Make Orange Cardamom Cookies the new star of your cookie tray! Every year I strive to find my new *favorite* Christmas cookie and this year I decided to use a spice that is all too often overlooked: cardamom.
What's In This Article
What is Cardamom?
If you have never had cardamom, you are missing out. It is made from the pods of seeds that come from the plants that belong to the ginger family. It has a light peppery flavor with hints of lemon and mint which means it pairs well with citrus of all kinds.
It’s flavor lends itself extremely well to both savory and sweet dishes such as curries and garam masala spice mixes as well as chai spice mixes and other desserts.
Two Types of Cardamom
There are two types of cardamom that grow in different regions of the world: green cardamom and black cardamom. Both are sold as whole pods (which contain the seeds), seeds, as well as ground and have great cardamom flavors.
For baking purposes and especially for cookies, ground is typically the best thing to buy.
There is actually a third, white cardamom, but it is just green that has been bleached.
Orange Cardamom Cookies
I decided to use orange as it is abundant this time of year and blended with cardamom it is the perfect mix of sweet, spice, and everything nice. What more do you need from a slice and bake cookie?
Slice and bake Cardamom Orange Cookies are a fabulous idea for a cookie exchange idea or to keep in the freezer for unexpected visitors. Bright and just the right amount of sweet, they are the perfect thing to pair with a cup of tea or coffee.
Slice N Bake
We all love baking around the holiday season, but sometimes you are short on time which is where this slice and bake cookies excel. It is one of my absolute go-to’s for the simple fact that you can make it days ahead of time.
You can make the dough and wrap it up and leave it in the fridge or even pop it into the freezer. When guests are on their way, all you have to do, as the name suggests, is slice and bake. Voila, warm cookies with minimal effort.
Super simple, it is one of my hostess with the mostess tricks of the trade. Not only that, but the scent of these cookies will fill your kitchen with the most beautiful and warm smell. What a way to greet your guests during the holidays!
Orange Cardamom Cookies Ingredients
- Flour – All purpose flour works great for these cookies. I’ve never used almond flour or coconut flour, but let us know in the comments if you do!
- Baking soda – The air bubbles that baking soda gives off when baked provide a light and airy texture to these cookies.
- Salt – I like to use coarse kosher salt for this recipe. If using salted butter, make sure to omit the salt altogether. No one likes a salty cookie!
- Sugar – Although cardamom spice tastes great in savory recipes too, we need a sweet element to these cookies. White granulated sugar works great.
- Butter – I always opt to use unsalted butter when baking so that I can control the amount of salt in a recipe. It’s always easier to work with when it’s room temperature.
- Egg – Eggs provide structure, leavening and moisture to baked goods, and that’s exactly why we need one in this recipe.
- Orange – Not only will we be using orange zest, but also fresh orange juice as well. This really helps to bring out the fresh and bright orange flavor. Zest comes from grating the orange peel and the juice comes from squeezing the inside pulp.
- Cardamom – Above we discussed the different types of cardamom. For these cookies we want to use ground black cardamom. You can either grind your own or buy it pre ground from the store.
How to Make Orange Cardamom Cookies
- Sift dry ingredients. Sift together the dry ingredients. Sifting seems like an unnecessary step, but don’t skip it. It will cut down on the amount of time you need to mix your dough and also evenly distribute the leaveners.
- Cream butter and sugar. Beat butter well and then cream together butter and sugar until fluffy and light in color. Add egg through cardamom and mix well. Get them all good and mixed before you add the flour so you don’t have to overmix and create more gluten and add air, which leads to dry, frail cookies instead of soft ones.
- Whisk flour in. Add flour mixture until just combined.
- Roll into log. Form cookie dough into a log about 12-14 inches long and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Dough will be very soft. My best advice is to pour it onto the plastic wrap along an edge and then wrap it up, forming the log as you go. It might have a lot of bumps and this is ok, as it starts to harden, you can roll it on the counter or another hard surface to make a perfect circle. Place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 2 hours but up to 5 days. If freezing, double wrap with plastic wrap and then aluminum foil.
- Slice. When ready to bake (thaw if frozen), preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut cookie dough into 1/4 inch disks and place on prepared baking sheet sheet about 2 inches apart. Cookies will spread, so make sure they have some room.
- Bake cookies. Bake for 9-12 minutes, or until tops are lightly browned and puffy. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Oven temperatures and cooking times vary greatly.
These orange cardamom sugar cookies are delicious just like this. But there are plenty of different varieties to make them your own.
- Royal icing – I like the warm spices of these sweet treats just as they are, but you can certainly take them up a notch by adding some icing. Icing sugar mixed with a couple tablespoons of milk, egg whites and vanilla extract makes for a great royal icing to pipe on the tops of the cookies.
- Orange glaze – You could also top these cookies with an orange glaze. Orange extract or fresh orange juice mixed with confectioner’s sugar or powdered sugar and melted butter.
- Cut out cookies – Feel free to grab your favorite festive cookie cutters and make these cut out cookies instead of slice and bake. They would look beautiful on your holiday cookie platter.
- Food coloring – For an extra burst of color, you could definitely add a couple drops of orange food coloring to your cookie shortbread dough.
- Extracts – Take the flavor of these orange sugar cookies up a notch by adding vanilla or almond extract to the crumbly shortbread cookie base.
- Chocolate coating – Dip baked cookies in melted chocolate, either dark chocolate or milk chocolate, for a whole new flavor experience.
Storage & Freezing
Storage: Store cookies at room temperature in an airtight container. They will be best enjoyed within a week.
Freezing: Orange cardamom cookies can also be frozen in an airtight container for up to three months.
More Delicious Dessert Ideas
- Lemon Cardamom Cake
- Peppermint Macarons
- Chocolate Bacon Saltine Toffee
- Christmas Cake Mix Cookies
- Dark Chocolate Almond Cream Cheese Cups
Orange Cardamom Cookie Recipe
- Sift together flour through salt. Set aside.
- In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or a large mixing bowl with an electric mixer, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy and light in color. Add egg through cardamom and mix well.
- Slowly, add flour mixture until fully combined.
- Form cookie dough into a log about 12-14 inches long and wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Dough will be soft and sticky. Pour it onto the plastic wrap along an edge and then wrap it up, forming the log as you go. It might have a lot of bumps and this is ok, as it starts to harden, you can roll it on the counter or another hard surface to make a perfect circle.
- Place in the refrigerator for a minimum of 4 hours but up to 5 days. If freezing, double wrap with plastic wrap and then aluminum foil.
- When ready to bake (thaw if frozen), preheat oven to 375 degrees. Cut cookie dough into 1/4 inch disks and place on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet about 2 inches apart. Cookies will spread, so make sure they have some room.
- Bake for 9-12 minutes, or until tops are lightly browned and puffy. Allow to cool for 5 minutes before moving to a cooling rack. Cooking times vary based on your oven, so watch them closely and remove when centers are tracky and shiny.
- If you've tried this recipe, come back and let us know how it was in the comments or ratings.