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.

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
  • 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
  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

126 comments on “Cranberry and White Chocolate Chip Cookies”

  1. I’d love to make these but as a bar cookie (I’ve got 4 kids ages 5 and under so bars would just be easier for me to pull off lol). Any advice on cook time and temperature if I were to make that way instead?

  2. Made this today – they turned out amazing! (Didn’t exactly measure the scoops – so they needed to be in the oven around 15 minutes). Another successful recipe from Averiecooks.

  3. These were tasty! I doubled the recipe since you say it only makes 16 cookies. I ended up with 63 cookies. As tasty as they were, I did not need that many cookies! The only thing I did differently is add about half a cup of pistachios. I used a 3/4oz cookie scoop. I will definitely make them again, but one batch at a time is more than enough. Thanks for the recipe! :)

    • Thanks for trying the recipe and I’m glad you enjoyed it! My scoop that I used for these is a 2-tablespoon scoop. I am not sure how that translates to ounces but I am thinking that 1-ounce scoop is about 1 tablespoon of dough, thus you were using less than 1 tablespoon of dough per cookie and I use a solid 2 tbsp per cookie. And then with the double batch, that makes sense. Clearly I make bigger cookies than you :) You could have always frozen some of the dough for up to 4 months or freeze the cookies if you don’t need them all now.

    • A 3/4oz scoop is apparently 1 and 2/3rds tablespoons, so only a teaspoon off what you use. Maybe I put in extra cranberries or something (I had a toddler “helper”). I dunno. I will have to make them again, without my little helper, and see how many I end up with. Having extra cookies wasn’t a big deal, really. I was just surprised at how many I got out of the recipe. Thanks again for a great recipe. :)

  4. Hi Averie! so i followed the recipe exactly. Left it in the fridge overnight. This morning i placed them on a well greased cookie pan. I baked them at 350. After 6-7 minutes i took them out. the bottoms were black and the inside was mushy… i let them cool a bit and when tried to remove them from the pan, they stuck to the pan and fell apart… I am so disappointed :( i had such a craving for these cookies. Any idea why this happened to me?

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  7. I made these this weekend for Thanksgiving and they are fabulous! I followed your directions exactly and they look like your picture. So yummy and soft/chewy. I wanted to skip refrigerating dough because I was short on time, but I think the scoop and cold dough was key to turning out right. Glad I was patient and followed your directions :)

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  10. Hi, my name is Jen and I’m a carbaholic. It’s been thirty seconds since my last cookie….ok so I realized I have a problem when my most visited website is yours, and my grandpa (visiting for a while) bought two Costco packs of butter…on top of having one in the freezer still. Anyway. These cookies are amazing. For the last month they have been the most requested cookie and I’ve made them at least a dozen times. It started out with one of those ginormous bags of long overdue Craisins needing some immediate use. I do have to slightly dehydrated my cranberries because they really are that old, but they taste just amazing. My aunt tried one and turned to me..”this is what makes life with living”. agreed. My grandma, who still maintains she hates cranberries and white chocolate disappeared with the full tray returning with only the cookies left… mighty suspicious of you ask me. Love your recipes so much. Keep up the awesome work.

    • this is what makes life with living = AMEN!!! to cookies!! :)

      So glad these are on repeated rotation with you, at least a dozen times, and love that you have a giant stash of Craisins as well as all that butter :) I adore these cookies as well and have wanted to re-do the photos because I don’t think they convey at all how amazing these cookies taste and I am so glad you agree!!

      • Averie, I’ve made these every year since you posted the recipe. It’s now our family tradition. My husband, the chocolate king, LOVES these more than chocolate chip cookies, brownies, anything else I bake. That says a lot.

        They really are so good. Your photos are great but maybe a redo and post again would help people realize what they are missing out on. Especially since you now have 2 printed cookbooks! You go girl!

        I still follow the exact original recipe. Bread flour and all. It just works. :)

      • I wrote that to someone else recently with these cookies – they are amazing and the photos don’t sell them and next holiday season, I think a re-shoot is in order :)

        Glad these are your faves and that you make them annually AND that your husband prefers these to almost anything else – that’s amazing and thanks for sharing! Merry Christmas!

  11. 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?

  12. 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!

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  14. 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?

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  16. 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!

    • 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!

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  18. 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!

    • 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!

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  20. 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!

    • 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!

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  22. 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!

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

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  25. I made these for my spread of Christmas cookies for my family. They were an absolute hit! Thank you so much and keep up the delicious and beautiful baking!


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