38 Cranberry Desserts That Deserve a Spot on Your Holiday Table

·7 min read

With the holidays on the horizon, odds are you’re already dreaming about all the pumpkin, apple, caramel and cinnamon treats you’re going to bake. But there’s one fruit that always gets overlooked, despite its sweet-tart flavor and striking color: the cranberry. Believe it or not, it can do so much more than cranberry sauce. Make this the year that you let this underrated produce in on the fun with 38 cranberry desserts that are bound to impress.

RELATED: The 50 Best Cranberry Recipes You Could Possibly Try This Holiday Season

1. Easy Cranberry-Pecan Sandwich Cookies

Whether you’re serving a crowd, participating in a cookie swap or looking for a weekend baking project, these nutty handhelds are sure to be a hit. Save time by using store-bought jam (although the homemade version will make your house smell like Christmas).

Get the recipe

2. Mini Cranberry Potpies

One bite will have you saying, “chicken who?” This decidedly sweet twist on a savory classic pairs best with a heaping scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Get the recipe

3. Cranberry-Brie Puff Pastry Pops

Cheese is always invited to dessert at our house—especially when it’s melted in a pocket of flaky pastry dough and covered in cranberry jam.

Get the recipe

4. Cranberry Apple Danish

They taste just as good first thing in the morning as they do after a hearty dinner. Might we suggest washing it down with a frothy chai latte?

Get the recipe

5. Cranberry-Orange Pie

Cranberries and citrus go together like PB&J. Because cranberries are naturally high in pectin, the filling will thicken like a charm on the stovetop.

Get the recipe

6. Mini Cranberry, Pistachio and Chocolate Panettone

You only *think* brioche-like panettone is doomed to be bone dry, but shrinking its size helps maintain its moisture.

Get the recipe

7. Matcha-Cranberry Linzer Cookies

These red-and-green cuties are fated to be the star (see what we did there?) of your holiday spread. Feel free to use a tree- or candy cane-shaped cookie cutter instead for extra seasonal flair.

Get the recipe

8. Cranberry-Brie Pie Crust Bites

Want to up the dessert ante? Dust the pie dough with cinnamon sugar instead of salt and pepper.

Get the recipe

9. Cranberry Sauce Cheesecake Brownies

Aka the best way to use up leftover cranberry sauce after Thanksgiving.

Get the recipe

10. Cranberry Christmas Cake with Butter Sauce

Helloooo, decadence. Despite its rich texture and the indulgent, warm butter sauce, this masterpiece is gluten-free and low-carb.

Get the recipe

11. Cranberry Trifle

Dig into layers of crimson cranberry filling, homemade vanilla custard and chunks of white cake, all topped with fresh whipped cream and sugared cranberries.

Get the recipe

12. Cranberry Lemon Pound Cake

This breakfast delicacy comes together in under 50 minutes. Whether you finish it off with three-ingredient lemon glaze or not, it’ll be moist, tart and sweet.

Get the recipe

13. Cranberry White Chocolate Chip and Macadamia Nut Cookies

Chewy dried cranberries + creamy white chocolate + crunchy macadamia nuts = an epically balanced bite.

Get the recipe

14. Cinnamon Spiced Dutch Baby with Cranberry Butter

Wanna see a magic trick? Plop this beauty in the center of your holiday table and watch it vanish before your eyes in ten seconds flat.

Get the recipe

15. Cranberry Orange Custard Pie

We love the idea of leaving the cranberries whole because they’ll burst with sweet-tart juice with every bite. Bonus points for topping the pie with a cranberry-shaped pie crust cutout.

Get the recipe

16. Orange-Cranberry Patties

BRB, gifting these to everyone on our holiday list. Think a simple chewy filling studded with candied orange peels and dried cranberries, all enrobed in dark chocolate.

Get the recipe

17. Cranberry Cheesecake Galette

Rich, creamy cheesecake filling is just the tangy-sweet match for tart, two-ingredient cranberry sauce. And since it’s a galette made with store-bought pie crust, you won’t have to fuss with any fancy crimping.

Get the recipe

18. Cranberry Orange Cake

Sour cream in the cake batter ensures an impossibly moist crumb. (BTW, the two-ingredient citrus icing on top is a breeze to prepare.)

Get the recipe

19. Cranberry Cobbler Bars

For when your heart cries out for pie but your patience says, “not today.” Think shortbread crust layered with brown sugar-cinnamon cranberry filling and crumb topping.

Get the recipe

20. Cranberry Bliss Cookies

Save yourself a trip to Starbucks and bake this copycat recipe instead. The cream cheese-white chocolate frosting is revelatory.

Get the recipe

21. 5-Ingredient Cranberry Brie Cinnamon Puff Pastry Swirls

They taste even more divine with a fall latte. Serve them warm so the cheese stays gooey and the dough stays soft.

Get the recipe

22. Dessert Board with Cranberry Chocolate Truffles

When in doubt, an over-the-top charcuterie spread is an easy win. The main event here is the chocolate truffles, filled with graham cracker-spiked cream cheese and cranberry-cinnamon goat cheese.

Get the recipe

23. Cranberry Crisp

These individual sweets are finished with crispy oatmeal-brown sugar topping and take just over a half-hour to make. If that’s not a Christmas miracle, we don’t know what is.

Get the recipe

24. Leftover Cranberry Sauce Parfaits

Have three minutes? Then this four-ingredient treat is within reach. Just choose your favorite crunchy granola or cereal and get to layering. (We’re betting vanilla ice cream or whipped cream would work just as well as Greek yogurt.)

Get the recipe

25. White Chocolate Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti

You bring the cookies, we’ll make the coffee. They’ll taste divine dipped in hot chocolate too, if that’s more your speed.

Get the recipe

26. Cranberry Swirl Buns

PSA: They smell *amazing*, thanks to a few dashes of almond extract in the dough.

Get the recipe

27. Cranberry Shortbread Bars

Not only are these bars Paleo-friendly, but they’re also totally vegan. You can thank plant-based butter, almond flour and coconut flour for that.

Get the recipe

28. Cranberry Spice Cookies with Eggnog Icing

Confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and warm spices transform store-bought eggnog into something spectacular that you’ll want to drizzle on just about everything.

Get the recipe

29. Healthy Cranberry Coffee Cake

Dairy-free? Check. Refined sugar- and flour-free? Check. All the honey-oat crumble? You bet.

Get the recipe

30. Cranberry Chocolate Chip Blondies

Name a better collab than this cranberry bar-chocolate chip cookie hybrid. We’ll wait.

Get the recipe

31. Melt-in-Your-Mouth Orange Cookies with Cranberries

These minis have a secret ingredient that not only enhances their flavor, but also gives them a soft, dense texture. (OK, we’ll spill—it’s carrots.)

Get the recipe

32. Cranberry-Almond Apple Pie

Thanks to a layer of almond paste that’s pressed atop the pie crust, this pie boasts sweet, nutty flavor in every bite.

Get the recipe

33. Brown Butter Cranberry-Pumpkin Cornbread Skillet

Brown butter makes everything taste a million times better. A few minutes of heating on the stovetop transforms it into caramelized liquid gold.

Get the recipe

34. Creamy Cranberry Bars

This recipe is especially for those who are diehard cranberry stans. The cranberry curd spiked with fresh lemon juice doesn’t shy away from its signature sour flavor.

Get the recipe

35. Cranberry Cream Cheese Banana Bread

Even without the cream cheese-white chocolate frosting, this bread is a crowd-pleaser…though you’d really be missing out by nixing it.

Get the recipe

36. Cranberry Crumble Pie Bars

These babies are prime for both transporting and freezing, so feel free to prepare them a few days ahead of serving.

Get the recipe

37. Cranberry Chocolate Nut Pie

Soaking the dried cranberries in brandy for an hour makes this recipe all the more Christmas-appropriate and fruitcake-inspired.

Get the recipe

38. White Christmas Cranberry Layer Cake

Your guests will be totally wowed by this centerpiece-worthy confection, from the homemade jam to the white chocolate buttercream to the sugared rosemary garnish.

Get the recipe

RELATED: 48 Christmas Dessert Recipes That Can Get Anyone in the Holiday Spirit

For even more great recipes, check out our first cookbook, Only the Good Stuff.