These festive fruit and oat refrigerator cookies are the perfect semblance of a fruit cake wrapped into a tasty cookie, and they’re perfect for the holidays because you can make the dough ahead of time and leave it in the fridge until you need it. This cookie is a winner.

A Refrigerator Cookie that Doesn’t Spread

We wanted a cookie that wouldn’t spread too much so that we could decorate the edges of the cookies. We used oatmeal and confectioners’ sugar for that. (We love oats in cookies anyway and the cornstarch in the confectioners’ sugar reduces spread.) The granulated sugar allows for aeration of the butter. And the fruit coupled with oats is perfect.

Choose whatever fruit you like, from cranberries to dates.

Festive Fruit and Oar Refrigerator Cookie Recipe


  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup quick oats
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 cup 1/4-inch diced dried fruit

Optional sugars, decorations, or nuts for coating the edges


1. Mix the flour, oats, baking powder, and salt together. Set aside.
2. Cream the butter and granulated sugar together. Add the confectioners’ sugar, the vanilla extract, and egg and beat until combined. Continue beating until the mixture is light and fluffy.
3. Add the flour mixture and the fruit and beat until combined. Do not over mix.
4. Divide the dough in half and form logs of each half first by squeezing the dough into the approximate shape and then by rolling the dough on the counter while wrapped in waxed paper until the logs are smooth. The logs should be about an inch and one-half in diameter. Refrigerate the logs wrapped in the waxed paper.
5. If you choose to decorate the edges, before baking roll the logs in the decorating sugar or nuts and use the waxed paper to press the decorations into the dough.
6. When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Use ungreased baking sheets with a nonstick surface or parchment paper.
7. Slice the logs with a sharp, serrated knife into 3/8-inch slices and place the slices on the cookie sheets. Bake the cookies for ten or eleven minutes or until done. Immediately remove them to a wire rack to cool.

Baker’s notes:

• Keep the slices of uniform thickness so that they are uniformly baked.
• Be sure to use a serrated knife to cut cleanly through the dried fruit.
• For uniformly round cookies, make sure that the log is chilled and firm and rotate the log on the cutting board between each slice. Any cookies that are out-of-round can be shaped by placing the cookie between the thumb and forefinger and pressing the edges to make the cookie round.

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