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These Cranberry Linzer Cookies are a delicious combination of an almond and orange butter cookie and cranberry curd. It's one of the best linzer cookies you'll ever make and it's the perfect Christmas cookie to share with family and friends this holiday season.
- Why This Recipe Tastes So Good
- Why Use Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour
- Cranberry Linzer Cookie Recipe Ingredients
- How to Make the Cranberry Curd
- How to Make the Orange Linzer Cookies
- How to Bake the Cookies
- How to Assemble the Cranberry Linzer Cookies
- How to Store the Cookies
- Pro Tips for Making This Recipe
- Recipe - Frequently Asked Questions
- Try These Other Christmas Cookies
- Cranberry Linzer Cookies
Why This Recipe Tastes So Good
This cookie is a delicious combination of cranberry and orange. The cookie is based on a traditional Linzer cookie recipe using almond flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg plus a generous amount of orange zest to give it a great citrus flavor. The cranberry comes from the cranberry curd filling, which has a hint of orange from the orange zest and juice. The tart cranberry curd when combined with the sweet orange cookie makes the perfect bite.
Why Use Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour
The traditional linzer cookie uses almond flour. Though if you're adventurous you can use hazelnut flour as I did in my Hazelnut Linzer Cookies. I prefer using Bob's Red Mill Superfine Almond Flour because it tastes great. If you taste it by itself, it takes just like almonds.
It's made with 100% California almonds and nothing else. No fillers, no anti-caking agents. It's a superfine grind which means that it mixes in great with the other ingredients and doesn't clump up. And when you taste the final bake the flavor of the almonds comes. This almond flour is also great if you're gluten-free or just want to try a flour alternative.
Cranberry Linzer Cookie Recipe Ingredients
This recipe combines two recipes:
- Orange Linzer Cookie. If you love orange, you'll love this cookie. Orange is one of my favorite holiday flavors, so I was excited when I came up with this cookie. With the addition of almond flour, the cookie is delicate, crumbly and buttery.
- Cranberry Curd. The cranberry curd is tart and a beautiful bright red. It tastes great as a biscuit spread, but it's also thick enough to use a cake filling or a tart and in this instance a cookie filling. See my recipe for Cranberry Meringue Tart on how to use it as a tart filling.
See my recipe for cranberry curd and make it at least one day before baking the cookies. Here is what you'll need for this recipe:
- Bob's Red Mill Unbleached All-Purpose Flour. The flour provides the structure for the cookies. I prefer Bob's Red Mill flour because of the consistent quality.
- Bob's Red Mill Almond Flour. Almond flour adds a nutty flavor to the cookie. This is my preferred brand because of how well it mixes in with other flavors.
- Fresh Oranges. You'll need fresh oranges for the orange zest and juice. Both the cookies and the curd have orange zest in them.
- Unsalted Butter. Butter adds fat and flavor to the cookie and helps create a creamy cranberry curd.
- Granulated Sugar. The sugar adds sweetness to the cookie. I don't use a alot of sugar for this cookie because I prefer it not to be too sweet, but if you want a sweet cookie you can increase it to 3/4 cup.
- Egg Yolks. The egg yolks help produce a tender cookie.
- Ground Cinnamon. The cinnamon adds a slightly sweet and spicy note to the cookie.
- Ground Nutmeg.
- Fresh or Frozen Cranberries. Use fresh or frozen cranberries for the cranberry curd. If using frozen cranberries, don't thaw them before before making the curd.
How to Make the Cranberry Curd
Use this recipe to make the Cranberry Curd. It can be made up to one week in advance and refrigerated until the cookies are made and ready to be filled.
How to Make the Orange Linzer Cookies
This cookie can be made in either a stand mixer or a food processor. The trick to making a cookie dough that is easy to handle is to use cold butter. See the recipe for steps for making the dough with either the stand mixer or the food processor.
Place the sugar in a bowl and zest the orange directly into the sugar. Use your fingers to rub the zest into the sugar until it's very fragrant and the sugar has turned orange.
Add the sugar, all-purpose flour, almond flour, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg to the bowl of the stand mixer. Mix on medium-low speed for 30 seconds to combine the ingredients.
Cut the cold butter into small cubes and add it to the dry ingredients. Mix on medium-low speed until the mixture resembles large bread crumbs. This part will take 6-7 minutes, depending on your mixer.
Add the egg yolks and mix on medium-low speed just until the dough comes together and the dough has pulled away from the sides of the bowl.
Gather the dough into a ball and press it together. Divide it in half and on a lightly floured surface shape each half into a rectangle or square. Wrap each half in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes.
How to Bake the Cookies
Remove the cookie dough from the refrigerator, one half at a time. Let it sit at room temperature for about 5 minutes (this will make it easier to roll out).
Flour your work surface. Roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. As you're rolling out the dough rotate it a quarter turn. Rotating the dough will help ensure even thickness. Any time the dough starts to stick to the surface, gently lift the dough and add flour to the surface. If the dough starts to stick to the rolling pin add flour to the rolling pin.
Cut the cookies out and then use a smaller cookie cutter (your preferred shape) to cut the center out of half the cookies. Use fork tines to prick holes into the cookies that will be the bottom.
Bake the cookies on a lined cookie sheet for 10-12 minutes, just until the top edges turn slightly brown. Remove the cookies from the oven, let them cool for 5 minutes and then move them to a cooling rack.
How to Assemble the Cranberry Linzer Cookies
Put the top of the cookies on parchment paper and dust them with powdered sugar using a fine-mesh strainer.
Place two teaspoons of cranberry curd on the bottom half of the cookies and use a small spatula knife to spread the curd almost to the edge. Add the top cookie and lightly press together.
How to Store the Cookies
Once the cookies are assembled store them in the refrigerator for up to one week. As the cookies sit with the cranberry curd they will become softer.
Pro Tips for Making This Recipe
- Use unsalted butter for this recipe. It makes it easier to control the amount of salt.
- Weigh your ingredients, especially the all-purpose flour and almond flour. Weighing the ingredients will ensure the cookies aren't dry or too delicate.
- Let the dough chill before rolling it out. Chilling the dough will make it easier to rollout and help the cookies keep their shape when baking.
- Bake one pan of cookies at a time.
- Let the cookie sheets cool completely before adding the next batch of cookies. Placing cookie dough on warm sheet pans will cause the cookie to start to soften and you may lose the defined shape of the cookie.
Recipe - Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, you can freeze the cookie dough for up to one month. You can even cut out the cookies, freeze them on a sheet tray in a single layer then place them in a freezer bag.
No, you cannot ship the filled linzer cookies because the cranberry curd must be refrigerated. You can ship the unfilled cookies, which are really tasty on their own.
You can use raspberry or strawberry jam for this cookie. both flavors work well with the orange. You can also use chocolate ganache.
Try These Other Christmas Cookies
If you're looking for more Christmas cookie ideas check out these recipes:
- Cranberry and Pistachio Shortbread Cookies
- Chocolate Shortbread Sandwich Cookies
- Pecan Caramel Chocolate Bars
- Apple and Tart Cherry Rugelach
Cranberry Linzer Cookies
- 1/2 cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons orange zest
- 1 -3/4 cups (250 grams) Bob’s Red Mill All-purpose flour
- 1 -1/4 cups (140 grams) Bob’s Red Mill Almond Flour
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup (227 grams) unsalted butter, cold
- 2 egg yolks (40 grams)
- 1/2 cup (115 grams) powdered sugar
Orange Linzer Cookie
- For both methods cut the butter into small cubes, place them in a bowl and refrigerate until ready to add to the other ingredients.
Stand Mixer Method
- Place the sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer and zest an orange into a sugar until you have about 2 teaspoons. Use your fingers to rub the orange zest into the sugar until the sugar has turned a light orange and it’s very fragrant.
- Add the all-purpose flour, almond flour, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and salt to the bowl with the sugar. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds until the ingredients are well combined.
- Add the cubed butter to the other ingredients. Mix on medium low speed until the mixture resembles large breadcrumbs, about 7 minutes. Add the egg yolks and mix on low speed until the dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl and starts to form a ball.
Food Processor Method
- Place the sugar in a small bowl and zest an orange into a sugar until you have about 2 teaspoons. Use your fingers to rub the orange zest into the sugar until the sugar has turned a light orange and it’s very fragrant.
- Put the all-purpose flour, almond flour, ground cinnamon, ground nutmeg, and salt in the work bowl of the food processor and add the sugar. Process the mixture for 30 seconds to combine them.
- Add the cubes of butter to the dry ingredients. Pulse the ingredients about 30 times until the mixture resembles large breadcrumbs. Beat the egg yolks together and as the food processor is running slowly pour the egg yolks into the cookie dough. Process the dough just until it starts to come together.
For Both Methods
- The dough should weigh about 780 grams. Divide the dough in half (390 grams each half), shape each half into a rectangle and wrap each one in plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough for at least 45 minutes and up to 2 days.
Baking the Cookies
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or Silpat.
- Lightly flour your work surface. Roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. If the dough starts to stick as it’s being rolled out add a little flour to the work surface. If it starts to stick to the rolling pin, rub flour on the rolling pin.
- Use a round cookie cutter 2-1/4 inch in size and cut out the cookies. In half of the cookies, cut out the center using a miniature heart, star shape, or circle shape cutter. For the other cookies that will be the bottm prick them with the tines of a fork.
- Reroll the cookie dough scraps and cut out additional cookies. Repeat this step until all the cookie dough is used up.
- Place the cookies on the cookie sheet and bake for 10-12 minute or until the edges are lightly browned. Remove the cookies from the oven let them cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes then place them on a cooling rack.
- Assemble the Cookies
- Pair the tops and bottoms of the cookies. For a decorative effect sprinkle the top parts of the cookies with powdered sugar. Place 2 teaspoons of cranberry curd on each bottom half, and spread the curd almost to the edge of the cookie. Add the cookie top and press together. The cookies are ready to eat.
- The cookies can be stored in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to two weeks. The longer the cookies sit, the softer the cookies will be become.