Sunday, January 17, 2010

Orange-Cranberry White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies

I have a confession. One that I never thought I'd make.

Ok, here goes: I might have found something that I love just as much as cupcakes... and it's a cookie! Oh, the insanity of it! Pigs have most definitely sprouted wings.

If you'll remember, the one other time that I posted a cookie recipe, the chocolate chip, I rambled on and on about my indifference towards them and listed all the reasons why. And it was only because of the fact that Hubby (aka Cookie Monster) had been bugging me for months about making him a batch, that I actually went to seek out a recipe.

I was feeling antsy one evening and needed to do something with my pent-up energy, so without thinking much about it, I went into the kitchen and started experimenting. I had seen white chocolate macadamia nut cookies around a lot recently and thought that maybe it would be good with cranberries in it. The idea had been in my head, but I was never enthusiastic enough about it to actually attempt it. But since it wasn't a designated "Judy In The Kitchen" day, the fact that I was experimenting with a cookie didn't put me off. I merrily went about the task, for no reason other than to give my energy and creativity an outlet.

Little did I know, this informal baking session would change my life forever. Ok fine, maybe that was a gross exaggeration. It at least changed how I feel about cookies. Or at least this cookie. =)

Luckily, I had some Craisins laying around. And it just so happens that when I was at the store the other day, I noticed the orange flavored ones. I was curious as to how they would taste, so I grabbed a couple of packs. You can't really go wrong with these two flavors anyway.

And boy was I right! The second I opened the bag, their super fragrant citrus scent filled the air! I grabbed a small handful and popped them in my mouth. SO divine! Wow. I had been missing out! I thought about all those years I wasted purchasing the regular kind. I could already tell that it was meant to be- this incredible find deserved to be the highlight of my cookies!

Off to a good start, I began to mix the dry ingredients.

Of all the white chocolate macadamia nut cookies that I had tasted before, they all seemed to be way too sweet. So when I started on the wet ingredients, I decided to only use brown sugar to cream with the butter. And even then, I used it sparingly. I wanted the cookie to be sweetened naturally by the white chocolate and the cranberries. This way, the citrus flavor of the cranberries will really get a chance to shine through, without being masked by the sweetness of white processed sugar. This ended up being a really good decision!

Add eggs and vanilla. Beat until combined.

Now add the dry ingredients and mix until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, making sure that all of the flour gets incorporated.

Once your dough has come together, time to add the good stuff!

Orange flavored Craisins, white chocolate chips, and chopped dry-roasted macadamia nuts.

Mix until well combined and evenly distributed through out the cookie dough...which is not what's pictured here. lol. For some reason, I only took pictures of the dough before I mixed it. hehe.

Roll into 1 inch balls and space evenly on a cookie sheet. Line your cookie sheet with a silicone baking mat if you have one. This will keep your cookies from becoming too brown on the bottom before fully cooking through. If you don't have one of these mats, I would highly recommend getting one. They're not super expensive- about $20, and it's a great investment that will save you from burning your cookies. They're about half the price on Amazon!

The second I pulled these out of the oven, Hubby came wandering in. He had been in the other room this whole time and didn't notice that I started baking. He was utterly confused when his nose brought him into the kitchen (since I don't usually bake like a maniac in the middle of the night). The smell of fresh baked cookies instantly brought him to my side and away from his computer, which for a computer nerd, is hard to do! =) He came to investigate because, well, a Cookie Monster knows when cookies are around. He has a sixth sense: "cookie-radar."

The second I was done photographing them, it was time to dig in! We ate one, then two... then three. We were both in heaven! Hubby, who has always been a die-hard chocolate chip fan, said that this was his favorite now. And I, who was always a die-hard cookie un-enthusiast, was instantly in love!

The orange cranberries were amazing and gave these cookies something extra- it really took it to the next level. I was surprised at how much of a difference it made! The citrus scent was so pure and fragrant that it made every bite a heavenly experience!

Just to put my love of these cookies in perspective for you, you should know that I baked a second batch the following day! This is huge for two reasons: (1) The only other time in the past year that I've baked cookies were those chocolate chip ones. But these cranberry ones were SO delicious that I baked them twice, consecutively! And (2) when it comes to trying out new baked-goods recipes, I hardly ever, almost never, bake the same thing twice. I'm always so busy trying out new recipes for my blog that baking something twice is considered a waste of time, because I'm already onto the next thing, trying to find bigger and better things to blog about.

This is the first time that I've craved a cookie so much that I baked enough for a whole week! And we hoarded them, I'm not ashamed to say. Usually, we send stuff off to friends. But with these, Hubby and I greedily kept all of them. A couple of days after we ran out, Hubby was still asking for them. Were there anymore left? No there weren't, unfortunately. But I'm already planning on baking more as I type... =)

Give these a try! You won't be disappointed. And they only take about 10-15 minutes to prep before going into the oven! So little effort for such huge rewards!

Click HERE for the most amazing cookie recipe EVER!


  1. These look so delicious. I love the macadamia nuts in here! I know what you mean about feeling antsy! Getting into the kitchen always helps me too. :)

  2. You've created a signature cookie! And what great ingredients - got everything except for the citrus cranberries (just reg. dried cranberries...) well worth the trip to the store though. These look like they probably tasted - delicious! I'm definitely trying these!

  3. I'm not a big eater either. Often times they are too sweet. I know how crazy does that sound. But, these look like there is a good balance between sweetness and not so sweet. I love the idea of the cranberries instead of chocolate chips. I'm not a big chocolate fan either. Love your blog! Love the recipe thanks for sharing!

  4. Oops thats supposed to say cookie eater LOL..

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  6. hey judy,
    i have lots of walnuts in my pantry, do u think it could be a substitute for the macadamia? I would probably use milk choc chips as its my daughter's fav. Yours look perfect like the store bought type. neev

  7. I do'nt see why not! go for it! let me know how you like it! =)

  8. I am a big fan of your blog, and I just tried making these cookies today! They turned out FANTASTIC! Except I had to substitute regular bittersweet chocolate chips since I didn't have cranberries, white chocolate, or macadamia nuts. Pictures at my blog :)

  9. Are these soft or cruchy type of cookies?


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