Dark Chocolate Cranberry Almond Cookies

These dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies are massively thick, buttery soft, and spiced with warm cinnamon. Loaded with cranberries, almonds, and pools of melted dark chocolate, texture lovers will delight in the decadence.

stack of dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies

These dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies are truly one of our best cookie recipes. There’s really no comparison to dark chocolate and these cookies are bursting with it! When developing today’s recipe, we were inspired by these soft chocolate chip cookies. They’re always a hit and we know many of you feel the same way about their unbeatable texture.


Tell Me About these Dark Chocolate Cranberry Almond Cookies

  • Texture: You’ll enjoy extra soft and thick cookie centers with irresistibly crisp edges.
  • Flavor: So much flavor! The cookies are filled with dark chocolate, spiced with warm cinnamon, and have pops of nutty and tart flavors from the almonds and cranberries.
  • Time: You can prepare the cookie dough within minutes, but you’ll need 2 hours to chill it before baking. It’s a fairly sticky dough and without time in the refrigerator, the cookie dough will melt into flat greasy puddles all over the baking sheet. 

overhead image of dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies

Recipe Testing: What Works & What Doesn’t

This cookie dough is a little bit of a test experiment, based off our soft chocolate chip cookies.

  1. Flour: We add a teeny bit of flour to bulk up the dough, but not too much to dry out the baked cookies – only 2 extra Tablespoons.
  2. Cornstarch: The cookies are still super soft even after we reduced the cornstarch to 1 teaspoon.
  3. Cinnamon: Just a hint of cinnamon gives these cookies that warm, cozy flavor. 
  4. Texture Boosters: We add plenty of real dark chocolate, a generous handful of dried cranberries, and some sliced almonds for even more crunchy texture.
  5. One thing we didn’t change: We still use more brown sugar than white granulated sugar in this recipe. Remember, brown sugar is what helps create a super soft and tender dough.

dark chocolate cranberry almond cookie dough in a glass bowl

Best Chocolate to Use

  • Dark chocolate bars. We recommend using quality dark chocolate bars. We usually use Baker’s brand, but Ghirardelli, Lindt, or Nestlé baking bars also work beautifully. What we love most about using real chocolate bars (as opposed to chocolate chips which contain stabilizers) is that real chocolate melts down. Melty chocolate means pools of melted chocolate inside each warm cookie. Is that enough to convince you? 
  • Chocolate chips. Though we prefer the bars, you could also use dark chocolate chips – Ghirardelli makes a 60% bittersweet chocolate chip that would be fantastic in these. 
  • Other types of chocolate. Of course, if dark chocolate just isn’t your thing, don’t worry. Semisweet, milk chocolate, or even white chocolate work too. 

dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies

dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies

More Cookie Recipes You’ll Love

Print
clock clock icon cutlery cutlery icon flag flag icon folder folder icon instagram instagram icon pinterest pinterest icon facebook facebook icon print print icon squares squares icon heart heart icon heart solid heart solid icon
stack of dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies

Dark Chocolate Cranberry Almond Cookies

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 12 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours, 35 minutes
  • Yield: 24 cookies
  • Category: Dessert
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American

Description

These dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies are massively thick, buttery soft, spiced with cinnamon, and loaded with cranberries, almonds, and pools of melted dark chocolate.


Ingredients

  • 2 cups + 2 Tablespoons (265g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup (1.5 sticks or 170g) unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
  • 3/4 cup (150g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 6 ounces (170g) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped*
  • 3/4 cup (105g) dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup (55g) sliced, slivered, or chopped almonds (I used closer to 2/3 cup)*

Instructions

  1. Whisk the flour, baking soda, cornstarch, cinnamon, and salt together in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl using a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and both sugars together on medium-high speed until smooth and creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla and beat on high speed until combined, about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides and up the bottom of the bowl and beat again as needed to combine.
  3. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and mix on low until combined. With the mixer running on low speed, beat in the chocolate, dried cranberries, and almonds until combined. Cover and chill the dough for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator (and up to 4 days). If chilling for longer than a few hours, allow to sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes before rolling and baking because the dough will be quite hard.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set aside.
  5. Roll cookie dough, about 1.5 Tablespoons of dough per cookie, and place 3 inches apart on the baking sheets. Bake for 11-13 minutes or until lightly browned on the sides. The centers will look very soft.
  6. Remove from the oven and allow cookies to cool on the baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. While the cookies are still warm, I like to press a few more chocolate chunks/dried cranberries/or almonds into the tops– this is only for looks!

Notes

  1. Make Ahead Instructions: Cookies stay fresh covered at room temperature for up to 1 week. You can make the cookie dough and chill it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. Allow to come to room temperature then continue with step 4. Baked cookies freeze well for up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough balls freeze well for up to 3 months. Bake frozen cookie dough balls for an extra minute, no need to thaw. Here’s how to freeze cookie dough!
  2. Special Tools (affiliate links): KitchenAid Stand Mixer, Silpat Baking Mat, Baking Sheet, and Cooling Rack
  3. Chocolate: I used 1 and 1/2 4-ounce bars of Baker’s bittersweet chocolate to get the 6 ounces. You can also use a semi-sweet chocolate bar, a milk chocolate bar, or a white chocolate bar. 1 cup of chocolate chips works too!
  4. Almonds: Anywhere around 1/2 – 2/3 cup sliced almonds is perfect.

Keywords: dark chocolate cranberry almond cookies

137 Comments

  1. Hi Sally! I’ve never mixed the egg on high speed before when making this type of cookie dough. Does it produce a different effect than mixing the egg at a lower speed?

    1. Hi Robin! No major difference that I’ve noticed in traditional drop-style cookies.

  2. Hi
    My daughter has a dairy allergy have you ever made these with coconut oil? Or a butter substitute?

    They looks delicious!
    Thanks!
    Molly

    1. Hi Molly! A few readers have replaced the butter with softened coconut oil in this recipe and other cookie recipes like it. They’ve enjoyed the results. Same amount of coconut oil. I haven’t tried it, but let me know if you do!

  3. Susan Drummond says:

    Hi Sally! I love every recipe of yours that I’ve tried. One question, when you say roll the cookie dough, do you mean roll each portion into a ball? I’m no quite clear on that. Thanks!
    Susan

    1. Yes, exactly!

  4. Sally, is there any way in which I could incorporate some oats into these? I love oatmeal cookies with all sorts of add-ins like in these. Or would you recommend using another recipe for oatmeal cookies and then adding the add-ins from this recipe? Thanks!

    1. I recommend using my oatmeal chocolate chip cookies recipe. You can swap in dark chocolate chips, sliced almonds, and dried cranberries. Enjoy!

  5. Ellen Liberman says:

    Cookies are my thing. Every Christmas, I make 13 different kinds and give them away. I always try a new one, and this year it was this recipe. O.M.G. My new favorite! I’ve made them twice since — the combination of flavors and texture is nothing short of addictive. Small quibble — the recipe only makes 3 dozen. Brava, Sally!

  6. I really love this base recipe except that I’m not getting the crisp edge. All ingredients are weighed, thermometer in the oven & cookies baked to golden brown. My only changes are omitting cinnamon and using 10.75 oz chocolate chips as the only mix-in. The exterior is just slightly too soft. Any suggestions?

    1. A couple extra minutes in the oven should help, but I also have these crispy chocolate chip cookies too. You could add the dried cranberries and almonds to that cookie dough too!

  7. Can you make this recipe as bars instead of cookies, and if so, what size pan should I use?
    Thanks

    1. Absolutely! I recommend a 9×9 inch pan.

      1. how long would you bake them for then if you are making them as bars?
        Thanks

      2. how long would you bake them for if making them as bars in a 9×9

    2. Maureen, did you ever try them as bars and if so, what was the baking time and how did they turn out?

  8. If you left out the almonds would you need to add another ingredient to make up for that? I am not a nut lover. Thank you!

    1. No need to alter the recipe at all, though you could add extra dried cranberries and chocolate chips to the dough if desired.

  9. I have been following you for a few years and have tried many of your recipes with good success . I cannot figure out why this particular cookie spread so much and came out a bit greasy. I made the first batch and it spread so flat. It deflated even more when I cooled them. I tried it again, with the same result. I chilled them overnight. I shaped them taller rather than rounder. I ran my silicone mats in the dishwasher. My oven may run a bit hotter but I don’t think it would make them spread. I used room temperature butter, which I put out for 1/2 hour before I used it. Do you think that would cause this? I am so disappointed, this cookie looked great in your picture.

    1. Hi Marcie, How frustrating! Sounds like you are doing most things right – hopefully my guide to prevent cookies from spreading will help you troubleshoot these cookies!

  10. Hi Sally! Could I double this recipe or do you recommend making two separate batches?

    1. Hi Tatiana! You can double the cookie dough with no issue.

  11. You’ve created another winner, Sally! I could not wait to try this recipe when I saw it come up in my FB feed recently. I loved the combination of textures and flavors from the bittersweet chocolate, craisins, and almonds. I used Ghiraredelli’s bittersweet chocolate chips, and their chips seem to take a long time to set up after cooling, so they were still melty and gooey for a long time, so for me, I feel that these work just as well as cutting up a bar of chocolate. I was worried that the cinnamon would be off-putting. Sometimes, I’ve tried recipes with chocolate and cinnamon together, and I don’t always love it. BUT, I thought since this was my first time making these, I should just risk trying the recipe as-is. I’m really glad I did. The cinnamon wasn’t off-putting at all. In fact, when I asked my husband if he could detect the cinnamon, he said he couldn’t either. The cookie just has a good flavor. The thickness of the cookie is perfect, too. I definitely think it needs more sliced almonds, like Sally mentioned using 2/3 cup. I only used 1/2 cup, since the bag of sliced almonds I had was only a 1-cup bag, and I was hoping to make a second batch. For those who don’t care for nuts, I honestly don’t think the nuts would be off-putting. Since they’re thinly sliced, you don’t get the same eating experience as if you were biting into coarsely chopped nuts. I think these are really delicious… and I’m about to make the dough for a second batch later this afternoon. 😀

  12. I tried this recipe using a 1:1 substitute of gluten-free flour (which your supposed to). Overall, excellent cookie! Great flavors, love the chocolate, cranberries, almond combo. The only thing I personally did not like was the amount of add ins, which made it seem a bit overwhelming when eating the cookie. When I make them again, I will decrease the bits and cranberries by one-half and the chocolate down to 4 oz.

  13. Hi Sally! Are chocolate baking bars the same as chocolate compound? Also, can I use chocolate couverture chips instead of chocolate bars for cookie recipes ?

    1. Hi Lyra! It depends– chocolate compound can contain additional sweeteners, but they are (generally) fine to use where a recipe calls for pure chocolate baking bars. You can use chocolate couverture chips instead.

  14. I was trying to decide between this and the pistacho cranberry white chocolate ones. I like the flavor combo of those but want these thick lovely cookies. Could I just sub pistachios and white chocolate chips here? Should I chop the pistachios?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Krithika, Yes you can definitely use white chocolate chips and pistachios in these cookies! No need to chop the shelled pistachios first. Enjoy 🙂

  15. Hi – I need to omit the cornstarch as I can’t eat corn. Any recommendation for a substitute?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Meghan, You can leave out the cornstarch. It’s just there for added softness, but the cookies are plenty soft even without it.

  16. Hi Sally! I was wondering if I could use fresh cranberries for this? Thanks!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Allie, We don’t recommend fresh cranberries in this cookie recipe.

    2. This cookie baked up amazingly, as you mention elsewhere, the key is that the dough is slightly cold to control spread. For me, the chocolate tends to overwhelm the cranberries and almonds with that tasty base, but I’m not a chocolate chip fan, so will make this again without the chocolate. Any adjustments needed other than increasing berries? Or maybe I’ll grab some dried cherries as well….

  17. Hi sally, cookies came out really yummy but didn’t turn out the same way as the ones in your photo. They looked undercooked even though I followed your instructions step by step. Might there be a reason why they didn’t spread or brown as nicely?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Chloe, When cookies aren’t spreading, it usually means that there’s too much dry ingredient (flour) soaking up all the liquid. Make sure you are properly measuring your flour. When measuring flour, use the spoon & level method. Do not scoop the flour out of the container/bag. Doing so leaves you with excess flour in the cookie dough. If you’re in the middle of baking a batch and the cookies still aren’t spreading, remove them from the oven, and use a spoon to slightly flatten them out before returning them to the oven.

  18. Hi Sally,
    can I make it by replacing flour by blanched almond. Thank you

  19. These cookies are the cats pajamas! So good and very do-able for a beginner baker! I’m so pleased with this recipe.

  20. Hi, I’m just wondering, could I add the same additions (chocolate, cranberries, and almonds) to your chewy chocolate chip cookie recipe? I love a really chewy cookie!

    1. Trina @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Definitely! Would love to hear how they go, Abby.

  21. Can you use fresh cranberries?

  22. Hi Sally
    Recipe looks amazing! Want to try it. How can I replace the egg? I cannot eat eggs
    Thanks!

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Mandy, We have not tested this recipe with an egg substitute but let us know if you try anything.

  23. Jeanette Morrissey says:

    Hi Molly,
    Can I use frozen cranberries in this recipe ? Jeanette

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Jeanette, we don’t recommend it. Best to stick with dried cranberries here. Let us know if you give these a try!

  24. Do I have to chill the dough for the 2 hours or can I just go to the baking part? If so, what does the chilling do for the dough? Thanks

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Irma, chilling the dough for at least 2 hours is imperative for this recipe. Without chilling, the cookies will spread too much in the oven. If you’re interested, we share more about the importance of chilling cookie dough in this post on 5 Cookie Baking Tips to Improve Your Next Batch.

1 2 3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

With kitchen-tested quality recipes and step-by-step tutorials, my goal is to give you the confidence to bake and cook from scratch.

Sally's signature

Recipes You’ll Love

Archives

Categories

Join the community on the 1st of every month as we tackle a new challenge recipe. Review Sally's Baking Challenge FAQ page if you have any questions.

View More

A tradition since 2013, every December we countdown to Christmas with 10 new cookie recipes in a row!

View More

The first week of every November is all about Thanksgiving Pies.

View More

My Cookbooks

Sally's Cookbooks

About Sally

Welcome to my Kitchen!

I’m Sally, a cookbook author, photographer, and blogger. My goal is to give you the confidence and knowledge to cook and bake from scratch while providing quality recipes and plenty of pictures. Grab a cookie, take a seat, and have fun exploring! more about Sally

×