Cranberry and Orange comes together to make an instant Holiday Classic – Cranberry Orange Cookies, baked thick for extra holiday goodness.
Every holiday season, I try to make at least a couple of new cookie recipes. Of course I always make my classic recipes (Sumbitches for my husband, and soft-baked Ginger Cookies for me) but I like to switch it up too. Try new recipes, make new traditions – like these orange flavored brown sugar cookies with cranberries!
My normal cookies on this blog are usually smaller in size, chewy, and soft. This time I chaned it up with a super-thick jumbo cookie, soft and chewy on the inside and crisp on the outside, with an almost biscuit-like texture. Inspired by Levain Bakery in NYC!
What do I need to get started?
- A nice big baking sheet. These cookies are huge and need room so they don’t spread into each other!
- A stand mixer with a large bowl. You can use an electric mixer as well, but this will not work by hand. You need the power of the stand/electric mixer to mix the butter and sugars!
- All purpose flour, cake flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and corn starch make up the dry ingredients for these cookies. Corn starch to keep the cookies nice and thick, cake flour for a small, soft crumb.
- Dried cranberries. I chose to use these over fresh cranberries. Fresh cranberries will work just as well, but I prefer the taste and texture of dried.
- Orange zest.
- Butter. This recipe calls for cold cubed butter. When making thick jumbo cookies like these, it is best to use cold butter – it will hold it’s shape much better.
- Granulated sugar and brown sugar.
- Egg and egg yolk.
- Vanilla extract.
Making Thick Cookies
Making thick cookies is a bit of an art form, and there are a few things you can do to make sure your own cookies are thick and gourmet every time.
- Use cold butter. Most of my cookie recipes use melted or room temperature butter (see my Kitchen Sink Cookies and my Coffee Chocolate Chip Cookies) but those are for normal sized, chewy, and somewhat flat cookies. For these, we want height. Keeping the butter as cold as possible before baking is the first step in achieving that.
- Corn starch. All of my cookie recipes use corn starch. You know how it acts as a thickener while cooking? It does the same thing in baking.
- An extra egg yolk. So the cookies stay moist on the inside while still thick.
- Shape the dough into balls that are just slightly taller than they are wide.
Tips and Tricks
- Keep the bake time at around 12 minutes. It might feel like you need more because the cookies are so big – I promise, 12 minutes is enough. If they are golden brown with a crackly top, they’re ready.
- If you are making the dough and it still seems very wet, add 1 tbsp of flour at a time. You want cookie dough to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
- A hot oven for nice brown bottoms on these Cranberry Orange Cookies – preheat the oven to 375 rather than 350.
- If you are finished making the dough and it is still somewhat wet, chill the dough for 30 minutes.
- Roll the doughs into equal sized balls, using a cookie scoop or a kitchen scale. I make mine 120 grams each, which makes about 6 cookies. Give them a lot of room on the baking sheet!
Cranberry Orange Cookies Toppings
I chose to keep my cookies plain and simple – they really don’t need more dressing up. But you can do these simple things to dress up your Cranberry Orange Cookies.
- Make a simple orange glaze using a couple tablespoons orange juice, a bit of cream, and powdered sugar (you probably won’t need more than a 1/2 cup sugar.)
- Add fun Christmas sprinkles! You can mix them into the batter, press them on top of the dough balls before baking, or add them after glazing the top!
- Dunk in milk to make the cookies extra soft!
- 1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- 3/4 cup cake flour
- 1 tsp corn starch
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup cold butter, cubed
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg + 1 egg yolk
- Zest of 1 orange
- 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- Preheat oven to 375.
- In a medium sized bowl, whisk together the flours, baking soda, baking powder, corn starch, and salt. Set aside.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer (of electric mixer) mix the butter and sugars together until the butter is lighter in color and the mixture is creamed together. This takes about 1-2 minutes.
- Add the egg, egg yolk, orange zest, and vanilla to the bowl and mix together. The mixture might look curdled at this point. That is okay.
- Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and mix on the lowest setting, until the flour is nearly all incorporated.
- Add the dried cranberries and mixed until the cranberries are mixed throughout and the flour is no longer visible.
- If the dough is still wet at this point, refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Roll into large equal sized balls, using a kitchen scale or a cookie scoop. This recipe makes 6 large cookies, about 120 grams each. Place the cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the cookies are golden brown and crackled on top.
- Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes before serving.