Vegan cranberry almond biscotti is the perfect edible gift to share with friends during the holiday season—or to enjoy on your own with a cup of coffee!
There is so much to love about a good biscotti recipe. That super crispy exterior, combined with a slightly tender center. The nutty, toasted aroma. The assurance that your cookie is sturdy enough to be packed and shipped to friends.
Or dunked into a cup of coffee.
Biscotti have always been one of my favorite holiday treats. And these vegan cranberry almond biscotti are my favorites. I make them each December. I’m always delighted by the scent of almond as they bake and the tiny, chewy pockets of dried cranberry.
On first inspection, biscotti seem to me like a lot of work. Two baking times, baking just long enough the first time to make them sliceable: the process requires a little patience.
But when you break a biscotti recipe into its steps, it’s really not so difficult. And these vegan cranberry almond biscotti are one of the easier recipes I’ve tried.
Making biscotti also has its advantages. Unlike other holiday cookies, biscotti don’t need any rolling, shaping, sprinkling, or piping.
The toughest step is to slice the biscotti before they bake for a second time. And a good serrated knife makes easy work of this (you can find some additional good tips in this post).
In addition, biscotti keep well. They hold their texture and crunch better than more delicate cookies, which can become too soft or too hard after only a day of storage.
As a result, they’re ideal for sharing with friends as a holiday gift. I’ve boxed, wrapped, and shipped these cranberry almond biscotti many times. They always seem to be a welcome gift.
Unbleached, all-purpose is my go-to for baking. In this recipe, it contributes to a crispy, light, tender biscotti.
If you’re allergic or sensitive, you can try a gluten-free, all-purpose flour instead. My favorite is King Arthur’s Measure for Measure flour.
For me, any treat with cranberries screams “Christmas!”
If you don’t like, or don’t have dried cranberries, you could use:
These vegan cranberry almond biscotti become almond-y in two ways. The first is with the addition of sliced or slivered almonds. They add texture and some nutty flavor to the recipe.
As with the cranberries, you can modify this to use a different type of nut! For biscotti, I like:
For all of the above, I recommend an unsalted variety. It works best for this sweet recipe!
Almond extract is the other ingredient that gives the cranberry almond biscotti their distinctive flavor.
The extract may not be something that you have in your pantry already. And in a pinch, you can replace it with additional vanilla extract.
But almond extract is a great baking ingredient to have at home. It adds so much flavor to cakes and cookies. I love it in my Nantucket cranberry pie and my favorite vanilla sugar cookies. I’ve added it to a lot of bundt cakes, too.
However, I think I slightly prefer aquafaba as an egg replacer in cookie recipes. That’s my choice for these biscotti, though a flax egg is just fine if you don’t have (or don’t want to open) a can of chickpeas.
Finally, I couldn’t resist adding of orange flavor to the biscotti, since it plays so nicely with both cranberries and almonds.
The citrus zest and juice really do make the cookies more flavorful, and I’m happy I went with it! A last minute addition that paid off.
One thing I love about biscotti is that they’re light and not overly sweet. This makes them a pretty reasonable snack or afternoon treat.
To store the cookies, keep them in an airtight container at room temperature. No need to pop them in the fridge.
They last a little longer than other types of cookies this way, so you can also consider them for holiday gifts. I usually get them in the mail them as soon as they’ve cooled completely. So long as I ship them someplace that’s a few days away, they can handle the journey.
I hope you’ll enjoy these cookies, friends. ‘Tis the season for something crispy, sweet, and worthy of sharing.