Cranberry Crunch

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These cranberry crunch bars include sweet and tart cranberries with a buttery streusel-like crumble topping and base that make them the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving table this year.

Cranberry crunch hero image

Some recipes just get you talking about the old days, which is why we love them so much. Cranberry crunch is one of those recipes that gets my mother talking about her childhood. The school lunch ladies often made this around the holidays and she loved it so much that one of them gave her the recipe for it, which has led us to enjoy it for the past couple of generations. Nothing like an heirloom recipe to bring memories back to life, especially around the holidays.

You only need 5 ingredients to make this old-fashioned cranberry crunch recipe: cranberry sauce, flour, oats, butter, and brown sugar. All we’re going to do is combine our dry ingredients (flour, oats, and sugar) in a mixing bowl and then cut in the butter to make it deliciously crumbly. Then we press half of this into the bottom of our baking dish before adding all the cranberry sauce and then the remaining crumble topping.

Then you have to patiently wait for it to bake before grabbing a bowl and serving your cranberry crunch bar with a big dollop of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream. I’ve also been known to enjoy one for breakfast, too. If you’re a fan of the humble crumble, you will love cranberry crunch. The combination of tart yet sweet cranberries with the buttery streusel-like crumble topping will be the perfect addition to your holiday table this year.

Cranberry Crunch Ingredients

Recipe Ingredients

  • Whole berry cranberry sauce
  • Old-fashioned oats
  • Flour
  • Dark or light brown sugar
  • Butter

How To Make Cranberry Crunch

Place dry ingredients in a large bowl.

Place your flour, oats, and brown sugar in a large bowl.

Mix together dry ingredients.

Stir them up.

Cut in butter.

Add your butter and cut that in with a long-tined fork or pastry cutter.

Crunch topping all mixed together.

It will look like this.

Grease baking dish with cooking spray.

Now spray a pie plate or 8×8 baking dish with cooking spray.

You can see some of these pretty dishes by fellow food blogger, Ree Drummond here.

Press half of mixture into the bottom of the baking dish.

Press half of your crumble mixture into the bottom of the pie plate to form the crust for the cranberry crunch.

Add cranberry sauce on top.

Top that with the entire can of cranberry sauce. 

Spread our cranberry sauce.

Then take that same spoon and spread it around a bit.

Add the remaining topping.

Sprinkle the remaining topping over the cranberry sauce.

Piece taken out of baked cranberry crunch.

Bake cranberry crunch at 350, uncovered, for 45 minutes to one hour, or until bubbly and golden brown.

Cranberry crunch with whipped cream.

Cranberry crunch is excellent served with whipped cream or ice cream but you can also serve it as a side dish. Enjoy!


  • Store leftover cranberry crunch in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days or in the fridge for up to 7 days. You can serve it at room temperature, cold, or reheated either in the oven or the microwave. This is a great recipe to make ahead of time this Thanksgiving.
  • You can also freeze leftovers for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature before serving.

Recipe Notes

  • I use old-fashioned rolled oats but quick oats will work just as well if that is what you have on hand.
  • As for brown sugar, I’m using dark because it is my very favorite, but if you have light or prefer light, knock yourself out!
  • I don’t recommend using frozen or fresh cranberries for this particular cranberry crunch recipe, as the cranberry sauce has added sweetness, which is exactly what we want.
  • If you like, you can add 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts or chopped pecans to the crumble mix for added flavor and texture.
  • Another option is to make cranberry apple crunch. Spread a cup or so of chopped apples over the cranberry sauce before adding the topping.
  • Another way to add flavor is to add some spices to the topping. I’d recommend 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg.

Check out these other tasty cranberry treats:

Cranberry Banana Bread

Cranberry Cheesecake Bars

Pumpkin Cranberry Bread With Caramel Glaze

Chewy Oatmeal Cranberry Cookie Recipe

Upside Down Cranberry Cinnamon Rolls

Cranberry Lace Cookie Recipe

Cranberry Crunch

These cranberry crunch bars include sweet and tart cranberries with a crumble topping and base that make them the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving table.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: bars, cranberry
Servings: 12
Calories: 298kcal


  • 1 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 16-ounce can whole berry cranberry sauce
  • 1 cup light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine


  • Mix the oats, flour, and brown sugar together in a large bowl. Cut in the butter using a long-tined fork or pastry cutter.
    1 cup old-fashioned oats, 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, 1 cup light or dark brown sugar, 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • Press 1/2 of the crumble mixture into the bottom of a greased 8x8 baking dish.
  • Spread cranberry sauce over the crust before topping it with the remaining crumbs.
    1 16-ounce can whole berry cranberry sauce
  • Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until lightly brown. Excellent served with whipped cream or ice cream.


Calories: 298kcal
Tried this recipe?Mention @southernplate or tag #southernplate!


Don’t set yourself so firmly on remembering Thanksgiving’s past that you forget to put your heart into this one.

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  1. Christy, You a gave us this recipe at the right time! I am gonna make it for Thanksgiving, with another favorite of mine. “whole berry cranberry sauce of course”. Hope you try it out one day. It was a hand me down from a friend years ago:
    Cranberry Salad:
    1 can whole berry cranberry sauce
    1 8 oz. package cream cheese
    2 tablespoons sugar
    2 tablespoons mayonnaise
    1 20 oz can of crushed pineapple – drained
    1 8oz. carton cool whip – thawed
    1 cup chopped nuts pecans or walnuts
    Coconut (Optional) *I love coconut!

    Beat the sugar and mayonnaise with softened cream cheese
    And blend in the cranberry sauce. Then mix in the drained pineapple,
    And Cool Whip. Stir in the nuts and handful of coconut if using:
    I make this for Thanksgiving and for Christmas!

  2. I remember a delicious lunchroom treat from 50 plus years ago and I hope you or your readers can help me enjoy it again. It was a peanut butter bar. It was the exact consistency of a dense warm brownie–not cakey. There was no chocolate in it; just a dense peanut butter bar. Anyone else remember it? Thanks!!

  3. I made this last night for my family, and it was delicious. However, the crust really stuck to the glass pie plate. I had to chisel the cranberry crunch out of the pan! What did I do wrong?

  4. I can’t tell you HOW many times I’ve thought of this amazing recipe since I first read it. I almost dream about it. *-* I think I’m the only one who will enjoy it for T’giving, but since my birthday is the same week, I do believe I’ll just treat myself and enjoy the whole thing! =) Thanks for your darling video and easy recipe. Love them all, and love how you inspire and encourage others. You are a gift to the world Christy Jordan. Hugs!

  5. What size dish or pie plate is best to use? I have a 9 inch, also a 10 inch pie plate. And I have an 8×8 baking dish. Thank you for the recipe, this was never served at my school cafeteria. (In Arkansas). So I look forward to this for Thanksgiving dinner. It is also my birthday.

  6. Another winner Christy !! I love your recipes especially the ones that can be tweaked, Oh and the ones that are easy I love easy,

  7. Christy,

    I always appreciate your recipes that mention you can use whatever floats your boat, cranks your tractor, moves your groove etc. when it comes to replacing some ingredient. In this case it’s the oatmeal. We know some recipes are more precise than others but I like it when you let people know they can (should) use what’s already in their cupboard. I’m never in a hurry to rush out to the store to buy something. I want to work with what I already have.

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