Zesty Cranberry Pinwheels

Rouse your senses with these refreshing little cookies!

Zesty Cranberry Pinwheels incorporate the tart sweetness of cranberries with just the right amount of orange flavor and rich pecans ~ they boast a zesty, slightly sweet filling. 

The pinwheels take a little time to make, as the dough requires chilling time.  Other than that, they’re fairly easy to make; just be sure to tightly roll the dough into a log.

You will love the fragrant aroma that fills the house while they’re baking.   Then, all you need to is a cup of coffee, or a little cup of tea to enjoy with these delicious holiday pinwheels!

Zesty Cranberry Pinwheels

Dough ingredients:

½ cup butter, softened
¾ cup sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla
1½ cups flour
¼ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon salt

½ cup finely ground cranberries
½ cup finely chopped pecans or walnuts
1 tablespoon orange zest

Spread on dough:
3 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons milk


Make dough and refrigerate one hour:
In a large bowl, combine first 4 ingredients, beat until fluffy.
Combine dry ingredients, add to the creamed mixture.
Refrigerate at least one hour.

Make filling, roll and refrigerate several hours or overnight:
In a small bowl, mix together cranberries, pecans and orange peel, set aside.
On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 10-inch square.
Combine brown sugar and milk, spread over the dough.
Sprinkle with cranberry mixture, leaving ½” edge at edges.
Roll up tightly, jelly-roll style.
Wrap with waxed paper, chill several hours or overnight.

Slice and bake:
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Cut roll into ¼” slices and place on a well-greased cookie sheet.
Bake for 14-15 minutes, or until edges are lightly browned.
Let cool on baking sheet for a minute or two.
Makes 42 pinwheels.  

Zesty delicious!

Be sure to visit my friend, Linda’s blog, @My Kind of Cooking for great tips and delicious easy recipes!


  1. These look like Christmas!

    Sending you wishes for a merry Christmas and a healthy and happy new year.


  2. Merry Christmas, dear Pam.


  3. Dear Pam, What festive and delicious Christmas cookies.
    Wishing you a beautiful, merry, happy and healthy Christmas and New Year. Catherine xo

  4. Love your description zesty zing. Just the way I like it.

    Merry Christmas Pam.

  5. I have the Cranberries & Pecans for this festive cookie. Pam, my rolling mat is ready for work, again. :) I'm bookmarking this recipe, thanks!

    Merry Christmas to you & your family!

  6. Two of my favorite ingredients! These look delicious, Pam,

    Merry Christmas to you!

  7. What a beautiful cookie Pam! I love the thought of the tartness of the cranberries. Thank you for sharing this holiday sweetness! I hope you have a blessed Christmas!

  8. Oooooh YUM!! These look like the perfect holiday cookie!!! Okay, these look like the perfect cookie for any time, but especially for the holidays :)

  9. What a festive cookie, looks delicious!


Good bread is the most fundamentally satisfying of all foods; good bread with fresh butter, the greatest of feasts!
~ James Beard

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