Cranberry-Orange Pinwheel Cookies

A soft pinwheel cookie with a burst of festive color from the cranberry and pecan filling.

Light and flavorful cranberry-orange pinwheel cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

Light and flavorful cranberry-orange pinwheel cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

You might remember these from last year. They’re a tradition in this house. An absolute must. When I asked The Mr recently what his top 5 favorite cookies were, these were on the list. Of course he couldn’t even give me a list of 5 but that’s not the point. I’ve been making them for Christmas easily the last 6 years or more.

I like making these for the aromas. The orange zest and cranberries give off wonderful fragrances. How something smells is just as important as how it looks and tastes, to me anyway. And these smell incredible. They also have a nice light taste. You can eat cookie after cookie without having a heavy feeling in your stomach like certain other desserts can cause.

Light and flavorful cranberry-orange pinwheel cookie recipe from @bakedbyrachel

These require more work than the average cookie but the end result is worth it. Be sure to check out my tips below for an easier time making these.

Yield: Roughly 4 dozen cookies

Cook Time: 8-10 minutes

Total Time: 24+ hours

Cranberry-Orange Pinwheel Cookies

A soft pinwheel cookie that has a burst of festive color from the cranberry and pecan filling.

Ingredients:

1C fresh cranberries
1C pecans
1/4C light brown sugar
1C unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2C granulated sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 large eggs
2 tsp orange zest
3C all purpose flour

Directions:

In a food processor; add cranberries, pecans and brown sugar. Blend well until only small pieces remain. Set aside or cover and chill until needed.

In a large bowl or stand mixer, cream butter and sugar. Add baking powder, salt, eggs and orange zest. Beat only low/medium for roughly 1 minute. Contents may be lumpy. Add flour by the spoonfuls, mixing on medium speed until ingredients have been mixed well. Cover and chill for at least one hour.

Divide dough in half. Place one half between two sheets of wax paper. Roll into a large rectangle roughly 1/4" thick. Remove top layer of wax paper. Evenly spread out half of the cranberry filling over dough to 1/2" from all sides.

Begin rolling from one of the short ends. Dough may stick at first. Gently guide dough by pulling up on wax paper. Pinch to seal ends. Transfer rolled dough log to a clean sheet of waxed paper. Roll and tape shut. Place between two large drinking glasses. This will help prevent flat bottom logs.

Chill at least 24 hours. After several hours, gently roll log to check for any flat spots.

When ready to bake. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice 1/4" thick slices. Space 1-2" apart on a baking sheet prepared with parchment paper or a silpat. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until bottoms are just turning golden. Let cookies rest on tray for 1-2 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool.

Store in a covered container for up to a week. Remaining dough may be frozen. Label well with any instructions such as type of dough, baking temp, time, etc.

**For more 'how to' photos go here.

Recipe source: BHG cookbook 12th edition

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223 Responses to “Cranberry-Orange Pinwheel Cookies”

  1. #
    51
    Terri — December 16, 2011 at 8:46 am

    Holiday plans are cooking and enjoying a great meal with friends and family.

  2. #
    52
    Terri — December 16, 2011 at 8:47 am

    I follow you on Twitter

  3. #
    53
    Terri — December 16, 2011 at 8:49 am
  4. #
    54
    Terri — December 16, 2011 at 8:50 am

    I follow you on Twitter.

  5. #
    55
    Kimberly B. — December 16, 2011 at 9:04 am

    We are staying in town and having our dinner at home with our extended family.

  6. #
    56
    Kimberly B. — December 16, 2011 at 9:05 am

    I ’Like’ Baked by Rachel on Facebook.

  7. #
    57
    Kimberly B. — December 16, 2011 at 9:07 am

    I follow you on Twitter.
    @winsome6

  8. #
    58
    Kimberly B. — December 16, 2011 at 9:07 am

    I Subscribe to your feed via RSS.

  9. #
    59
    Kimberly B. — December 16, 2011 at 9:14 am
  10. #
    60
    Cassie @ bake your day — December 16, 2011 at 9:33 am

    These cookies are awesome. Love the combination! Our holiday plans will include a lot of church and relaxing at home. And, of course, a lot of cooking and eating!

  11. #
    61
    Cassie @ bake your day — December 16, 2011 at 9:34 am

    I follow you on Twitter. (BakeYourDay)

  12. #
    62
    Elizabeth — December 16, 2011 at 9:35 am

    Going home to see my parents and my boyfriend (who lives in NY). Very much looking forward to it.

  13. #
    63
    Danae (The Busty Baker) — December 16, 2011 at 10:26 am

    On Christmas Eve Boyfriend and I exchange our presents and eat take out Chinese food. Then in the morning I’ll be headed to my parents for Christmas and a big meal and falling asleep on the couch watching a Mythbusters marathon!

  14. #
    64
    Brianna Dale — December 16, 2011 at 10:54 am

    We will be home for the holidays this year :)

  15. #
    65
    Brianna Dale — December 16, 2011 at 10:55 am

    I liked you on FB

  16. #
    66
    Brianna Dale — December 16, 2011 at 10:55 am

    I shared the giveaway on fb and tagged you

  17. #
    67
    Brianna Dale — December 16, 2011 at 10:56 am

    I followed you on Twitter as @BresBaubles

  18. #
    68
    Brianna Dale — December 16, 2011 at 10:58 am

    I tweeted about the giveaway as @BresBaubles and tagged you in my tweet :) (Awesome giveaway by the way)

  19. #
    69
    Krista {Budget Gourmet Mom} — December 16, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    Beautiful cookies! I am all over that marathon! “Oh, fuuuudge!”

  20. #
    70
    nicole — December 16, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    christmas plans… renting a car to drive to CT, jamming in as much family ‘fun time’ as possible in 36 hours and then high tailing it out of there!

  21. #
    71
    nicole — December 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    I like you on FB

  22. #
    72
    nicole — December 16, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    I follow you on twitter!

  23. #
    73
    nicole — December 16, 2011 at 1:21 pm
  24. #
    74
    nicole — December 16, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    I suscribe

  25. #
    75
    nicole — December 16, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    I shared on FB

  26. #
    76
    blackbookkitchendiaries — December 16, 2011 at 1:27 pm

    these are amazing.. love how pretty they look:)

  27. #
    77
    Danae (The Busty Baker) — December 16, 2011 at 1:33 pm

    I follow you on Twitter :)

  28. #
    78
    Alyssa — December 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    My family always watches A Christmas Story on Christmas… not all 24 hours of course, but that’s what channel the TV stays on all day! I’m going to my parents house for Christmas… No cooking for me, except I’m going to make the White Chocolate Peppermint Bark Cheesecake from your blog a couple days ago! Yum!

  29. #
    79
    Alyssa — December 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    I follow you on Twitter…

  30. #
    80
    Alyssa — December 16, 2011 at 1:58 pm

    And I Like you on facebook!

  31. #
    81
    amy marantino — December 16, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    i am going to spend a quiet christmas with my parents and grandmother

  32. #
    82
    Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family — December 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm

    I ALWAYS watch Christmas Story and this year my family and I are going to the beach right after Christmas…just a great way to decompress.

  33. #
    83
    Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family — December 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    I like you on FB

  34. #
    84
    Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family — December 16, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    I posted the giveaway on FB (as My Naturally Frugal Family)

  35. #
    85
    Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family — December 16, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    I tweeted the giveaway (@rachelkyle0402)

  36. #
    86
    Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family — December 16, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    I subscribe to your blog

  37. #
    87
    Sarah @ pão e queijo — December 16, 2011 at 3:23 pm

    Great giveaway! I love the cookies! This year the only thing that is decided on is the fact I will be baking a whole lot from now until Christmas. And spending precious time with family :)

  38. #
    88
    Sarah @ pão e queijo — December 16, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    I’m a fan of Baked by Rachel on Fb (as pão e queijo blog).

  39. #
    89
    Sarah @ pão e queijo — December 16, 2011 at 3:24 pm

    I follow you on Twitter.

  40. #
    90
    Sarah @ pão e queijo — December 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    I subscribe to your RSS feed via Google Reader.

  41. #
    91
    Sarah @ pão e queijo — December 16, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    I just tweeted!

  42. #
    92
    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts — December 16, 2011 at 4:09 pm

    What pretty cookies!! My inlaws are coming to visit this Christmas. First year on Colorado, temps should be close to 50 maybe some afternoon hiking will be in store.

  43. #
    93
    Jess @ Floptimism — December 16, 2011 at 4:24 pm

    Every year I bake up a storm and then go to my boyfriend’s grandparents house for a Christmas dinner. Plus lots of other festivities for Hannukkah and Christmas Eve before that!

  44. #
    94
    Jess @ Floptimism — December 16, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    I just added your blog to my RSS feed!

  45. #
    95
    Jess @ Floptimism — December 16, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    I also became a fan on FB (as Floptimism)!

  46. #
    96
    Jess @ Floptimism — December 16, 2011 at 4:26 pm

    And I follow you on Twitter (also as @Floptimism)!

  47. #
    97
    Jess @ Floptimism — December 16, 2011 at 4:28 pm

    I just posted about the giveaway on FB, too!

  48. #
    98
    Pat — December 16, 2011 at 4:40 pm

    Two of my favorite flavors and the cookies look beautiful! I’m going to be local for Christmas, joining family & friends on Christmas Eve. My kids go to their dad’s on Christmas Day so I like to volunteer that day to make it a Merry one for others.

    I’m a new follower & so glad I found your blog.

    Thanks for the luscious recipe!
    Pat

  49. #
    99
    Pat — December 16, 2011 at 4:41 pm

    I’ve “liked” you on FB!

    Pat

  50. #
    100
    Chris @ TheKeenanCookBook — December 16, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    Loving these. Seriously. And, after making tricolor rainbow cookies, these don’t seem like anywhere near as much work :)

    Christmas Eve we head out to my in laws for fish dinner, Christmas Eve mass, and if we are lucky my FIL almost lighting the kitchen on fire (one year he overheated the oil in the fry pan. It wasn’t serious, but was quite the show. We tease him every year since)

    Christmas Day, after doing our own thing that morning we head up to my parents where all my siblings (I have 6 of them, Im the oldest. It’s chaotic but fun with all of us together) for a big dinner, too much eating, and watching A Christmas Story multiple times.

    This year will especially be fun because we have Baby Boy who will turn 9 months on Christmas Day. Got him a few toys but I think he’ll really just want the wrapping paper and box. Which will be fun. :)

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