Sugar-Cranberry Cake Is Perfect Combination of Tart & Sweet

Janine of Happy Happy Nester is back sharing one of her favorite holiday dessert recipes.  In her words” the Sugar-Cranberry Cake combines a unique pairing of sweet and tart.” The cake contains layers of gingersnap cookie crust and cream, with sugared cranberries sprinkled on top. This crimson-colored dessert will undoubtedly add a festive flair to your table for the holidays.


Cranberry Meringue Cake


For the cake

  • Cooking spray
  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 cups chopped graham crackers
  • 2 cups chopped gingersnap cookies

For the Frosting

  • 8 ounces (1 cup) cream cheese
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ cups crushed meringue cookies

Sugared Cranberries

  • ¾ cup agave nectar
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup granulated sugar




Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray 9-inch nonstick spring form pan with cooking spray.

Cake: Beat eggs whites on high speed with electric mixer. Beat until soft peaks form. Add granulated sugar slowly, then the vanilla, baking powder and salt. Beat for 2 more minutes. Fold in the graham crackers and ginger snaps.

Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Bake 30 to 40 minutes. Let cake cool for 15 minutes, then remove from pan.

Frosting: With an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese, sour cream, powdered sugar and vanilla extract until soft peaks form and the mixture is smooth and without lumps.

Spread the frosting over the top of the cake. Next, place the meringue cookies in a plastic Ziploc bag and crush with rolling pin. Sprinkle the frosting with the crushed cookies. Next garnish with sugared cranberries.

Sugared Cranberries: Cook the agave nectar and ¼ cup water in a saucepan over medium-low heat, 1 to 2 minutes. Make sure not to let the syrup get too hot since it will pop the cranberries.) Remove pan from heat and add cranberries. Cool berries and then refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours.

When ready to serve, drain chilled cranberries in a colander. Place a small handful of cranberries in a bowl of sugar and coat the cranberries. Place the sugared berries on parchment paper and allow to dry. Once dry, sprinkle the cranberries over the crushed meringue topping.

Original recipe courtesy of Marcela Valladolid

Photography courtesy of Daidri Smythe


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