Fresh Cranberry Lemon Cookies

Fresh Cranberry Lemon Cookies

I wish I could fit the words “melt in your mouth” somewhere in the title of these cookies. These fresh cranberry lemon cookies are absolutely amazing. Maybe I’m the last person to figure it out, but lemon and cranberry are a match made in heaven, especially when surrounded by a cookie sweet enough to cut through the tartness. The cookies themselves are buttery and soft, and like I mentioned above, they really do melt in your mouth. I ate one before I added the lemon glaze on top, and also one after, and I have to tell you – don’t skip the lemon glaze. Even Mike, who isn’t the biggest cranberry fan, raved about these cookies. Please try them – I know you’ll love them!

Fresh Cranberry Lemon Cookies

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Fresh Cranberry Lemon Cookies


2 1/4 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp lemon zest
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, diced

Lemon Glaze:
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 Tbsp lemon juice


In a medium sized bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt in a bowl and set aside. In a large bowl, rub the lemon zest into the sugar until moist and fragrant. Add the butter to the lemon sugar and beat until light and fluffy – 3-5 minutes. Add the egg and vanilla, mixing until smooth. Add in the flour mixture, mixing until just incorporated. Fold in the cranberries by hand. Cover and chill for at least 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 350. Gently form the dough into balls and bake for 13-15 minutes on parchment lined cookie sheets. Let the cookies cool slightly before moving them to a rack to cool completely.

To make the glaze, mix the powdered sugar and lemon juice together, and drizzle over the fully-cooled cookies.

from BakeBreak

12 Days of Christmas Treats 2012 from What Megan's Making

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41 Responses to “Fresh Cranberry Lemon Cookies”

  1. 1

    Blog is the New Black — December 3, 2012 @ 8:34 am

    These look great- and so pretty!

  2. 2

    Erin @ Texanerin Baking — December 3, 2012 @ 10:22 am

    I don’t think I’ve ever even tried or seen cranberry lemon. I always do cranberry orange. But you’ve inspired me. Definitely going to try something out with that combo! These cookies look lovely. So festive looking, too. :)

    • megan replied: — December 3rd, 2012 @ 11:23 am

      Glad I’m not the only one who wasn’t aware of the cranberry lemon combo :)

  3. 3

    Becca @ Crumbs and Chaos — December 3, 2012 @ 10:31 am

    I’m so in love with cranberries lately! I’ll bet these are divine!

  4. 4

    sally @ sallys baking addiction — December 3, 2012 @ 11:32 am

    I was just telling my boyfriend yesterday that I want to make another cranberry cookie this holiday season! I bake SO MANY cookies this time of year and i need something “different” – this fits that bill quite nicely Megan! I love lemon cookies too – any lemon dessert, really! Yum.

  5. 5

    Erin @ Dinners, Dishes, and Desserts — December 3, 2012 @ 1:45 pm

    I just bought a bag of cranberries, with no ideas in mind. Now these look perfect for them!

  6. 6

    Julia — December 3, 2012 @ 3:07 pm

    I keep seeing cranberry cookies all over the web but these might be the best ones yet. I am a huge fan of lemon (along with cranberries) so it’s a great pair!

  7. 7

    Rachael {SimplyFreshCooking} — December 3, 2012 @ 4:38 pm

    Oh yum… This is the perfect Christmas cookie!

  8. 8

    Stephanie @ Macaroni and Cheesecake — December 4, 2012 @ 1:37 pm

    These are so gorgeous! and perfect for the holidays!

  9. 9

    sarah k @ the pajama chef — December 4, 2012 @ 2:52 pm

    i made cranberry lemon muffins recently that were amazing. i have no doubt that these cookies would be anything but!

  10. 10

    Bakeaholic — December 4, 2012 @ 3:37 pm

    I will be making these tomorrow for a Christmas Book Club party. I was thinking about doing cranberry orange, but I may just switch to cranberry lemon! I’ll let you know how they turn out and what the ladies say!
    Thanks for the inspiration.

    • megan replied: — December 4th, 2012 @ 9:26 pm

      I hope you like them! And yes, please let me know how they turn out :)

  11. 11

    Ashley @ Wishes and Dishes — December 5, 2012 @ 1:37 pm

    I’m adding these to my Christmas baking list!

  12. 12

    Iris Levine — December 6, 2012 @ 7:48 pm

    I made these cookies today….YUMMY! If you like sweet and sour, these are the cookies for you. The texture soft and almost cake like and the lemon icing is perfect.

    • megan replied: — December 6th, 2012 @ 7:51 pm

      I’m so glad you liked them! Thanks for stopping back to let me know how they turned out :)

  13. 13

    Kristy — December 10, 2012 @ 6:17 am

    Thank you!! A friend and I made 29 dozen cookies this weekend and these are by far one of our favorites from the bunch! I know this recipe will become a staple in our annual bakeathon. The lemon flavor is incredible and it is so nice to have something a bit tart among all the other sweet goodies!

    • megan replied: — December 10th, 2012 @ 6:55 am

      Oh my goodness, 29 dozen? That is impressive! And I’m glad these topped the list :) Thanks for letting me know!

  14. 14

    Adrienne McWithey — December 11, 2012 @ 12:42 am

    Can you tell me approx. how many cookies one batch makes? Thanks!

    • megan replied: — December 12th, 2012 @ 6:17 am

      I can’t remember exactly, but I think around 3 dozen. I’ll pay better attention next time I make them. :)

  15. 15

    Valerie — December 20, 2012 @ 5:42 am

    These cookies are great. I’ve been making them for holiday gifts and they are a big hit.

    • megan replied: — December 20th, 2012 @ 6:34 am

      I’m so glad you like them! :)

  16. 16

    stacy — November 24, 2013 @ 10:00 pm

    Im about a year late to the party, but we just made these. Amazing and yes melt in your mouth for sure! Even my 5 year old made them his new favorite.
    Thanks for a great recipe! This one is going in my binder!

  17. 17

    Lisa — December 10, 2013 @ 12:37 pm

    I am having my first “adult” Christmas gathering at my apartment this year and would love to prepare things ahead of time. Do you have any suggestions for preparing these cookies in advance? can all cookie dough be put into the freezer?

    I made these last year and they were a huge hit :)

    • megan replied: — December 10th, 2013 @ 2:58 pm

      You can actually bake the cookies ahead of time and stick them in the freezer. I do that all the time, and did it with these cookies last year. They were just fine after being defrosted. good luck! :)

  18. 18

    Debbie — December 12, 2013 @ 6:01 pm

    Megan, you have inspired me. I baked the same traditional cookies every year when my kids were growing up but last year tried some of the recipes you posted with great success on every one. These cookies are incredible. Only problem I see is that I should have doubled the recipe!

    • megan replied: — December 13th, 2013 @ 9:34 am

      You just made my day, thank you for the kind comment! I’m so glad you enjoyed these cookies – they are some of Mike’s favorites. Hope you’re doing well!! :)

  19. 19

    Tracey — December 16, 2013 @ 7:04 pm

    Wowzers! I’m not really a cookie person, as my taste buds prefer salty & fried. However, these are by far the best cookies I’ve ever eaten! Yummy!!! And so pretty to look at, too! These will now be my holiday cookies thanks to you! (And btw, I doubled the recipe and wound up with 60 golf ball sized cookies.)
    I recently made your thick & chewy M & M bars and those were delicious, too! Thanks for sharing your recipes!!! You’ve made me look like a pastry chef! :-)

    • megan replied: — December 17th, 2013 @ 9:32 am

      I’m so glad you liked these! (And the M&M bars!) Thanks for letting me know how many cookies you got as well, that’s always helpful. :)

  20. 20

    Tanya — December 17, 2013 @ 9:00 pm

    AMAZING!!! I have directed a friend to your site… all because of this yummy recipe! Worth the effort… and I made 36 cookies with one recipe…

  21. 21

    linda — December 17, 2013 @ 9:17 pm

    Wondering if frozen cranberries could be used?

  22. 22

    Becky Edwards — December 21, 2013 @ 9:35 pm

    These are so yummy! I received fresh cranberries in my fruit delivery box and needed to use them. I googled fresh cranberry cookie recipe and I’m so glad I found this! They are delicious! Mine required an additional 2 minutes to bake and they are fantastic! Thanks!

  23. 23

    Petrie Eve — January 20, 2014 @ 9:37 pm

    These were amazing! I didn’t make the glaze because I am a lazy bum but they were delicious none the less.

  24. 24

    Christmas Is Coming Part 3 – Lemon and Cranberry Cookies | littlebirdiebaking — March 23, 2014 @ 3:23 pm

    [...] from one of my favourite blogs ‘What’s Megan Making’. You can find the recipe here. As it’s an American recipe you will need some cups (or use a conversion website – I [...]

  25. 25

    Sarah — November 1, 2014 @ 11:35 pm

    These are the best cookies we have ever had!! Thanks Megan. I now need to make them gluten free for quests. Any tips?

  26. 26

    Cindy Owen — December 10, 2014 @ 7:09 pm

    I looked high and low for this recipe. I didn’t have fresh cranberries, but had a large bag of Craisins I purchased from a warehouse store. I modified the recipe with the craisins. I will try the original recipe when I find some fresh cranberries. I will let you know how they turned out.

  27. 27

    Mariagomez — December 22, 2014 @ 7:10 pm

    I made these cookies last night and they are delicious. I used orange zest since I did not have lemons and they were delicious.

    • megan replied: — December 24th, 2014 @ 7:15 am

      I’m so glad you liked them! I’ll have to try them with orange next time. :)

  28. 28

    Jen — December 22, 2014 @ 8:03 pm

    So good! I just finished the second batch and adding frosting. They taste like the perfect lemon cookie (I did use a little lemon juice extra in the dough). The cranberries are tasty but not over powering. I also chopped them in the food processor so there wouldn’t be big pieces of bitter cranberry. I will definitely make these again.

    • megan replied: — December 24th, 2014 @ 7:16 am

      I’m so glad you liked them! They are one of Mike’s favorite Christmas cookies.

  29. 29

    Gisela Szekely — December 22, 2014 @ 11:10 pm

    They are sooo good!!! Glad I decided to make them and I used fresh cranberries.
    Will keep these in my recipe file.

    • megan replied: — December 24th, 2014 @ 7:17 am

      I’m so glad you liked them, thanks for letting me know!

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