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Sparkling Cranberry Gems


Sparkling Cranberry Gems Recipe

Coarse white sugar gives these cookies their sparkle; their relatively healthy content makes them gems! With less than half a teaspoon of fat per cookie, lower sugar content, plus loads of antioxidants from the cranberries, these tangy-sweet, mildly chewy treats are much less guilt-inducing than most cookies.

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At a glance

3 dozen cookies
Nutrition information


Choose your measure:


  • 1 cup King Arthur White Whole Wheat Flour, organic preferred; or King Arthur Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 cups dried cranberries, packed
  • 2 tablespoons confectioners' sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract
  • 3/8 cup (6 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, cut into pats
  • 3 tablespoons milk



  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease (or line with parchment) two baking sheets.
  2. Place the flour and dried cranberries in the bowl of a food processor. Process until the cranberries are coarsely shredded. Imagine a single dried cranberry cut into about 4 pieces: that's your goal.
  3. Whisk together the flour/cranberry mixture, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Add the vanilla and butter, mixing until the butter is thoroughly distributed, but some pea-sized chunks still remain.
  4. Dribble in the milk while mixing; the dough will become cohesive.
  5. Place the coarse sugar in a plastic bag; about 1-quart size should do.
  6. Using a teaspoon cookie scoop (or a spoon), scoop the dough by 1 3/4-teaspoonfuls (about 1 1/4" balls) into the bag, 6 or 8 at a time.
  7. Close the top of the bag, and gently shake to coat the balls with sugar.
  8. Place them on the prepared baking sheet, and use the bottom of a glass to flatten them to about 1/4" thick (about 1 1/2" in diameter). Repeat with the remaining dough.
  9. Bake the cookies for 16 to 17 minutes, until they're set and barely, BARELY beginning to brown around the very edge; the tops shouldn't be brown at all. Remove them from the oven, and cool right on the pan.
  10. Store, covered, for 5 days at room temperature, or freeze for longer storage.

Nutrition Information

  • Serving Size 1 cookie, 15g
  • Servings Per Batch 36
Amount Per Serving:
  • Calories 60
  • Calories from Fat 20
  • Total Fat 2g
  • Saturated Fat 1g
  • Trans Fat
  • Cholesterol 5mg
  • Sodium 30mg
  • Total Carbohydrate 10g
  • Dietary Fiber 1g
  • Sugars 7g
  • Protein 1g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.