I mentioned in my last post that I really get a kick out of making treats for friends and family around the holiday season. These little gift-wrapped packages were part of my contribution to the three (I repeat, THREE) Thanksgiving meals I enjoyed with loved ones this year. I included some yummy gingerdoodle cookies, stacked alongside these white chocolate cranberry blondies. I was pretty pleased with how they turned out, and got some great feedback on the goodies!
The blondies have just enough spice and color to make them the perfect addition to any holiday meal or get-together. The texture of the bars is fantastic, with plenty of dried cranberries and white chocolate mixed in, and I personally love the thick cream cheese frosting slathered on top. Enjoy!
White Chocolate Cranberry Holiday Blondies
Adapted from Taste of Home
- 3/4 cup butter, cubed
- 1-1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 6 ounces white chocolate chips
- 1 package (8 ounces) reduced fat cream cheese, softened
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 6 ounces white chocolate chips, melted
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped
Preheat oven to 350°. In a microwaveable bowl, melt butter. Stir in brown sugar. Transfer to a large bowl; cool to room temperature. Beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon; gradually add to butter mixture. Stir in cranberries and chopped chocolate (batter will be thick).
Spread into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking dish. Bake at 350° for 18-21 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean (do not overbake). Cool on a wire rack.
For frosting, in a large bowl, beat the cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar and orange peel if desired until blended. Gradually add half of the melted white chocolate; beat until blended. Frost brownies. Sprinkle with cranberries. Drizzle with remaining melted white chocolate. Cut into bars. Store in the refrigerator to preserve moisture.