1 Sweet for Santa: Dark Cherry Whole Wheat Bars

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As I write this post, I’m eating a forkful of these amazing bars. Of all the cookies, bars, brownies and cakes I made this season, these are definitely the best. I love the flavor, the texture, the lemon zest and especially the big chunks of dark cherries. These bars are absolutely to die for and can be enjoyed anytime of the day. I brought them with me to Ohio for Christmas and since there are barely any left for me to devour, that shows me they were a big hit with my family too! If you’re not a cherry person, you can add blueberries, raspberries or even lemon! Original recipe from Eating Well.

Dark Cherry Whole Wheat Bars

What You’ll Need:


  • 1 1/3 cups plus about 3 tablespoons whole-wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cherry Filling

  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
  • 2 cups frozen cherries
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Confectioners’ sugar for dusting

How To Make Them:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Coat a baking dish with cooking spray.
  • Whisk together 1 1/3 cups flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.

  • Mix butter, egg, vanilla, oil and brown sugar in another bowl and stir until creamy. Add flour mixture and stir until well mixed.

  • Transfer two-thirds of the dough to the prepared baking dish and use it to press the dough into the bottom of the dish in an even layer. Bake for about 15 minutes.

  • While the crust is baking, prepare the filling. Stir sugar, remaining flour and lemon zest into a small bowl.
  • Combine the cherries and lemon juice in a medium sauce pan and cook until berries are soft and juicy. Add sugar mixture and stir until thick.

  • While filling is thickening, prepare the topping. Work remaining 3 tablespoons of whole wheat flour into the remaining mixed dough mixture.
  • Once filling is done, pour into the crust. Top with remaining dough and bake for 15-18 minutes. Sprinkle with powdered sugar once finished.

Nutritional information per bar: 170 calories, 5 grams of fat, 3 grams of protein and 2 grams of fiber.

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  1. Posted by Ravienomnoms on
    Tuesday, December 28th, 2010
    They look simply sinful!
  2. Posted by Kate @ Diethood.com on
    Wednesday, December 29th, 2010
    These could also become my favorite! I love the taste of a dark cherry in any dessert. Great recipe!
  3. Wednesday, December 29th, 2010
    Oh my goodness these bars look AMAZING! I love dark cherries and I especially love them in desserts. I just have to make these! Thank you soooo much for the recipe. :)
  4. Posted by Vicki @ WITK on
    Wednesday, December 29th, 2010
    I love how these sound, and my dad would love them too. We love cherries and it's great you can use frozen cherries. Thanks for sharing! I'm imagining these would be amazing warm with vanilla ice cream!
  5. Posted by Kimba's Kitchen on
    Thursday, December 30th, 2010
    I love these bars they look amazing and love the cherry filling!!
  6. Posted by Briarrose on
    Thursday, December 30th, 2010
    Yum! Wonderful cherry filling.