Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies

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Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

This is kind of an uncharacteristically healthy cookie for me. (If you know me, you know it’s not often that I start tossing flax seeds and oats into my baked goods.) The recipe is my version of a super-yummy cookie that Whole Foods sells. They’re a real treat, but at almost $7 for a handful of cookies, I wanted to see if I could noodle out a similar recipe at home, based on one of my oatmeal cookie doughs. These come pretty close—and cost a lot less!

They’re chewy, and studded with a generous amount of sweetened, dried cranberries. (Yep, those are Craisins.)

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Sweetened, dried cranberries

They’re fragrant with almonds from a generous amount of almond extract and a cup of sliced nuts. With such a strong marzipan-y flavor, I’ll take these over a granola bar anytime I’m craving an energy-packed snack. (A healthier snack that doesn’t taste like it? Yes, please!)

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Sliced almonds

A handful of flax and sunflower seeds add some texture and nice crunch. For the sunflower seeds, be sure to get unsalted sunflower seeds (not the dry roasted kind).

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Unsalted sunflower seeds

Flax seeds are fabulous for you. They’re packed with Omega-3s and protein. Most of the larger U.S. grocery stores carry the glossy little seeds these days. Whole Foods will definitely have ’em if you’re having trouble finding them in your neck of the woods.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Flax seeds

 

The trick to keeping these cookies nice and chewy is to undercook them ever-so-slightly. This means yanking them out of the oven when they look firm and are *just* starting to brown on the edges. (If you bake them ’til they’re very brown on top, they’ll be crispy—not chewy—when they cool.)

Take a peek at the pictures towards the end of this post, so you know just what you’re looking for.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Exciting stuff at The Hungry Mouse!

A quick update for you before we head to the ovens.

As some of you know, The Angry Chef and I have been in the process of relocating to Salem, Massachusetts—a fabulous—town about 20 minutes north of Boston.

It’s rich in history, and is home to a thriving community of artists, cooks and foodies, and other wonderful folks. We’re looking forward to showing you around the area in the coming months.

So! With the move pretty much done, we’re gearing up to celebrate our first anniversary (!!!) next month. We have a handful of over-the-top giveaways and contests planned—plus a very exciting and special announcement! Stay tuned!

Alrighty. To the kitchen!

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies

8 Tbls. butter (that’s 1 stick or 1/2 cup)

3/4 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed

1 egg

2/3 cup flour

1/2 tsp. baking soda

pinch of salt

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/2 tsp. almond extract

1 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats

1 1/2 cups dried, sweetened cranberries

1 cup sliced almonds

2 Tbls. flax seeds

2 Tbls. unsalted sunflower seeds

Makes about 2 dozen large cookies

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or silicone baking mats. Set them aside.

Make the cookie dough base

Toss the brown sugar and butter in the bowl of your mixer (or a large mixing bowl if using an electric mixer or making the dough by hand).

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat together until well combined. Crack in the egg.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat for a minute or two until well combined. You want the mixture to get lighter in color and look fluffy, like this:

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Toss in the flour, baking soda, and a pinch of salt.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat until the mixture just comes together and is uniform. It will be very thick and rough looking.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Pour in the vanilla extract and the almond extract.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat to combine. The dough will still be very thick, but will smooth out a little from the liquid.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Add all the goodies to the cookie dough

Toss in the oats.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

And the dried cranberries.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Add the sliced almonds, flax seeds, and sunflower seeds.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Beat together to combine all the ingredients. The dough will be very thick, and almost kind of dry. It should look like there’s more stuff in your bowl than actual cookie dough. That’s just fine.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Make and bake the cookies

Scoop out a blob of dough with a large soup spoon. You’re aiming for about the size of a golf ball. The dough should feel kind of loose in your hands. Roll it between your palms to smoosh the air out of it.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Put the ball on one of your prepared sheet pans. Repeat until you have a dozen on each sheet pan.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Line up the dough balls so they’re evenly spaced out.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Now, because there’s more stuff than dough to these cookies, they won’t spread much when baked. So, use your hand to smoosh the balls flat, like this:

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Pop the pans into your preheated 350 degree oven. Bake for 11-13 minutes, until they look firm and are just starting to brown on the edges. If you like, peek under one (carefully…like most hot cookies, they can be crumbly ’til cool). It should be lightly browned on the bottom, like this:

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Yank the pans out of the oven when they’re done. Cool for 10 minutes on the pans, then transfer to a wire rack to finish cooling.

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

Enjoy!

Cranberry Almond Trail Mix Cookies at The Hungry Mouse

 

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Jessie Cross is a cookbook author and creator of The Hungry Mouse, a monster online food blog w/500+ recipes. When she's not shopping for cheese or baking pies, Jessie serves as an Associate Creative Director at PARTNERS+simons, a boutique ad agency in Boston. She lives in Salem, Massachusetts with her husband and two small, fluffy wolves.

20 COMMENTS

  1. Thanks so much for this recipe. I love the idea of creating your own rendition of a more expensive, store-brought version. I also love the pics. Thank you!

  2. Just so you know, you have to grind the flax seeds before you use them, because your body can’t digest the outer shell. So unless you grind them into a fine meal, you won’t get any of the nutrients. Just a heads up.

  3. Just thought I’d send you a thanks.
    My friend and I made them today and they were amazing.
    the only difference we made was grinding the flax seeds first.
    As a reader commented your body can’t digest the whole seeds.
    Tasted amazing. Thanks so much.
    We will definitely make these again!

  4. Love these! I bring them camping, they are a great snack. I can’t have dairy so I sub the butter with 2 TBS grapeseed oil and 2 TBS Earth Balance Margarine. I also have used pecans, dried cherries and blueberries. And I use ground flax seeds. Great any way you make them! Thanks!!

  5. Just made these and they are yummy! I will definitely keep this recipe on hand. Also wanted to mention something about flax seeds. It isn’t that whole flax seeds have no nutritional benefit, it is just different than the type that we would get from ground. First, *most* of the whole flax seeds will pass through undigested, but some that were chewed on will breakdown and will get digested (So chew that cookie well). Second, whole flax seeds are bulk. It is always good to have something move through your digestive track unabsorbed (think insoluble fiber!), cleans those intestines and helps keeps things moving, whole flax seeds are great for that. My recommendation would be to do 1 Tbsp. of whole flax seeds and 1 Tbsp. of ground, that way you get the nutritional benefits of both forms!

  6. OMG I thought I lost the recipe. I couldn’t remember how I found it the first time. Love these cookies. I have made them twice. Am making them for an upcoming road trip. Yum, thanks!

  7. I hope these are the same cookies that were sold at our county fair. Best I have ever had. The only difference is the cookies I had used dry roasted almonds (whole) that put the “icing on the cake” so to speak. I hope these turn out the same.

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