Matcha Cranberry Shortbread is a crumbly cookie perfect for the holiday season. These shortbread have festive colors from japanese green tea powder, dried cranberries and white chocolate. My recipe results in a perfectly buttery and chewy shortbread which is decadent in every bite.
Shortbread is probaby one of the most frequently baked things in my kitchen because it is super easy to make, fuss free and the ingredients are few. The beauty lies in the simplicity- how butter, flour and sugar transform into a delicious cookie.
If you love Matcha, you will love these cookies. The mild notes of green tea and the vivid color from matcha is really amazing. I love the chewiness & pop of red color that the dried cranberries add. And dipped in melted white chocolate along with a scatter of gold sprinkles, these look super pretty. If you like cookies that aren't too sweet, this recipe is for you.
I did not like matcha when I tasted it for the first time because I feel it is an acquired taste for heavy chai drinkers like myself. However, I really love it in baked goods and desserts more than in latte form itself.
What is Matcha Cranberry Shortbread?
Matcha is fine ground Japanese green tea powder which is rich in anti oxidants. It has gotten really popular around the world and has found its way into numerous desserts and drinks. Matcha is bitter in taste and in these shortbread combined with butter, flour and sugar, it add a nice hint of tea flavor. The dried sweet and tart cranberries make these shortbread nicely chewy. Imagine biting into a crumbly chewy shortbread- sweet, pleasantly bitter and tart in one bite. Really good stuff.
How does Matcha Cranberry Shortbread Taste?
Firstly, these cookies do not taste bitter at all. Secondly, matcha combined with the sweet tart cranberries these overall have a fruity tea taste. These aren't too sweet. I liked them just as they are, however the husband preferred them dipped in white chocolate.
Ingredients Needed For Matcha Cranberry Shortbread
You are going to need the following ingredients:-
- Unsalted Butter
- Powdered Sugar
- Culinary Grade Matcha Powder
- Heavy Cream
- Dried Sweetened Cranberries
- Melted White Or Milk Chocolate for Dipping
You are going to need the following baking equipment:-
- Measuring Cups & Spoons
- Hand or Stand Mixer
- Plastic Cling Film
- Baking Sheet
- Parchment Paper
- Mixing Bowl (1 or2)
- Cookie Rack
How To Make Matcha Cranberry Cookies
These cookies are incredibly easy to make. This recipe will yield you about 30-32 cookies. Here are the steps.
- Chop the dried cranberries.
- Beat the sugar, vanilla and butter until creamy.
- Mix in the sifted flour, matcha and salt.
- Once the dough just comes together, mix in the cranberries and dump the dough on a board.
- Gather the dough and shape it into two logs. Wrap the logs in cling films and chill for 8 hours or overnight.
- Preheat oven and bake until bottoms are slightly brown.
- Once cooled, dip them into melted chocolate and add sprinkles.
Few Tips and Tricks When Baking Matcha Cranberry Shortbread
Here are a few of my tips for a perfectly chewy and crumbly matcha cranberry shortbread.
- Softened Butter. It makes all the difference in the texture and the ease of working with the dough. If you forgot to take the butter out, add the unwrapped stick to a glass bowl and microwave for 10-12 seconds and leave it for 15 minutes on the counter. Then proceed to use it.
- Matcha. Use culinary grade Matcha. I buy mine off amazon.The taste of matcha in these cookies is quite good. Its not mild or too prominent.
- Cranberries . I use dried sweetened cranberries. And they add a fruity tart bite as well as a sweetness.
- Powdered Sugar. Powdered sugar makes them melt in the mouth. Store bought powdered or confectioners sugar has cornstarch in it and it adds to the smooth texture.
- Heavy Cream - You just need a tablespoon of it but trust me it makes a difference. Due to matcha, the dough can feel a bit dry and heavy cream helps.You can replace it with 1 tablespoon milk as well if you do not want to use heavy cream.
- Chilling the dough. Chilling the dough helps in bettering the taste of the shortbread. It also helps in solidifying the butter in the dough. It is super important. When chilled fat in the dough hits the heat of the oven, the cookies get a crumbly texture and don't spread a lot. Since shortbreads use handful of ingredients, chilling gives that time for the flavors to mingle and get absorbed.
- Make Ahead. Shortbread dough is wonderful thing to have in the freezer. It freezes beautifully for months. Whenever you want to bake, defrost the dough overnight, slice and bake next morning.
- Chocolate - You can use White or Milk chocolate to dip the cookies. I do not recommend dark chocolate because I felt that combined together the cookies tasted a bit bitter due to matcha.
Here Are Some More Shortbread Recipes To Try
- Saffron Shortbread
- Parmesan Rosemary Shortbread
- Chai Shortbread
- Coconut Shortbread
- Nan Khatai
- Sable Breton
Storing Matcha Cranberry Shortbread
These shortbread can be easily stored in an air tight container for upto 2 weeks. I felt that the tasted best next to the day I baked them.
Matcha Cranberry Shortbread
- ⅓ cup dried sweetened cranberries
- 2 cup alll purpose flour
- 1.5 tablespoon matcha powder (culinary grade)
- 8 tablespoon unsalted butter, softened
- 7 tablespoon powdered sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream(if needed)
- 4 oz(100g) white chocolate (or milk chocolate)
- Chop the dried cranberries. Keep ready.
- Sift the flour and matcha powder. Keep near.
- Add the butter,sugar and vanilla to the bowl of your stand mixer(or use hand mixer). Cream them for 2 minutes until fluffy.
- Add the sifted flour to the butter mixture.On stir mode, mix for 1- 2 minutes until you see a green dough is formed. Do not mix too much. Add the cranberries and heavy cream. Mix just until combined.
- Dump the dough onto your work surface and gather together.The dough will be soft but not at all sticky. Divide into two and shape each half into a log.
- Wrap the logs in a cling film and chill for at least 6 hours or overnight. You can freeze it as well.
- Line a large cookie sheets with parchment. Or you can use two cookie sheets.
- Unwrap the dough logs and using a sharp knife cut into rounds, about ⅓ inch thick.
- Place the rounds on a cookie sheet 1 inch apart (they do not spread much) and refrigerate again for 10 minutes.Preheat oven to 350F.
- Bake for 11-12 minutes till they are just beginning to brown. Pull the cookie sheet out and let cool for 10 minutess on the sheet itself before transferring to a rack. Cool completely.
- While cookies are cooling, in a microwave safe bowl, add the white chocolate and heat at intervals of 30 seconds until smooth and completely melted.
- Dip one half of a completely cooled shortbread in the melted chocolate and add sprinkles. Place on a parchment lined cookie sheet to dry.
- Store in an air tight container for 2 weeks. Enjoy!