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Cranberry-Lemon Squares

These tart bars use dried cranberries instead of fresh, so you can make them any time of year.

  • yield: Makes about 16

Ingredients

  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces, plus more for pan
  • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries, (about 7 ounces, available at specialty-food stores)
  • 1/4 cup confectioners' sugar, plus more for dusting
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed plus 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice, (about 3 lemons)

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan, and set aside.

  2. Step 2

    In a medium saucepan, combine cranberries and 2 cups water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until water has been absorbed, about 25 minutes.

  3. Step 3

    Transfer cranberry mixture to bowl of a food processor; chop coarsely. Transfer to a bowl, and set aside.

  4. Step 4

    In bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine confectioners' sugar and 3/4 cup flour. Add butter, beating on low speed until mixture forms pea-size pieces. Press batter into baking pan.

  5. Step 5

    Bake until golden, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

  6. Step 6

    Beat eggs and granulated sugar until smooth. Add lemon juice; beat to combine. Add remaining 1/4 cup flour, and beat to combine; set lemon mixture aside.

  7. Step 7

    Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees. Spread cranberry mixture over cooked crust. Pour lemon mixture over the cranberry mixture. Bake until set, about 40 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool, 40 minutes. Chill 4 hours. To serve, cut into squares, and dust with confectioners' sugar.

Source
10th Anniversary Cookbook; Martha Stewart Living Cookbook, 2000

Reviews (20)

  • 20 Dec, 2009

    These are delicious, though very tart. Not a favorite of children. Everyone I gave some to loved them. Creative twist on the lemon bar.

  • 10 Mar, 2009

    You can find CHEAP cranberries at Walgreen's. They are $1.00 a box under the brand name of Deerfield Farms. They are sweetened and the amount in box is 4.25 oz.

  • 10 Jan, 2009

    I made this recipe the other day with dried cherries. Instead of making bars I pressed the crust into mini muffin tin and made little "tartlets". That was more work than it was worth but they were cute. I loved the lemon/cherrry flavor combo but the texture of the soaked/choppedcherries was a little weird. Would prefer something smoother in textue for that layer. Maybe cherry jelly or jam would work better.

  • 9 Jan, 2009

    I've bought Craisens at my regular grocery store-look in the dried fruie aisle. I use them in place of raisens all the time. will be trying this recipe soon!

  • 9 Jan, 2009

    I've bought Craisens at my regular grocery store-look in the dried fruie aisle. I use them in place of raisens all the time. will be trying this recipe soon!

  • 9 Jan, 2009

    Love the idea of inlineclass with using dried cherries as an alternative. I do love cranberries as I use them a lot, Now with lemon as well, wow, what a treat.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    No you can not use canned cranberry sauce. Its basically gell, even the one with
    whole cranberries has to much gelatin.heat melts gelatin, thats why you need
    thick with cranberries it holds up to heat and gives you something to bite into
    without it running out. the dried can be found any store by the raisins

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    Has anyone figured out the amount of carbohydrates in these, using the sweetened dried cranberries??

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    Do you suppose you could use cranberry sauce from a can somehow?

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    You can get sweetened dried cranberries @ Costco. They are packaged by Oceanspray and called Craisins. They come in 48 oz. packages and very economical and good. My kids just love eating them as a snack. This recipe sounds good, not so sweet. I'm going to try making this tomorrow.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    I would use the 1 1/2 cups listed in the recipe for the fresh or frozen fresh cranberries then cook those down as I mentioned before.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    Humm, I certainly would use Sweetened Cranberries in this as they will be very very tart in this recipe as made. The only sugar is in the crust, and the lemon mixture. Yes I would sweeten the cranberries. I would venture to say you could use fresh, cook them down with about a 1/2 to 3/4 cup of water at least a cup of sugar, then blend them and let cool a bit. As they cook check the water level so they do not burn or become too thick, add water as needed to make a spreadable type paste mixture.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    Trader Joe's have them, not so expensive.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    I have seen unsweetened dried cranberries at whole foods. They are more expensive, so I have not tried them yet.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    Is the recipe calling for dried sweetened cranberries? I don't think I have ever seen unsweetened, but I am just checking...

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    I have fresh cranberries that I need to use. I wonder I much of them would be used in the recipe? Please let me know your thoughts. Thanks.

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    Lemons and cranberries, two of my favorite fruits. Can't wait to try thtese. I see no reason why they would not freeze. Will try them tooday. Thanks, MSL

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    How well do you think these would freeze?

  • 8 Jan, 2009

    I bet dried cherries instead of cranberries would be fantastic too.

  • 27 Sep, 2008

    Excellent! The blend of cranberry and lemon flavors is spectacular!