Cranberry Orange Spiral Cookies

So pretty aren’t they? :) These lovely cookies are easy to make and taste great. Just the right amount of sweetness! I did substitute almonds for the pecans as that’s what I had on hand, and I added a little almond extract to the filling. I was a bit short on filling, so some of the dough is plain, but the cookies are still wonderful, perfect with a cup of tea or coffee!

I found this recipe in this massive book called 400 Sensational Cookies by Linda Amendt. These Cranberry Orange Spirals are actually featured on the cover, but I didn’t even notice that until after I made them! I had gone through the entire book one night and bookmarked a BUNCH of recipes, and chose to make this one first as they seemed perfect for Thanksgiving. Since this one went so well, I will definitely be making more from this great book!

I’ll give you the correct recipe below and just jot my notes and adjustments under the step by step photos. Hope you make them, they are wonderful!

Chop the nuts up small, you don’t want them cutting and poking through your dough.
Chop the dried cranberries up small too. Sneak some in
your mouth while no one’s looking. I’ll never tell. ;)
Place your chilled dough rectangle on your flour dusted parchment paper.
I buy the parchment sheets from King Arthur’s flour. It’s so much nicer than
arguing with that stupid roll from the grocery store!
Roll your rectangle out to roughly 12×9 inches.
Add your mixed filling to the dough. See the pink arrows?

That’s the area of dough I left filling-less because I didn’t have
enough. There should be plenty if you use the measurements
in the instructions. :)
Use your parchment paper to help get the rolling part started. The book
says “use the parchment paper to fold the edge of the dough over onto
itself and roll up the dough, shaping it into a log.
There. Isn’t that nice?
Now roll it up into the parchment and chill it for 3 hours or more.
Once you slice it, you should see these beauties staring back at you.
Notice how I used the rimless baking sheets? That makes it easier
to slide the sheet of parchment off the hot sheet and onto the cooling
rack when they come out of the oven. You will not be removing the
cookies from the parchment right away.

Cranberry Orange Spirals
from 400 Sensational Cookies 

[printable version]

2 1/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
1 cup granulated sugar
1 egg
2 tsp grated orange zest
1 tsp vanilla extract

2/3 cup finely chopped dried cranberries
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
1/2 cup orange marmalade

(Amanda’s Note: I used the right amount of cranberries but only 1/3 cup of finely chopped almonds and 1/3 cup orange marmalade as that’s all I had left. I also added 1/2 teaspoon almond extract to the filling ingredients. Because I was short, I had to adjust how much of the dough received filling. No matter, even the unfilled cookies were great.)

In a bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt until well combined. Set aside.

ANOTHER DELICIOUS IDEA >>  Carrot Cake Towers: Diabetic Friendly

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes (mixer at medium speed). Add egg and beat well. Beat in orange zest and vanilla. Scrape down sides of bowl. On low speed or with wooden spoon, gradually add flour mixture, beating until just blended.

Shape the dough into a flat rectangle. Tightly wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least one hour.

Using confectioner’s sugar or flour, lightly dust a piece of parchment paper and rolling pin. Unwrap chilled dough and place on parchment, roll into a 12×9 inch rectangle of uniform thickness.

In a bowl, combine the cranberries, pecans and orange marmalade until well blended. Spread cranberry mixture evenly over dough to within 1/2 inch of edges. Starting with long edge, tightly roll up dough jelly-roll style to form a log. Tightly wrap in parchment paper and chill for at least 3 hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 F and line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Unwrap the chilled dough log and using a sharp knife, cut into 1/4 inch slices. Place on prepared cookie sheets about 2 inches apart. Bake one sheet at a time in preheated oven for 8 to 11 minutes or until edges start to turn lightly golden (mine were 9 minutes). Immediately slide parchment paper onto a cooling rack. Cool the cookies for 5 minutes before removing from the parchment and placing directly on cooling rack.


  1. MaryBeth says

    I was just looking at this recipe in a new cookie book my husband got me, I was thinking they looked delish and now I can see that they do…Great Job Amanda!

  2. LDH says

    These cook delicious ~ cranberry and orange are so good together and it is so pretty spiraled in a cookie. Will give these a try. Thanks for posting, Amanda!

  3. Amanda says

    Thanks everyone!

    Nanny, I don't think so. I think that if you used fresh cranberries, the baking would create too much juice and it would ruin the cookie. I thought about it myself because of my freezer stock pile of cranberries I hoarded this year LOL

  4. Sarah, Maison Cupcake says

    These pinwheels look brilliant. That's a very comprehensive photo guide how to make them too. Thank you!

  5. Beth says

    I made these today and they taste super yummy and made the house smell great (I was also making my Cranberry Zinfandel sauce in the slow cooker so double yummy smells!) Thanks for the great recipe!

  6. bluamaryllis says

    I'm new to your blog and I'm enjoying it tremendously. I've added it to my blog roll and passed it along to my friends. I'm definitely going to make to spiral cookies. Thanks!!

  7. strivingforthriving says

    I made very similar (maybe even the same) cookies last year, and they were absolutely delicious. I think I got my recipe out of a magazine, though – Kraft Food & Family, maybe.

  8. Cheryl Rafuse says

    Chill my rectangle about 2-3 hours. It’s seems rock solid and isn’t rolling out easily. Any suggestions, I’m going to give it twenty minutes and try again.


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