Better than Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bread




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Better than tarbuck's Cranberry Bliss Bread 4

This Better Than Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bread has all the bells and whistles of the original cranberry bars, but in an irresistible pound cake form.  Skip the coffee shop and stay home and bake!

cranberry bliss bread pin

My better than Starbuck’s cranberry bliss bread is one of the best perks of fall!

I delight in everything about this season, and even though it’s a cliche, I still get a warm rush when Starbuck’s brings out the pumpkin lattes.  But I think everyone can agree that while their coffee is pretty fantastic, their baked stuff has taken a nosedive in recent years.  There was a time when I was happy to splurge on maple oat nut scones and pumpkin breads, but not anymore.   Now I grab my coffee solo, because I know I’ve got an even better treat waiting for me at home.

cranberry bliss bread, sliced

The base of this ‘bread’ is a rich buttery cake made with part whole wheat  flour and studded with dried cranberries and white chocolate chips.  The thick vanilla frosting is covered with more cranberries, and then the whole thing is drizzled with white chocolate.  It’s fun, festive, and way better than the dried out squares in the case.

a slice of cranberry bliss bread

A slice of cranberry bliss bread, broken aoart

tvfgi recommends: the perfect loaf pan

Loaf pans can be surprisingly tricky to work with because they come in all kinds of sizes and most recipes aren’t specific about the dimensions.  This is the classic 1 1/4 pound, 9×5 loaf pan that is your best bet for most recipes.  USA pans are my favorite because they’re sturdy, and made here in the US.  

I recommend having at least 2 loaf pans in your collection because some recipes are formulated for 2 loaves.

cranberry bliss bread, frosted

Part of the appeal of the cranberry bliss franchise is that gorgeous top.  It just screams holiday!  It’s a yummy combination of a creamy white frosting, drizzled white chocolate, and sweet/tart cranberries for a pop of color.

TIP: some white chocolate can be tricky to melt.  Adding a teaspoon of vegetable oil to the chocolate before melting can help prevent it from seizing.  Go low and slow, whether you melt it in the microwave, or a double boiler on the stove.

cranberry bliss bread, sliced on a wooden table

Do you love to copy Starbucks recipes as much as I do?  Try my other copy cat recipes~

Better than Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bread
Rate this recipe
210 ratings

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 55 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Category: dessert

Cuisine: American

Servings: serves 8

Better than tarbuck's Cranberry Bliss Bread 4

This Better Than Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bread has all the bells and whistles of the original bars, but in an irresistible pound cake form. Skip the coffee shop and stay home and bake!

Ingredients

    cake
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 stick (1/2 cup, 113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries, plus a handful more for scattering over the frosting
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
    frosting
  • 2 cups confectioner's sugar, sifted
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • milk or cream to thin
    drizzle
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 tsp coconut or vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. Set oven to 350F
  2. Whisk together the flours, soda, powder, and salt. Set aside.
  3. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, and then the vanilla.
  4. Gently mix in the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk, beginning and ending with the dry ingredients.
  5. Fold in the cranberries and chocolate chips.
  6. Turn the batter into a greased standard (81/2 x 4 1/2) loaf pan. I like to line it with a sheet of parchment paper to make it easy to remove the cake after baking. Bake for 55 minutes to an hour until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out without wet batter clinging to it. Don't over bake, check it early. Let the cake cool before you frost it.
  7. To make the frosting mix the sugar with enough milk or cream to create a thick spreadable consistency.. Blend in the vanilla. Spread over the top of the cooled cake. Scatter with dried cranberries.
  8. Make the chocolate drizzle by melting the chocolate and the oil in a small (clean and dry!) microwave safe bowl. Microwave for 30 seconds and stir to melt. If necessary microwave for another few seconds, but be careful not to over do it.
  9. When the chocolate is smooth, take a spoon and drizzle it all over the top of the cake in a criss-cross pattern.

cranberry bliss bread pin

 

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78 Comments

    Leave a Reply

  • Reply
    Geneine Wolff
    January 13, 2019 at 6:02 pm

    Can I make this recipe in muffin form? At what temperature? Some muffins bake st 375, and some at 400. Thank you

    • Reply
      Sue
      January 13, 2019 at 8:04 pm

      I haven’t tried this as muffins, so I can’t say for sure Geneine, but I’d probably go for 350F.

  • Reply
    Krisztina Szucs
    December 16, 2018 at 2:44 pm

    Hi there!
    I would like to know if this bread can be made with rregular flour and fresh cranberries?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 16, 2018 at 3:48 pm

      I think that would be good, but I haven’t tried so I can’t say for sure. The flour substitution shouldn’t be a problem at all, but not sure what the fresh cranberries will do to the cake, worth a try though!

  • Reply
    Roxanne
    December 9, 2018 at 1:58 pm

    Third time’s the charm. Made two at a time last night. One was perfect the other didn’t cook all the way through…I swear the toothpick came out clean! :-)
    Re-made one but the outside was overdone to get the inside done. Made it one more time this morning…perfect!

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 9, 2018 at 3:59 pm

      You’re so sweet to come back and let us know, and I’m so glad you persevered! I often have that trouble with toothpicks, I sometimes have to jab something multiple times to be sure :)

  • Reply
    Tammara
    December 4, 2018 at 11:04 am

    So, I’m making this now!! But mine started bringing on the top writhin 20min!! Why would that happen?! I did everything in the recipe and it’s set to 350. :(

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 4, 2018 at 12:16 pm

      Ovens are often way off in temperature, Tammara, is it possible yours is calibrated too high?

  • Reply
    Janelle
    December 2, 2018 at 11:26 am

    Looks wonderful, and will make later today…. but I wonder if you’ve ever tried adding pecans? Would it change the baking, etc? It sounds like a wonderful addition to me. Perhaps I’ll try one loaf with and one without.

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 2, 2018 at 11:45 am

      I haven’t added pecans, but you could certainly do that, and it wouldn’t change the recipe baking time.

  • Reply
    alex
    November 26, 2018 at 10:41 am

    wanna make the cranberry bread. do not want to buy whole wheat flour, nor ever use it in my recipies. can i make this with just ap white? it really looks delicious. thanks.

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 27, 2018 at 7:39 pm

      Yes, it will work fine with white flour, no need to get special flour for this.

  • Reply
    Mary Vaccaro
    November 12, 2018 at 5:31 am

    My daughter-in-law has an egg allergy. Do you think I could substitute 2 med. bananas instead of eggs.

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 12, 2018 at 5:41 am

      It’s worth a try, I haven’t experimented with egg substitutes in this recipe, so I can’t say for sure.

  • Reply
    Jacquie
    October 10, 2018 at 7:02 am

    Fantastic recipe. I perfected the bars a number of years ago. A couple of suggestions, 1. replace some of the water/milk in the frosting with lemon juice 2. Add one tbsp grated orange zest in the batter. Occasionally I added chopped pistachios to the top. The color combo with the cranberries is very holiday festive and the sweet-salty contrast is yummy. I agree, the bars dry out far too quickly, thank you for doing the legwork on this recipe. They are my daughters fave

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 10, 2018 at 8:46 am

      Thanks so much Jacquie ~ I like your tweaks :)

  • Reply
    Lana
    October 9, 2018 at 1:56 pm

    Hi
    Just found this Amazing recipe. I LOVE CRANBERRIES . Can I use all purpose flour instead of white and wheat flour?
    Thanks

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 9, 2018 at 3:05 pm

      Yes, you sure can Lana, hope you love it!

  • Reply
    Jeanette Chapman
    October 9, 2018 at 10:33 am

    Hi
    In England we don’t use cups or “sticks” as you probably know. whilst I can get around most of the receipt can you tell me how I measure the butter please. I have no idea what a stick is and short of melting butter into a cup and then letting it harden, I have no idea!
    Many thanks in advance.
    Regards,
    Jeanette

    • Reply
      Sue
      October 9, 2018 at 11:54 am

      That would be 113 grams Jeanette.

  • Reply
    Trish
    September 10, 2018 at 3:53 pm

    Does this freeze well? I’m thinking of making this to give as Christmas gifts this year. Do you think I could make the loaf, freeze it, and then thaw it shortly before giving and do the frosting, drizzle, etc. then?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 10, 2018 at 4:22 pm

      I think most quick breads freeze well, so if you double wrap it and get it pretty airtight, it should be fine.

  • Reply
    Jean Jenkins
    September 3, 2018 at 5:31 am

    Can you use reg milk instead of buttermilk ?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 3, 2018 at 7:38 am

      That should be fine, Jean. You can also make your own ‘buttermilk’ by adding a little lemon juice or vinegar to regular milk. For every cup of milk I add a tablespoon of acidic lemon or vinegar.

  • Reply
    Moriah
    January 15, 2018 at 6:43 pm

    Aha, take that Starbucks! You’re coffee always made my stomach quesy anyway and you’re food is way to expensive.
    Though I will admit, their cheese, greens and tomato sandwiches (especially the one with feta) I do like. But again, so expensive! Do you have any diy’s for their sandwiches??

    • Reply
      Sue
      January 15, 2018 at 7:53 pm

      I haven’t done a copy cat sandwich, that will have to be next!

  • Reply
    Lori
    December 24, 2017 at 10:12 am

    Made this for Christmas Eve and it was amazing! The only caveat I would have is that people need to use clear Vanilla extract; I used the kind from Mexico and while it tasted phenomenal, it discolored the frosting! Ack!

  • Reply
    Marsha Tomko
    December 8, 2017 at 7:40 am

    My husband and I baked this bread together. Was easy. Smelled delightful while baking. Expectations were high. Let it cool and drizzled all the dreamy white chocolate over it. Got our hot tea ready for our much anticipated “first piece”. It was just “okay”. Couldn’t put our finger on it until the second piece. It was dry!! I didn’t even notice during prep that there is no oil in this bread. Did oil, of some kind, get left out of the recipe accidentally? If not, what can we do to remedy this? We really want to try this again! Help!!
    Marsha and Glen

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 8, 2017 at 9:16 am

      Hi Marsha and Glen! This recipe uses butter, not oil, and should have a nice pound cake type texture. Is it possible you left out the butter? Another possible reason for the dryness might be that your oven runs hot, and the bread was accidentally over-cooked. If you want to try this with oil instead of butter, you would use about 20% less oil, so a little bit less than 1/2 cup. Hope this helps!

  • Reply
    Hannah
    December 6, 2017 at 8:37 am

    I cannot wait to try this recipe! I was just wondering, would it work if I used a mini loaf pan and decreased the cooking time? I’m hosting a cookie exchange this weekend and would like to give these as little gifts to my guests!

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 6, 2017 at 8:44 am

      Sure, that would be fine. I think the rule of thumb is to reduce the oven temp by 25 degrees, and bake for about 25 minutes, but I would do a test loaf to be sure, Hannah, since they’re going to be gifts.

  • Reply
    Renee Seltmann
    December 4, 2017 at 8:15 am

    Could I use all white flour? I hate to buy a bag of wheat, for just this recipe! Has anyone tried it that way?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 4, 2017 at 8:19 am

      Yes absolutely Renee, it will work fine.

  • Reply
    Kelly Placeres
    November 4, 2017 at 6:33 pm

    I just baked this amazing cranberry bread! I doubled the recipe it is so easy and it came out great! I love it I also used fresh and dry cranberries. It came out yummy.

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 4, 2017 at 7:36 pm

      Thanks Kelly, I’ve been meaning to try it with fresh berries :)

  • Reply
    Imraan
    February 19, 2017 at 4:14 am

    When I first looked that the Cranberry bliss Bread picture I thought this will take some time to bake but after reading your recipe it seems so easy to make ! I will surely be trying this very soon! Thanks for the great recipe!

    • Reply
      Sue
      February 19, 2017 at 5:22 am

      Let me know what you think Imraan :)

  • Reply
    Alyssa
    December 29, 2016 at 3:02 am

    Delicious recipe!!! I had fresh cranberries that I needed to use up, and the bread turned out the ideal combo of sweet and tart.

  • Reply
    Courtney
    December 1, 2016 at 9:46 am

    I wasn’t wondering if I could just use regular flour instead of whole wheat flour because I have a gluten allergy?

    • Reply
      Sue
      December 1, 2016 at 10:33 am

      Yes, that should be fine, Courtney. I bet you could use a good gluten free flour blend as well.

      • Reply
        Joan
        December 11, 2016 at 5:22 pm

        I just made these today and I used GF flour. I also made them in a tiny loaf mold from Demarle. They turned out perfect at 25 minutes, the flour was not an issue.

        • Reply
          Sue
          December 11, 2016 at 5:53 pm

          Great to know, thanks Joan!

  • Reply
    kavi
    September 29, 2016 at 4:02 am

    yummy… i think it will be very tasty they have used cranberries & white chocolate chips those who love choclates they definetly love it cranberries it will be very tasty with this too combination

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 29, 2016 at 7:21 am

      Sounds wonderful!

  • Reply
    nina
    September 29, 2016 at 3:14 am

    Thanks for sharing the recipe with us so that we can learn it easily :)

  • Reply
    Phyllis
    September 17, 2016 at 6:24 pm

    Have this in the oven right now .Cannot wait to taste it,looks yummy.

  • Reply
    Donna Elick
    November 3, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    Oh my heavens. This looks amazing. I am totally making this over the weekend. I can’t wait to try it.

  • Reply
    Diane
    November 2, 2015 at 9:13 pm

    This looks wonderful! This may be a dumb question, but are the cranberries just dried cranberries or are they SWEETENED dried cranberries? Thanks

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 3, 2015 at 6:25 am

      I believe I used standard sweetened dried cranberries, Diane, but I’m sure either would work. I think in general most dried cranberries are sweetened because the fruit is so tart.

  • Reply
    Allizon
    September 18, 2015 at 8:36 am

    How much does this recipe yield?

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 18, 2015 at 11:32 am

      One loaf, Allizon.

  • Reply
    Laura@Baking in Pyjamas
    September 2, 2015 at 2:02 pm

    I just had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte today and can’t wait for the rest of the Autumn bakes to hit the shelves. I’ve never seen Cranberry Bliss Bars in the Starbucks here in the UK but after seeing this I’m dying to try your version. It certainly looks like bliss indeed!

    • Reply
      Sue
      September 2, 2015 at 2:19 pm

      :) Thanks Laura – I haven’t had my first Pumpkin Spice Latte, I guess I better get with the program! Thanks for stopping by.

  • Reply
    Jennifer
    December 16, 2014 at 7:47 am

    These look really yummy! Have you ever tried making this in mini loaf pans to give as gifts? I’m thinking a full size pan might be too much. Think it would still work but maybe just cook for less time?

    • Reply
      Karen
      December 16, 2014 at 6:31 pm

      I would love to make these in mini pans too. I’ve put other bread recipes in mini pans and I usually just check them around 25 minutes or so. I think this would work with this recipe.

      • Reply
        Sue
        December 16, 2014 at 6:43 pm

        I’m sure it would, it’s only that baking time that can screw things up. This would make great gifts in mini tins!

  • Reply
    Ryann
    November 25, 2014 at 7:21 am

    These look delicious! I’ve been looking for a recipe to make for Christmas gifts, definitely trying this recipe! Question, what size loaf pan did you use? Thanks!!

    • Reply
      Sue
      November 25, 2014 at 7:32 am

      Great question, I just updated the recipe to say a standard loaf pan, about 8 1/2 x 4 1/2. Good luck with it Ryann!

      • Reply
        Ryann
        November 28, 2014 at 5:31 pm

        Thanks for the reply, looking forward to gobbling up this bread, oh and of course making christmas gifts ;-)

  • Reply
    Christina
    November 15, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    Wow! I am SO making this bread! I can almost taste it just by looking at it…cannot wait! Thanks for the recipe, Sue!

  • Reply
    Melynda@OurSundayCafe
    November 15, 2014 at 7:37 am

    I love Cranberry Bliss anything! I have pinned this for later. Thank you.

  • Reply
    Caroline
    October 17, 2014 at 7:56 am

    Wow…this could not be more beautiful! I love that gorgeous top! I need a slice right now!

  • Reply
    Foodiewife
    October 12, 2014 at 10:06 am

    I’ve had a starbucks gift card in my wallet, for months, that I haven’t used. Funny, but I rarely go there. So, I’ve never tried any of their baked goods. I’ve seen these bars, and have been tempted. Your version is gorgeous! I’d love to have this with my own coffee, from home!

  • Reply
    cheri
    October 2, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    Hi Sue, Just had a pumpkin latte today as a matter of fact, always signals fall. Love, love this cranberry bread. Looks gorgeous!

  • Reply
    Kiran+@+KiranTarun.com
    October 2, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    The baked goods at Starbucks does look tempting but these looks so delicious!! Yum :)

  • Reply
    Laura+(Tutti+Dolci)
    October 1, 2014 at 12:42 pm

    So gorgeous, love the drizzle and cranberry topping!

  • Reply
    Abbe@This+is+How+I+Cook
    September 30, 2014 at 8:25 pm

    This looks so good. I admit I’ve heard about the Starbucks version and I did use to love those maple scones, but this looks like way better. I mean, REALLY WAY BETTER!

  • Reply
    Kitchen+Belleicious
    September 30, 2014 at 7:22 pm

    better? I totally see it and believe it! It looks and sounds 10 times better and that is one of my favorite breads from starbucks too!

  • Reply
    Amanda
    September 30, 2014 at 4:48 pm

    I love everything about this bread!

  • Reply
    La Cuisine Helene
    September 30, 2014 at 1:34 pm

    I really have to bake this bread, it looks so yum. I always look at it when I go to Starbucks but I never tried it.

  • Reply
    Susan
    September 30, 2014 at 10:02 am

    As much as I prefer unadorned sweet breads, this is so gorgeously delicious I would love to try it! You’re right, it does scream “Holiday”.

  • Reply
    Monique
    September 29, 2014 at 4:13 pm

    Hi Sue..I/ve made the bars but never the bread nor the cookies..everything everywhere looks terrific.. a few links don’t work but if you Google the name of the blog and the recipe..it does..(Ex..Gimme some oven)..
    Thanks everyone!

  • Reply
    Averie @ Averie Cooks
    September 29, 2014 at 2:11 pm

    Thanks for the shoutout, Sue! That is so nice of you! :)

    Wow, your bread. Just wow. I totally want this! I’ve made Cran Bliss Bars, and Cookies, and was just yesterday on a long run thinking well what else could I do with that…and voila, bread! But now I won’t make it because you beat me to it, but seriously, looks amazing!

  • Reply
    Liz+@+Floating+Kitchen
    September 29, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    Festive indeed! I’m loving this thick white chocolate topping. YUM!

  • Reply
    Luci {Luci's Morsels}
    September 29, 2014 at 11:54 am

    These look stunning! And these are my sister’s favorite. I’m debating between sharing the recipe with her or making them for her and then winning best sister of the year award!! And yes – I completely agree with the Starbucks nosedive. They went with La Boulange and now the morsels look like pre-formed options that are high in calories and fat -with little character. The seasonal cookies are super cute, but I still never buy them. Ok – Starbucks rant over (until it comes up in conversation again)!

    Luci’s Morsels – fashion. food. frivolity.

  • Reply
    Catherine
    September 29, 2014 at 10:52 am

    Dear Sue, I agree; the baked goods at Starbucks is expensive and really not all that much to write home about.
    Homemade is the best and so much easier on the wallet.
    This looks absolutely delicious!!! Blessings dear. Catherine