Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies

It’s National Cookie Day and tis the season to bake cookies.

Especially soft and chewy ones that are loaded with cranberries and white chocolate chips.

The cookies were inspired by a two recent recipes. First, from my love of the Sugar-Doodle Vanilla Cookies I made a couple weeks ago. That dough is made using good old-fashioned simple ingredients. There’s nothing fancy, or specialty about it but the resulting cookies taste exceedingly special. Never under-estimate the power of butter and sugar.

Compared to the more recent Chocolate Chip and Chunk Cookies, which is my new favorite recipe for chocolate chip cookies, the Sugar-Doodle dough is a bit sweeter and more delicate. I knew it would be the perfect dough base to support copious amounts of tart dried cranberries and sweet white chocolate morsels.

Additionally, I couldn’t get the Cranberry Bliss Bars out of my mind. They’re loaded with cranberries and oodles of white chocolate, baked in a soft and tender bar that’s a dead ringer for the Starbucks version. I have to resist the urge to go back for seconds, or thirds. It’s a good thing the batch size is only eight.

This recipe is an ode to Cranberry Bliss Bars, in cookie form.

The dough comes together in minutes. Cream together butter, sugars, an egg, vanilla, a splash of cream or milk, and add the flour. I used a combination of both bread and all-purpose flours because bread flour produces chewier cookies and I love a good chew-fest.

Exclusively using all-purpose is fine but the resulting cookies likely won’t be quite as chewy or have as much height. Bread flour also adds increased structure, height, and rise to baked goods, thanks to it’s higher gluten content. These sweet and golden cookies baked up tall and proud.

In order to get maximum height and to ensure the cookies spread as little as possible while baking, the dough must be chilled prior to baking. You can make this dough up to five days in advance and allow it to remain in the refrigerator until you’re ready to bake the cookies. Bake one or two at a time, or make the whole batch at once.

There is nothing worse than an under-stuffed, under-loaded, under-sauced or just under-whelming dessert. If it’s a chocolate chip cookie, I use enough chocolate chips and also add chocolate chunks to ensure I know it’s a chocolate. Or I use chocolate five ways.

If it’s a piece of cake, I liberally glaze it, ganache it, or stud it with a wall-like layer of streusel topping. Live in abundance. And I abundantly used dried cranberries and white chocolate chips, and dough really couldn’t hold much more.

Living in abundance can be a double-edge sword and this is the season for it. Everywhere I turn there’s a holiday cookie tray, dessert platter with fudge on it, or another specialty holiday product for sale in the grocery store with a ‘limited time only’, heightening my urgency to have it now. The nice thing about this recipe is that it’s a smaller-batch recipe, yielding about sixteen cookies, not dozens and dozens. Double the recipe if you need more abundance than I do.

The cookies have chewy edges and tender, soft, pillowy centers. They’re moist and are bursting with texture. Each bite is full of something chewy. Either a tart and wrinkly cranberry or sweet and smooth white chocolate. As the cookies bake, the white chocolate melts and meshes with the buttery dough in a scrumptious way.

A cross between a chewy sugar cookie, a fluffy snickerdoodle, and a Cranberry Bliss Bar, they’re the best of all worlds and a new holiday favorite.

Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: about 16 cookies

The cookies are part chewy sugar cookie with chewy edges and tender, soft, pillowy centers. And part Cranberry Blliss Bars, in cookie form. They're bursting with texture and each bite is loaded with either tart and chewy cranberries or sweet and smooth white chocolate. As the cookies bake, the white chocolate melts and meshes with the buttery dough in a scrumptious way for a soft and moist cookie that's a new holiday favorite.

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 large egg

2 tablespoons cream or milk

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 cup all-purpose flour

3/4 cup bread flour (all-purpose flour may be substituted and used exclusively; bread flour yields chewier cookies and is recommended)

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt, optional and to taste

1 cup dried cranberries

1 cup (8 ounces) white chocolate chips

Directions:

To the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter on low speed until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the sugars and beat on medium-high speed until creamed and well combined, 2 to 3 minutes. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the egg, cream, vanilla, and beat on medium-high speed until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes. Stop, scrape down the sides of the bowl, and add the flours, baking soda, salt, and mix until just combined, about 1 minute. Notes regarding the flour - solely using all-purpose flour will work, the cookies will not be as chewy or rise as well because bread flour creates chewier results and gives greater rise. Also, I live in a dry climate and only need 1 3/4 cups flour total but if you are in more humidity or your dough is very moist or loose, adding up to 1/4 cup of additional flour, for 2 cups total, is possible. The more flour, the more the cookies will stay domed and puffed while baking.

Add the cranberries, white chocolate chips, and beat momentarily with the mixer until combined or fold in by hand. Transfer dough to an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 3 hours, up to 5 days.

Preheat oven to 350°F, line a baking sheet with a Silpat Non-Stick Baking Mat, parchment, or spray with cooking spray. Using a 2-ounce cookie scoop, form heaping mounds weighing 2 1/4-ounces each (weighed on a scale, which is approximately a scant 1/4-cup measure) and place them on the baking sheet, spaced at least 2 inches apart. Bake for 8 to 10 minutes, or until pale golden and edges have just set, even if slightly undercooked in the center, as cookies will firm up as they cool (The cookies shown in the photos were baked for 9 minutes and have chewy edges with soft pillowy centers. For crunchier cookies, extend baking time by 1 to 2 minutes). Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 10 minutes before removing. Store cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Alternatively, unbaked cookie dough can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days, so consider baking only as many cookies as desired and save the remaining dough to be baked in the future when desired.

Inspired by Sugar-Doodle Vanilla Cookies and Cranberry Bliss Bars

http://www.averiecooks.com/2012/12/cranberry-and-white-chocolate-chip-cookies.html

Related Recipes:

Cranberry Bliss Bars {Starbucks Copycat Recipe} – The flavor in the Bliss Bars is very similar to the cookies, but they are more loaded and decadent. They’re made with a white chocolate and cranberry blondie bar base, topped white white chocolate-cream cheese frosting, more cranberries, and a white chocolate drizzle. They can be made from start to finish in a half hour and are one of the best things I’ve made in ages

Sugar-Doodle Vanilla Cookies – These cookies inspired today’s recipe because the dough base itself is just so scrumptious. There’s nothing fancy in the ingredients, but they combine so wonderfully to produce soft, chewy, and cookies with fragrant vanilla notes. Easily one of my top 5 favorite cookie recipes on my site

White Chocolate Snickerdoodle Cookies – The cookies are rolled in a cinnamon-sugar coating prior to baking, making for a truer snickerdoodle than the Sugar-Doodles (above), and they’re loaded with white chocolate chips

Cranberry Pineapple Mango Preserves – Much more flavorful than traditional cranberry sauce from the addition of pineapple, mango, cinnamon, and ginger, which sweetly spice and enhance fresh cranberries. The preserves are full of chunky texture from the variety of fruits used, and can be made in just over a half hour. Makes a nice gift that will keep refrigerated for about one month

Mango and White Chocolate Chip Cookies – These cookies are thinner and very chewy, and combine two of my favorite ingredients, mango and white chocolate chips. They’re combined in this ridiculously soft and moist cookie

Peanut Butter Oatmeal White Chocolate Chip Cookies – Perhaps my favorite cookie recipe on my entire blog. From the peanut butter included, to the texture from the oats, and the sweet bits of white chocolate in each bite, they’re an all-time favorite. They stay soft and chewy for days. Very easy to make and  no-mixer-required

Do you like cranberries? White chocolate? Favorite holiday cookies?

If you have favorite recipes feel free to share the links.

I have all my White Chocolate Recipes here including photos with links

Thanks for the Nielsen-Massey Vanilla Sampler Giveaway entries – winner announced next post

   

106 Responses to “Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies”

  1. #
    51
    Good — January 14, 2013 at 9:44 pm

    We’re truly grateful for these, they’re incredibly delicious every time we make them!

    Reply

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    52
    Sarah — January 22, 2013 at 11:40 am

    These are THE best cookies I’ve ever made in my entire life!!! Which is saying
    A lot considering I bake something every single day with my kids and I’ve tried
    Countless cookie doughs. This will be my go to base for all other cookies from now
    On. Thk you so much. That 2 T of cream makes all the difference!

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — January 22nd, 2013 at 1:33 pm

      Wow, this is such high praise! If you like these, also check out these, very similar http://www.loveveggiesandyoga.com/2013/01/maraschino-cherry-white-chocolate-cookies.html and I described why I used that base and why I love it so!

      I absolutely adore the dough base, too. It’s a bit ‘delicate’ for like for a really chunky/hearty choc chip cookie with nuts in it, and I wouldn’t use it for that. But for so many other cookies, I love the dough base, and can’t get enough of it. The fact that you bake every day, too, speaks volumes. Thank you so much for the comment!

      Reply

  3. #
    53
    Caroline Li — February 10, 2013 at 7:30 pm

    Was looking for a soft chewy cookie recipe that included these exact ingredients. Pleasantly surprised by how well they turned out. Delicious and I would definitely bake them again! I loved it; great job!

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — February 10th, 2013 at 8:34 pm

      I am so glad to hear you were pleasantly surprised with the results; that’s good! I do love these cookies and this is a cookie that I have people write in and rave about and those who like these, REALLY like these. I am glad to hear you had success!

      Reply

  4. #
    54
    Lynn — February 14, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    I made these last week, and they lasted until right about this morning before getting too chewy/stale (of course there was only one left this morning to be eaten, so who really knows). This really is a wonderful mixture! My parents were very dubious, but tried them and loved them immediately. The taste reminds me of yogurt-covered raisins, in a way.
    I cooked them longer than you recommended, because of personal taste- I know it’s almost sacrilege, but I prefer my cookies on the crunchy side, rather than soft and chewy. I also fooled around with how I rolled them and how big they were. I loved them, and will definitely make again!

    Reply

    • Averie @ Averie Cooks replied: — February 14th, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      the dough base flavor IS very yogurt-covered raisins, yes! I totally can get that…would have never said that but now that you do, yes! I think it’s the little bit of cream in the dough that does that and then with the white choc rather than yogurt and cranberries rather than raisins. Glad to know that even (over)baking them until crunchy and they still lasted a week+ for you! Wow, that’s awesome. Thanks for LMK you made them!

      Reply

  5. #
    55
    Aggie — December 16, 2013 at 7:24 am

    I made these cookies for my neighbors for the holidays and they are awesome! I live down south in a very humid climate and this is the first batch of cookies that were nice and fat, exactly as I hoped! I assume that the difference is the bread flour… Would you recommend doing a 1:1 ratio using bread flour in your sprinkle sugar cookies? I have made those several times and while they are fatter than others I make they are not as fat as I would like. What are your thoughts? I am in love with your recipes, thank you!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 16th, 2013 at 8:47 am

      Bread flour has a higher protein content than AP by about 1-2%, thus more gluten, thus anything made with bread flour WILL rise higher and be thicker and puffier. Given your climate and what you know to be true w/ your results, I think that bread flour cannot hurt! Tinker around with the ratios in whatever way you think works best and play it by ear. Glad to hear you love these & my recipes!

      Reply

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    56
    Avra-Sha Faohla — August 3, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    Just a baking science question: What is the purpose of the cream/milk in this cookie? If it’s to add extra liquid to compensate for the extra flour . . . well, why the extra flour then?

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — August 3rd, 2014 at 5:23 pm

      The purpose of the cream is to make the cookies taste CREAMY.

      Reply

  7. #
    57
    Amy — November 25, 2014 at 6:45 pm

    Made these as a pre-Thanksgiving treat for my coworkers. Everyone said they had never had cranberry cookies before but that they were amazing!
    I only made two substitutions: using only all-purpose flour and egg beaters instead of real eggs.
    Great recipe that I would definitely make again!

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — November 25th, 2014 at 7:35 pm

      Glad these came out great even using egg beaters! I’m impressed! And so glad everyone loved the cookies!

      Reply

  8. #
    58
    Meegan — December 13, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    Hi Averie, These look so amazing! I just went out and purchased all the ingredients to make them, andI probably should have asked this before hand. I don’t have a standing mixer, Is that an absolute necessity for making these cookies?

    Reply

    • Averie Sunshine replied: — December 13th, 2014 at 2:40 pm

      You can use a handheld electric mixer rather than a stand; and I supposed you could cream the ingredients totally by hand if you have some elbow grease to spare :)

      Reply

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