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Fresh Cranberry Orange Pecan Shortbread Cookies

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1 cup (2 sticks room temperature) Butter unsalted
2/3 cups (83 g) Powdered sugar
3 tsp Vanilla Extract
2 TBSP (2 medium oranges) Orange zest
1/2 cup Cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1/2 cup Pecans crushed
2 cups (240 g) All purpose flour
1/4 tsp (1 g) Baking powder
1/4 tsp Kosher Salt

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Fresh Cranberry Orange Pecan Shortbread Cookies

These are small cookies just a perfect bite of flavor. You can also sprinkle a little powdered sugar on the tops for added sweetness. Cook time does not include refrigerator time for the dough.





Fruit flavors are one of the easiest ways to make cookies taste yummy. So many combinations that work well together. My recipe this week called for cranberry and orange which works extremely well together but needed a little kick. Looking around at my nut assortment I thought perfect, pecans would be just what these cookies needed.

Pecans have almost a buttery taste, well let’s face it who doesn’t love butter! Since there is 2 stick of butter in this recipe what a perfect match. Plus since I have a really good friend in Atlanta, Georgia I am supporting her state agriculture.

Pecans are a great source of vitamin E and B1, plus it is a source of plant protein. These little beauties are just full of good components. So have 1, 2 or 3 and think healthy nuts.


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Adapted from Authentic Suburban Gourmet

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In a food processor (I use a Breville Sous Chef Food Processor) pulse whole fresh cranberries till they are in pieces and add to a small bowl. You can use frozen if you don't have fresh. Then pulse pecans till they are small pieces but not dust, you want very small pieces. Then add pecans to a small bowl. It gives the cookies a little texture and will incorporate well throughout the whole cookie dough. Set both bowls aside.


Next zest (Micoplane Wood Handle Zester) 2 medium oranges into a small bowl. (Depending on how much orange taste you like I added two heaping tablespoons into my dough mix). Set the bowl aside.

Weigh or measure your powdered sugar into a bowl. In a separate bowl weigh or measure flour, baking powder, and salt together. I run a whisk through to blend them.


In a stand mixer (I recommend a KitchenAid Stand Mixer) or handheld add the butter and mix on medium speed to cream the butter. I scraped down the sides to make sure all the butter was creamed.

Turn the mixer speed down and slowly add the powdered sugar till it is all incorporated. Next, add the vanilla extract and orange zest and turn the mixer back to medium speed. I had to stop and scrape down the bowl and across the bottom to make sure it was all mixed together.


Turn the mixer speed down and slowly add the flour, baking powder and salt mixture till the flour is incorporated. The dough will be a little stiff. Turn the mixer off and add the cranberries and pecans and turn the mixer on for about 30 seconds. You may need to hand mix the dough a little to make sure the cranberries and pecans go through the whole dough.


Take the dough out of the bowl and place on a silicone pastry mat (Silicone Non-Stick Pastry Mat). Divide the dough in half and roll and form 2 log shapes about 12 to 14 inches each. It should have a diameter of about 1-1/2 inches. Take plastic wrap and wrap around each log and put into the refrigerator for at least 1 hour. I took them out after about 3/4 of an hour and just rolled them a little so they do not get a flat bottom, then returned them to the refrigerator for 15 minutes or more.


Preheat the oven to 350°. Take one log out of the refrigerator and unwrap the plastic (I put it on a piece of parchment paper so I can slice the log). Slice into 1/2 inch slices and put them onto a parchment lined cookie pan. I did 4 across and 5 down. These cookies do not spread hardly at all so they only need about an inch between each disc of cookie. Bake for 12 to 13 minutes, leave on pan for about a minute or two after pulling the pan from the oven before moving to a cooling rack.


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