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Blood Orange Bars

Blood Orange Bars are a less tangy version of lemon bars. They are vibrant, full of orange flavor, and rest on a buttery shortbread crust. This simple recipe will bring light to your cold winter days.

angled view of blood orange bars on a dark baking sheet

Blood Orange Bars

This is one wintery dessert gorgeous enough for Valentine's Day!

The smooth creamy filling is nothing more than a flavorful blood orange curd.

The curd sits on top of a crisp, buttery shortbread crust.

overhead view of blood orange bars in a square baking sheet

I'm a huge fan of blood oranges, with their dark colored flesh and sweet citrus flavor, I get so excited when I see my grocery store stocked with them.

Once again a gorgeous fruit got the best of me and I had to buy the biggest bag available. At the time of purchase, I had no idea what I was going to do with this stunning orange, but it didn't take me long to figure it out.

I modified my all time favorite lemon bar recipe and turned it into a pleasantly sweet blood orange bar.

I didn't change much about the bars. I only swapped the lemon for orange, reduced the sugar, and used 5 whole eggs. Everything else is pretty much the same and the result is amazing!

To ensure the orange flavor was prominent, I used a whole cup of juice and some zest. The zest really brightened up the flavor.

And because the oranges are already sweet I didn't use much sugar at all. You could probably cut it back even more if you are watching your sugar intake.

overhead view of blood orange bars on a baking sheet with one on a wooden plate

Go grab a bag of blood oranges while they are in the stores! You don't want to miss this winter treat!

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angled view of blood orange bars on a dark baking sheet

Blood Orange Bars

Yield: 16 bars
Prep Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 10 minutes

Blood Orange Bars are a less tangy version of lemon bars. They are vibrant, full of orange flavor, and rest on a buttery shortbread crust. This simple recipe will bring light to your cold winter days.

Ingredients

For the crust

  • 1 and ⅓ cups all-purpose flour
  • ⅓ cup confectioners' sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces

For the filling

  • 4 large eggs
  • 3 egg yolk
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup blood orange juice, (about 6 oranges)
  • 1 tablespoon blood orange zest
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • red and blue gel food coloring, (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Line an 8x8-inch pan with foil with enough overhang on all sides for easy removal.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Stir to combine. Using a pastry blender or a fork, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until lightly golden brown.
  3. Make the filling: While the crust cools, whisk the eggs, yolks, sugar, and salt together in a medium pot. Stir in the blood orange juice and zest. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for about 10 minutes. The curd will thicken to the consistency of pudding. Stir the butter and cream into the smooth curd filling. If you want to deepen the color of the curd, add 2 drops of red and 1 drop of blue food coloring. Alternate colors and stir between each addition. Add more color if needed to achieve the desired hue. Strain the curd through a fine-mesh sieve set over a medium bowl. Pour the curd over the crust and spread evenly with a silicone spatula. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the filling is set.
  4. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 1 hour. Cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. Lift the bars out of the pan using the foil overhang. Cut into 16 squares.
  5. Bars will keep for up to 3 days stored covered in the refrigerator.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 16
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 176

* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet. Since different brands of ingredients have different nutritional information, the values shown are just an estimate.

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Maple

Saturday 10th of February 2018

I'm confused... so is it 4 eggs in total? or 7?

Jen Sobjack

Monday 12th of February 2018

You need 4 whole eggs plus 3 egg yolks.

Laura @ Laura's Culinary Adventures

Thursday 18th of February 2016

What a beautiful pink color!

Denise @ Sweet Peas & Saffron

Monday 15th of February 2016

These are just too pretty! Love that pink color, and that you adapted a lemon bar recipe...so perfect!

Jen

Wednesday 17th of February 2016

Thank you so much, Denis!

Danielle

Monday 15th of February 2016

What a gorgeous bar, Jen! I love blood oranges, but I've never thought to turn them into something like this! I could easily devour that entire batch :)

Jen

Wednesday 17th of February 2016

Thanks Danielle!

Rebeccah

Monday 15th of February 2016

Seriously tempted by these! Unfortunately, woe is me that our local grocery store almost never carries blood oranges. These definitely look like they're worth making a special trip for though!

Jen

Wednesday 17th of February 2016

Boo! That's so unfair of your grocery store!

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