Cherry Almond Cookies with Dates

5 from 2 votes

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Soft-centered cookies filled with crunchy sliced almonds, sweet maraschino cherries, and chewy, flavorful dates. Perfect for your cookie jar any time of the year!

Aerial photo of cherry almond date cookies on a plate with a small bowl of maraschino cherries.


In my personal opinion, one of the best flavor combinations to ever exist is cherry + almond. It’s also a really great scent combo, but the flavors together are just magical. Sweet cherry and a deeply nutty flavor complelment each other so well, especially when you amp it up with super sweet maraschino cherries and potent almond extract. 

While I love classics like a chocolate chip cookie, oatmeal raisin cookie, snickerdoodle cookie, and peanut butter (blossom or frosted style!), I love having “fun” cookies in my baking arsenal for times when an unexpected flavor is welcome like a cookie exchange, Christmas cookie trays, a baking competition, or when you’re just plain ol’ tired of the regulars.


This cherry almond cookie with dates is adapted from an old recipe that my mom used to make when I was a kid. It is the epitome of holiday nostalgia for me, and I have my mom to thank for that (thanks, Marm!). While she always made it around Christmas time, this cookie can grace your cookie jar any time of the year!

A stack of cherry almond cookies with dates. There are maraschino cherries around it.

This recipe is adapted from Kellogg’s cherry dot cookies which are often also called cherry wink cookies or cherry winks. In the original recipe, Cornflakes are used as an outside coating for the cookies, but in true Marm form, the recipe she uses is simplified immensely by just throwing the Cornflakes into the dough.

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Wham, bam, thank you ma’am. I am so down with that method.

The funny thing about these cookie recipe you’ll see below, though, is that I actually omit the Cornflakes completely AND add a little something extra to make them my own (almond extract, because remember, cherries + almond = ahhhmazing!).

Cherry almond date cookies on a plate.

So while this recipe does not include any Cornflakes at all, I thank Kellogg and my childhood for providing the base and concept for these fabulous, chewy, and flavorful almond cherry cookies. They are one of my favorite cookies of all time, and I think you’ll love them, too!


You might be looking at this list of ingredients and be wondering where the heck the dates come in. Believe me, they are a delicious addition. They are dense, a little chewy, and full of robust flavor, which makes them a really wonderful addition to baked goods.

These cookies aren’t super sweet, so the maraschino cherries and chopped dates take on a lot of the sweetness. You may be tempted to swap them for other ingredients, which I include information about in the notes, but I think if you’re open to this fun flavor combo, you’ll be a believer with one bite!

Aerial photo of ingredients for cherry almond cookies with dates with text overlay.

For these cherry almond cookies with dates, you will need:
• all-purpose flour
• baking powder
• salt
• ​unsalted butter
• granulated sugar
• egg
• vanilla extract
• almond extract
• sliced almonds
• chopped dates
• maraschino cherries


While you will need to build in time for chilling the cookie dough, this is a very straightforward recipe. Be sure to see my success tips below for creating the perfect texture and intended end result.

Cherry almond date cookies on a plate.


Start by whisking together the flour, baking powder, and salt, and then set this mixture aside.


Next, cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat again, then add the vanilla and almond extracts and beat again until completely combined.


Next, slowly add flour mixture and mix until the dough comes together, then add the almonds and chopped dates and blend until completely combined. 


Lastly, add the chopped cherries and blend until evenly dispersed. Cover the dough and allow it to chill in the refrigerator.


When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven, scoop the dough, roll it in your hands, and then bake.


While these cookies are pretty straightforward, there are a few things you need to keep in mind to ensure you get the perfect cookies.

Cherry almond date cookies on a plate.

WEIGH THE FLOUR: while the intention is that these cookies are a cakey cookie, measuring the flour properly will ensure they don’t become too cakey or spread too much in the oven. My preferred method is weighing with a scale, but the scoop and level method will work, too.

SQUEEZE THE MARASCHINO CHERRIES DRY: maraschino cherries are very juicy! And chopped maraschino cherries are even more so, since they’ve been chopped to expose their juicy centers. It is imperative that you squeeze them dry before adding them to the cookie dough. There will be some residual maraschino cherry juice, but the goal is not to add any extra than necessary.

DO NOT USE WHOLE ALMONDS: you may be tempted to use whole almonds or even chop them. Do not do this. The cakiness of the cookies means we need some softer, chewier additions. Whole almonds are too harsh of a texture. The sliced ones are very thin and have a gentler crunch since they have been blanched.

DO NOT USE FRESH CHERRIES: you may be tempted to use fresh cherries, but believe it or not, these are not quite sweet enough for these cookies. You are absolutely welcome to try them, but know the taste will be quite different from what you’d get with maraschino cherries. Consider my cherry brownies if you’re looking for fresh cherries in a dessert!


Since these cookies are quite moist, I find it best to store them loosely in a container so they don’t become soggy. I like to put them in a container with the lid just placed on top so there can be a small air exchange.

Aerial photo of cherry almond date cookies on a plate with a small bowl of maraschino cherries.
5 from 2 votes
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Cherry Almond Date Cookies Recipe

Soft-centered cookies filled with crunchy sliced almonds, sweet maraschino cherries, and chewy, flavorful dates. Perfect for your cookie jar any time of the year!
Prep Time15 minutes
Bake Time15 minutes
Chilling Time1 hour
Total Time1 hour 30 minutes
Recipe Author Lynn April
Servings: 18 cookies


  • 1 cup + 2 Tablespoons (135g) all-purpose flour be sure to measure properly
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 6 Tablespoons (85g) unsalted butter softened to room temperature
  • ½ cup (50g) granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ½ teaspoon almond extract
  • ½ cup (60g) sliced almonds
  • ½ cup (60g) chopped dates
  • 6 ounces (170g) maraschino cherries1 finely chopped and squeezed/patted dry2


  • In a medium size mixing bowl, toss together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl with a handheld mixer or the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, about 3-4 minutes. Add egg and beat again. Add vanilla extract and almond extract and beat again until completely combined.
  • Reduce the mixer to low, then slowly add flour mixture and mix until the dough comes together. Add the almonds and chopped dates and blend until completely combined. Add the chopped cherries and blend until evenly dispersed. Cover the dough and allow it to chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour and up to 2 days.
  • When you are ready to bake the cookies, preheat oven to 350°F (177ºC). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat. Set aside.
  • Using a cookie scoop (I use this #50 cookie scoop for all of my standard size cookies), scoop dough and roll in your hands. Place balls of dough onto the prepared baking sheet and bake cookies for 13-15 minutes or until golden brown on the edges. Allow to cool on baking sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Cookies will stay fresh stored in an airtight container at room temperature up to 5 days. Baked cookies freeze well, up to 3 months. Unbaked cookie dough freezes well, up to 3 months. Place on baking sheet frozen and add 1-2 minutes to the baking time.


  1. Maraschino cherries: this will be about 1 cup before chopped. 
  2. Squeeze dry: maraschino cherries are very wet. Too much moisture in these cookies will make them much cakier than intended and possibly too wet to store safely. I like to let my chopped cherries drain through a mesh sieve and then use a paper towel or dark colored kitchen towel to squeeze them as dry as possible before adding them to my cookie dough. 
Did you make this recipe?Mention @freshaprilflours on Instagram or tag #freshaprilflours!

Nutrition Disclosure

All nutritional values are approximate and provided to the reader as a courtesy. Changing ingredients and/or quantities will alter the estimated nutritional calculations.

Serving: 1cookie | Calories: 134kcal | Carbohydrates: 19g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 6g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 19mg | Sodium: 72mg | Potassium: 70mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 12g | Vitamin A: 135IU | Vitamin C: 0.02mg | Calcium: 41mg | Iron: 1mg
5 from 2 votes

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  1. I AM SO EXCITED that 12 days of cookies is finally here! And WOWZA waht a recipe to start with. I’ve never, ever heard of adding maraschino cherries to cookies, but am LOVING IT! Plus dates?! I die. This is perfection.

    1. You are a date-in-cookies lover, Leah! Ya gotta add maraschinos to something soon! They’re just so tasty and PRETTY!

    1. Thank you for catching that, Michele! I fixed the recipe. I meant to go back and fix it once I counted how many it was– much easier than a measurement. It’s 16 cherries, finely chopped.

  2. The 12 days of cookies is so much sweeter than the 12 days of Christmas! These are so festive, and such an unexpectedly awesome cookie addition to the usual rotation of gingerbread and choc-mint creations. YUM! Can’t wait to see what Friday brings!

    1. Hey, Judy– I’ve never tried that, so I’m not quite sure! I’m guessing it would taste great. Let me know if you try it!

  3. These look really good but I’m not a fan of dates. Are they really necessary in this recipe? Could they be omitted or substituted with something else?
    Thanks, I always enjoy your recipes, keep them coming!

    1. Hey, Joanne– you can leave them out or sub in extra almonds OR chocolate chips instead. Personally, I love dates, but I get it– not everyone does! I love their chew, but you can definitely detect their flavor, so if you try them with another ingredient, let me know how it turns out 🙂

    1. Hi, Paula– thanks for finding that typo. What you saw as the second baking powder was actually supposed to be vanilla extract. It’s fixed now.