Cherry Wink Cookies are old-fashioned chewy and crunchy cookies that will take you back, way back to the good old days. Rich cookie dough stuffed with dates and pecans is then rolled in crushed cornflakes and topped with a maraschino cherry to make a true vintage cookie.
Cherry Wink Cookie History
In 1950 Pillsbury ran their second annual baking contest. This recipe for Cherry Wink cookies was the baking contest winner submitted by Ruth Derousseau of Wisconsin. Since then this cookie recipe has been popping up in cookie swaps and on cookie platters all over the United States. Though this unique cookie recipe is over 70 years old it is still quite popular today.
With the bright red cherry on top, these cookies are the perfect festive-looking cookie to celebrate the holidays with. Make a batch for your gathering or leave a few out for Santa.
Ingredients Needed To Make This Cherry Wink Cookie Recipe
You will find a complete printable recipe card at the bottom of this recipe post.
Sugar – I used white granulated sugar in these cookies.
Shortening – If you can find nonhydrogenated shortening that would be best.
Milk – Any kind of milk will work in this recipe. I used skim milk.
Vanilla – I prefer real vanilla extract but if you have imitation vanilla then feel free to use it.
Eggs – I usually bake with white large eggs but brown, organic, or free-range are good options as well.
Flour – I used all-purpose flour in these cherry winks.
Baking powder and baking soda – These both help the cookies rise. Any brand is fine.
Salt – A touch of salt enhances the flavor of these cherry wink cookies.
Pecans – I used unsalted pecans and chopped them but if you can find chopped pecans that will work well.
Dates – make sure they are chopped.
Maraschino cherries – These cherries can be found canned in the canned food aisle of the grocery store. They are required to go in the cookie batter and used it on top of the cookie. I chopped and patted them dry with paper towels.
Corn flakes cereal – Any kind of corn flakes cereal will work. Any brand is fine. Just make sure to crush and coarsely chop them.
How to make cherry wink cookies
First: In a large mixing bowl beat sugar and shortening with an electric mixer on medium speed, scraping the bowl occasionally, until well blended.
Second: Beat in milk, vanilla, and eggs.
Third: Add in the dry ingredients. On low speed beat in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally, until dough forms.
Fourth: To the flour mixture, stir in pecans, dates, and chopped cherries.
Fifth: If necessary, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes for easier handling.
Sixth: Heat oven to 375°F. Spray cookie sheets with cooking spray or line them with parchment paper.
Seventh: Drop cookie dough by rounded teaspoonfuls into crushed cornflakes; coat thoroughly. Shape into balls. Place 2 inches apart on the baking sheet.
Eighth: Lightly press the maraschino cherry quarter on top of each ball.
Ninth: Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until light golden brown.
Tenth: Cool for 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets to a wire rack for cooling.
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What cereal can I use instead of cornflakes? To be true to the original recipe from 1950 the cookies are coated in cornflakes. Betty Croker did a similar recipe called Cherry Blinks and those cookies contained Wheaties cereal.
How can I store cherry wink cookies? You can store these old-fashioned cookies in an airtight container on the counter for 3-4 days or in the freezer for a few months.
Can I use butter instead of the shortening? Yes, butter can be used in place of shortening. Note margarine has a higher water content so it may not work as a 1-1 substitution.
- Try raisins or currents if you don’t have any dates.
- Chocolate chips make a nice addition to any cookie in my opinion.
- Shredded coconut will also add a nice flavor.
- Drizzle cookies with a vanilla glaze
- Add lemon zest for a bit of a zing.
- Use a combination of red and green maraschino cherries.
- Substitute almond extract for the teaspoon of vanilla
Tips & Tricks To Make Old Fashioned Cherry Wink Cookies
- Bring your ingredients to room temperature before you begin making the cookies.
- Crush the cornflakes with the bottom of a glass measuring cup.
- Toast the pecans to heighten their flavor.
More Cherry Recipes to LOVE
- White Chocolate Cherry Cookies (pictured above)
- Cherry Cheese Bread
- Cherry Dessert
- Fried Ice Cream Pie
- Cherry-Filled Coffee Cake
- Cherry Pie Jell-O Salad
Check out all of the amazing Cookie Recipes shared today in our #ChristmasCookies recipe group at the bottom of this post.
If you are looking for some nostalgia then these rich and chewy cherry wink cookies are a must. Turn on some Nat King Cole, grab a cup of tea and enjoy!
- 1 cup sugar
- ¾ cup shortening
- 2 Tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 eggs
- 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chopped pecans
- 1 cup chopped dates
- ⅓ cup chopped maraschino cherries patted dry with paper towels
- 1 ½ cups coarsely crushed corn flakes cereal
- 30 maraschino cherries cut in half
- In a large bowl, beat sugar and shortening with an electric mixer on medium speed, scraping the bowl occasionally, until well blended.
- Beat in milk, vanilla, and eggs.
- On low speed, beat in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, scraping the bowl occasionally, until dough forms.
- Stir in pecans, dates, and 1/3 cup of chopped cherries. If necessary, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 15 minutes for easier handling.
- Pre-heat oven to 375°F. Spray cookie sheets with cooking spray.
- Drop dough by rounded teaspoonfuls into cereal; coat thoroughly. Shape into balls. Place 2 inches apart on cookie sheets.
- Lightly press the maraschino cherry quarter on top of each ball.
- Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until light golden brown. Cool for 1 minute; remove from cookie sheets to cooling racks.
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Amount Per Serving: Calories: 139Total Fat: 7gSaturated Fat: 2gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 13mgSodium: 74mgCarbohydrates: 18gFiber: 1gSugar: 11gProtein: 2g
Please note that nutrition is not guaranteed accurate.
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