Bars?

Lemon-Cranberry Bars
Make these bars up to two days in advance, then cover and store in the fridge until you’re ready to cut them. For the finest slices, we advise chilling for at least 12 hours before slicing. It is entirely possible to pre-make Cranberry-Lemon Bars, and in fact, doing so can be a convenient strategy for planning or accommodating a busy schedule. These delectable bars typically consist of a buttery crust, a luscious layer of cranberry-lemon filling, and a crisp topping. To pre-make them, you can follow the recipe up to the point just before baking. Once you’ve assembled the layers in the baking pan, cover it tightly with plastic wrap or aluminum foil. Refrigerate the unbaked bars for up to 24 hours before you intend to serve them.

This pre-making approach offers several advantages. Firstly, it allows you to break down the baking process into more manageable steps, spreading out the workload if you’re preparing them for an event or gathering. Secondly, the chilling time in the refrigerator allows the flavors to meld and intensify, potentially enhancing the overall taste of the bars. Finally, by having them ready to bake, you can ensure that you serve them freshly baked, achieving that perfect balance of gooey filling and buttery crust.

When you’re ready to enjoy these delightful treats, simply preheat the oven as directed in the recipe, remove the pan from the refrigerator, and proceed with the baking instructions. This way, you get the convenience of pre-making without compromising the freshness and quality of the Cranberry-Lemon Bars. It’s a practical solution that lets you indulge in homemade goodness with minimal effort when the craving strikes or when you’re entertaining guests.

You may also prepare the bars in advance and freeze them for up to three months. When ready to serve, just defrost at room temperature or refrigerate overnight, then sprinkle with powdered sugar.

How to Keep Cranberry-Lemon Bars That Are Leftover?

The sliced bars may be stored for up to three months or refrigerated for up to five days in an airtight container (layered between layers of parchment paper if necessary).

Additional Delicious Lemon Dessert Recipes You’ll Like
These cakes, bars, and pies are guaranteed to please if, like us, you enjoy tangy-sweet desserts:



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