The holiday season is approaching — do you have your go-to cookie recipe ready? Spritz cookies involve careful pressing, and Linzer cookies require filling and decorating. These cookies, however — lightly scented with orange zest and studded with white chocolate chips and dried cranberries — are full of holiday flavor and take next to no time to pull together.
The Ultimate Last-Minute Holiday Cookie
These are the cookies to keep in your back pocket when you forget about the kids' school holiday party or that cookie swap you committed to weeks ago. They're also the cookies to bake when you need just one more treat to round out your collection but don't want to fuss too much.
These treats have the texture of thick chocolate chip cookies — perfectly chewy and buttery — and fit the season, thanks to the classic combination of white chocolate and cranberry. It's a recipe you're guaranteed to turn to more than once these last remaining months of the year.
White Chocolate Cranberry Bar Cookies
Cooking spray or butter, for greasing the pan
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly grated orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon fine salt
1 cup dried cranberries
Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 350°F. Line a 9x13-inch metal, glass, or ceramic baking dish with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang on two opposite sides. Lightly grease the pan and parchment with cooking spray or butter.
Place the butter, granulated sugar, and brown sugar in a large bowl and use a wooden spoon to stir until well-combined (the mixture will not be smooth), about 30 seconds. Stir in the eggs, orange zest, and vanilla until completely combined. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix until just combined. Fold in the dried cranberries and white chocolate chips. Spread the batter into the prepared pan, using a spatula or your hands to press it into an even layer.
Bake until a tester inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs, 20 to 25 minutes in a metal pan or up to 30 minutes in a glass or ceramic pan. The edges should look firm and well-baked; the center should be moist but not gooey. Cool completely in the pan on a wire rack. Grasp the excess parchment and lift the cookie slab out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Cut into 32 pieces.
Storage: Store the baked cookies in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 4 days.