You'll find these bars at Starbucks during special holidays. The texture is like a chewy brownie, but the flavors include white chocolate, zesty orange, and cranberry, finished with a cream cheese frosting. NOTES - this recipe uses a 10x15 pan. One of the photos shows you how to make the right cuts to create signature triangle shapes. Nov. 2013 note - the bars bought from Starbucks have gone down-hill this year with icing that is flavorless and no real ginger flavor to the bars. Skip Starbucks and make your own! For Valentine's Day, I used a heart-shaped cookie cutter and tinted the icing pink. They were beautiful!
- 1 cup butter (2 sticks, very soft)
- 1 cup brown sugar (some cooks reduce this to 2/3 cup)
- 1⁄3 cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 2 teaspoons orange extract or 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups flour
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 3⁄4 cup craisins (dried cranberries)
- 3⁄4 cup white chocolate chips
- 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened
- 3 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1 teaspoon orange extract (or vanilla)
- 1⁄3 cup craisins, chopped
- 1 -2 tablespoon grated orange rind
- 1⁄3 cup white chocolate chips
- 1⁄2 teaspoon canola oil
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (325 for a glass or dark pan). Prepare a 10x15 by lining it with parchment paper or use a non-stick spray.
- BARS: With an electric mixer, beat together softened butter and sugars 3-5 minutes until light; gently blend in eggs and orange extract (don't overbeat eggs). Add the flour, baking powder, and ginger and beat briefly. Add the cranberries and chips, stirring just until incorporated.
- Spread thick batter in prepared 10x15 pan. Bake 350 for 20-24 minutes until light brown AT EDGES and a skewer tests clean. Don't overbake or your bars will be dry. Let it cool completely. NOTE: If you use a 9x13 pan, the bars will be thicker and will take 26-28 minutes.
- FROSTING: Blend cream cheese and butter until fluffy. Add orange extract and confectioners sugar and beat until frosting is fluffy and spreadable (adding 1 t. milk if needed). Spread evenly over COOLED bars.
- GARNISH: Use a zester to remove rind from an orange; sprinkle zest over frosted bars. Chop 1/3 cup Craisins coarsely; sprinkle over frosted bars.
- DRIZZLE: Mix white chocolate and oil in a glass measuring cup. Microwave 1 minute; stirring every 15 seconds until melted. Use a fork or whisk to drizzle the white chocolate diagonally across the bars.
- Allow one hour for the white chocolate to set before cutting. **To make signature Starbuck triangles, cut into 20 large squares (5 cuts by 4 cuts with the knife). Then cut each square in half diagonally to create triangles.