White Chocolate Pistachio Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies. These cookies make an appearance in my holiday cookie boxes every year. Tasty and so easy to make.
These white chocolate pistachio cranberry oatmeal cookies kick off my 10 (maybe 12 days if I can get them all done) of cookies for this year. 2020 has been a difficult year for many, might as well end it with as many cookie recipes as we can.
I decided to be as ambitious as last year with making Christmas cookies for my blog. I have a few that I tested last year that never made it to my blog but will be making it this year. As well as some old recipes getting a face-lift with new recipe tweaks and photos and some brand new recipes for this year. And some cookie baking tips with each recipe.
I think everyone needs a good oatmeal cookie recipe. This one is mine. Well. Sort of mine. I originally got it from a hairstylist when we lived in Oregon. He would bring in fresh baked cookies on Saturday mornings. I would purposefully make my appointment for that time just for the cookies. I finally bugged him for his recipe and I am so glad I did.
I took his recipe and tweaked it a little each time I made it until I got what I wanted that made sure the cookies came out perfect every batch. I have been making variations of these oatmeal cookies for years now. This is my Christmas or holiday version.
Tips for making amazing oatmeal cookies:
Use half butter half shortening. I like using Nutiva shortening. Shortening is all fat, no water content, so the cookies are softer. I prefer softer oatmeal cookies to ones that have a snap to them
Old fashioned/rolled oats vs quick cooking. Honestly I have used both and never noticed a huge difference other than the rolled oats tend to be a little chewier. Which I like. Quick cooking can soak up the liquid faster and make for a dryer cookie but I haven't noticed that when I use it. Not a lot of liquid in these cookies to make that much of a difference.
Weigh out your ingredients rather than using cup measurements. I cannot stress enough that every baker should own a food scale. Do you watch The Great British Bake Off? You see them shake their ingredients out of containers into bowls set on a scale. Weight measurements are way more accurate. You can easily add too much flour by scooping it out of the container or bag with your measuring cup. If you only measure one thing in your recipes, make sure it's the flour measurement.
Cream butter and sugars together and not just for a minute or two. Mix them for a good 7-8 minutes until pale and fluffy. A good friend of mine who is a professional pastry chef gave me this tip. That most cookie recipes don't cream the butter and sugars long enough.
Combine oats and mix-ins ( chocolate chips, dried fruit, nuts) together and add at the end of mixing on low until just combined. Do not over mix.
Chill the dough before baking. Ideally overnight. This will help hydrate the dough as well as keep the cookies from spreading too much during baking.
For these cookies I used the classic Christmas trifecta of mix-ins with pistachios, dried cranberries and white chocolate chips. The classic, red, green and white colors of Christmas. A popular flavor combination.
These cookies also have a hefty dose of vanilla extract as well as a pinch of cinnamon. I love to add just a touch of spices to any cookie recipes. My favorites to use are cinnamon, mace, ginger, allspice and cardamom.
A few more notes about these white chocolate pistachio cranberry oatmeal cookies before the recipe:
- These cookies freeze well. They are a great recipe to make early in your holiday baking and keep in a resealable bag in the freezer.
- You can also make the dough, scoop it out and freeze before baking. You can bake them from frozen as well as slightly thawed. Baking time might be a minute or two longer.
- Baking times are never exact since everyone's oven differ. Start with the lower time, and then check from there. I usually under bake by a minute to keep them chewy.
- Make sure your dried fruits and nuts are fresh, not stale. Stale, dried fruit seems to turn to rocks in when baked. ha ha.
- Don't care for white chocolate chips, use milk or dark. These cookies are really good with dark chocolate chips as well
- You can find shelled pistachios at many stores. I use unsalted, feel free to use salted if you like
- Room temperature for butter/eggs/dairy should be around 65-70 deg F. Cool room is fine. You want the butter soft enough to be able to mix well.
- 2 cups all purpose flour (9 oz/255g)
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt (⅛oz/4g)
- ½ cup butter (4 oz/113 g) room temp
- ½ c shortening (3 oz, 85g)
- 1 cup granulated sugar (7 ¼ oz/200g)
- ⅔ cup packed light brown sugar (5 ⅓ oz/150g)
- 2 large eggs, room temp
- 4 tablespoon milk (2 0z/60ml)
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract (15 ml)
- 2 cups oats ( quick cooking or whole oats) (5 ⅝ oz/ 160g)
- 1 cup of each:
- White chocolate chips ( 6 oz/170g) (You can add 2 cups of chips if you like as well)
- Dried Cranberry pieces (4 ½ oz/130g)
- Shelled pistachio pieces, roasted salted or unsalted (4 ¼ oz/125g)
Whisk together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, salt) in a medium bowl and set aside. In another bowl mix together the oats, chocolate chips, cranberries and pistachio pieces.
In mixing bowl or bowl of a stand mixer beat the butter and shortening for a minute on medium speed then add the sugars and beat until light and fluffy, 7-8 minutes. You want this mixture really light and fluffy.
Add in the eggs one at a time and mix well after each addition then add in the vanilla and milk. Add the dry ingredients and mix on low speed until just mixed. Add in the oats/chocolate chips/cranberries and pistachio mix and stir gently to combine. Chill the dough in a bowl wrapped with plastic wrap/cling film for 2 hours up to overnight.
When ready to bake heat oven to 375 Deg F (190 C)
Scoop 2 rounded tablespoons of dough on cookie sheets prepped with either bake mats or parchment paper. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Cool for a minute on the baking sheet then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
This recipe makes around 40 3" cookies. I used
Since this is my go-to Oatmeal cookie recipe I make them several times a year with a variety of flavor combinations. Here are ideas to make them as unique as you want!
Spices – cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, allspice, apple pie spice etc… (add a teaspoon or so in with the dry ingredients
Chocolate chips (milk, white, dark, semi sweet) cinnamon chips, butterscotch, peanut butter
Nuts – walnuts, pecans, pistachios, hazelnuts, peanuts, macadamia nuts etc
Candies – caramel bits, M&Ms, toffee bits etc
Dried fruit – raisins, cranberries, cherries, pineapple, coconut, apple, ginger, pear
Some of my favorite combos of mix-ins are:
2 cups semi sweet chocolate chips, 1 cup chopped walnuts, 1 cup raisins and cinnamon
2 cups dark chocolate chips, 1 cup chopped dried cherries
2 cups white chocolate chips, 1 cup dried pineapple pieces, ½ cup sweetened shredded coconut, ½ cup chopped macadamia nuts
1 cup chopped caramel pieces (or toffee bits), 1 cup dried apple diced up, 1 cup chopped pecans and 1 teaspoon apple pie spice added in to dry ingredients (this is for a caramel apple oatmeal cookie)
The possibilities are endless. You can also go for “Kitchen Sink” cookies and throw in any combo of whatever add in ingredients you have on hand. Go crazy put anything in. These cookies are super yummy!!