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

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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 into balls, 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

71 Comments

  1. 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.

  2. I have bags of whole cranberries. Can these be used instead of the dried cranberries?

    1. Michelle @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

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

  3. Can I leave out the almonds?

    1. Michelle @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Sandy, You can leave out the almonds without altering the recipe at all, though you could add extra dried cranberries and chocolate chips to the dough if desired.

  4. Susan Domenico’s says:

    Not sure what the instructions mean when it says roll out dough. Do you roll flat and use cookie cutter? They looked like drop cookies.

    1. I don’t think you roll out the dough.I think you just roll the dough into balls before baking.

  5. Samir elmegadess says:

    The best looking cookies, I will try it ASA I can get to make it.

    Thank you Sally ( one of my nieces name Sally)

  6. Hellooo Fall!!! These cookies are a nice alternative to chocolate chip cookies. They just scream Fall with each bite. Each to mix, bake and eat!!! Thank you!!!

  7. Sorry left off the stars… to busy eating cookies!!!

  8. Can i use walnuts instead of almonds?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Sure can!

  9. Hi,
    could you put the dough in a 8×8 or 9×9 pan and bake them into bars?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Carrie, absolutely! We recommend a 9×9 inch pan. We’re unsure of the exact bake time.

  10. Truly a great recipe! Thank you for sharing.

  11. Do you think pecans would work in place of almonds? I couldn’t find sliced or slivered almonds at the store but I think pecans and cranberries go well together.

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Absolutely!

  12. Would it work well here if the cranberries were replaced with dried cherries?

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Definitely! Dried cherries would be a delicious swap.

  13. Just stopping by to say how much I love these cookies, as I look this recipe for the hundredth time. I love the combination of flavors and the crisp edges. Perfection!

    1. Lexi @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Thank you so much for the kind note, Eleasa! So glad to hear these cookies are a favorite for you.

  14. Do the slivered almonds need to be toasted before they are added to the dough mixture?

    1. Stephanie @ Sally's Baking Addiction says:

      Hi Janine, We don’t toast them first but you certainly can for extra flavor.

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