The best part of making low carb desserts is that, there isn’t any guilt feeling. In addition, it amazes me how you can’t really tell the difference between a dessert with sugar and one without sugar.
One of my favorite places I use to spend my checks on was Starbucks. Just thinking back on it, I use to go there four times a week and spend at least $20+ each visit. The receipts sure did add up and at the end of the day, it wasn’t worth the calories. Also, to be honest, you can make all the drinks, food and desserts at home at half of the calories, sugar and the carbs.
My two go treats from Starbucks were the Matcha Ice Latte and the Cranberry Bars. If you know me, I am always drinking matcha or baking with it. However this time, I wanted to recreate their Cranberry Bars. My spin on their classic dessert uses all low carb ingredients with a touch of Lemon Juice and Zest.
After 4 attempts, I finally mastered this dessert and it wasn’t easy. Recipe development is fun, but it is very time consuming. It takes a lot of research, testing and more. The lemon zest and vanilla extract brings out a fresh sweet soft and chewy dessert.
I added step by step of the process because lot of people like seeing it because it makes it easy for them to follow along. One of my pet peeve is when I am recreating a recipe, and there are only instructions and no visuals. In that said, I always find myself making a mistake and having to start all over.
What are the Ingredients for the Low Carb Cranberry Lemon Bars?
- 1/3 cup sugar- free white chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup Unsalted butter softened (1stick)
- 1/4 cup sugar-free dried cranberries; chopped
- 2/3 cup Swerve Granulated Sugar
- 1 large egg; room temperature
- 1 3/4 cup almond flour
- 1/4 cup coconut flour
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1 tbsp Xanthan Gum
- 1/4 tsp sea salt flakes
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp lemon juice; fresh
- 1/2 tsp lemon zest
Recipe to make your own Sugar-Free Dried Cranberries
- 16 ounces cream cheese; softened
- 2/3 cup Swerve Powdered Sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp lemon extract
- 4 tbsp sugar free white chocolate; melted
Garnish + Drizzle:
- 1/4 cup sugar-free dried cranberries; chopped
- 3 tbsp sugar-free white chocolate chips
- 1/2 tsp coconut oil
- 1-2 tsp lemon zest
How to make the Low Carb Cranberry Lemon Bars?
- Line a 8×8 inch baking pan with Parchment Paper and set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the butter with the sweetener until well combined. Beat in the egg, lemon juice, and vanilla extract.
- Add the almond flour, coconut flour, xanthan gum, baking soda, and sea salt flakes. Beat until the dough is thoroughly combined.
- Using a rubber spatula, fold in the cranberries, white chocolate chips, and lemon zest.
- Spread the dough evenly in the prepared pan and set in the fridge for 20 minutes or in the freezer for 10 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 325F, take pan from the fridge/freezer and bake 15 to 20 minutes. Bake until the edges are golden brown, but the center is still soft to the touch.
- Remove and place on counter top to cool complete; about 20-30 minutes.
Frosting + Cutting:
- In a small cup, melt white chocolate chips. About 30 seconds in microwave.
- In a large bowl, beat the cream cheese and sweetener until well combined. Beat in the vanilla, lemon extract then beat in the melted white chocolate until smooth and creamy.
- Optional: Divide frosting in half. One in bowl and the other in a large ziploc bag (cuts small triangle tip at the end to make a piping bag). This method is to make two types of designs, traditional flat design and zig zag design.
- **If you don’t like the extra zig zag design on top you can just make the tradition flat design**
- First layer: Using a rubber spatula, spread the frosting evenly over the bars. Then place in the fridge for 20 minutes to set.
- Using a sharp knife cut the edges off. Then cut evenly to make three sections diagonally and horizontally to get 9 bars. Check out step by step pictures to see.
- Second layer: Using a ziploc bag as a piping bag, pipe a zig zag pattern starting at one of the corners. Check out step by step pictures to see.
- Using a sharp knife, chopped the cranberries and set aside.
- In a small bowl, combine the white chocolate chips and the coconut oil. Microwave 30-1 minute until melted and smooth.
- Using a fork or small spoon, drizzle chocolate over the bars.
- Sprinkle the bars with the chopped dried cranberries and lemon zest.
- Let it set in the fridge for 20 minutes before cutting into triangles to get 18 bars. Enjoy.
- See approximate nutrition facts below pictures and more.
How long does it take to make the bars?
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Cooling Time: 1hr to 1 hr 10 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes (Not including cooling)
How many bars does this recipe make?
Serve: 9 Bars (18 triangles)
Calories: 230 (1 bar)
*Note: I am not a Dietitian. These numbers are approximate from my knowledge and the ingredients I used**
How to store left overs?
You can store in an air tight container for up to 2 to 3 weeks. If you want them to last long, store in a freezer safe ziploc bag in the freezer for up to 3 months. To thaw, just place in it the fridge overnight or out on the counter for an hour before eating.