Does anyone remember (or still love) those orange flavored chocolate oranges? You know, the ones shaped like an actual orange that you get to “smash” to loosen all the chocolate orange slices. I usually spot them at the store around Christmas time, and I’ll be real, I miss those freaking chocolate oranges. Going dairy-free to keep my skin clear has made me miss foods I didn’t even know I really liked all that well.
Anyways, these cookies are not chocolate oranges, but they are my Dairy-Free Classic Chocolate Chip Cookies with fresh orange zest, dried cranberries, and lots of chopped semisweet chocolate, and they are good. The orange zest adds a ton of citrus flavor, while the dried cranberries bring a bit of chew and tartness to the sweet and chocolatey cookies. I opted for chopped semisweet chocolate for these, because I like the messy look that you get when chopped chocolate melts into a fresh baked cookie. Chocolate chips would work just fine, too, and dark chocolate would make for an excellent cookie.
The recipe for these cookies is short and sweet. Be sure to use solid coconut oil and a big wooden spoon or spatula to do all the mixing. You don’t want to over-mix your dough or cause the coconut oil to become too soft. It’s normal for this dough to be a bit crumbly and even seem somewhat dry. That’s okay. The dough will easily press together and bake up to make a perfect cookie (with no refrigeration required)! I recommend using a cookie scoop for these cookies, and feel free to play around with the size! Happy baking!
Orange Cranberry Chocolate Chunk Cookies
Makes ~25 small cookies
1/2 cup coconut oil, solid
3/4 cup coconut sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1 cup chopped dairy-free chocolate (semisweet or dark)
3/4 cup dried cranberries
Zest of one medium orange
1.) Preheat your oven to 350°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.) Using a large spatula or wooden spoon, mix together the solid coconut oil and coconut sugar in a medium bowl until combined – I like to mash my coconut oil into the sugar to make sure all the lumps get incorporated. Mix in the egg and then the vanilla and orange zest until totally combined; set aside.
3.) In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir the dry ingredients into the wet (do not beat) until a few flour streaks remain. Stir in the chocolate chips and dried cranberries. Your dough may look a bit crumbly, depending on how hot/cold the temperature is where you are (the coconut oil may be more or less oily).
4.) Scoop 1 Tbsp dough balls onto your parchment-lined baking sheet and bake at 375°F for 6-7 minutes. Let the cookies rest on the baking sheet for 2 minutes before transferring to a cooling rack. Enjoy! Store any leftovers in an airtight container at room temp. Re-heat to enjoy.