Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies

Edited to Add: I remade this recipe December 2015 with new photos and can be found at Soft and Chewy Cranberry 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.

MY OTHER RECIPES

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
Cook time
Total time
 
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.
Serves: about 16 cookies
Ingredients
  • ½ cup unsalted butter, softened (1 stick)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons cream or milk
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ¾ cup bread flour (all-purpose flour may be substituted and used exclusively; bread flour yields chewier cookies and is recommended)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • ¼ teaspoon salt, optional and to taste
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup (8 ounces) white chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. 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 1¾ cups flour total but if you are in more humidity or your dough is very moist or loose, adding up to ¼ cup of additional flour, for 2 cups total, is possible. The more flour, the more the cookies will stay domed and puffed while baking.
  2. 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.
  3. 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 2¼-ounces each (weighed on a scale, which is approximately a scant ¼-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.
  4. Inspired by Sugar-Doodle Vanilla Cookies and Cranberry Bliss Bars

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

124 comments on “Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies”

  1. oooops! I just put an s in the website. Haha

  2. These are obvious winners, Averie! Cranberries and white chocolate is one of my favorite combinations this time of year, and your cookies always look so perfect.

  3. These sound spectacular. I love white chocolate and cranberry oatmeal cookies, so I’m sure these would be a huge hit as well. I use fresh cranberries in my favorite Christmas cake too. Thanks for even more cranberry inspiration!

  4. I like making cranberry and white chocolate chip cookies, but I usually use an oatmeal cookie as a base. And I love how festive these cookies look, with the white and red colors.

  5. How did I not know it was national Cookie Day? I love these Cranberry Vanilla Bliss Cookies. Gooorgeous.

  6. I must have known it was national cookie day because I ate a cookie for breakfast. I love these cookies, they’re so pretty with the cranberries. Cranberries make everything pretty!

  7. Pretty cookies! Cranberries always looks so gorgeous on a cookie!

  8. I was just dreaming about a cranberry and white chocolate cookie! It’s such a great combination….

  9. These cookies look so wonderfully chewy, I love the cranberry and white chocolate!

    (P.S. I noticed The Kitchn featured your cranberry bars yesterday – congrats! :))

  10. Happy National Cookie Day!! (Why can’t I stay on top of these holidays?!) :D
    Your cookies are always spectacular, especially when they’re loaded with festive ingredients. (Smaller batch too, yay!!)

  11. I like cranberries and white chocolate, but I especially like the idea of them in a cookie together. I am a cookie monster!

  12. These are a good combo aren’t they?
    next time you make them add in some oats, and this turns it into a morning-like cookie

  13. Averie when are you going to start selling all these incredible cookies and bars by mail order…I’ll be your first customer.

  14. I made cookies similar to these awhile ago, and they were so good! Now I need to make these oo!

  15. These are so right up my alley! I have to try bread flour in my cookies. I really want to see if I notice a difference.

  16. I just made cookies like this over the weekend! They are my favorite!! I love that you added bread flour, that is different! Your cookies look super delish! Wait till you see mine, my one cookie looks like the top of an aligator, the cranberry sticks out like an eye!! lol

  17. I had some cranberry carrot cookies today that one of my students made me. I haven’t eaten dried cranberries in ages, but I remember baking some very vanilla cranberry cookies when I still lived in AZ. And I had a bag of white chocolate chips in my grocery cart the last time I was at the store, but I put them back on the shelf. *Smacks self on head*

  18. I’ll have to try these cookies with bread flour next time to see if there’s a big difference in them. Another yummy cookie to try! Wow Averie, you sure have your mind working overtime! Lol.

  19. These cookies look great! For the past couple of years I have been making cranberry white chocolate shortbread cookies as part of the cookie tins I give away at Christmas time….i might have to switch it up this year and make these. They look so soft and chewy and delicious…hmm….this is not good..i may just end up eating them all before they make it to the tins!

  20. yum! love the combo of cranberry and white chocolate!

  21. Thanks for explaining about the bread flour/reg. flour combo; I LOVE chewy cookies:)

    I am LOVING your blog:)

  22. I made these last year. Such an amazing combo! And perfect for the holidays.

  23. You know, the boyfriend was just asking me to make a white chocolate chip cookie recipe and I’ve been searching and searching and I think I’ve found the perfect recipe.

  24. Hey Averie! I made these yesterday! Well not exactly those..ya know..there is no such thing here as white choc-chips, breadflour, and unsweetned cramberries, and I made them wholewheat and a third of the sugar you raccommend, but still..I cut white chocolate into pieces and took sweetened cramberries, and made everyone happy! Thank you for the idea!! Next time (tomorrow?) I’ll add oats too!

  25. I baked these cookies for our Christmas gathering and they were a hit. I had one relative say he thought they were divine and that he would pay money for these cookies. Thanks for the great recipe!! I will definitely be baking these cookies again.

    • You just made my day! Thanks for the sweet comment and taking the time to both make these & come back and LMK they were so popular. I am honored your relative would pay money for these – now that’s super high praise and thank you! :)

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