RECIPE: Left Over Cranberry Sauce Ginger-Oat Bars

Happy Holidays everybody! If you are like my family, you are recovering from a food coma and digging your way out of a pile of leftovers. One of the holiday staples that I feel you never know what to do with, yet breaks your heart throwing out-is leftover cranberry sauce. If you make it from scratch with spices, fruit zest, and other yummies and spend time lovingly stirring it, turning it into a luscious sauce, the last thing you want to do is throw it out. I know that's how I felt. SO I made up this delicious, spicy and tart cookie bar that makes great use of leftover cranberry sauce. 

Take time this holiday season to bake, it gives you practice in mindfulness and a chance to be with family. It is also is very rewarding and makes the house smell warm and wonderful. But also take time for you. And make sure to make yourself a priority next year, as you make your resolutions.

Happy New Year!

Left Over Cranberry Sauce Oat-Ginger Bars


about 2 cups cranberry sauce, more or less

1 3/4 cup flour
2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. orange zest
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
2 stick butter, softened
1 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs, room temp
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1/2 cup powdered sugar
dash of vanilla extract
1/2 Tbsp. milk (or more if needed for the right consistency)


Preheat oven to 350˚. Line a 13 x 9 pan with parchment paper and set aside.

Mix the flour with the ginger, baking powder, orange zest, and salt, set aside.

With a stand mixer, whip the butter until creamy. Add the brown sugar and whip until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition, then add the vanilla extract and combine. With the mixer on low, add the dry ingredients and the oats until just combined.

Reserve about just over a cup of the dough for crumbling on top. With the rest, press into the waiting pan, using a spatula. Spread evenly and flatten. Pour the cranberry sauce over the top, evenly. Then crumble with floured fingertips or dollop with floured teaspoonfuls the remaining dough on top, trying to arrange the dollops apart from each other to let the cranberry bubble through, but making sure the dough topping is evenly distributed.

Bake for about 35-45 minutes, or until edges and top are a light golden brown. Cool in the pan for about 15 minutes, then lift the cookies out by pulling up on the parchment paper, and let cool on a wire rack.

Once cooled, hold onto the parchment again and move it to a cutting board. With a serrated knife, cut into bite-sized bars. Mix the glaze until thick enough to drizzle with a fork, and drizzle over the bars. Let the glaze set up, and serve. Store bars in an airtight container for a few days or in the refrigerator for a week. These freeze very well, too.

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