cranberry almond cookies

It’s almost that time of year, when potlucks and parties begin to take up all of your spare time either in preparation or attendance. These cookies are a super easy way to stay on top of it all, and they are delicious as well.

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These cookies can be made from sifting to the cooling rack in about 25 minutes. Or, as I prefer, the batter can be made ahead of time and refrigerated for about a week – ready for any last-minute cookie requirements. While chocolate chips are usually the go-to cookie flavor, I like using tart cranberries and crunchy almonds as they don’t leave any gooey, sticky chocolate residue on baking pans, countertops, or serving trays, making the baking experience as painless as possible. Which is a real bonus when you have two office parties looming ahead on the weekend. That said, these work just as well with chocolate chips, or whatever you have laying around that might taste good in a cookie. In fact, this recipe is adapted from Isa Chandra’s chocolate chip cookie recipe, which is a real powerhouse. I’ve made several hundred of those and never experienced a bad batch.

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cranberry almond cookies
makes about 2 dozen 1 1/2″ cookies – recipe can easily be doubled
adapted from Isa Chandra’s recipe

1/2 c brown sugar
1/4 c white sugar
1/2 c oil
1/4 c soy milk (or your favorite, but soy works best for me)
1 tbl tapioca starch (or cornstarch)
1 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 c flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
3/4 tsp salt
1/3 c dried cranberries, preferably unsweetened
1/3 c almonds, slivered or sliced

  • If baking right away, preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease two sheet pans, or use a silicone baking mat.
  • Cream together the sugars, oil, milk, and starch until the mixture thickens and its color lightens, about 3-5 minutes. This step is crucial to preventing oily, snappy cookies. I have the best results with a standing mixer with a paddle, but a hand mixer would also work well. Otherwise use a whisk and lots of elbow grease.
  • Sift together the flour, soda and salt. Add to the wet ingredients and mix until just combined, without overworking.
  • Add the cranberries and almonds and combine until fully incorporated
  • If making ahead of time, form the dough into a log and wrap with plastic wrap. Refrigerate for up to a week. Remove from the fridge about 30 minutes before baking to take the chill off.
  • Scoop walnut-sized scoops, or slice 1/2″ slices from the log, and arrange on the baking sheet, for 1 1/2″ cookies. Otherwise make them as large as you want. If they are to be wider than 2″, flatten them out to about 1/2″ discs so the middle will be sufficiently done.
  • Bake at 350F for 8-12 minutes, turning the pan halfway, or until the edges are caramel-colored.
  • Leave to cool on the sheet for 5 minutes before removing to rack to cool fully.
  • Eat right away, stack on a serving tray, or freeze for later.
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