I couldn’t help but create this cranberry ritz bar recipe. When you think up a no bake cranberry dessert idea, you just have to make it ASAP.
The holiday season is upon us, and the stores are having ridiculous sales on fresh cranberries and canned cranberry sauce. After seeing how well my pumpkin spice ritz bars did on the blog (and pinterest), I had to think up a no bake cranberry dessert.
While I could have gone with fresh cranberries for the cranberry ritz bars, I knew I needed to go the frugal route and make these suckers with the canned stuff.
Simple No Bake Cranberry Dessert
I’m guilty of stocking up on canned cranberry sauce when they go on sale each year, so it’s always nice to think up new ways to use them. Just like the pumpkin spice ritz bars, these are no-bake and use Ritz crackers as the secret ingredient.
I love using whole cranberry sauce for this recipe, so you get flickers of cranberries within the bars. The pink color of the bars with peeks of red would make these just as yummy during Valentine’s day.
Let The Kids Make It
This recipe is so easy, the kids can make it as their holiday treat. Have them make some for Thanksgiving Dinner, or as a fun addition to Christmas breakfast.
Since it’s a no-bake recipe that uses the microwave, you shouldn’t have too much of a mess in the kitchen. But, I guess that depends on your kids. Ha!
Cranberry Ritz Bars
1 bag marshmallows
3 sleeves of ritz crackers
1/2 cup whole cranberry sauce
2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
Lightly spray an 8×8 baking dish with oil spray. Place a piece of wax paper inside of the pan. Lightly spray the wax paper with oil. Make it long enough that it goes over the sides of the pan, to create “handles” to lift out the dessert once it’s time to cut it.
Place the ritz crackers in a food processor and pulse until they turn into cracker crumbs. It may take a few processing sessions to do all of the crackers. Once they are done, place in a medium sized bowl and set aside.
Place the butter in a large microwaveable bowl, and microwave for 30 to 45 seconds, until the butter is melted but not bubbling.
Place the bag of marshmallows in the microwaveable bowl, and coat with the melted butter. Place in the microwave for 90 seconds, or until marshmallows are melted together and “puffy.”
Stir the butter/marshmallow mixture until the butter is fully incorporated. Once blended, add in the cranberry sauce and vanilla. Stir until blended, about 15 to 20 rotations.
Pour in the cracker crumbs and toss until the mixture comes together. The consistency will be similar to playdoh, but a bit slippery. Once the mixture holds together, place it in the 8×8 pan.
Let the cranberry ritz bars cool for at least 2 to 4 hours, or overnight. Pull out the bar with the wax paper handles and cut to desired sizes.