Copycat Starbucks Bliss Bars

My coworkers are regulars at Starbucks and just about everyday I see a drink with the familiar coffee label on one of the desks in our office. They’re not the “mocha latte lo-fat cream” types, but although they like the plain ol’ fashion cup of joe they will occasionally pick up some fancy treats from under the display case.  A favorite among these seems to be the Cranberry Bliss Bars. They’re a seasonal favorite this time of year, and exactly the recipe I wanted to duplicate! Maybe it was divine intervention or just another foodie on the same quest for deliciousness, but quite by surprise a friend tagged me on Facebook a copycat Starbuck Cranberry Bliss Bar recipe from Mr. Breakfast, mrbreakfast.com!
These triangular pieces of cookie with cake crust are topped with a decadent cream cheese frosting, mixed with white chocolate and dried cranberries, similar to my earlier scone recipe combining chocolate and cranberries, and just as delicious.  Added is a hint of ginger in the crust… ohhh, bliss for sure! Mr. Breakfast’s recipe has a perfect frosting, although I tried to save 1/3 calories by using neufchâtel cheese instead of full fat cream cheese, and I did tweak the bar ingredients just a bit.
Bliss Bar Base – preheat oven to 350 degrees, and lightly grease a 9×13 pan.
  • 1 1/2 sticks of butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 cups brown sugar, packed
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/2 cup dried minced cranberries (I used pomegranate Craisins)
  • 4 0z. white chocolate (I used 1 bar of Lindt), coarsely chopped

Directions:

  1. Beat butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.
  2. Add vanilla.
  3. Once incorporated, add eggs one at a time.
  4. In a separate bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, salt, and ground ginger.
  5. Combine flour and butter mixture.
  6. Separately, mix fresh ginger and 1 teaspoon of sugar, then add to the dough.
  7. Fold in cranberries and chocolate.
  8. Put in greased 9 X 13 pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned.

Frosting
  • 4 oz. neufchâtel cheese, softened
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  1. Mix well and top cooled bars.
Garnish
  • 1 tablespoons minced dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup white chocolate chips, melted (I used Ghirardelli)
  1. Sprinkle cranberries on top to frosting.
  2. Drizzle chocolate on top.

Cranberry Scones with White Chocolate Chips

I think of scones as the stage for a grand production!  With a little thought and imagination, nearly all varieties of toppings and ingredients can be folded into the dough.  These little babies won’t last long, so as soon as you bake them stash a few for yourself to enjoy at your leisure!  Cranberries and white chocolate chips will be the stars of this scone, creating a beautiful combination of slightly tart and tangy, with bits of creamy sweet bursts! Is your mouth watering yet??

Cranberry Scones with White Chocolate – preheat oven to 400 degrees F

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour ( sneak in some wheat flour!)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk

Goodies to add:

  • 1/2- 3/4 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup white chocolate chips

Top drizzle:

  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon milk

Combine flours, baking powder, sugar and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender or two knifes incorporating the butter into the flour mixture. The result will be course crumble. Add buttermilk. Combine well.

Add cranberries and chocolate. I left my cranberries whole, but you can chop them into course pieces.

Kneed dough on a lightly floured surface 10-15 times. Protect your counters!  Cranberries can be naturally staining.

Divide dough in half. Form each piece into 5″- 6″ round circle. Use a sharp knife to cut into triangles. I used a pizza wheel and cut it like I would a pizza.

Place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for 9-11 minutes. The sides of the scone should be slightly browned. Once cooked, combine the powdered sugar and milk, and drizzle the top of the scones using a spoon.

Doesn’t cuddling up with a blanket, a good book, and a cup of tea with your freshly baked scone sound enticing? You deserve it. Now relax….