Jeweled Butter Cookies

November 19, 2020
10 Ratings
Photo by Julia Gartland. Prop Stylist: Megan Hedgpeth. Food Stylist: Lauren LaPenna.
  • Prep time 2 hours 10 minutes
  • Cook time 15 minutes
  • makes 3 ½ dozen
Author Notes

This is a really simple, really delicious butter cookie. It's studded with pieces of sour cherry, and pistachio, and apricots, and flavored with a little bit of orange. They're basically a cookie that is meant for a cup of tea, which is basically my favorite kind of cookie.

This is a great recipe for the holidays because you can basically make this dough well in advance, form it into a log, throw it into your freezer and then forget about it for, I would say, up to 3 months and then just bake them as you need them. It also makes 3 ½ dozen cookies, which is a lot of cookies, so great for sharing, great for cookie swaps, and things like that. I like to have a cookie dough in my freezer at all times, just so I can bake a few off whenever I have a warm cup of tea and a book ready to go, or someone desperately needs a little dessert.

This recipe was featured on our new cook-along podcast Play Me a Recipe. Listen as Sam whisks, rolls, and dips her way through this recipe, offering insider tips and backstory along the waySamantha Seneviratne

Test Kitchen Notes

These butter cookies remind us of fruitcake in all the best ways: jewels of fruit studded throughout, encased in a buttery shortbread. The chocolate dip is the perfect addition of just a little extra sweetness to these already delightful cookies. They're perfect for parties, bake sales, or even just with your morning coffee. —Food52

What You'll Need
  • For the cookies:
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup pistachios, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup dried sour cherries, roughly chopped
  • For the chocolate glaze:
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • 1 teaspoon neutral oil, such as coconut or vegetable
  1. Make the cookies: In a large bowl, with an electric mixer on medium speed, beat butter and sugar until combined and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add egg yolks and orange zest and beat until combined. Beat in flour, baking powder, and salt. Add pistachios, apricots, and cherries and beat just until evenly distributed.
  2. Divide the dough in half. Tip each half out onto a sheet of plastic wrap and roll into a 2-inch cylinder. (Two smaller cylinders are easier to work with than one big one.) Freeze cylinders until solid, 2 to 4 hours.
  3. Heat the oven to 350°F. Using a sharp knife, cut ¼-inch slices from one frozen dough cylinder. Place slices on parchment-lined cookie sheets and bake until set and light golden around the edges, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool completely.
  4. Dip the cookies: Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper. Whisk the oil into the warm melted chocolate. Transfer the chocolate to a short glass or ramekin (it should be wide enough to dip the chocolate but narrow enough that you have about at least 1 ½ inches of chocolate at the bottom). Dip cookies into the chocolate and transfer to the prepared sheets. Let set at room temperature or in the fridge. To store: place in an airtight container; the cookies will last for a week.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Melissa Bartell
    Melissa Bartell
  • freshparsley
  • Olivia
  • Claire

7 Reviews

Olivia December 4, 2022
I came across this recipe when it was originally published & made these cookies for Christmas that year. My family now expects them every Christmas, and they’ve become a “signature” of mine. Absolutely pitch perfect balance of textures and flavors and just a minimal effort, maximum reward situation (prepping the ingredients is the “hardest” part). My only substitution is cranberries instead of cherries, as they are more consistently available near me. I always love to have an extra roll of dough hanging out in the freezer for an elevated “slice and bake” moment.
Claire December 1, 2022
Fantastic recipe for the holidays!
Made exactly as written and the result is as delicious as it is beautiful!
Melissa B. December 22, 2021
These are so good. I tested freezing the baked cookies, some dipped in chocolate and some not, and was pleasantly surprised to see the chocolate dipped cookies froze and thawed well.
freshparsley November 27, 2021
Thank you for a beautiful cookie! I decided to try because I have a pantry full of dried fruits and nuts to use up. The result of pandemic panic buying! Everyone raved and the recipe is easy to put together and store in the freezer for easy baking when needed. It is our new favorite!
MJ January 9, 2021
Getting a little tired of the traditional chocolate chip cookie that my family of seven adore, yesterday I chose to change it up. I'm always impressed with my family's uncanny ability to go berserk whenever I decide to have a moment of peace while baking. Such was the pattern yesterday and I'm here to say these cookies are very resilient! I put ingredients in the wrong order; I forgot to put in half the fruit in which I had to add after fully mixing and lastly, I realized I forgot the sugar once they were already in the freezer! While the house was burning down around me, I figured there was no way they would pull through but they did! My children loved them. As of this morning, only nine cookies remain. I enjoyed one with my morning coffee. I highly recommend.
Terri December 22, 2020
This recipe is excellent. The orange zest adds great depth. The fruit and nuts are in perfect proportion. I dipped mine in white chocolate and some festive sprinkles.
teaafternoons December 12, 2020
Made a first batch on Tuesday, these are excellent! Delicious balance of fruit and nut with the simplicity of the butter cookie. Added a bit of dried orange peel. Now making a couple of batches for gifts...thank you for a new favorite.