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Fresh cranberries in a glass bowl mixed with bourbon, star anise, brown sugar and vanilla bean.

Bourbon Apple Cranberry Cobbler with Anise and Vanilla Bean

Piping hot, fresh, and so festive, this bourbon apple cranberry cobbler with anise is a quick and delicious addition to your holiday feast! Served with a scoop of your favorite vanilla bean ice cream, this is a lovely treat!
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 4 Generous Servings
Calories 460kcal
Author Vanilla And Bean


Cranberry Mix:

  • 1 C Fresh Cranberries 100g
  • 1/3 C Bourbon such as Jim Beam Reserve or Makers Mark 78mL
  • 3/4 tsp Star Anise Extract or two star anise I use Rodelle
  • 2 Tbs Brown Sugar 30g
  • 1/2 Vanilla Bean I use Rodelle

Apple Mix:

  • 3 Baking Apples: I prefer Jonagolds but Gala and Honeycrisp are lovely (550g before peeling)
  • 1/2 tsp Lemon Zest
  • 1 Tbs Lemon Juice
  • 2 Tbs Brown Sugar
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
  • 4 Tbs Unsalted Butter 56g

Tender Dough Topping:

  • 1/4 C Sugar Evaporated Cane Juice, 56g
  • 3/4 C All Purpose Flour 118g
  • 2 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • Pinch of Sea Salt
  • 3/4 C + 2 Tbs Heavy Whip Cream 207 mL
  • 1 Tbs Turbinado or Sanding Sugar for finishing

Serve With Your Choice:

  • Sifted powder sugar
  • Vanilla Bean Ice Cream
  • Vanilla Bean Whip Cream


Prep the Cranberries:

  • The evening prior to making this dessert, prepare the cranberries for maceration. Place the cranberries in a bowl with the bourbon, star anise extract (or anise) and brown sugar. Scrape out the vanilla bean and put the beans and pod in the cranberry mixture. Stir, cover and refrigerate over night or for at least 8 hours.

Prep 4, 10 oz Baking Ramekins or 8x8 Baking Dish:

  • Take 1 Tbs of unsalted butter and spread it on the bottom and sides of the baking dish(s) of your choice.
  • Line a sheet pan with parchment paper or a silpat.
  • Preheat oven to 400F.

Prep The Apples and Filling:

  • Peel and dice the apples into 1/4"-1/2" pieces, place in a bowl; compost the peel.To the apples add the lemon zest, juice, brown sugar, cinnamon and pinch of salt.
  • Remove the vanilla pod from the cranberry mixture and pour the cranberry mixture into the apple mixture. Stir to incorporate all the flavors. (Rinse the vanilla bean pod and set it out to dry overnight. When dry, add it to your sugar bowl or sugar container for vanilla sugar).

Prep The Dough:

  • In a mixing bowl add the sugar, flour, salt and baking powder. Whisk. Add the heavy whip cream and stir just to incorporate the ingredients. Do not over work the tender dough. It will be a shaggy mess.

To Assemble:

  • Place the fruit mixture into the baking dish(s) of your choice. If using ramekins, divide the fruit equally among the ramekins. Pour the remaining juice evenly over the fruit. Divide the remaining butter evenly among the ramekins and place it on top of the fruit.
  • Spoon the dough evenly over the fruit mixture. Pack it down if needed. The ramekins will be full, but the fruit mixture will breakdown as it bakes.
  • Sprinkle the top of dough with turbinado sugar.
  • Bake for 25-30 minutes at 400F. Start watching the crust at about 20 minutes. You want a golden brown crust.
  • Remove from oven and allow to set for at least 10 minutes before serving


Calories: 460kcal | Carbohydrates: 71g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 9g | Cholesterol: 39mg | Sodium: 12mg | Potassium: 538mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 43g | Vitamin A: 521IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 181mg | Iron: 2mg