Thanksgiving Recipes


Pumpkin Cranberry Bars


Pumpkin Cranberry Bars

Who says you can’t taste fall? These bars are packed with flavor, and each chewy bite will take you back to a chilly fall day. The flavors of pumpkin and cranberry are what you might find at Thanksgiving dinner, but you can enjoy them any time of year with the tasty recipe. These bars bake up nicely, and you can store them in airtight containers for several days. You can even make them ahead of time and freezes them, so you have them available whenever you get a craving for something sweet.

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Pumpkin Cranberry Bars Recipe Substitutions

While pumpkin and cranberry are definitely a great combination and work well in these bars, you can substitute them for other flavors that you like better. You can swap out the canned pumpkin for fresh pumpkin or just leave out the pumpkin altogether. You can also leave out the cranberries or replace them with other fruits or berries such as cherries, blackberries, or raspberries. Of course, you can adjust the spices to get the perfect flavors you love.

When Is A Good Time To Serve Pumpkin Cranberry Bars

While these bars are perfect for a cold fall day and go nicely with many of the same foods you will serve on Thanksgiving; you can actually enjoy them any time of year. They are perfect for breakfast, brunch, snacking, or of course, dessert. You can even pack them in school lunches. If you decide to switch up the recipe with other ingredients, you should make the bars with ingredients that are fresh and in season. Try making these bars for your Christmas breakfast or something to snack on while you wait for Thanksgiving dinner to be finished.

Plating Your Pumpkin Cranberry Bars

These bars are decadent and deserve to be shown off before they are eaten. You can cut them and add them to adorable serving trays for a real holiday spread. You can also stack them up on plates and platters to make them look even more delicious. If you are serving other foods or desserts, consider displaying the bars with cookies, cakes, and pies to create a stunning dessert table or display.

If these tasty bars sound good to you, give this pumpkin cranberry bars recipe a try. You may enjoy it just the way it is, or you may choose to change it up a little and put your own twist on it. Whatever you decide, you can count on your family and guests loving these tasty treats.

If you like this pumpkin recipe, try these! 

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Pumpkin Cranberry Bars

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  • Author: MomsWhoThink
  • Total Time: 1 hour


  • 1 (18.25 ounce) package yellow cake mix
  • 2 cups finely chopped pecans or walnuts
  • ½ cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 3 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 (16 ounce) can jellied cranberry sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon orange juice
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 (15 ounce) can pumpkin
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 Tablespoon vanilla extract


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine cake mix, nuts, butter and 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice until crumbly. Reserve 1½ cups crumb mixture. Press remaining crumb mixture onto bottom of 13×9-inch baking dish.
  2. Place jellied cranberry sauce and orange juice in small saucepan. Cook, stirring frequently, over medium heat until smooth. Remove from heat; cool slightly. Meanwhile, in large bowl, beat eggs.
  3. Add pumpkin, condensed milk, vanilla extract, and remaining 2 teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice; mix well.
  4. Spread cranberry sauce evenly over crust. Pour pumpkin mixture over cranberry. Sprinkle with reserved crumb topping. Bake 45 minutes or until crumb topping is golden brown. Serve warm or chilled.
  • Prep Time: 15
  • Cook Time: 45
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