Simple and stunning Christmas cookies! These cranberry orange pinwheel cookies are a festive delight, and are a slice and bake favorite at Christmas.

Christmas is almost here. I’m done shopping for Ben and the boys, but still lollygagging on the rest of the family. With presents that still need to get shipped across the state if there is a hope in hell of them arriving on time, I really need to get with it! So naturally, I made cookies instead. Procasti-baking at its finest!

But when you have a cookie as good as these, that can be made ahead of time, and frozen so all you have left to do is slice and bake, there is nothing better. And really, the orange cranberry combo is pure Christmas!

The beauty of this recipe is that the ingredients are simple, they are easy to make ahead of time, and the flavor is out of this world. When the holiday chaos hits, it’s hard to think of a new recipe to try, and you want to make something that is full of festive cheer, with minimal effort. Let’s be real, as much as we want the holidays to be full of those magical memories, it takes effort and this is one area you can save yourself some stress. This pinwheel cookie recipe can made and wrapped in plastic wrap, and then stored in a plastic freezer bag for 2 months ahead of time. Then, all you need to do is to slice and bake them as needed for eating, or gifting.

Ingredients for Cranberry Orange Pinwheel Cookies

The ingredients are simple enough and easy to source during the winter months. Fresh or frozen cranberries give these a delicious sour pucker factor. And anything with orange during winter months makes me blissfully happy.

  • Fresh (or Frozen) Cranberries
  • Pecans
  • Brown Sugar

Cookie Dough

  • Butter, unsalted
  • Sugar
  • Baking Powder
  • Salt
  • Eggs
  • Orange Zest
  • Flour

How to Make This Pinwheel Cookies Recipe

  1. In a food processor, pulse to combine the cranberries, pecans, and brown sugar. Process until the pecans are very finely chopped. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth. With the mixer running on medium-low, pour in the sugar. Beat until it is light and fluffy, stopping to scrape down the sides a couple of times to ensure it is evenly mixed.
  3. Beat in the eggs and orange zest, and scrape down the bowl at least one time to ensure it is evenly incorporated.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  5. Mix in the flour mixture on low speed until the dough forms.
  6. Divide the dough into two portions, and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour. This will make it easier to roll out.
  7. Roll one portion of the dough out at a time into a 10×10″ square. Spread half of the cranberry filling onto the dough, leaving 1/2″ clear at the edge closest to you. Moisten the edge so that it sticks to the dough when it is rolled up. Roll the dough up tightly from the far edge towards you to create the pinwheel effect. Seal the edge of the dough.
  8. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze, or refrigerate for 2 hours, or overnight (my choice).
  9. Repeat with the other portion of the dough.

To Bake

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut the pinwheel cookie roll into 1/4″ thick slices and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake until the edges turn golden brown, about 8-10 minutes.
  2. Allow the cookies to cool on the sheet for 1-2 minutes before removing them to cool completely on a wire rack.

For Orange Drizzle

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients. Start out with 1 tablespoon of milk, and add more as needed to adjust the consistency so it will drizzle.
  2. Drizzle over 1/2 of the cookie, or all if you want more! Sprinkle with sparkling sugar if you have it, or omit. They are delicious either way!

Inspired Homemade Recipes To Try

Almond Pinwheel Christmas Cookies

Aged Brandy Apple Cider Hot Toddy

31 Must Have Holiday Bread Recipes

Gluten Free Cranberry Orange Almond Bars

Gooey Apricot Orange Twisted Coffee Bread

Print
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Cranberry Orange Pinwheel Cookies

  • Author: Megan Keno
  • Prep Time: 30 MInutes
  • Chill Time: 2 Hours
  • Cook Time: 8-10 Minutes
  • Total Time: 2 Hours 45 Minutes
  • Yield: 36 Cookies 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Description

Simple and stunning Christmas cookies! These cranberry orange pinwheel cookies are a festive delight, and are a slice and bake favorite at Christmas.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Cookie Dough

  • 1 cup Fresh or Frozen Cranberries (thawed)
  • 1 cup Pecans
  • 1/4 cup packed Brown Sugar
  • 1 cup Unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • 3/4 tsp Salt
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Tbsp Orange Zest
  • 3 cups Flour

Orange Drizzle

  • 1/2 cup Powdered Sugar, sifted
  • 12 Tbsp Milk
  • 1 1/2 tsp Orange Zest
  • Sparkling Sugar if desired (for topping on to drizzle)

Instructions

Cookie Dough

  1. In a food processor, pulse to combine the cranberries, pecans, and brown sugar. Process until the pecans are very finely chopped. Set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter on medium speed until smooth. With the mixer running on medium-low, pour in the sugar. Beat until it is light and fluffy, stopping to scrape down the sides a couple of times to ensure it is evenly mixed.
  3. Beat in the eggs and orange zest, and scrape down the bowl at least one time to ensure it is evenly incorporated.
  4. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  5. Mix in the flour mixture on low speed until the dough forms.
  6. Divide the dough into two portions, and wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour. This will make it easier to roll out.
  7. Roll one portion of the dough out at a time into a 10×10″ square. Spread half of the cranberry filling onto the dough, leaving 1/2″ clear at the edge closest to you. Moisten the edge so that it sticks to the dough when it is rolled up. Roll the dough up tightly from the far edge towards you to create the pinwheel effect. Seal the edge of the dough.
  8. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and freeze, or refrigerate for 2 hours, or overnight (my choice).
  9. Repeat with the other portion of the dough.

To Bake

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut the pinwheel cookie roll into 1/4″ thick slices and place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Bake until the edges turn golden brown, about 8-10 minutes.
  2. Allow the cookies to cool on the sheet for 1-2 minutes before removing them to cool completely on a wire rack.

For Orange Drizzle

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together all of the ingredients. Start out with 1 tablespoon of milk, and add more as needed to adjust the consistency so it will drizzle.
  2. Drizzle over 1/2 of the cookie, or all if you want more! Sprinkle with sparkling sugar if you have it, or omit. They are delicious either way!

Notes

Adapted from BHG’s Cranberry Orange Pinwheels

Keywords: Christmas cookies, cookies, Orange, Cranberry, Holiday, Pinwheel cookie