Sugar Cookies – a versatile recipe for mix-ins

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Cranberry-Orange-Walnut Sugar Cookie 12-13 IMG_8772Prep 30 mins   Bake 10 mins   Eat 40 mins

Not a lot of time to bake cookies this year?   Try this delicious Sugar Cookie recipe and do some mix-ins.

At the cookie exchange.

At the cookie exchange.

That’s what I did to create this Cranberry-Orange Walnut Sugar Cookie when I was pushed against the clock before meeting up with the outrageous bakers in the Food Bloggers of Los Angeles for our annual Cookie Exchange.  (See links to all the FBLA recipes below.)   This was my first time at this event, since it usually conflicts with my Holiday Cookie Baking Class, which will be next Saturday, December 14, 2013.

The Table of Cookies at the Food Bloggers of Los Angeles Cookie Exchange

The Table of Cookies at the Food Bloggers of Los Angeles Cookie Exchange

I must say, there are some mighty fine bakers in this group and I’m making my way through the cookie tin I took home so I can taste them all.  Below you will find a link to all of these wonderful recipes from the Food Bloggers of Los Angeles.

Cranberry Orange Walnut Sugar Cookies

Cranberry Orange Walnut Sugar Cookies

How to make the Cranberry-Orange Walnut Sugar Cookies.

I took my basic Sugar Cookie recipe we bake every year in my Holiday Cookie Class and mixed in some dried cranberries, orange zest and walnuts.  So easy – try adding your own mix-ins.  Be creative.

What was left in my icing bag at the end.

What was left in my icing bag at the end.

Then I made a simple icing out of powdered sugar and orange juice.

Print This Recipe

Sugar Cookies with Mix-Ins and Icing

  • 3/4 cup butter (1 1/2 sticks), softened
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 3/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt

Mix-Ins: (use these or vary it up)

  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
  • 2 tsp zest from 1 large orange (orange part only, not the bitter white underneath part of the peel)


  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tbs. orange juice or use milk

1. In medium bowl, stir together flour, baking powder and salt. Set aside.

2. In large bowl with mixer, cream butter and sugar together until creamy.  Add in eggs and vanilla and mix until slushy.  Gradually add flour mixture and mix-ins to butter mixture and blend just until combined into a soft dough.

3. Shape dough into 3/4″ size balls and place slightly apart on ungreased baking sheets.  Flatten the balls so you have a flat top.

4. Bake in a 350° oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until edges begin to brown.  Transfer to wire racks to let cool completely before decorating.

5. While cookies are cooling, make icing.  Mix powdered sugar and orange juice together in a heavy zipper plastic bag.  Massage mixture with your hands until it is smooth.  Dribble in more orange juice as necessary. Cut off a tiny piece from the corner and squeeze the icing decoratively onto the cookies.  Let the cookies sit until icing is dry and the cookies can be stacked between sheets of wax or parchment paper for storage.   Enjoy with a glass of milk!

FBLA 2013 Cookie Exchange Recipes

Non-Cookie Items

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