Lemon Cranberry Cheesecake Bars

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2 3/4 c. (285 g.) frozen cranberries (1 [10-oz.] bag)
1/2 c. (100 g.) granulated sugar
1 tbsp. cornstarch
1 tsp. finely grated orange zest
3 tbsp. fresh orange juice
3/4 tsp. pumpkin pie spice mix
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
2 (8-oz.) packages of cream cheese, softened
1 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
3 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
3/4 c. (150 g.) granulated sugar, divided
Cooking spray
2 (8-oz.) packages of refrigerated crescent roll dough
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

How to:

Preheat oven to 350º. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer on medium-high speed, beat cream cheese, lemon zest and juice, vanilla, and 1/2 cup granulated sugar until smooth and well combined.

Grease a 13″-by-9″ baking pan with cooking spray. Line the bottom of the pan with parchment, leaving a 2″ overhang on both long sides. Spray parchment with cooking spray.

Unroll 1 can of dough and press into the bottom of the prepared baking pan, pinching the seams closed and stretching the dough to the edges. Spread the cream cheese mixture over the dough. Dollop cranberry filling over cream cheese mixture.

Unroll the remaining can of dough and pinch the seams together. Place over top of cranberry and cream cheese filling and stretch to the edges of the pan. Brush with butter, then sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar.

Bake the bar until the top is golden brown, 28 to 32 minutes. Transfer the pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.
Using a parchment overhang, lift bars out of the pan. Cut into 12 bars and serve at room temperature, or chill and serve cold.



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