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Cranberry and Pistachio Sable Shortbreads

Cranberry and Pistachio Sable Shortbreads

  • Author: Abbe Odenwalder
  • Prep Time: 20 Minutes
  • Cook Time: 18 Minutes
  • Total Time: 38 Minutes
  • Yield: 24 Cookies 1x
  • Category: Cookies
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


These cranberry and pistachio sable shortbreads are sandy and slightly salty with a touch of vanilla and the added flavors of tart cranberries and nutty pistachios.


Units Scale

12 T softened butter

1/3 c sugar

3/4 t vanilla

1/2 t flaky sea salt, such as Maldon or just sea salt

1 3/4 c flour

1/4 c chopped dried cranberries

1/4 c chopped pistachios

Sanding Sugar


With an electric mixer, cream butter until soft and whipped, 2-3 minutes or until light colored. (Use the best butter you can find.)

Add sugar and continue beating until incorporated, about 1 minute.

Add vanilla and sea salt and beat briefly.

Add flour and beat until almost incorporated and then add your cranberries and pistachios and beat until mixed in. Mixture will be very sandy. As long as it is moist and you can gather it into a plastic wrapped log you are OK. If not feel free to add another tablespoon of softened butter and beat until mixed in. (No this is not traditional, but it worked when I had to try this.)

Form dough into two plastic wrapped logs and shape into as round a log as you can get. Roll in sanding sugar. Transfer wrapped logs to refrigerator and chill until firm, but still sliceable. Usually you will need and hour, but this dough can be kept for several days in the fridge.

Preheat oven to 325 when ready to bake. Arrange racks in upper and lower thirds of oven. Remove plastic wrap from dough. Cut off ends if needed to make a straight slice. Slice each log into 12 slices. Arrange on an ungreased cookie sheet, spaced about 1 1/2″ apart.

Bake rotating cookie sheets after 9 minutes. Cookies should be firm and undersides just barely golden. Total baking time is about 18 minutes. Let cool on cookie sheet for 2 minutes and then transfer to wire racks to cool completely.

Cookies can be made up to two weeks ahead and kept in a covered container at room temperature. (If they last that long.)

Keywords: cranberry shortbread cookies, shortbread cookies, sable cookies, cranberry cookies, pistachio cookies, Christmas cookies