How to Make Copycat Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars

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Skip the drive-thru! Follow this guide to make a delicious copycat recipe of Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars.

Starbucks Copycat Cranberry Bliss Bars And Starbucks Exterior Side By SideGetty Images, Molly Allen for Taste of Home

Once the holidays roll around, all eyes are on Starbucks. From the go-to classics like peppermint mochas to brand-new holiday drinks, the chain’s festive menu keeps us going during a busy season. Another favorite treat around the holidays? The ever-popular Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars.

Year after year, Starbucks brings back its delicious Cranberry Bliss Bar. And whether you grab just one bar when picking up your drive-thru coffee order, or can’t resist a whole box, it’s safe to say they’re one of the most beloved treats of the season. The only problem? The window to enjoy this tasty treat is fleeting!

Now you can make Cranberry Bliss Bars any time you please with this step-by-step copycat recipe. It makes an entire pan of bars that taste just like the real thing.

Copycat Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bar Recipe

Starbucks Copycat Cranberry Bliss Bar IngredientsMolly Allen for Taste of Home

Ingredients

For the Blondie Layer:

  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 4 ounces white baking chocolate, chopped

For the Topping:

  • 1 brick cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  • 5 cups confectioners’ sugar
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries

Tools You’ll Need

  • KitchenAid Hand Mixer: A hand mixer will make mixing this batter together a breeze.
  • Silicone Spatula: Use a sturdy spatula to spread a smooth layer of cream cheese icing on top of your bars.
  • Pastry Bag: Use a plastic pastry bag to drizzle the white chocolate on top to finish off the bars.

Directions

Step 1: Mix the butter and sugar

Mixing Butter And Sugar For Cranberry Bliss BarsMolly Allen for Taste of Home

Preheat the oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl, add the brown sugar and melted butter. Mix to combine, and then mix in the eggs and vanilla extract.

Step 2: Add the dry ingredients

Adding Dry Ingredients For Cranberry Bliss Bars batterMolly Allen for Taste of Home

In a separate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, ground ginger and salt. Gradually add the dry ingredients mixture to the brown sugar mixture. Mix until combined.

Step 3: Stir in cranberries and white chocolate

Stirring In Cranberries And White Chocolate For Cranberry Bliss BarsMolly Allen for Taste of Home

Stir in the dried cranberries and 1/2 cup of the chopped white chocolate.

Step 4: Bake the bars

Line a 13×9 pan with parchment paper. Transfer the batter into the prepared pan and use a spatula to spread it evenly. Bake the blondie layer for 20 minutes until the edges are golden. Once baked, remove the pan from the oven and set it aside to fully cool.

Step 5: Make the cream cheese icing

Cranberry Bliss Bars Cream Cheese IcingMolly Allen for Taste of Home

While the bars cool, make the cream cheese icing. In a mixing bowl, cream the cream cheese and butter. Mix in 2 cups of confectioners’ sugar and 2 tablespoons of milk. Then, gradually mix in the remaining confectioners’ sugar. Zest the orange into the frosting and stir to combine.

Step 6: Top the bars

Topping The Cranberry Bliss BarsMolly Allen for Taste of Home

Once the bars are fully cooled, spread a layer of cream cheese icing on top. Sprinkle the top with additional dried cranberries.

Melt the remaining white chocolate using a double boiler or in the microwave, and transfer it to a piping bag or zip-top bag. Cut the tip off of the bag to form a small hole and drizzle white chocolate over the bars. Allow the bars to cool and set in the fridge for at least 30 minutes before cutting and serving.

Here’s What I Thought

Copycat Starbucks Cranberry Bliss BarsMolly Allen for Taste of Home

This recipe perfectly captures the blondie cake that serves as the base for a Cranberry Bliss Bar! It’s dotted with cranberries and chunks of white chocolate, though not enough to be overwhelming. It has the perfect hint of toffee flavor from all of the brown sugar, and it’s soft and chewy.

The real star of the show here, however, is the topping. This copycat recipe mimics the same cream cheese icing with just a hint of orange zest to balance it all out. You could easily eat it by the spoonful out of the mixing bowl. It’s THAT good! But of course, adding it to the blondie cake bars with additional dried cranberries and a white chocolate drizzle is even better.

Overall, these copycat bars mimic the Starbucks recipe, with just a hint less sweetness than the original. And while they take a few steps to make with the blondie layer and icing layer, they come together pretty quickly and are absolutely worth the effort.

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Molly Allen
Molly Allen is a previous bakery owner and former event planner. Now, a freelance writer and editor focused on food and beverage, lifestyle, travel and parties, she brings her years of experience and industry knowledge to readers across a variety of platforms.