Cranberry Rosemary Butter Cookies

 These Cranberry Rosemary Butter Cookies are the perfect mix of sweet and savory and make a wonderful addition to your Christmas and holiday cookie baking! 

These Cranberry Rosemary Butter Cookies are quickly becoming a new favorite thing in our household. The kids were initially skeptical of me putting “leaves” in cookies and suggested chocolate chips instead. After one bite, they were sold! If you’re looking for other ideas for your holiday baking, you can find some here.

cranberry rosemary butter cookies

Cranberry Rosemary Butter Cookies Recipe

I adapted these cookies from an old beloved Martha Stewart recipe: French Butter Cookies. Martha suggests the highest quality creamery butter since it plays such a big part in this recipe. While I couldn’t get my hands on any french butter, we did use Kerrygold. Irish butter is delicious, too!

cranberry shortbread cookies

The addition of the lemon zest and transforming the cookies to cranberry rosemary were my own ideas. I thought the combination of flavors would be delicious, and it really did not disappoint. The lemon zest also just adds a little something, in my opinion. I think a little orange would be good, too!

These cookies do take a bit of planning ahead since the dough needs to be refrigerated for at least an hour. For the best possible results, I recommend chilling the dough overnight.

cranberry rosemary butter christmas cookies with sugared cranberries

When you are ready to bake them, rolling the dough in sugar before slicing the cookies is a nice finishing touch!

Overall, the mix of sweet and savory makes these cookies a little different, but not too different. They are still delicious and the perfect flavor combination to remind you of the holidays!

They’re sure to be the perfect addition to your Christmas cookie baking. They’re also a great idea to wrap up as a neighbor gift. I hope you enjoy them!

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5 from 1 vote

Cranberry Rosemary Butter Cookies

These Cranberry Rosemary Butter Cookies are the perfect mix of sweet and savory and make a wonderful addition to your Christmas and holiday cookie baking! 
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time50 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Servings: 5 dozen
Author: Nina Hendrick


  • 1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature 2 sticks
  • 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • 2 1/2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves


  • In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter and light-brown sugar; beat on high speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Add egg and vanilla, lemon zest and mix to combine. Add flour and salt, and mix on low speed until flour is incorporated.
  • With a rubber spatula, fold cranberries and rosemary leaves into the dough until well combined. 
  • Roll dough into three 1 1/2-inch-diameter logs. Wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour or overnight.
  • Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll cookie log in sugar, coating it evenly, and slice into 1/4-inch rounds with a sharp knife. Place cookies on baking sheet about 1 inch apart.
  • Bake until golden brown, 15 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove from oven, and let cool completely on wire racks.


Adapted from Martha Stewart’s French Butter Cookies; Martha Stewart Living, May, 1995

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cranberry rosemary butter cookies for the holidays and Christmas

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  1. 5 stars
    I made this with orange zest in place of the lemon, and they were largely a fan favorite. I did bake them before they turned golden brown, more so that they maintained a light color. Maybe a minute or 2 less than the suggested time. I also refrigerated them overnight. A half hour wasn’t near long enough at my fridge’s temperature. An hour and a half to 2 hours probably would have worked. My coworkers were in love, and none of them even like crumbly textured cookies! Using this as my base recipe for future flavor combos! Thanks for sharing the delicious recipe!

    1. I’m so glad you enjoyed them! Thank you so much for the tips. I love the idea of using other flavor combos- that’s something I’ll have to try, too!

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