These vegan cranberry crumble bars feature a delicious oat crust, sweet and tangy chia seed cranberry filling and oat crumble topping.

A stack of 3 cranberry crumble bars on a small grey plate.

Ingredient Notes

  1. Cranberries. This recipe calls for whole, fresh or frozen cranberries. Do not use dried cranberries.
  2. Chia seeds. Chia seeds are needed to thicken the cranberry jam.
  3. Flour. I used whole wheat flour in this recipe and have not tested any other flours, however, it should work just fine with a gluten-free flour blend such as Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten-Free Baking Flour.
  4. Sweetener. I used organic cane sugar in this recipe but any kind of dry granular sweetener, such as coconut, demera or turbinado sugar works. To reduce the sugar in the recipe, you could use monk fruit sweetener here.
  5. Oats. Rolled (old fashioned) oats are best here but you could use quick oats in a pinch.
A plate of cranberry oat bars with some whole cranberries scattered around.

How to Make these Bars

There are two parts to these bars: the cranberry chia seed jam and the oat crumble. Let’s go through how to make each and how to put them together – it’s easy peasy!

Step 1. Make the Cranberry Chia Jam

Start the chia seed jam on the stovetop. While it’s cooking you can whip up the oat crumble.

To make the jam, add the cranberries, chia seeds, lemon and maple syrup to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat and cook until the cranberries start to break down and it starts to thicken.

As the cranberries start to pop, smash them up against the side of the saucepan until they’re mostly all broken down. If a few whole ones remain, that’s totally fine. This whole process should take 10-12 minutes.

Whole cranberries in a small saucepan with chia seeds.
Thick cranberry chia jam in a small saucepan with a wooden spoon.

Step 2. Make the Oat Crumble

To make the oat crumble, add the dry ingredients to a mixing bowl and stir to combine. Next, mix in the melted coconut oil, lemon juice and almond milk. Mix it all up until you have a crumbly dough that you can press together in your fingers.

Raw oat crumble in a mixing bowl with a spoon.

Step 2. Layer and Bake

Once you’ve made the oat crumble dough and the cranberry jam, layer them in a loaf pan and bake!

Quick Tip: Scoop out about 2/3 cup of the crumble mixture to reserve for the top of the bars.

Start with a layer of oat crumble, pressing in it firmly into the pan. Next add the chia jam and then top with the remaining oat mixture.

Cranberry jam being spread on a layer of oat crumble dough in a baking pan.
Baked oat crumble in a baking pan.

Once they’ve finished baking, let them cool completely (or for at least half an hour) before slicing and carefully lifting out of the pan.

Close up of a baked oat crumble bar in a baking pan.
Sliced oat crumble bars in a baking pan.
A stack of 3 cranberry crumble bars on a small grey plate.

Vegan Cranberry Crumble Bars Recipe

These bars are the perfect pairing of sweet and tart thanks to the delicious layer of cranberry chia seed jam. Made with cranberries, these are perfect for the holidays but can also be made with blueberries or raspberries for a fun summertime treat.

More Dessert Recipes

Loving these cranberry bars? Here are some more delicious desserts to try:

For another cranberry recipe, try my easy homemade cranberry sauce.

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A stack of 3 cranberry crumble bars on a small grey plate.

Vegan Cranberry Crumble Bars

  • Author: Deryn Macey
  • Prep Time: 5 mins
  • Cook Time: 35 mins
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: 8 bars 1x
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking, Stovetop
  • Cuisine: Vegan

Amazing cranberry crumble bars featuring an ooey, gooey layer of tart but sweet cranberry chia seed jam between an oat crust and crumble topping. These bars are perfect for the holidays!


Scale

Ingredients

For the Chia Seed Cranberry Jam

  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp chia seeds

For the Crust and Topping

  • 1 cup (120 g) whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 (150 g) cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 cup (90 g) sugar (coconut, raw cane or any other granulated sugar)
  • 1/3 cup (70 g) coconut oil, melted
  • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
  • 35 tbsp unsweetened almond or cashew milk

Instructions

  1. To make the chia seed jam, combine all ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a gentle boil while stirring. Once it reaches a very gentle boil, turn the heat down. Continue stirring, while starting to mash the cranberries, for 6-10 minutes until it’s thick and has a jam-like consistency. Set aside.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  3. Mix the oats, flour, baking powder, salt and sugar together in a large mixing bowl until well combined.
  4. Add the melted coconut oil, lemon juice and nut milk (start with 3 tbsp). Mix into a crumbly dough, adding more almond milk as needed until you can press the dough together in your fingers. It should be crumbly but moist enough to start sticking together. It should not be overly wet or as moist as cookie dough or cake batter.
  5. Lightly grease a 7-8 inch baking pan, line with parchment paper or spray with non-stick cooking spray.
  6. Reserve about 2/3 cup of the dough then firmly press the rest into the bottom of the pan.
  7. Evenly spread the cranberry jam on top of the bottom layer.
  8. Sprinkle the rest of the dough on top of the jam layer.
  9. Bake for 35 minutes.
  10. Let cool in the pan, then slice into 16 squares. Store in a sealed container in the fridge or freeze up to 2 months.

Notes

This recipe can also be made with fresh or frozen blueberries or raspberries.

Keywords: cranberry bars, crumble bars, easy

This recipe was originally published November 10, 2016. It was updated with new photos and text February 2020.