Learn how to make biscotti! This never-fail Cranberry Pecan Biscotti is a reliable recipe that can be easily adapted to include your favourite nuts, dried fruits and spices. Perfect for morning coffee time, it makes a welcome gift, too. This post includes gift tags for you to download!
I've made three batches of this Never-Fail Cranberry Pecan Biscotti in the last two weeks.
That's a lot of biscotti, but fear not, I didn't eat it all myself. I like to make biscotti for gifts for friends and family!
Biscotti is a favourite holiday treat. I mean, who doesn't love dipping a cookie into their morning coffee? It just may be the best way to start the day!
❤️ Why this recipe works
- Biscotti is a cookie, but it's not overly sweet, which suits most of my friends just fine.
- I used a basic biscotti dough recipe from Canadian Living that I've relied on for years. It hasn't failed me yet, and it's easy to adapt.
- You can make it your own by changing the nuts and dried fruits to make different varieties! This year, besides the cranberry biscotti, I also made a batch of Cherry Chocolate biscotti for my friends who can't tolerate nuts.
Homemade kitchen gifts are fun to make and always appreciated. Besides biscotti, you may want to make Cranberry Pistachio Chocolate Bark, one of these 7 Holiday Spiced Nuts Recipes or any of the recipes in this roundup of Homemade Gifts from the Kitchen. Have a look!
Ingredients for cranberry biscotti
You'll find a complete list of ingredients with amounts in the recipe card below, but first, here are a few notes about some of them.
You'll need butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla for the wet ingredients and
all-purpose flour, baking powder and salt for the dry ingredients.
To flavour it, this recipe uses pecans, dried cranberries and lemon zest (don't leave that out!)
It's absolutely delicious when glazed! You can make a very simple glaze with powdered sugar, lemon juice and a little vanilla extract, or you can dip the biscotti in melted chocolate if you'd like!
🔪 How to make biscotti
Making biscotti requires two steps: mixing and baking the dough, then slicing and baking it for a second time, until it is almost dry. You'll find complete, detailed directions in the recipe card below.
You'll beat the butter and sugar together, add the eggs and vanilla, then combine this mixture with the dry ingredients before adding the nuts and cranberries.
Then you'll form the dough into a ball by pressing it together.
The next step is to divide the ball of dough in half, roll it in two logs and brush them with egg white mixed with water. They're now ready for the first bake.
Once the two logs are baked, you'll let them cool for about 15 minutes, then cut them diagonally into slices about ½ inch thick using a very sharp or serrated knife. Take your time when slicing.
Stand the slices upright on a baking sheet so that the heat from the oven can circulate all around.
Reduce oven heat to 300°F and bake the biscotti slices for an additional 30 minutes. The cookies may be slightly soft in the center but will harden as they cool.
Cool them completely, then drizzle with lemon glaze. Let the glaze harden completely before storing the cookies in cookie tins or packaging as gifts.
How long will biscotti keep?
Biscotti cookies keep well and will stay fresh for two weeks or more. Store in a container at room temperature with sheets of parchment paper between the layers to protect the lemon glaze or chocolate coating. It doesn't have to be airtight. A cookie tin helps to keep biscotti crisp.
Can I freeze biscotti?
Yes, these cookies freeze well. Wrap tightly and store in an airtight container. You can also freeze the dough if you like. I form it into a log, wrap it in plastic wrap and then overwrap it with foil before freezing.
When you're ready to bake it, let it thaw in the fridge overnight, then slice it diagonally, place the slices upright on a baking sheet and put the sheet in the oven for the second bake.
It's fun and easy to vary the flavours, just by substituting different nuts, dried fruit, and spices. Dip them in chocolate, or drizzle them with lemon glaze or caramel.
Try substituting cinnamon for the lemon zest, or any of these combinations.
- dried cranberries with walnuts
- dried cherries with chocolate chips
- dried apricots with finely chopped almonds
Cranberry Biscotti makes a great gift
This never-fail biscotti recipe was originally published in 2015. It has been updated with extra helpful information and new photos.
If you love this biscotti recipe, please give it 5 stars and let me know how it turned out in the comments sections below. Thanks!
Never-Fail Cranberry Pecan Biscotti
- ½ cup butter, softened
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 2 large eggs * see note below
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ¼ teaspoon sea salt
- 1 cup finely chopped pecans
- 1 cup finely chopped dried cranberries
- 2 teaspoons lemon zest finely grated
- 1 teaspoon egg white, beaten with 2 tsp. water (for brushing top of dough) *Save one teaspoon of the egg white before you add the eggs to the creamed butter and sugar.
- ½ cup powdered sugar
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice (or just enough to make a spreadable consistency.
- ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- Heat oven to 325°F.
- In a large bowl, beat butter with sugar until fluffy.
- Before adding the eggs, save one teaspoon of egg white for brushing on the dough before baking. Beat in eggs, 1 at a time, then add vanilla extract.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt. Stir into butter mixture in 2 additions, until just combined.
- Add the pecans, cranberries and lemon zest.
- Form into a ball by pressing together with your hands. It may look like it is too dry and crumbly, but it comes together once you press it together.
- Transfer to a lightly floured board. Divide in half and form into two logs, 12 inches long. Place on a parchment-paper-lined baking sheet. Brush with one teaspoon egg white mixed with 2 teaspoons water.
- Bake at 325°F for 35 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and let cool for 15- 20 minutes.
- With a sharp knife, slice the logs into ½ inch slices on a slight diagonal.
- Stand the slices upright on the baking sheet, spaced slightly apart.
- Reduce oven temperature to 300°F and bake for an additional 30 minutes. Cookies will be slightly soft in the center but will harden as they cool.
- Cool completely, then drizzle with lemon glaze. Let the glaze harden completely before storing in containers or packaging as gifts. These cookies store well in a cookie tin.