Cranberry Orange Pecan Swirl Cookies

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 001

After making another batch of Cranberry Avocado Salsa, I had a bunch of leftover cranberries sitting in my fridge. When I found a recipe for pinwheel cookies, I was nervous to try it out, as I’d never made cookies before that involved rolling up (and then slicing) dough. (The closest I’d ever come to that before = making the Pillsbury sugar cookies with the shapes in the middle, and yes, in that case, only the slicing part is required. :-P)

These Cranberry Orange Pecan Swirl Cookies ended up reminding me of the Cranberry Orange muffins you often see served for breakfast. They aren’t super, super sweet, and they have a light, fluffy consistency, which makes them perfect to eat in the morning (or really, any time :-P). If you do like your cookies super sweet, I’d recommend adding in an additional 1/4 cup of sugar. This recipe makes about 30-40 small cookies.

The Makings:

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 002

  • Cranberries – 1 cup
  • Pecans – 1 cup
  • Brown sugar – 1/4 cup
  • Butter, softened – 1/2 cup
  • Sugar – 3/4 cup
  • Baking powder – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Salt – 1/4 teaspoon
  • Egg – 1
  • Orange peel, shredded – 2 teaspoons
  • Orange juice from 1/2 of an orange
  • Flour – 1 1/2 cups

The Sweetness

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 003

1. Using an electric mixer, beat butter in a large mixing bowl on a medium speed. Add in sugar, baking powder and salt, and continue beating mixture together. Beat in eggs and orange peel next, followed by flour. Divide dough in half. Cover and chill dough for at least an hour.

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 004 Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 005

2. While dough is chilling, use a blender to create filling, combining cranberries, pecans, brown sugar and the juice from half of an orange. Blend filling until nuts and cranberries are finely chopped.

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 006 Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 007

3. Remove chilled dough from fridge and roll dough out between two pieces of waxed paper. Note: Be sure to use lots of flour here to prevent dough from sticking to paper. Using a butter knife, trim dough to a rectangle shape.

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 008 Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 009

4. Spread half of filling over dough, leaving a 1/2 border around edges of dough. Roll up dough, pinch ends together and lightly moisten the edges. Repeat process for remaining dough and filling, and chill rolled dough for a minimum of 4 hours.

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 010 Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 011

5. Slice rolls into 1/4 inch cookies. Heat over to 375 degrees and bake each batch for about 8 minutes. (These cookies do NOT spread out much in the oven.)

Cranberry-Orange-Pecan Swirl 012

I tried (unsuccessfully) to pinch the top and bottom of one of my dough rolls, to create a heart-like cookie shape. How cute would heart swirl cookies be for Valentine’s Day?

Recipe adapted from Better Homes & Gardens.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: