You did read that right. Low sugar. Now what exactly does that mean? Like most of my creations, it came from necessity. I was on the hunt for a cranberry bar that wasn’t loaded with sugar…and butter. While both of those ingredients seem splendid for a delicious dessert, I am really trying to curb the sugar intake coming off the heels of the sugar fest, otherwise known as Halloween.
I started out making a cranberry sauce, light on the sauce. I still needed to add sugar, because if you’ve ever tried to cut the sugar out completely from cranberry sauce…let’s just say that not a lot of people will eat it. It’s a little tart. So, I left some sugar in there. That is where the majority of the sugar lies in this recipe.
I also cut out all the butter on the cake and opted for canola oil. If you’re worried about canola oil containing GMOs, there are some great organic canola oils in the store. And if I can get it in Germany, I know you can get it where you are. I had to put a little butter in the crumb topping, because, well…you have to.
I have to laugh at the butter amounts everyone is using. I like how they try and hide it too. I can always tell if a recipe writer is a little shy about posting about the amount of butter in a recipe when the yield is really low. That means that a typical amount of the same recipe would use 2x the ingredients.
This recipe makes 16 bars, which is awesome. The cake on the bottom is not sweet at all, but when the cranberry sauce is added, it adds sweetness and tang and it pairs well with the oatmeal cake on the bottom. And just because it needed a little crumb topping, I added a small amount. It adds a little crunch as well.
It’s such a fun recipe that you can add mix ins to. Coconut flakes would be awesome in the crumb topping and different zest combinations would be amazing!
- 3 cups fresh cranberries
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ cup coconut milk
- ¼ cup maple syrup
- 2 Tablespoons canola oil
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- non-stick spray for pan
- ½ cup rolled oats
- 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ⅛ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon cinnamon
- In a small-medium saucepan, add cranberries, water, sugar, and zest
- Bring to a boil and then to a simmer
- Simmer for 15-20 minutes or until the cranberries have all popped
- Let cool and refrigerate until ready to use
- Mix all ingredients for crumb topping together in a small bowl, either with a fork or with fingers
- Set aside
- Preheat oven to 350ºF or 176ºC
- In a medium mixing bowl, add all dry ingredients, flour, oats, salt, cinnamon, and baking powder
- Make a well (hole) in the middle of the dry ingredients and add milk, canola oil, maple syrup, eggs, zest
- Mix just until combined
- Spray a 9x9 pan with non stick spray and pour cake batter into pan and smooth out
- Bake for 15 minutes
- Remove from oven
- Spread cranberry topping over the top and top with pieces of the oatmeal crumb topping
- Bake for an additional 15 minutes or until crumb topping starts to lightly brown
- Remove from oven and allow to cool completely