October 18, 2016

Apple Cranberry Crumble Bars ~ #CreativeCookieExchange

The October theme for #CreativeCookieExchange is Celebrate the season - Autumn, and we were asked to focus on seasonally appropriate ingredients for wherever you are for fall!

We don't celebrate Autumn here, or Winter, or Spring.  Summer we have in spades. We do have whale season, hurricane season, big wave surf season, and mango season but that doesn't mean that we forget about celebrating all those delicious flavors associated with Autumn - pumpkin, cranberry, apple, maple.

I am one of those people who walks by the bags of cranberries when they hit the store and puts one in my cart, then I circle back around and grab another just in case they run out.  Before I know it I have more cranberries than I can possibly use in the holiday season. In my defense you just never know here if the stores will get more in, and it is not like a new shipment will arrive the next day since they all come in by ship.  It is nice to have them have them to use throughout the year, and especially for these bars.

The base and topping for these bars comes from one of my previous recipes, Razzleberry Bars, and they were so delicious I use them for all of my crumb bars now.  The filling was inspired by a recipe from Sweet Twist of Blogging.  I love the idea of using slices of apple rather than a cooked apple mixture or using applesauce.  They just hold their shape better in the cooked bars, and give it some texture.  And of course Granny Smith apples and cranberries are a match made in heaven.  I know, so many people say there are much better apples for pies and slices, but I am not ashamed to say that I love them.  I always have since I was a kid, although I am kind of weird because I love the apple slices to be sprinkled with a little salt when I am eating them out of hand. These crumbs bars were absolutely delicious, and the apple-cranberry filling really balances out the sweetness of the crumbs topping.

If you would like to know more about #CreativeCookieExchange and see what the other bakers made for the Drop Cookies theme please scroll down below the recipe. Thanks to Laura from The Spiced Life, who is our host & fearless leader.

Apple Cranberry Crumble Bars
(Printer Friendly Recipe)

Filling ~
  • 200g fresh cranberries
  • 100g granulated sugar
  • 125ml apple juice
  • 30g cornstarch
  • 60ml water
  • 2 large apples
  • 60ml lemon juice
Base & Topping ~
  • 100g sugar
  • 110g sugar
  • 5g baking powder
  • 360g all-purpose flour, divided (300g for the base; 60g for the topping)
  • 100g almond meal
  • 226g cold butter, cut into small cubes
  • 1 egg
  • 5ml pure vanilla extract
  • pinch salt

Filling ~ 
  1. Combine 2 cups fresh cranberries, granulated sugar, and apple juice in a medium saucepan.
  2. Heat on medium until cranberries begin to pop and become more liquid, about 10 minutes.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch and water and add to the cranberry mixture. 
  4. Stir until mixture begins to thicken, reduce heat to low and cook a few more minutes.
  5. Remove from heat and set aside.
  6. Peel, core and slice the apple.
  7. Add sliced apple and lemon juice to the cranberry mixture, and gently toss until well combined.
Base & Topping ~
  1. Preheat the oven to 190℃. 
  2. Line a 33×23cm pan with parchment paper and spray with nonstick cooking spray. 
  3. In a small bowl, whisk the egg and vanilla together until combined. 
  4. In the bowl of a food processor add sugar, brown sugar, 300g flour, salt, and baking powder; pulse to blend. 
  5. Add cold butter and pulse until small crumbs appear. 
  6. Remove half of the crumbs and set aside. 
  7. Add almond meal, remaining 60g of flour, and egg/vanilla mixture to the food processor; pulse until mix comes together. 
  8. Press the almond meal-flour mixture evenly into the bottom of prepared pan.  
  9. Spoon the cranberry-apple mixture evenly over the crust. 
  10. Sprinkle the remaining crumbs evenly over the cranberry-apple layer. 
  11. Bake for approximately 45 minutes, or until top is golden brown. 
  12. Cool completely, sprinkle with powdered sugar, and cut into squares.
Recipe by All That's Left Are The Crumbs©
For US measurements please click here

One of the best things about fall--in addition to sweaters and football--is all of the delightful seasonal themes that come to mind for baking. Pumpkin, apples, late summer and early fall harvest, Halloween, Thanksgiving…. They are all fun and delicious to play around with, so check out what we have for you this month!

You can also use us as a great resource for cookie recipes. Be sure to check out our Pinterest Board and our monthly posts (you can find all of them here at The Spiced Life). You will be able to find them the first Tuesday after the 15th of each month! Also, if you are looking for inspiration to get in the kitchen and start baking, check out what all of the hosting bloggers have made ~


  1. I remember missing the seasons when I lived in Hawaii and baking with flavors like these is a great idea to celebrate fall. These look really good!

  2. These look delicious! I've already started the cranberry hoarding now that cranberries are in the stores. I'm going to have to try these for sure!

  3. I love this combination of flavours! Granted, I could eat cranberry sauce by the spoonful!


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