When I was asked to participate in the Cape Cod Select Holiday Recipe Blogger Recipe Challenge, I immediately started thinking of what flavors I’d want to highlight in my recipe. (Participating bloggers are able to submit recipes for an entree, beverage, or baked good. Since my greatest love is baking, I knew a cranberry-themed dessert was in my future.)
(Oh, quick update on the recipe contest front. My last recipe content entry was a Southern Summertime Soba Bowl for the JSL Noodle Recipe Blogger Contest, and I ended up winning an honorable mention for my dish. Fun stuff!)
Okay, back to the contest at hand…
This one’s all about the cranberries. (Aren’t they just beautiful?)
Cranberries always pair so well with citrus (this delicious recipe is a testament to that!), so I wanted to bring that combo to the recipe in some way. Orange is the typical go-to complement to cranberry, so I went the grapefruit route to mix (and tart) things up a bit.
I decided to keep things simple and festive, but also wanted to try to bring a healthier sweet treat option to the table with this recipe. The result? A pretty darn tasty (if I do say so myself) shortbread topped with cranberry and grapefruit compote. Bonus: it’s also vegan as well as gluten and dairy free, and is sweetened with erythritol (a natural, sugar-free sweetener) rather than white sugar. This treat would be perfect to bring to any holiday party, as it’s as lovely as it is delicious. I also love that it’s not overly sweet.
Interested in whipping this recipe up for yourself? Let’s get to it!:
Healthy Shortbread With Cranberry & Grapefruit Compote (Makes about 15 shortbreads)
Ingredients (for shortbread)
- 2 1/2 cups blanched almond flour
- 1 cup finely ground walnuts or pecans
- 2/3 cup erythritol
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink sea salt
- 1 Tablespoon vanilla
- 2/3 cup coconut oil, melted
Ingredients (for compote)
- 1/2 cup erythritol
- 2 1/2 cups Cape Cod Select premium frozen cranberries, thawed (For this recipe, the cranberries I used were provided by Cape Cod Select for the purposes of participating in this recipe contest, but they’re available at lots of stores near me, including the Cloverdale Harris Teeter for all you Winston-Salem folks! Find the store nearest you that carries Cape Cod Select by using their store locator.)
- 1/4 cup grapefruit juice (juice from about half a grapefruit)
- 1 teaspoon grapefruit zest
Directions (for shortbread)
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the almond flour, finely ground nuts, erythritol, baking soda, and salt.
- Mix in the vanilla and melted coconut oil.
- Place the dough in the center of a large piece of parchment paper and roll the dough into a log shape, about 3-4 inches in diameter (completely covering it in the parchment paper.
- Refrigerate for at least three hours until the dough becomes firm (overnight works, too!).
- Once you’re ready to bake the shortbread, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Unwrap the dough and cut it into 1/2-inch-thick slices.
- Place the slices on a baking sheet lined with a Silpat or parchment paper and bake until light brown in color (roughly 13-15 minutes).
- Cool completely before adding compote topping.
Directions (for compote)
- Place erythritol, 1 1/2 cups cranberries, and grapefruit juice to a simmer over medium-low heat in a small saucepan.
- Simmer, stirring occasionally, until berries burst and the mixture becomes thick and syrupy (about 8 minutes).
- Stir in the remaining 1 cup of cranberries and cook until the skin on the cranberries begins to split (roughly 3 minutes).
- Remove compote from heat and let cool completely.
Directions (for adding compote topping to shortbread)
- Spread cooled cranberry-grapefruit compote over the cooled shortbread cookies.
- Distribute grapefruit zest on top of the compote.