Dried Berries Will Give Your Cookies A Tart Twist

Despite the seemingly neverending number of cookie recipes out there, if you're finding yourself in a cookie rut with a desire to shake things up a bit, dried berries are a great way to add a tart twist to virtually any beloved cookie recipe. We're all familiar with the classic oatmeal raisin cookie recipe; however, raisins aren't the only dried fruit that can make a delicious addition to your favorite cookie recipes.

Amazingly, there are hundreds of different types of berries, from the standard cranberries and blueberries to the more adventurous boysenberries and cloudberries, so the possibilities are truly endless, with a tasty recipe out there for lovers of each of the different dried fruits. Thank goodness we aren't stuck with just using raisins to add a bit of tartness to our cookies, right? No shade to the raisins, but we can do better.

For instance, sugar cookies can be upgraded with tangy dried blueberries, while chocolate cookies can take on a fruitcake spin with the inclusion of various dried berries and nuts. You can even take your favorite no-bake oatmeal cookie recipe and add dried currants and cranberries along with dates and a bit of orange zest for an extra tart bite or pair cranberries and white chocolate for a seasonal spin. Yum.

Things to keep in mind when baking with dried berries

Despite their great flavor, dried berries, unfortunately, present several potential baking stumbling blocks that you'll need to address in order to save your cookies from an overly sugary and dry demise. Because dried berries have been dried out (as the name implies), you'll need to counteract that by rehydrating them a bit with a good soak in boiling water and potentially adjusting the moisture in your cookie recipe, lest your cookies end up dry when the berries suck all the moisture out of them. 

You should also be mindful of the sugar content of the dried berries you choose. Some berries — especially when you buy them already dried — are preserved with sugar, making them a sugar bomb just waiting to happen. As such, you may want to decrease the amount of sugar you use in your cookie recipe, so you don't end up with something too sweet. You can also dry berries in an air fryer or dehydrator yourself, to better control how much sugar is added and really amp up the tartness factor. At the end of the day, a good cookie recipe will call for some experimentation, but that'll make your dried berry treats all the more worth it.