WRAL SmartShopper

WRAL SmartShopper

New cookie swap recipes: Cranberry Pistachio & Nut ball cookies

Posted December 18, 2015

2015 Cookie Swap cookies from JDouglas

The annual Smart Shopper Cookie Swap, Coupon Swap and Food Drive was tons of fun this year!

Here are even more of the recipes from the swap. These are two of my favorites!

Thanks to those who attended and all the goodies you brought. I am already looking forward to the 2016 swap!

These are the recipes I have received so far. If you have sent your recipe, but you don't see it here, please send it again via e-mail to

Recipes from JDouglas (added 12/18/15):

JDouglas' Mom's Nut Ball Cookies

2 sticks softened butter (8 oz total)
1/2 cup 10X confectioners (powdered) sugar - plus extra for coating later
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt only (not iodized)
2 cups AP flour
8 ounces (about 2 cups) finely chopped walnuts (toast walnuts first in oven, then cool, then chop)

In a stand mixer, beat together butter,1/2 cup sugar, and vanilla until very fluffy. Add remaining ingredients and mix on low just until combined.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and put oven rack in center of oven. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Using a small cookie scoop, scoop out about a teaspoon or so of dough for each cookie, rolling it in your hands to form a ball. Bake 15 - 25 minutes at 350 degrees. Your cookies should be very fragrant and just starting to turn a pale golden color. Remove from oven, let cool about 15 minutes.

In a one-gallon ziploc-type bag, put in about 1-1/2 cups or so of 10X sugar. Add cookies to bag, seal, and very gently turn bag over several times to coat cookies in sugar. You may need more than one bag -- don't overcrowd the cookies. You may also need to add more sugar. They should look like snowballs.

I usually double this recipe, but you can only fit one batch at a time in a 5 quart stand mixer bowl.

You can see a photo of the cookies above.

JDouglas' Cranberry-Orange-Pistachio Icebox Cookies

Adapted and modified from Martha

3 cups AP flour
1 scant teaspoon baking powder (non-aluminum)
2 sticks softened butter (8 oz. total)
1 cup granulated sugar
1 large egg
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt (not iodized salt)
Grated zest of four oranges (scrub well first)
2 or 3 heaping tablespoons frozen orange juice concentrate, melted in microwave for a few seconds
About 1 cup or more (to taste) dried cranberries (I used original flavor Craisins)
Coarsely chopped pistachios (the nut meat from 8 ounces of in-the-shell pistachios)
White Sparkling Sugar to coat dough logs and to sprinkle on top of cookies before baking

In stand mixer, beat together butter and sugar until very fluffy, at least five minutes. Beat in egg, oranges zest, and OJ concentrate until combined.

In a separate bowl, stir together flour, baking powder, and salt. Add to butter mixture and combine on low speed just till flour is incorporated. Add in pistachios and dried cranberries.

Form dough into logs about 1 1/2 inch in diameter and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm enough to slice cleanly -- at least two hours.

When ready to bake, preheat oven to 350 degrees and put oven rack in center of oven. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. Roll dough logs in sparkling sugar. Slice about 1/8 inch thick and place on parchment lined cookie sheet. Sprinkle the top of each cookie with a little more sugar. Bake about 10-14 minutes. The bottom of the cookies will brown lightly, but you don't want the tops to brown much. Cool and enjoy!

You can see a photo of the cookies above.

Recipes from TwinRedHeads (added 12/12/15):

To see the recipe for the Chewy White Chocolate Chip gingerbread cookies, see

For the Cinnamon Cookies recipes, head to

Recipe from Baseball2Hockey:

German Shortbread ( called Spritzgebaeck)

4 sticks butter or margarine ( room temperature)
3/4 cup powdered sugar
splash of vanilla
2 egg whites
3 cups flour

Beat butter and sugar until creamy. Add vanilla and one egg white at a
time and beat more until creamy and light in color. Add flour and
incorporate well. Put in pastry bag with a star tip attached and spritz
on a cookie sheet lined with a non-stick liner and bake at 350 degrees
for about 10-12 minutes or until it slightly turns color.

Slight variation if you like chocolate ones:
Add 2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa and 1/4 cup more powdered sugar when
creaming the butter.

Recipe from Ascherer:

To see the recipe for the Peppermint Bark Chocolate Cookies, head to

Recipes from Dr. D:

Cranberry Cookies

5 c. all-purpose flour

2 Tblsp. baking powder

3 ¾ c. sugar

2 ½ tsp. salt (or less)

3 ½ tsp. cinnamon

3 ½ Tblsp. grated orange rind

1 ½ c. + 2 Tblsp. shortening

3 lg. eggs, beaten

3 c. cranberries (1 pkg.)

chopped 2 ½ c. pecans, chopped

Mix dry ingredients, then cut in shortening. Add eggs, then cranberries and pecans. Form the dough into
balls the size of a walnut or slightly smaller. Roll in sugar. Do not flatten the balls. Bake at 375 degrees
F. for about 12 minutes. This recipe makes about 4 batches and can be reduced as you want. The dough is
messy to handle; expect to stop to wash your hands frequently.

Chocolate Pixies

4 oz. unsweetened chocolate

2 c. all purpose flour
1/4 c. butter

2 tsp. baking powder

2 c. sugar

1/2 tsp. salt

3 eggs

1/2 c. chopped walnuts

confectioner's (powdered) sugar

In a large saucepan, melt chocolate and butter over low heat, stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Cool
slightly. Stir in remaining ingredients, except confectioners' sugar. Blend well. Chill at least 30 minutes.
Shape into balls using a rounded teaspoon for each. Roll in confectioners' sugar. Place on greased cookie
sheets. Bake at 300 degrees F. for 18 to 20 minutes. Cool. Makes 48 to 54 cookies.


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  • jdouglas13 Dec 18, 2015

    Nice photo of the cookies! Thanks for adding them. :)

    Barbiedoll, were the Oatmeal Raisin cookies yours? I know I spoke to whomever the lovely baker was, but I am very memory challenged, so please forgive me for that. I am waiting with baited breath for that recipe. They were so good!!

  • Faye Prosser -WRAL Smart Shopper Dec 12, 2015

    baseball2hockey - I did find the recipe in my e-mail from last year and just posted it.

    twinredheads - I just added your recipes as well.

    Thanks to all who have sent them in so far! I'll just keep updating as I receive new ones.

  • baseball2hockey Dec 12, 2015

    The cookies I brought were shortbread cookies (Spritzgebaeck) that I call "Buttons" I had made them last year,too. So I am not sure if you still have the recipes from last years swap. Faye, please let me know. If you don't have it anymore I will send it to you again.
    The other kind were carrot cake cookies made with a boxed carrot cake mix modified to make a cookie dough instead.

  • Faye Prosser -WRAL Smart Shopper Dec 11, 2015

    Thanks for sending the additional recipes, everyone! I'll post them as I get them and repost the main post each time.

  • twinredheads Dec 11, 2015

    JDOUGLAS13- I believe it was BASEBALL2HOCKEY that made the oatmeal raisin. I know she doesn't post much, but maybe she will see this and share:) I'll get my recipes to you as well Faye. Might try that now!

  • jdouglas13 Dec 11, 2015

    Vlynn, I made the walnut wedding cookies. Glad you enjoyed them! I promise to get the recipes to Faye as soon as I'm back home! :)

  • vlynn Dec 11, 2015

    I really liked those wedding cookie ones with walnuts, covered in powdered sugar. There was 2 sets, one with pecans which I'm allergic to so I couldn't try them :-( and the walnut ones which I devoured!

  • Dr D Dec 11, 2015

    Yes, BarbieDoll, we need that oatmeal raisin cookie recipe too! :-)

  • jdouglas13 Dec 11, 2015

    I will definitely send in my cookie recipes when I get back!

    There were some wonderful oatmeal raisin cookies -- I spoke to the baker at the time, and please forgive me, I can't remember who it was. I would LOVE that recipe! Those were by far the best oatmeal raisin cookies I've ever had. SO GOOD!!

    I'm hoping my DW has enjoyed the cookies this week as I didn't get a chance to try any except the oatmeal raisin before I left. :)

  • Pepper2 Dec 11, 2015

    Faye - Thanks!!!!! This was a great idea :)
    We have such awesome cooks here on the blog!
    I really wanted to go to the cookie swap and meet some of you (maybe next year) ...I can tell a good time was had by all. At least now I can enjoy some of the cookies :)
    I can hardly wait to start baking!!!
    Thanks again to all who share :)