If you’re bored of the usual Oat and Raisin Cookies, we have a great recipe suggestion for you. With Christmas fast approaching, we’re making Christmas Spiced Orange Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies. They are soft and chewy, generously studded with cranberries and orange peel and smell of all things Christmas – cinnamon, nutmeg and ground ginger!
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A Gift Of Oat And Cranberry Cookies?
These Spiced Oat Cookies have so many uses! Aside from eating them as soon as they’re ready, these are great to pack in little bags for small Christmas gifts for your loved ones.
Furthermore, they are an absolute saviour when you have unexpected guests. Using simple ingredients and ready in under 25 minutes, they are perfect when you are short on time or caught by surprise!
They also make a great snack to pack for work or on a hike: I’ve just made the first batch for Seb to take to work instead of his usual flapjacks and granola bars!
Christmas in A Cookie
The flavours in this spiced oat cookies recipe go so well together! And most importantly, they all come together in one huge flavour called CHRISTMAS! Yes, the rich caramelly sweetness of brown sugar, the slightly sour cranberries, the chewy orange peel and the warmth of the spices dance in your mouth to the tune of your favourite Christmas songs. Before you finish one, you will be reaching for another…
Why You Will Love These Orange Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies
- The simplest cookies you will ever make: no chilling, no rolling, no piping and very minimal cooling time!
- Ready in under 25 minutes – start to finish! Just perfect for the busy festive period!
- Simple ingredients commonly found at home over the holiday season.
- Very soft and chewy – just like all the cookies should be!
- They keep very well in airtight containers or bags (up to 2 weeks) so it’s a perfect gift to give to your loved ones! What says “Merry Christmas” better than cookies, right?
Ingredients and Substitutes
- butter: we used unsalted butter, at room temperature. You can replace the butter with a baking spread, but your cookies will be more crunchy than chewy.
- brown sugar: we used light brown sugar in these Spiced Oat Cookies, which is a brilliant ingredient that helps retain moisture and make them so irresistibly soft and chewy. You may replace it with dark brown sugar though for a similar effect and slightly stronger molasses flavour. Using only white granulated sugar or caster sugar will produce tasty, but crunchier cookies.
- caster sugar: can be replaced with white granulate sugar. It ensures crisp edges of your cookies.
- vanilla bean paste: we love Nielson Massey products, but you can use the seeds from 1 vanilla pod, or simply add some vanilla extract instead.
- egg: medium in the UK, large in the US. Use fridge-cold eggs, to ensure your cookies don’t spread too much in the oven.
- flour: plain (all-purpose) flour.
- bicarbonate of soda: also known as baking soda, not to be confused with baking powder. You may use baking powder, but your cookies will be even softer, without the crispy edges. Almost cake-like.
- spices: ground cinnamon, ground ginger and nutmeg. If you wish, substitute all the spices for the same amount of mixed spice or pumpkin spice.
- rolled oats: also known as porridge oats or oatmeal will work great in this recipe. See more details in the section below.
- cranberries: dried cranberries, like Ocean Spray Craisins.
- orange peel: can be substituted with cut mixed peel.
What Oats To Use In Oat and Cranberry Cookies?
Oats generally come in three different forms: jumbo, rolled (a.k.a porridge) and instant oats. We have experimented with the three types, and the results are in! Rolled (porridge) oats were a clear winner. They provided just enough texture, but also absorbed the moisture well, making these spiced Cranberry Oatmeal cookies soft and chewy.
Instant oats produce a very soft and mushy cookie, that doesn’t really hold its shape. They spread out in the oven more and bent in half when picked up.
Jumbo oats, on the other hand, produced dry and crumbly cookies, that were more like a biscuit.
Method: How To Make Cranberry Oat Cookies?
Cream butter, brown and caster sugar, vanilla paste and a pinch of salt until light and fluffy. It’s best to use an electric handheld mixer for this. Then crack in an egg and beat again until the mixture is smooth and cohesive.
In a separate bowl, mix flour, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and ground ginger. Sift all the dry ingredients into your butter/egg mixture and fold until just combined. Then add the oats, cranberries and cut orange peel and mix until the fruit and oats are evenly distributed.
NOTE: If your mixture is extremely sticky, place the mixture in the fridge for 20 minutes to firm up.
Form small balls with the palms of your hands. They should be about the size of a small plum. Place the balls of your cranberry oatmeal cookies on the prepared baking sheet, spacing them out, as they will spread in the oven.
Bake in the centre of the oven for 10-12 minutes. That’s all they need. Your Spiced Oat Cookies will turn light brown and make your kitchen smell amazing!
Cool them on the baking sheet. If you want to decorate them, I suggest drizzling your Spiced Orange Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies with either dark or white chocolate (or both!).
If you followed the recipe exactly, they really shouldn’t be dry. It could be that your oven temperature runs a little high, and the cookies are overbaked. Another reason could be adding too much flour.
Generally speaking, it is the moisture and the sugar in your cookies. Using brown sugar, which has higher moisture content ensures that your Cranberry Oat Cookies stay soft and chewy.
These spiced oat cookies will need to be cooled to room temperature before placing them in an airtight container. You may stack them with a sheet of baking parchment in between. Store the cookies in a cool dark cupboard for up to 2 weeks.
We do not recommend freezing oatmeal cookies, as they are too soft and slightly sticky after thawing.
Other Christmas Baking Recipes To Try
If you’re looking for more inspiration to get you in the mood to make amazing treats for Christmas, have a look at our other suggestions:
- Sourdough Stollen
- White Chocolate and Orange Bread & Butter Pudding
- Cranberry and White Chocolate Flapjacks
Spiced Orange Cranberry Oatmeal Cookies
- 125 g butter room temperature
- 50 g brown sugar
- 40 g caster sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
- 1 egg fridge-cold
- 110 g flour
- ½ teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ⅛ tsp nutmeg
- 100 g rolled (porridge) oats
- 50 g dried cranberries
- 20 g cut orange peel
- Preheat the oven to 180°C Fan. Line large baking sheets with baking parchment.
- Using a handheld electric mixer, beat butter, brown and caster sugar, vanilla paste and a pinch of salt until light and fluffy. Then add an egg and beat again until the mixture is smooth.
- In a separate bowl, mix flour, bicarbonate of soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. Then fold the dry ingredinets into your wet ingredinets.
- Fold oats into the mixture, alongside cranberries and cut orange peel, if using.
- Using your hands roll small balls (about the size of a small plum) of mixture, then place on the prepared baking sheet. Make sure to leave 4-5 cm between cookies to leave them space to spread.
- Bake in the centre of the oven for 10 minutes. They should be golden brown and very soft when you take them out of the oven.
- Leave them to cool completely on the baking sheet.