Perfectly soft and thick white chocolate cranberry cookies. One of my favorite flavor combinations ever!
Thanksgiving turkey is leaving me completely stuffed, but in my world… there is always room for another cookie. Especially a cookie that is so ultra soft, it tastes like a famous Mrs. Fields cookie or a Pepperidge Farm soft-baked cookie.
Overloaded with white chocolate chips and tangy dried cranberries, I’d like to say… come to mama you gorgeous softie!
A spin-off of my Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies, today’s cookie stands the true cookie test: remaining ultra-soft, even the next day.
What’s my secret? Cornstarch! Yes, cornstarch.
Making your baked cookies soft, thick, and chewy has never been easier. Add a touch of cornstarch to your cookie dough and prepared to be amazed. Think about it: often used as a thickening agent, cornstarch gives your gravy, pie fillings, soups, and glazes a more bodied and full texture. The same goes for your cookie dough – cornstarch will help your dough remain more compact during the baking process, leaving the cookies soft, thick, and puffy.
Look at how puffy it made my chocolate chip cookies!
Mixing cornstarch with all-purpose flour will give you cake flour; cake flour is a much softer flour than regular. The lack of high gluten content in cake flour makes the texture of your cakes and pastries much lighter.
While there is no cake flour in these cookies, you are getting the same soft-effect by mixing cornstarch with all-purpose flour. Moving along…
I adore white chocolate in cookies around the holidays. Well, I adore white chocolate cookies any time of year… but they are a favorite add-in when I’m doing my holiday baking. Dried cranberries give the cookies a bright festive color and provide a tart flavor burst in each bite. A soft cookie with a tangy punch of flavor. I like it!
White chocolate and dried cranberries are an impeccable combination, and these cookies are LOADED with both. Told ya, I am a sucker for super chunky cookies.
Most important about this cookie recipe is the baking time. You must watch the cookies closely – I didn’t even leave the kitchen as they baked. Take the cookies out of the oven at a precise 8 or 9 minutes. The cookies will appear soft and undone in the centers, but will eventually firm up as they set. Allow the cookies to cool for 5-10 minutes on the baking sheet after you remove them from the oven.
Also important in this cookie recipe is the use of dark brown sugar instead of light brown sugar. I swear by dark brown sugar in my oatmeal cookies – it gives the cookies a more chewy texture, less crispy texture. Light vs dark brown sugar is mostly interchangeable in dessert recipes. But I find that dark brown sugar gave these cookies a rich aroma and unique depth of flavor.
I know I sound like a broken record, but I just love dark brown sugar in cookies!
I chilled today’s cookie dough for about 3 hours. Chilling is certainly not necessary, but the cookies baked up a tad more thick when the dough had time to settle and chill out before hopping into the oven. If you’re strapped for time, don’t worry about it – the cookies will still be thick, soft, and chewy if the dough is not chilled. I recommend chilling, but do what your schedule allows.
Fresh out of the oven, these cookies are incredibly gooey – each bite will literally melt in your mouth. I brought them into work and they disappeared within 30 minutes. At 9am in the morning!
Trust me, these cookies are irresistible!
Soft-Baked White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies
Soft, thick, and puffy white chocolate chip cranberry cookies. The cornstarch is the secret!
Yield: 2 - 2.5 dozen
- 3/4 cup (1.5 sticks to 170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 1 large egg, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch (aka cornflour)
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup (135g) white chocolate chips
- 3/4 cup (105g) dried cranberries
In a large bowl using a hand-held mixer or stand mixer with paddle attachment, beat the butter for 1 minute on medium speed until completely smooth and creamy. Add the brown sugar and granulated sugar and mix on medium speed until fluffy and light in color. Mix in egg and vanilla. Scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl as needed.
In a separate bowl, combine flour, cornstarch, baking soda and salt. On low speed, slowly mix into the wet ingredients until combined. The cookie dough will be quite thick. Add the white chocolate chips and dried cranberries, mix for about 5 seconds until evenly disbursed. Cover dough tightly with aluminum foil or plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days. Chilling is mandatory for this cookie dough.
Remove cookie dough from the refrigerator and allow to sit at room temperature for 10 minutes. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
Once chilled, the dough will be slightly crumbly, but will come together if you work the dough with your hands as you roll into individual balls. Roll balls of dough, about 1 Tablespoon of dough each, into balls. Bake for 8-9 minutes, until barely golden brown around the edges. They will look extremely soft when you remove them from the oven. Allow to cool for 5 minutes on the cookie sheet. If the cookies are too puffy, try gently pressing down on them with the back of a spoon. They will slightly deflate as you let them cool. Transfer to cooling rack to cool completely.
Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. Baked cookies freeze well - up to three months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well - up to three months.
*Do not drop dough onto warm cookie sheets. Allow cookie sheets to cool completely between batches.
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