Whip up a batch of delicious cookies for the holiday season! These Fresh Cranberry Orange Shortbread Cookies are quick and easy to make with simple ingredients. They look pretty on a holiday cookie platter and they're perfect for gift-giving.
The pop of tangy cranberries and fresh orange zest is a heavenly combination in this buttery shortbread cookie. One of our favorite holiday flavours, cranberry and orange always make an appearance during the holidays. A batch of fresh cookies always gets us into the Christmas spirit!
If cranberry and orange is one of your favorites too, you will not want to miss Cranberry Orange Loaf Cake and these Cranberry Orange Scones. They're a Starbucks copycat recipe and we think they're even better han Starbucks!
This recipe calls for simple ingredients, some of which you likely already have in your pantry!
- Butter - use butter, softened at room temperature. Take it out of the refrigerator 30 to 60 minutes before you start the recipe.
- Powdered sugar
- Vanilla extract
- Almond extract
- All purpose flour
- Fresh orange zest
- Cranberries - fresh tart cranberries
- Granulated sugar - for rolling the cookies into before baking.
Substitutions & Variations
You can substitute dried cranberries in this recipe for the fresh cranberries.
Cranberry shortbread cookies go well with white chocolate chips. Grated or finely chopped white chocolate may be added to the batter following the cranberries. It's a tasty variation!
Glaze with orange juice - mix ½ cup powdered sugar with orange juice to make a thin glaze and drizzle over top. Start with 1 teaspoon of juice and add by teaspoon until drizzling consistency.
Step by Step Instructions
The cookie dough will chill for 30 minutes before baking, so you will not need to preheat your oven until that time.
Line baking sheet with parchment paper. If you don't have parchment paper, simply use an ungreased cookie sheet.
Using a food processor or a sharp knife, coarsely chop the fresh cranberries. Set aside.
In a large mixing bowl, or bowl from stand mixer, cream together butter, powdered sugar, vanilla extract and almond extract. Beat until light and fluffy. (about one to two minutes).
With clean hands, add in the all-purpose flour just until combined.
Gently fold in the chopped cranberries and orange zest.
Divide dough into three equal portions and roll each portion into a log shape. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Unwrap dough and use a sharp knife to slice cookies into ¼" thick slices.
Dip the top and roll the sides of the cookies into a small bowl with 3 Tablespoons of granulated sugar.
Place unbaked cookies on prepared baking sheet approximately two inches apart.
Bake in 300°F oven for 17 to 20 minutes. Bottom of cookies will be light golden brown when they are done.
Cool on wire cooling rack.
Chill now and bake later!
This the is perfect cookie recipe to have ready in the refrigerator. Simply slice and bake them when you have company coming over! Keep the chilled dough in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Storing These Cookies
Store cooled cookies in airtight container for up to to 4 days at room temperature or in the refrigerator for one week.
Freeze cookies by placing layers of cooled cookies between layers of parchment paper for up to two months.
Tips for Making Fresh Cranberry Cookies
- Sort through the cranberries and remove any that are bruised. Use the whole or chopped in recipes.
- Chilling the dough for this recipe is absolutely necessary. Plan ahead for the 30 minute chill time.
Cranberries are tart, sour and typically require a sweetener with them to be enjoyed fully.
Fresh cranberries taste delicious in muffins, loves, cakes and cookies. Rinse the cranberries and dry with paper towels. Remove any berries that are bruised. Add them whole or chopped to your favorite cookie recipe.