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Blood Orange and Vanilla Bourbon Bars | URBAN BAKES

Blood Orange and Vanilla Bourbon Bars

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5 from 3 reviews

  • Author: URBAN BAKES
  • Total Time: 4 hours 30 minutes
  • Yield: 12 bars 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian


Creamy and Mildly Sweet Blood Orange Bars with a Smooth Blend of Bourbon and Vanilla Notes over a Generous Graham Cracker Crust. Try saying no to a second serving!




  • 1 cup plus 2 1/2 tablespoons (113 grams) finely ground graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/3 cup (66 grams) granulated sugar
  • 5 tablespoons (70.6 grams) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons blood orange zest, grated and separated
  • 1/2 cup (120 milliliters) blood orange juice, strained with pulp and seeds removed
  • 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) bourbon
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract
  • 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/2 blood orange, thinly sliced into quarters (optional)


  • 20 tablespoons (115 grams) powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons (30 milliliters) blood orange juice, strained with pulp and seeds removed


  • 1/4 cup (60 milliliters) chilled heavy cream
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons (6 to 12 grams) powdered sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste or extract



  1. BARS: Heat oven to 350°F (175°C).  Line an 8-inch square pan with aluminum foil leaving excess foil to hang over two opposite sides for easy removal.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together graham cracker crumbs, sugar and butter. Press evenly into the bottom of the prepared lined baking pan. Use the back of a measuring cup to firmly press crumbs together.
  3. Bake for 10 minutes or until dry and golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow the crust to cool in the pan over a wire rack.  Crust may rise slightly during baking but will flatten upon cooling.  Leave the oven on.
  4. In a large bowl using an electric mixer, whisk on high speed the egg yolks and 3 teaspoons of blood orange zest to thicken, about 5 minutes.  Reduce speed to medium.  Add condensed milk in a slow, steady stream, continue mixing.  Increase speed to high and beat until thick, about 3 minutes.  Reduce speed to low.  Add blood orange juice, bourbon and vanilla, continue to mix until just combined. Pour filling evenly over the crust.
  5. Bake for 40 minutes or until filling is just set.  Filling is set when you lightly touch the center of the baked custard and it is dry, a slight jiggle is okay.  Allow to cool completely to room temperature over a wire rack before removing the custard from the pan. Refrigerate covered at least 4 hours or overnight. 
  6. BLOOD ORANGE GLAZE: In a small bowl whisk powdered sugar and blood orange juice together until smooth. Glaze should be thick and form a stream of ribbons when a spoon of the mixture falls slowly from the spoon and holds shape above the mixture for up to 30 seconds. 
  7. VANILLA WHIPPED CREAM: In a large chilled bowl using an electric mixer with a whisk attachment, beat heavy cream, 1 tablespoon (6 grams) of powdered sugar and vanilla together until soft peaks form.  Taste, add an additional tablespoon of powdered sugar if needed and continue to beat until stiff peaks form.
  8. Place a dollop of whipped cream over each bar or fill a piping (pastry) bag fitted with a closed star tip (I used Wilton 1B).  Garnish bars with remaining 1/2 teaspoon of blood orange zest and sliced quarters of blood orange over whipped cream. Cut custard into 2-inch squares. Serve chilled and ENJOY!


There are 1/4 to 1/3 cup (60 to 75 milliliters) of juice per blood orange.

  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Category: Bars
  • Cuisine: American

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