Cranberry orange cookies are a delightful treat that combines the tartness of fresh cranberries with the citrus flavors of orange. These orange icebox cookies with cranberries are perfect during the holiday season.
These slice and bake cookies are easy to make and are the perfect addition to cookie platters or holiday cookie tray during Christmastime. With their fruity flavors, this is a great cookie to balance the flavors of chocolate and peanut butter and a great Christmas cookie.
Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Flavorful: Each bite has a flavor of citrus and sweetness, creating a delicious flavor combination with some of the most favorite holiday flavors.
- Easy to Make: Icebox cookies are easy to make, simply make the dough, roll it into a log, chill, slice, and then bake.
- Festive: This is a great cookie to add to cookie platters and great for a Christmas cookie exchange.
- Make-Ahead: This cookie dough is easy to make ahead and freeze for a few months before baking. Just make the dough ahead of time and store it properly to maintain freshness!
Ingredients in Cranberry Orange Cookies
- granulated sugar
- unsalted butter, room temperature
- orange zest
- vanilla extract
- large egg
- all-purpose flour
- cream of tartar
- baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- chopped cranberries, fresh
How to Make Cranberry Orange Cookies
Using an electric mixer, cream together the unsalted butter and the white sugar until pale and creamy at medium speed in a large bowl.
Stir in the grated orange zest and vanilla extract and beat in the egg.
In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients by mixing together the all-purpose flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt.
Gently stir the chopped fresh cranberries and evenly distribute them throughout the cookie dough.
Shape the cookie dough into a log and wrap the log tightly with plastic wrap.
Chill the cookie log in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Slice the cookie dough into ¼-inch slices using a sharp knife and place them two inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
Allow the cookies to cool for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
Store the cooled cookies in an airtight container.
TIP: A food processor will easily chop the cranberries with little effort.
Fresh Cranberry Substitution - Dried cranberries can be used in place of fresh cranberries interchangeably.
Egg Alternatives - Substitutions for eggs are flaxseed meal, applesauce, or store-bought egg replacers.
Variations for Cranberry Orange Cookies
Nuts - Walnuts are a great choice to add an earthy flavor to the cookies while almonds add a balanced sweetness to the tartness of the cranberries. Pecans are a nice choice to complement the citrus flavors in these cranberry cookies
Chocolate Chips - Adding chocolate chips not only adds a chocolate flavor but it creates a smoothness to the cookies. Adding dark chocolate chips will create balance while creating a delicious chocolate flavor.
Oatmeal - For a chewier texture, add some oatmeal to the flour mixture. It will also make the cookie more filling.
Cookie Storage Tips
For short-term storage, let the cookies cool completely and store them in an airtight container or a cookie jar. These soft cookies will remain soft and fresh for up to 5 days.
For longer storage, freezing is a great option. Let the cookies cool completely and then place them in a freezer-safe container with parchment paper between the layers of cookies to prevent sticking. When stored properly, these orange cranberry cookies will last up to 3 months in the freezer.
When ready to eat or serve, allow them to come to room temperature first.
Frequently Asked Questions
What ingredients are needed to make chewy cranberry orange cookies?
Orange zest, fresh or dried cranberries, and cream of tartar along with other simple ingredients are needed to make these cookies.
How do I use dried cranberries in cookies to maintain moisture and flavor?
Dried cranberries can be used in place of fresh cranberries. Dried cranberries tend to be hard and chewy so it's a good idea to soften them up a little bit before adding them into the shortbread dough. To do this, soak the dried cranberries in some fresh orange juice to soften them up. It will also add more orange flavor to the cookies.
Among these Cranberry Orange Cookies are some of the other delicious popular Christmas cookies recipes:
- Sugar cookies are a classic and these Christmas Sugar Cookies are fun to make and decorate with the whole family.
- These Chocolate Peppermint Cookies have the flavor of hot cocoa and are topped with a peppermint patty. They're festive and fun to make!
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 2 teaspoons grated orange peel
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 egg
- 2 cups all-puporse flour
- ½ teaspoon cream of tartar
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup chopped fresh cranberries
- Using an electric mixer, cream the unsalted butter and the white sugar together until pale and creamy at medium speed in a large bowl.
- Stir in the grated orange zest and vanilla extract and beat in the egg.
- In a medium bowl, combine the dry ingredients by mixing the all-purpose flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, and salt together.
- Gently stir the chopped fresh cranberries and evenly distribute them throughout the cookie dough.
- Shape the cookie dough into a log and wrap tightly with plastic wrap.
- Chill the cookie log in the refrigerator for 1 hour.
- Preheat the oven to 350ºF and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Slice the cookie dough into ¼ inch slices using a sharp knife and place them two inches apart on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake for 12-14 minutes or until the edges are golden brown.
- Allow the cookies to cool for 5 minutes before transferring them to a cooling rack to cool completely.
- Store the cooled cookies in an airtight container.
Dried cranberries can be used in place of fresh cranberries. To use dried cranberries let them soak in a bit of orange juice to soften them up before adding them to the dough.
As an Amazon Associate and member of other affiliate programs, I earn from qualifying purchases.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 20 Serving Size: 1 cookie
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 152Total Fat: 10gSaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 34mgSodium: 63mgCarbohydrates: 15gFiber: 0gSugar: 5gProtein: 2g
Nutrition calculation is a rough estimate and can vary depending on the cooking technique and the exact ingredients used. For informational purposes only.
Dana is the lead recipe developer and photographer for PopularRecipes.com. With her 10+ years of experience creating, testing, and photographing recipes, she has become an artist in developing wholesome, family-friendly meals that are a hit with both kids and parents.