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Cranberry White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Traditional oatmeal cookies will always be a classic, but I love dressing them up a bit. This version with dried cranberries and white chocolate chips are the perfect way to add a little fun and excitement to your traditional oatmeal cookie recipe making them the perfect Christmas cookies to celebrate the holiday season.


I debuted this oatmeal cookie recipe on Good Morning America's 12 Days of Cookies in December of 2022 and, since so many people were reaching out for the recipe, I wanted to share it with you all along with a few tips and tricks to help you get those perfectly chewy and soft cookies we all know and love.


Before I jump into the recipe, let me share some baking tips to help these quickly become your favorite oatmeal cookies of all time.


Tips for the Perfect Cookie


Room Temperature Eggs and Butter


Room-temperature butter makes for a soft and cake-like cookie. Using melted butter will cause your cookies to spread more quickly when baked, resulting in more chewy cookies that are also crispier. You want your butter to hold it's shape and not be too runny for this recipe.


I like an oatmeal cookie that's more pillowy soft and that's just what you'll have with the correctly softened butter in this recipe.


I will also make a case for room-temperature eggs. Using room-temperature eggs when you're using room-temperature butter allows your ingredients to blend together more seamlessly and completely, leaving you with the cookie texture you're hoping for.


Don't Overwhip Your Butter


Remember, it's a cookie, not a cake!


Overwhipping your butter will cause your cookies to spread too much resulting in less soft and pillowy cookies. Just mix your butter enough to combine and then move on to the next step.


Quick Oats vs Old Fashioned Oats

It's all about the texture! Old-fashioned oats hold their shape and texture better than quick oats so they make a good mix-in to your baked goods. Don't add them with the dry goods, reserve them and add them as a mix-in after your dry ingredients are already combined to allow them to keep as much of that perfect texture as possible.

Chill Cookie Dough an Hour Before Baking


This is another way to prevent your cookies from spreading and losing their shape and texture. Adding the cookies to a bag to chill will flatten them and make them easy to cut into squares once chilled.


You can also put the dough into a freezer bag or airtight container to freeze for up to three months. You can pull them out to thaw a bit, then cut them into squares to bake before you're ready to serve them.


Remove Cookies When They're Just About Done

This will prevent overcooking. The residual heat from the pan will allow the cookies to finish cooking to the perfect, golden brown doneness.

No one wants burned bottom cookies on their holiday tables.


Try Other Mix-Ins


If you're not a fan of white chocolate, you can mix it up with dark chocolate, milk chocolate, or even classic semi-sweet chocolate chips instead. You can even try other dried fruit if you'd like.

Personally, I think the hints of red and white from the dried cranberries and white chocolate chunks make for the perfect addition to your holiday cookie platter, but other mix-ins will work just as well.




Cranberry White Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies


Makes 3 quarts of dough


Ingredients

2½ cups all purpose flour

2 tsps baking powder

1 tsp salt

1¼ tsps cinnamon

1 tsp baking soda

½ tsp nutmeg

12 oz unsalted butter, room temperature

2¼ cups brown sugar

1¾ cups granulated sugar

4 eggs

2 tsps vanilla extract

4½ cups old fashioned rolled oats (NOT quick oats)

1½ cups dried cranberries

1½ cups white chocolate chips


Directions

Mix together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, baking soda and nutmeg. Set aside.


In a large bowl, cream butter and both sugars just until combined with an electric mixer; add eggs and vanilla and mix for 2 minutes. Incorporate flour mixture, a little at a time, until blended, but not overworked.


Add in the oats, dried cranberries, and white chocolate; mix thoroughly to distribute.


Spoon the dough into a gallon-size resealable bag and flatten the dough to completely fill the bag. Refrigerate dough for at least 1 hour to chill the butter or freeze for up to 3 months.


Remove from the refrigerator and carefully remove the dough from the bags. Cut into ½ -inch cubes, or desired cube size, and place on parchment paper lined baking sheets.

Bake cookies in a preheated 350° oven until cookies are lightly golden, 8-10 minutes (depending on size), but still soft in the center if pressed lightly.

Allow cookies to cool on a baking sheet for 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack.


Store cookies in an airtight container.


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