Sweet, but not too sweet, these gluten-free Cranberry Lemon Oatmeal Bars have notes of bright lemon and they're bursting with cranberries! These oat bars have just the right amount of sweetness, a buttery oatmeal base, and a crumbly coconut topping that puts them over the top. They're soft and slightly chewy.
I'm having a hard time describing just how good these Cranberry Lemon Oatmeal Bars are!
These gluten-free cranberry bars have just the right amount of sweetness, a buttery oatmeal base, and a crumbly coconut topping that puts them over the top. They're soft and slightly chewy.
They're perfect for a holiday baking tray or for snacking any time!
You should make these cranberry dessert bars because:
- they taste amazing!
- they're gluten-free! Made with oats and gluten-free baking flour.
- these bars are not overly sweet, but just sweet enough
- they have a bright lemony flavour, bursting with cranberries!
These Cranberry Lemon Oatmeal Bars will be high on my holiday baking list this year. I rarely bake with granulated sugar, except at holiday time, when I like to make some of our favourite family treats, like these Zebra Cookies, Nana's Butter Tarts, and Crispy Salted Coconut Cookies.
These bars are slightly reminiscent of the raspberry coconut bars my Mom used to make every Christmas, but if I recall correctly, there was a lot of butter, a lot of sugar, sweetened long-shred coconut and most of a jar of raspberry jam in those! Tasty, yes, but I prefer these healthier cranberry bars.
Ready to make a batch of these yummy cranberry oat bars? Here's what you'll need:
- fresh cranberries: or frozen
- a lemon
- granulated sugar and coconut sugar
- vanilla extract
- gluten-free baking flour
- old-fashioned rolled oats
- unsweetened medium coconut
Here's a quick overview of what you'll do. You'll find detailed instructions in the recipe card below.
- Start by making the cranberry filling. You'll cook it on the stovetop in a saucepan, then set it aside while you make the base and topping.
- Next, you'll combine the crumble ingredients: butter, sugar, vanilla, gluten-free baking flour, and rolled oats.
- Reserve 1 cup of the crumble for the topping. Add ¼ cup coconut to this mixture.
- Press the rest into a lined 8-inch square pan.
- Spread the cranberry filling on top, taking care to leave a ½ inch margin all the way around to prevent the filling from leaking out while it's baking.
- Top with the reserved crumble, sprinkling evenly over the top.
- Bake until golden brown. Cool completely before cutting into bars or squares.
Frequently Asked Questions
These cranberry bars can be ready for the oven in about 15 minutes! Make today, enjoy a few, and freeze the rest for another day.
This recipe makes 8 large bars or 16 of a "more polite size."
Yes! These cranberry dessert bars slice without crumbling, as long as you cool them completely before slicing.
Store these bars in an airtight container at room temperature for a few days, or in the freezer for up to 6 months. Guaranteed not to last that long!
Not all gluten-free flour blends are the same. They contain varying amounts of ingredients. Some have xanthan gum, which provides structure and helps baked goods to rise, others do not. I tested my recipe with Bob's Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-1 Baking Flour.
For more tasty gluten-free recipe ideas using rolled oats, see 30 Healthy Oatmeal Recipes.
If you love these gluten-free cranberry oatmeal bars, please give this recipe 5 stars and share how they turned out for you in the comments section. Thanks!
Gluten Free Cranberry Lemon Oatmeal Bars
Cranberry Lemon Filling
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- ¼ cup lemon juice
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 2 tsp cornstarch
Oatmeal Base and Crumble Topping
- In a medium saucepan, combine sugar, cornstarch and lemon zest. Add lemon juice and cranberries. Stir to combine. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes until mixture begins to thicken.
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment paper.
- Add melted butter to a medium bowl (or melt it in the bowl in the microwave). Stir in sugars and vanilla, then add flour and oats.
- Set aside 1 cup of the oatmeal mixture for the topping. Transfer the remaining amount to the prepared pan, pressing it evenly into the bottom to create a firm base.
- Spread the cranberry mixture on top of the base, taking care to leave a ½ inch margin to prevent the cranberry from leaking out the edges while baking.
- Add ¼ cup coconut to the remaining 1 cup oatmeal mixture. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the cranberry layer. Bake for 30 - 35 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely before cutting into bars.