‘Tis the season for Christmas baking!

I don’t know about you, but I love to bake cookies. Only problem is I also like to EAT cookies, which my taste buds love…but my waistline? Not so much. ­čÖé

Several years ago I found a recipe for white chocolate cranberry cookies*. They were delicious, but not quite as healthy as I’d like. And surprisingly, they were also too sweet for my tastes.

These factors prompted me to make a few modifications to the recipe. I substituted unsweetened applesauce in place of half the sugar, split the flour into half whole wheat/half all-purpose, and cut back on the cranberries and white chips to┬áreduce the┬áoverall sweetness. I also┬ámade the cookie size smaller (hence, “cookie bites”) to help with portion control.

When I make these, I bake the whole batch and put at least half of them in the freezer for later.

The colors make them look pretty for Christmastime, but really, they can be enjoyed any time of the year. ­čÖé

Feel free to experiment with the ingredients, and have fun!

White Chocolate Cranberry Cookie Bites

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 5 dozen miniature cookies


  • 5 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup unsweetened applesauce
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, unbleached
  • 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/3 cup vanilla or white chips


  1. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter, sugar, and applesauce until crumbly, about 2 minutes. Beat in egg and vanilla.
  2. In a separate bowl, combine the flours, salt, and baking soda; gradually add to butter mixture and mix well.
  3. Stir in cranberries and chips.
  4. Drop by small teaspoonfuls 1 inch apart onto parchment-lined baking sheets.
  5. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 minutes or until lightly browned.
  6. Cool for 1 minute before removing to wire racks.


To make these into standard-sized cookies, drop by tablespoonfuls onto cookie sheets; bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown.


Because of the smaller cookie size, you can fit several on the baking sheet at a time. Here’s an example…

*If you’re interested in the original cookie recipe, you can find it HERE.



White Chocolate-Cranberry Cookie Bites Recipe