Orange Cranberry White Chocolate Bars

Each year, I search and search for a recipe to send out with my Christmas cards. I found a similar recipe to this, tweaked it just a bit, and perfection was born. These have a ton of great flavor…they are a little sweet and a whole lot of delicious! You can use light or regular cream cheese for the frosting, add a little more or a little less orange zest, depending on your taste. Completely customizable to your tastes.  Plus, they turn out really pretty. Great for a holiday cookie exchange, gifts to neighbors, or to devour yourself! They are ah-maz-ing!! ~Kathy



  • 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) butter
  • 1 1/3 c. packed light brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. freshly grated orange zest
  • 2 1/8 c. flour
  • 1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 c. dried cranberries, coarsely chopped (this helps distribute them more evenly throughout
  • the batter)
  • 4 ounces white baking chocolate, coarsely chopped or 1/2 ­ 2/3 cup white chocolate chips

Frosting / Topping:

  • 1 package (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened (regular or light)
  • 3/4 c. powdered sugar
  • Pinch salt
  • 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp. freshly grated orange zest
  • 4 oz. white baking chocolate, melted
  • 1/2 c. dried cranberries, coarsely chopped


  1. Preheat the oven to 350˚F and lightly grease a 9×13 ­inch pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a microwave­-safe bowl, melt the butter.
  3. Stir in the brown sugar until well­-combined.
  4. Whisk in the eggs, vanilla extract and orange zest.
  5. Stir in the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon until well combined; then fold in the cranberries and white chocolate.
  6. Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan.
  7. Bake for 18­-20 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean or with moist (not gooey) crumbs. Do NOT over bake!!!
  8. Let the bars cool completely in the pan.
  9. For the frosting, using an electric mixer (handheld or stand mixer), beat the softened cream cheese, powdered sugar and salt together until light and fluffy (about 2­-3 minutes).
  10. Mix in the vanilla.
  11. Add about half of the melted chocolate and mix until creamy.
  12. Spread the frosting onto the cooled bars.
  13. Sprinkle with cranberries and orange zest and drizzle the remaining white chocolate over the top. Refrigerate until the chocolate is set.
  14. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Four Sisters’ Favorite Things for the Kitchen… plus a Giveaway!

We are kicking off a new series of Four Sisters Favorite Things with our very favorite category of things: kitchen tools and gadgets! We each have carefully chosen our favorite item for the kitchen and professed our love for each of them below. These are things we have owned for some time and use often.   

Any of these items would make great Christmas gifts for the cook in your life (or for yourself – no shame in buying yourself a gift! Click the links or the photos to shop!) so don’t forget to Pin this post for later reference and, most importantly, don’t forget to read how to enter our giveaway at the bottom of this post!

I think every person has those times in their life that cause them to instantly think, “Why didn’t I do/get this sooner!?” Those life-altering moments like having your first child or buying a king-sized mattress. While I admit that these life events may be on somewhat different playing fields, both changed my life for the better. On that list is also the purchase of my Kitchenaid Stand Mixer. If you mix or bake just about anything, you will LOVE one of these. I have the 5 quart stand mixers in “green apple.” This mixer comes with the traditional mixer paddle, a whisk, and a dough hook (I use all three frequently). This piece of kitchen equipment is an investment that you won’t regret and Kitchenaid often has great sales. But, I’ll let you in on a little secret… can find them refurbished on Amazon (sold by Kitchenaid), which is how I bought mine. Check out this great model that’ll look beautiful on your kitchen counter top:


I thought long and hard about my favorite kitchen item. I have so many favorites! Ultimately, I decided on one of the few I would instantly replace if it were to break: my Ninja 3-in-1 Cooking System. You’ve seen it many times in my recipe photos and videos because I use it constantly. The thing I love most about it is the “stovetop cooking” setting. I can sear a roast on the highest stovetop setting, then switch it over to the slow cooker mode to slow cook it all day. No need to use an extra pan to brown the meat! I LOVE that it saves me from dirtying more dishes. That’s not all though. You can use the Ninja 3-in-1 Cooking System to steam and even bake! This is definitely my most versatile kitchen gadget; worth spending the money to replace my old boring, slow-cooker. You can get yours at this link or by clicking on the photo below.  


I am a coffee fanatic, so naturally while at Williams-Sonoma I accepted the free cup cappuccino…game changer! In the Nespresso VertuoPlus Deluxe Coffee Maker & Espresso Machine with Aeroccino Milk Frother (I just call it my Nespresso machine–anyway, I linked to the updated model so you can be sure the fab device is available for you.), the coffee brewed faster than my Kurig – with one lovely difference: these pods are foodgrade aluminum and are easily shipped in for recycling in a pre-addressed shipping bag! There is a handy-dandy little storage container on the back of the coffee pot where your used coffee pod is automatically dropped when you open the lid to start the next cup of coffee!

I had no idea pre-measured coffee could be that flavorful and amazing. They have several great flavor options of espresso or regular brew; a barcode on the edge of the pod is read by the machine so it knows how much piping hot water to use for each kind of brew. The milk steamer is shockingly easy to use and just as easy to clean – in about one minute or less you can pour in your milk and have perfectly steamed, frothy milk. The frother can even do a cold frothing! You will never go back to a Kurig. And while it’s a bit pricy, they have frequent specials (we’re talking 60% off specials) to get both the coffee maker & milk steamer together. I have had this coffee pot for over a year, and I am still absolutely loving it – it’s so good it feels downright luxurious. Who doesn’t need a little luxury to start the day?  


The below image on the left is the coffee alone, just brewed. The one on the right is, of course, with that perfectly steamed milk.

I have many kitchen favorites. But to me, this gadget stands out! I use it as much, or more than any other in my kitchen. My Cuisinart Immersion Blender (also called a hand blender) is the bomb! I’ve had it for years and I use it for everything! I love that it’s powerful, small, fits easily into a drawer and is super easy to clean. I make milkshakes, smoothies, puree soups and have even whipped egg whites with it. I have even used it to get lumps out of gravy. My favorite way, and I’d say the most resourceful way, to use it is to blend up veggies into my family’s favorite foods & they never suspect! I use kale, spinach, zucchini, beans and flax seed quite often blended into sauces, soups, etc. and no one is the wiser….. genius, I say!!


Bonus Favorite Thing!: Three out of four of us own this air fryer and LOVE it! This is the GoWise USA 5.8 Quart Air Fryer and it’s the best thing since sliced bread.

GoWISE USA 5.8-Quarts 8-in-1 Electric Air Fryer XL + 50 Recipes for your Air Fryer Book (Black)

We love it so much that we are giving one away to one of our readers! There are TWO ways to enter:

  1. Follow Four Sisters Dish. Do this by entering your email address into the box labeled “subscribe via email” on the homepage below the recipe index link on Don’t forget to verify your email (check your email – if you don’t see it, look in your spam folder.) to get fully subscribed. (You’re automatically entered once if you already follow by email).   NOTE:  To make the subscribe option appear on a mobile device, click the gear icon in the center of your screen just below the Pinterest icon.
  2. Find our giveaway post on Facebook (Click here to be directed to our page) and follow the directions on how to enter there – it goes like this: Follow Four Sisters Dish on Facebook, tag a friend our original post, then share the post.

If you do both things, you get TWO chances to win the air fryer!

Rules: You must live in the continental U.S. and be 18 years or older to win.

The winner will be contacted by email OR via Facebook messenger, depending on winner’s entry method on December 15th, so it can hopefully be delivered in time for Christmas!

Good luck!

This is not a paid sponsorship! We do, however, receive a very small commission if you purchase any item below using the link provided. Don’t worry, it doesn’t change the price at all for you.