Cranberry Orange Pistachio Shortbread

By Maria Lichty

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Quick Summary

Cranberry Orange Pistachio Shortbread- buttery shortbread cookies filled with sweet dried cranberries, orange zest, and pistachios. This slice and bake shortbread recipe is perfect for the holiday season.

stack of cranberry orange pistachio shortbread on wood board.

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I love everything cranberry orange, cranberry orange bread, cranberry orange muffins, and cranberry orange scones, just to name a few! The flavors are SO good together, especially during the holiday months.

I also love these Cranberry Orange Pistachio Shortbread Cookies. This recipe is from my friend Daniela, who took all of the cookie photos for Let’s Eat Cookies. We have similar tastes in cookies and when she was telling me about her favorite shortbread cookies, I knew I needed to try them. They are so delicious and the perfect Christmas cookie!

I love these cookies because they are buttery, crisp, and filled with sweet dried cranberries, orange, and salty pistachios. The cranberry orange combination is always perfection but with the addition of pistachios? SO good and SO festive!

I also love that this is a slice and bake shortbread cookie recipe. They are so easy to make. You do have to chill the dough, but you can make the dough in advance. It will keep in a log in the fridge for up to 5 days. You can also freeze the dough, which is nice, especially during the busy holiday season.

I highly recommend these Cranberry Orange Pistachio Shortbread cookies. They are such a fun and delicious Christmas cookie.

ingredients in bowls to make cranberry orange pistachio shortbread.

Ingredients

  • Unsalted butter– at room temperature.
  • Granulated sugar– to sweeten the cookies.
  • Orange zest– use a microplane!
  • Orange extract– look for it in the baking aisle by the vanilla extract.
  • All-purpose flour– spoon and level when measuring.
  • Kosher salt– just a little salt to enhance all of the flavors.
  • Dried cranberries– make sure they are fresh so they aren’t hard.
  • Pistachios– shelled and chopped!
butter, sugar, orange zest, and orange extract in food processor to make shortbread.

How to Make Cranberry Orange Pistachio Shortbread

  • In a food processor, add the butter, sugar, orange zest, and orange extract. Process until combined.
cranberry orange pistachio shortbread dough in food processor.
  • Add the flour and salt and process until it starts to form a dough.
shortbread dough with cranberries and pistachios.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly floured flat surface and press it out into a flat circle.
  • Top with the cranberries and pistachios and press them into the dough. Knead the dough a little until the cranberries and pistachios are evenly distributed.
  • If you don’t have a food processor, you can make the dough in a stand mixer or use a hand mixer. Make the dough and stir in the dried cranberries and pistachios with a spatula.
cranberry orange pistachio dough rolled in log in plastic wrap on marble surface.
  • Using your hands, shape the dough into a log, roughly 12 inches long. Unroll a large piece of plastic wrap on the counter. Place the log onto the plastic wrap and use the plastic wrap to help roll and shape the log into an evenly round log.
  • Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Chilling the dough is mandatory. You can chill for up to 5 days.
slicing cranberry orange pistachio shortbread cookies into slices with knife.
  • When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.
  • Remove the log from the refrigerator and use a sharp knife to cut the log into 1/4-inch slices. Place the slices on the prepared baking sheets spacing them about 1 inch apart. Keep them chilled until ready to bake.
cranberry orange pistachio shortbread cookies on baking sheet with parchment paper.
  • Bake for 11 to 14 minutes or until shortbread cookies are lightly golden brown around the edges.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.
close up of cranberry orange pistachio shortbread cookies.

How to Store & Freeze

  • Store cookies in an airtight container on the counter for up to 1 week.
  • You can freeze baked cookies for up to 3 months. Make sure they are sealed tightly in a freezer bag or container.
  • You can store the cookie dough logs in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
  • You can also freeze the cookie dough logs for up to 3 months. I like to wrap them in plastic wrap AND foil. You can also put the logs in a freezer bag. Allow the logs to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and then slice and bake.
cranberry orange pistachio shortbread cookies in sliver serving platter.

Find MORE cookie recipes HERE and in my cookie cookbook, Let’s Eat Cookies!

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Cranberry Orange Pistachio Shortbread

Buttery shortbread cookies filled with sweet dried cranberries, orange zest, and pistachios. This slice and bake shortbread recipe is perfect for the holiday season.
4.72 from 25 votes

Ingredients
  

Instructions
 

  • In a food processor, add the butter, sugar, orange zest, and orange extract. Process until combined. (If you don't have a food processor, you can use a mixer, see note below).
  • Add the flour and salt and process until it starts to form a dough.
  • Transfer the dough to a lightly floured flat surface and press it out into a flat circle. Top with the cranberries and pistachios and press them into the dough. Knead the dough a little until the cranberries and pistachios are evenly distributed.
  • Using your hands, shape the dough into a log, roughly 12 inches long. Unroll a large piece of plastic wrap on the counter. Place the log onto the plastic wrap and use the plastic wrap to help roll and shape the log into an evenly round log. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight. Chilling the dough is mandatory. You can chill for up to 5 days.
  • When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the log from the refrigerator and use a sharp knife to cut the log into 1/4-inch slices. Place the slices on the prepared baking sheets spacing them about 1 inch apart. Keep them chilled until ready to bake.
  • Bake for 10 to 14 minutes or until shortbread cookies are lightly golden brown around the edges.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes. Transfer to a wire cooling rack and cool completely.

Notes

If you don’t have a food processor, you can use a stand mixer or hand mixer to beat the butter, sugar, orange zest, and orange extract. Mix in the flour and salt. Stir in the cranberries and pistachios with a spatula and then form the log.

Nutrition

Calories: 165kcal, Carbohydrates: 17g, Protein: 2g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 0.3g, Cholesterol: 22mg, Sodium: 28mg, Potassium: 55mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 8g, Vitamin A: 273IU, Vitamin C: 0.2mg, Calcium: 8mg, Iron: 1mg
Keywords cranberry, orange, pistachio

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Maria

I'm Maria and my husband is Josh. We share a love of cooking, baking, and entertaining. We enjoy creating recipes that are simple, fresh, and family friendly. We love sitting around the table with good food, good conversation, and good friends and family! Our kitchen is always open!
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