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Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread

Buttery Crispy Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies on ASpicyPerspective.comCrispy Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies with a hint of orange zest. Perfect for the holidays!

Crispy Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies on ASpicyPerspective.com

While nibbling any cookie, I always think to myself, “You know what would make this even better? …More butter and a touch of salt!”

In my mind, chocolate chip cookies would be better as crispy shortbread. Oatmeal cookies would taste better if they had more butter and less (meaning no) eggs.

Macaroons? Yep, they are in desperate need of butter.

Making Easy Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies on ASpicyPerspective.com

You can’t blame me for going a little overboard on the butter cookies this time of year.  After all, I was programmed to desire them once the weather turns cold.

Come December 1st, I start checking the mailbox for those metal tins of shortbread rings with course sugar crystals on top. Surely someone will send me one.

How to Make Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies on ASpicyPerspective.com

As I set off to bake the masses of Christmas cookies we will deliver to our friends over the next few weeks, I have one single agenda. Turn all cookies into shortbread.

You think I’m kidding?

Making the Best Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies on ASpicyPerspective.com

Today I’m sharing an old favorite shortbread recipe, Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread.

It’s prepared in the traditional pan method. I’ve ramped up the flavor a bit by adding orange zest, mini chocolate chips, and cranberries.

Several years ago we had a shortbread-athon recipe testing day before the holidays, creating several new combinations, and our Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread was the standout.

Holiday Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies on ASpicyPerspective.com

I hope you enjoy them. If not, send them to me.

Merry Shortbread Christmas!

Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread

Yield: 16+

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 12 minutes


  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
  • 1/4 cup chopped dried cranberries


  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. With an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla, and orange zest until light and fluffy. Add the flour and salt, and beat until just combined.
  2. Stir in the chocolate chips and cranberries. Divide the dough into two pieces. Press them evenly into 2- 8 inch round cake pans. Bake for 11-12 minutes, until golden around the edges.
  3. With a small sharp knife, score the shortbread into 8 wedges per pan.
  4. Allow the shortbread to cool in the pans another 10 minutes. Then flip out of the pans the gently separate into wedges.

Making this recipe? Why not take a quick shot and share it on Instagram! Make sure to tag it #ASpicyPerspective so we can see what you're cooking!

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55 Responses to “Cranberry Chocolate Chip Shortbread”

  1. Chow and Chatterposted December 13, 2010 at 4:21 am

    wow looks amazing also a big fan of short bread yum


  2. Belinda @zomppaposted December 13, 2010 at 5:19 am

    I LOVE shortbread, and especially citrus-y ones!


  3. sara @ CaffeInaposted December 13, 2010 at 6:04 am

    I love shortbread too so I'm totally with you…more butter pleeease!


  4. Al Dente Gourmetposted December 13, 2010 at 6:43 am

    What a beautiful cookie! Not to mention–> "Absolutely Mouth-watering" :)




  5. Cherineposted December 13, 2010 at 8:41 am

    Gorgeous cookies. Yummy!


  6. Lea Annposted December 13, 2010 at 1:02 pm

    I agree, I'm a shortbread fan and you know I'm loving this recipe. Great combo.


  7. Jenniposted December 13, 2010 at 1:05 pm

    Okay, YUM.

    Speaking of sweet, salty, buttery goodness, do you have a recipe for brickle? I've gotta make some this year!


  8. Sprinkled with Flourposted December 13, 2010 at 2:55 pm

    This shortbread looks perfectly buttery and delicious! I love the addition of chocolate and cranberries, yum!


  9. dmarieposted December 13, 2010 at 3:35 pm

    just bought a crate of oranges and I have vowed not to waste any of the zest, so this recipe is going to be made TODAY. Because I just baked cookies last night, I think I'll freeze this dough in the pan to bake later. LOVE your blog, Spicy!!


  10. Cake Duchessposted December 13, 2010 at 3:36 pm

    Delicious shortbread flavors! I love shortbread and could eat it every day!


  11. Monetposted December 13, 2010 at 3:40 pm

    I also have a thing for shortbread. There is nothing like a buttery, crumbly cookie and a cup of tea. Just heaven! I love the flavor combination in this cookie. What a bright and delicious holiday treat! Thank you for sharing…I hope you have a blessed week!


  12. Emily Zposted December 13, 2010 at 3:58 pm

    This shortbread looks great. I have officially fallen into cookie baking mode, I baked some yesteday (spritz cookies, also full of butter… I will be posting soon) and am already anxious to bake some more. Maybe I should try to bake some shortbread since you speak so highly of it!


  13. Roxanposted December 13, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    I love the butteriness of shortbread too! With a touch of salt – heaven. Oh, you have the kitchenaid mixer that has the head that swivels back. I wish for that one – mine doesn't do that so it's hard maneuvering around it sometimes. Anyways, back to the shortbread – it look amazing. I could always go for a piece of that.


  14. Stephposted December 13, 2010 at 4:35 pm

    I love shortbread! Perfect coffee dunkers!


  15. Green Girl @ A little bit of everythingposted December 13, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    your shortbread wedges look delicious. Love the addition of cranberry and chocolate chips and the cutting method.
    Thanks for sharing, hope you'll have a wonderful Monday


  16. claireposted December 13, 2010 at 6:29 pm

    your photos are perfect… and so is this recipe!

    thanks for sharing!

    How are you wrapping all of the cookies up and how soon are you delivering after making them? I am always worried they will be stale or crumbly!


  17. The Mom Chefposted December 13, 2010 at 6:53 pm

    I'm going to make these, but leave out the chocolate chips, since I'm not a fan of that, but LOVE shortbread. This looks like the perfect thing to eat with breakfast. :)


  18. Sophieposted December 13, 2010 at 6:54 pm

    Stunning & appetizing pictures of this Merry Shortbread!

    Your shortbread looks truly tasty, my friend!


  19. Angie's Recipesposted December 13, 2010 at 7:07 pm

    I love shortbread! And yeah…more butter!


  20. Rosa's Yummy Yumsposted December 13, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    Whata festive shortbread! So yummy looking.




  21. Katerinaposted December 13, 2010 at 7:39 pm

    Orange and chocolate are magical words to my ears!


  22. Cristina - Teenie Cakesposted December 13, 2010 at 8:08 pm

    I like the thinness of this shortbread, packed full of chocolate and cranberry goodness. You have a passion for shortbread and because of that, I'm sure your shortbread is the best around. Thanks for sharing this…I'm with you about shortbread – luv it!


  23. Kociposted December 13, 2010 at 8:12 pm

    Shortbread is pretty hard to resist! My mom would LOVE this cranberry orange version. This recipe may have to be a part of my holiday baking spree. :D


  24. Claudiaposted December 13, 2010 at 9:38 pm

    I would dearly love to find this in my mailbox! This is the one time of year I succomb to all things butter. And then you put in the chocolate and the cranberries and the orange and you've hooked me.


  25. blackbookkitchendiariesposted December 13, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    this looks so yummy!! wish i had one for this right now. it looks so festive!


  26. Gourmet Gadget Galposted December 13, 2010 at 9:48 pm

    I feel the same way – I use salted butter all the time and I think I could happily enjoy salted butter rolled in chocolate chips and sugar. I DON"T do that but I think I COULD.


  27. girlichefposted December 14, 2010 at 12:39 am

    I just ran out to check my mailbox ;)!!! Your shortbread is beautiful and sounds so tasty. Very festive :D


  28. julieposted December 14, 2010 at 12:42 am

    Beautiful shortbread Sommer! And I'm with you, the more butter the better.


  29. Susanposted December 14, 2010 at 12:56 am

    Oh my! More shortbread to try! I have been playing with Mangiabella's biscochitos and have Dulcis In Furno's shortbread-like biscotti on my to do list … now, yours! I should just buy a milk cow so I can make my own butter!


  30. Julianaposted December 14, 2010 at 2:26 am

    I love the ingredients of this shortbread…orange, chocolate and cranberries…not only pretty but very tasty :-)


  31. Amandaposted December 14, 2010 at 2:46 am

    Those look delicious and so pretty!


  32. Trishposted December 14, 2010 at 3:22 am

    This looks great. I love the combo of orange and chocolate and with cranberries, even better. I don't have any shortbread recipes so this is perfect. Bookmarked!


  33. 5 Star Foodieposted December 14, 2010 at 4:09 am

    These look so buttery and delicious, I love the cranberries and chocolate combo!


  34. Carolynposted December 14, 2010 at 12:24 pm

    I'm a fellow shortbread fan, and the flavours in these look delicious. So crispy and thin. I am giving it some buzz!


  35. Priya Sreeramposted December 14, 2010 at 1:01 pm

    hey sommers wonderfully explained and am sure bookmarking this !


  36. Biren @ Roti n Riceposted December 14, 2010 at 2:12 pm

    Looks super easy and tasty! Cranberries add such a festive touch.


  37. Chef Dennisposted December 14, 2010 at 2:19 pm

    I love shortbread!! I never thought of making it this way, the cranberries are such a wonderful additon! You really make it look easy, I'm going to have to make it over break!


  38. Annaposted December 14, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    Mmmmm…cranberry and orange….I absolutely love this combination, and adding chocolate chips to it is genius. They look lovely. I should definitely bake some cookies this week. Have a great week Sommer.


  39. denise @ quickies on the dinner tableposted December 14, 2010 at 4:05 pm

    Oh, you are not alone! More butter – always! Salt – YES! And no eggs – wonderful!! I adore shortbread too (more than regular cookies *shhhhhh*) and with chocolate, orange and cranberries, it's just genius!!!


  40. Wilde in the Kitchenposted December 14, 2010 at 5:39 pm

    These shortbread cookies look amazing. I love the flavor combination!!


  41. sweetlifeposted December 14, 2010 at 6:31 pm

    love love shortbread, did I say love..I love your festive creation…yum sommer..I will have to try this for my hubbys holiday work party!!



  42. A Canadian Foodieposted December 14, 2010 at 7:03 pm

    Good for you! I mean – shortbread is the quintessential Christmas cookies and everything DOES taste better with butter… and these look incredible! Love the idea.


  43. Gourmandeposted December 15, 2010 at 11:16 am

    That's a great variation of shortbread… I'm hungry now.


  44. awbluemondaysposted December 15, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    The shortbread looks so elegant cut into triangles!


  45. Evan @swEEtsposted December 15, 2010 at 4:53 pm

    I just put out everything this morning so I could make shortbread when I got home from work.. I may have to make a batch now with your additions! thanks for sharing :)


  46. Table Talkposted December 15, 2010 at 6:30 pm

    I am crazy for shortbread. Key lime and coconut is my favorite flavor combination. The chocolate and cranberries are so festive, and just right for this time of year. I know I will love these!


  47. lauraposted December 16, 2010 at 1:15 am

    These sound heavenly, Sommer! Butter and salt makes everything better, right? I love that you included both cranberry and orange with the chocolate chips. I've never made thin shortbread like this…will have to try!


  48. Johnposted December 16, 2010 at 1:56 am

    That looks wonderful.

    However, the post needs one more picture: an empty plate with a single crumb on it! :)


  49. High Plains Driftersposted December 16, 2010 at 4:25 pm

    in scotland, you get a year of good luck if you wake up on New Year's to find shortbread on your front step.

    if anyone needs the address of my front step …

    Best to you and yours this holiday. Cheers!


  50. Magic of Spiceposted December 17, 2010 at 7:24 am

    I just adore shortbread, and this is so perfect for this time of year…looks delicious!


  51. April Hunterposted December 19, 2010 at 8:20 am

    I tend to steer away from traditional British baking, seeing as I'm actually IN Britain, and rather wow my friends and neighbours with the almighty chocolate chip cookie……however, I think I am going to make this for Christmas, and may even take some over to our neighbours house.


  52. April Hunterposted December 19, 2010 at 8:21 am

    oh and a question, can you use fresh orange zest? as they don't sell the dried kind here. If so how much?


  53. A SPICY PERSPECTIVEposted December 20, 2010 at 10:21 pm

    Hey April~ I did mean fresh orange zest. Come to think of it, I don't believe I've seen the dried kind around here either! 1 tsp. = about a medium orange.


  54. April Hunterposted December 23, 2010 at 9:32 am

    Thanks! I'm going to bake these TODAY!! :) Will post a picture of them! xxx


  55. Maryposted December 24, 2010 at 8:22 pm

    That looks phenomenal!!! WOW! I must try this!!

    Merry Christmas!

    Delightful Bitefuls


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