The holiday season is the perfect time to try these Cranberry Orange Pistachio Biscotti – Italian biscuit cookies packed full of the seasonal flavors of tangy cranberries, crunchy pistachios, and zesty orange! These will be delicious dunked in a cup of tea or eaten with your morning coffee.
I adapted this recipe from my Fannie Farmer Cookbook, Thirteenth Edition. I love that it has the beautiful colors of the holidays and tastes great when dunked into my tea at breakfast.
If you’ve never tried biscotti before, you’ll notice that this Italian cookie is different than traditional cookies because they are baked twice! Instead of rolling or dropping your cookies, shape your dough into a log before baking. Then you’ll slice it to create the cookies and bake once more to give them the perfect crunch!
Gather the ingredients for these holiday treats. You’ll need the following:
Dry Ingredients: all-purpose flour, baking powder, allspice, and kosher salt.
Wet Ingredients: unsalted butter, granulated sugar, 2 large eggs
Mix-ins: zest of one orange, Grand Marnier liqueur, 3/4 cup fresh cranberries, and 1/2 cup shelled pistachios.
Dried cranberries are a great substitute for fresh cranberries. Use ½ cup instead of ¾ cup when using dried cranberries.
In place of the 2 tablespoons of Grand Marnier, you can substitute 2 tablespoons of regular or freshly squeezed orange juice.
You can also substitute 2 drops of orange extract for the Grand Marnier.
You’ll be baking these cookies in the top third of your oven, so adjust your baking racks if necessary, then preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Prepare your baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, allspice, and salt.
In the large bowl of a stand mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs and mix until smooth, then mix in the orange zest and Grand Marnier liqueur.
Gradually add the flour mixture and beat until just combined. Stir in the pistachios and cranberries, then turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide dough in half. Shape the cookie dough into two separate logs, each about 1 ½ inches by 10 inches long, then place them on a large baking sheet a few inches apart.
Bake the logs in the top third of the oven for about 25 minutes or until set and lightly golden brown on the top. Remove the logs from the oven and let them cool for about five minutes or cool enough to handle. Cut diagonally into ½-inch thick slices.
Reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees. Place the slices flat on the prepared baking sheet and return the sheet to the oven to bake for an additional 10 minutes. Turn the slices over, then bake again for 10 minutes.
If you want your cranberry biscotti to be extra crunchy and hard enough for dunking, turn off your oven at this point and leave the cookies in the oven for an additional 20 minutes.
Transfer the biscotti to a wire rack for cooling and enjoy!
These delicious holiday cookies are best stored in an airtight container at room temperature. Or you can freeze them for up to 3 months to enjoy later!
Use fresh ingredients, especially in your flour and baking powder for better crust formation.
As in most desserts, eggs and butter are best when used at room temperature.
Form dough into a smooth, pliable texture- yes you’ll have lumpy ingredients in this recipe, but the dough itself should be smooth and easy to handle.
Keep a close eye on your biscotti during the second bake. They can overcook and even burn easily, so stay close and check often.
When slicing your biscotti, use a sharp serrated knife for a clean cut.
Keep your slices on the thicker side- thin slices will crumble easily.
If you’re a biscotti fan, you’ll love these delicious recipes here on the blog. These Peppermint Chocolate Biscotti combine two of my favorite flavors for the holidays and are amazing dunked in some hot chocolate! This Gingerbread Biscotti recipe is another Christmas favorite and reminds me of gingerbread houses! You’ll find these Citrus Biscotti are another breakfast favorite as well!
Cranberry lovers will find tons of delicious recipes featuring that tart little berry. Find them all here! Not sure where to start? Here are some favorite cranberry recipes:
This post was originally published December 9, 2012 and has been updated in format and with pictures on November 20, 2023.