December 23, 2013

Cherry Cream Cheese Cookies

Christmas is coming up quick! And I said I was going to share with you my grandma's almond, cream cheese, and candied cherry cookies, and I am! These are my favorite cookies on the entire planet. I'm not exaggerating. They're these sweet little cherry-cream-cheesy-almond-y cookies with an incredible cream cheese icing, topped with a maraschino cherry. Mm mm. Could I get a lifetime supply of these cookies? Please and thank you.

Every year, my grandmother would send everyone in my family home with a big bag of cookies, fudge, and bars. Her cherry cream cheese cookies were the first ones gone. When she stopped making these cookies a few years back, my heart broke. Okay, now I'm exaggerating, but I was pretty sad about it! It wasn't until this year that she told me they were cookies from a mix in a box... Cookies from a mix in a box that are no longer sold. So, I made it my goal to figure out how to make the same cookies from scratch this year.

 Save to ZipList Print RecipeCherry Cream Cheese Cookies
Author: Herbivore Haven
Makes: 3 dozen cookies
  • 1/2 cup candied cherries, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup  butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup (2 oz) cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 36 maraschino cherries (for topping)
  • 1/2 cup candied cherries, finely chopped
Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 3 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Place the maraschino cherries on paper towels to drain while preparing cookies. Line a cookie sheet with parchment paper; set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine the softened butter and cream cheese. Mix by hand or with an electric mixer until creamy. Add the sugar, almond extract, and salt to the mixture. Mix until the ingredients are combined. Mix in 1 1/4 cup of the flour until just combined. Add the candied cherries and the remaining flour and continue mixing until well combined.
  3. Lightly flour a work surface. Form the dough into a large ball. The dough make look crumbly, but once you work with it, it will stick together. Roll out dough to about 1/2 inch thick. Use a circle cookie cutter, or the open end of a glass, and cut out circles in the dough. Place each cookie on the prepared cookie sheet about 1/2 an inch apart.
  4. Bake at 325 degrees for 12-15 minutes, or until bottoms are light brown. Cool the cookies on the cookie sheet for about 2 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
  5. Make the frosting: In a medium bowl, combine the softened cream cheese and butter. Mix until creamy. Gradually mix in the 2 cups of powdered sugar. Mix in the milk. For a thicker consistency, mix in more powdered sugar as desired.
  6. Top each cookie with a dollop of the frosting and a single maraschino cherry. Enjoy!
To store: Layer unfrosted cookies between layers of waxed paper in an airtight container. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. To serve, thaw cookies, if frozen. Frost and top cookies with maraschino cherries.