A delicious and unique Christmas Cookie recipe, these Soft & Chewy Fruitcake Cookies take the best parts of a classic Christmas fruitcake and turn them into a crowd-pleasing Christmas favorite!
Fruitcake Cookies Recipe
Okay, so let’s just address the elephant in the room, shall we?
Not everyone is a fan of fruitcake. I definitely am not a fan of the conventional, store-bought version that has a 3-year shelf life and has a peculiar rubbery texture. But after my university roommate exposed me to the glorious comfort food that is Jamaican Fruit Loaf (complete with melted cheddar cheese on top), I’ve been open to the idea that fruitcake doesn’t have to be horrible.
I am still working on the perfect “fruit loaf” recipe, but until then I wanted to play with those flavors and make a soft and chewy fruitcake cookie with loads of chewy candied fruit and crunchy pecans.
These cookies are guaranteed to be a crowd-pleaser, whether you’re bringing them to a cookie exchange, serving them at a Christmas party, or gifting them. Even the most staunch fruitcake loathers will be pleasantly surprised at how yummy these tender cookies are!
By using a shortening base and all brown sugar (no white sugar), these cookies take on an incredible melt-in-your-mouth texture.
You can make them even more fruitcake-inspired by adding a splash of rum, or a teaspoon of rum extract.
I’m not usually a fan of anything other than chocolate chips or caramel in my baked goods (I’m looking at you nuts in brownies, or raisins in cookies…) but the candied fruit and nuts in this cookie recipe are really enjoyable and indulgent.
For this recipe, I used Millican Pecan’s Pecan Pieces. I didn’t realize what a difference there could be between pecan brands, but these are so incredibly fresh and flavorful. They also have delicious snack options like the Sweet and Spicy Pecans which are perfect for the holidays. My next order, I’m trying their Pecan Butter and the Caramel Pecan Coffee! (And by the way, this is not sponsored – I just really love them.)
Like most of my cookie recipes, you can freeze the cookie dough if you need to prepare ahead. Just wrap the dough securely with saran wrap and place in an airtight freezer-safe bag for up to three months. Let the dough come to room temperature before portioning and baking.
If you’re looking for even more Christmas cookie recipes, check out our Classic Christmas Cookies ebook, where we have gathered 40 of our favorite Christmas cookie recipes – from Peanut Butter Buckeyes to Easy Shortbread, Cream Cheese Mints to Toffee Biscuits! These cookies all share a few things in common:
- They are easy enough for the kids to help make
- They require no special ingredients requiring visits to 5 different grocery stores
- They are Christmas classics that everyone will be excited to see at the Cookie Exchange
- And they are delicious!
To make your holiday baking even easier, we’ve included several tips to ensure the best results so you can just focus on having fun with your kids and trust that these cookies will turn out perfectly, every time.
Grab your copy of our Classic Christmas Cookies ebook:
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Fruitcake Cookie Ingredients
Tip: add a teaspoon of rum extract, if desired. Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Mixing bowl
- Electric mixer <– this is a great hand mixer if you don’t want to make the investment into a stand mixer
- Cookie sheet
- Parchment paper
- Cooling racks <– I have and love these tiered cooling racks, they save so much counter space and are also oven-safe
How to Make Fruitcake Cookies
Place shortening and brown sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the egg and milk, and beat to combine thoroughly. In a small separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt. Add half the dry ingredients into the shortening mixture, combine fully, then add the remaining half and beat until combined. Do not overmix. Stir in the pecans and mixed fruit. Use a small cookie scoop to portion out the cookie dough and the refrigerate for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 400F and remove cookie dough from the fridge. Space the cookies 2″ apart on a parchment or silicone mat lined cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes. Allow cookies to cool for one minute on the cookie sheet before moving to a cooling rack. Pin this Delicious and Unique Christmas Cookie recipe: Grab your free printable for our Christmas Fruitcake Cookies recipe:
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1 3/4 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup pecans (mix of chopped and whole ideally)
- 1 1/2 cups chopped glace cherries
- Place shortening and brown sugar in a large bowl and beat with an electric mixer for 2 minutes until light and fluffy.
- Add the egg and milk, and beat to combine thoroughly.In a small separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.Add half the dry ingredients into the shortening mixture, combine fully, then add the remaining half and beat until combined. Do not overmix.
- Stir in the pecans and mixed fruit.Use a small cookie scoop to portion out the cookie dough and the refrigerate for 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400F and remove cookie dough from the fridge.
- Space the cookies 2" apart on a parchment or silicone mat lined cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes.
- Allow cookies to cool for one minute on the cookie sheet before moving to a cooling rack.
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Good Cook 13 Inch x 9 Inch Cookie Sheet
Domino Dark Brown Sugar, 32 oz
Reynolds Kitchens Non-Stick Parchment Paper - Amazon Exclusive 12 inch - 60 Square Feet
Crisco, All-Vegetable Shortening, 48 oz
Pennant Red Cherries, 8 Ounce
Orchard Fresh Raw Pecan Halves 1-Pound | Millican Pecan since 1888 | San Saba, Texas
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 140Total Fat: 8gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 5gCholesterol: 10mgSodium: 147mgCarbohydrates: 17gFiber: 1gSugar: 9gProtein: 2g
Sugar, Spice and Glitter uses an auto-generate nutrition calculator. Nutrition information isn’t always accurate unless analyzed in a scientific lab, so these should be considered more of a guideline than medical information.
These Fruitcake Cookies are a fun and unique recipe to bring to a cookie exchange or gift to loved ones during the holidays. For more delicious Christmas cookie recipes, check out our Walnut Crescent cookies or our Hot Chocolate Eggnog cookies recipe.
What is Houseful Of Cookies?
I’m sharing these Fruitcake Cookies today as part of the Houseful of Cookies blog hop.
Houseful of Cookies is an annual, virtual cookie hop, hosted by my friend Natasha Nicholes of Houseful of Nicholes. Check out the other cookie recipes below to round out your holiday baking!
Houseful Of Cookies Participants
Brownie Cookies – Houseful of Nicholes
Chocolate Rolo Surprise Cookies – Good Girl Gone Redneck
The Perfect Christmas Sugar Cookies – Love, Jaime
Cake Mix Santa Cookies – Dairy Carrie
Candy Cane Cookies – Brooklyn Active Mama
Chocolate Dipped Peppermint Shortbread Cookies – Honest & Truly
Gingersnap Cookies – Divas With A Purpose
Decorated Ugly Sweater Cookies – 1000 Directions
Mickey Christmas Headband Cookies – Cutefetti
Birds Nest Cookies – My Crafty Life
Cranberry White Chocolate Chip Cookies – Kenya Rae
Gluten-Free Russian Tea Cakes – Day by Day in Our World
Not His Mamma’s Tassies – Heather Spins a Yarn
Molded Peanut Butter Cookies – This Mamas Life
Not Your Mama’s Milk & Cookies – Life of a Ginger
Peanut Butter Marshmallow Chocolate Chunk Cookies – Mama Harris’ Kitchen
Coffee Sandwich Cookies with Browned Buttercream Filling – How Was Your Day?
Butterscotch Cornflake Cookies – Omadarling
Coffee Cookies – Someday I’ll Learn
Toffee Bits Cookies – This Worthey Life
Keto Almond Joy Cookies – The Crunchy Mommy