This easy Cranberry Orange Bread recipe is packed with sweet orange and tart cranberry flavors – perfect for the holidays! Delightfully moist with bright, bold flavors, this quick bread is sure to become in instant favorite. Make an extra loaf to share with friends and family this holiday season!
Orange Cranberry Bread
This Orange Cranberry Bread recipe features fresh orange juice and tart, fresh cranberries for the brightest flavor imaginable. Each slice is perfection and tastes like Christmas! No one will be able to resist this bread – it is simply packed with fresh holiday flavors!
A simple three ingredient glaze really takes this Cranberry Orange Bread recipe over the top!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
There are so many sweets and treats to make this holiday season but this simple quick bread is a must make for so many reasons:
- Holiday Flavors. Bursting with orange and cranberry flavors, this bread has bright, bold flavors that tantalize the tastebuds.
- Alluring Aroma. Bake one loaf of this bread and you are sure to get in the holiday spirit! It smells ah-mazing!
- Great to Gift. We love sharing homemade cookies, candies and breads with friends and family during the holiday season. This cranberry orange bread recipes tops the list and is definitely a crowd favorite.
This recipe would be perfect for a special holiday brunch or tea party too!
More Bread Recipes To Try
Cranberry Orange Bread Ingredients
This recipe starts with a perfectly moist and buttery orange and vanilla cake, then is studded with tart, fresh cranberries. A simple glaze adds a final layer of flavor, and you have a beautiful loaf perfect to enjoy with family and friends… or in a quiet moment all by yourself.
As always, you can find the full printable recipe with complete instructions in the recipe card at the end of this post. Let’s take a look at what you’ll need…
- all-purpose flour – make sure you properly measure the flour. Loosen the flour up by stirring the flour in the container, spoon it into the measuring cup and then use the back of a knife to level the cup, sweeping the excess flour off the top of the measuring cup.
- baking powder – the leavening agent in this bread which helps the bread to rise.
- salt – a critical component in this recipe as it helps to intensify the orange and cranberry flavors.
- unsalted butter – you can use salted if that is all you have on hand. Cut the amount of salt in half.
- sugar – granulated sugar gives this loaf a lovely sweetness and helps balance out the tartness from the oranges and cranberries.
- eggs – brings the mixture together.
- vanilla extract – use the real stuff here, it adds so much flavor! Make your own homemade vanilla extract for that special touch.
- fresh grated orange zest and orange juice – We’re using both orange zest and juice for a delicious orange flavor. Zest your oranges first before juicing.
- milk -loosens up the batter.
- cranberries – you can use fresh or frozen but please remember to toss them in flour before adding to the batter. This keeps them from sinking to the bottom while the bread is baking.
The glaze is super simple to make but adds so much to this quick bread recipe. Just 3 ingredients that get whisked together and then drizzled over the bread.
- melted butter
- powdered sugar
- fresh orange juice
How To Make Orange Cranberry Bread
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Line a 9″x 5″ loaf pan with parchment paper (or lightly grease with butter).
- Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a medium bowl.
- Beat together the melted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, orange zest and orange juice in a large bowl. Mix until well combined.
- Slowly add the flour mixture and milk in two batches (some flour, then some milk, then the rest of the flour and the rest of the milk). Stop mixing as soon as it’s just combined.
- Rinse the fresh cranberries, so they have just a bit of moisture on them, and then toss the cranberries with one tablespoon of flour. Stir into the batter.
- Pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 55-65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.
- Cool bread in the pan for 15 to 30 minutes, then move to a wire cooling rack with a baking sheet below (to catch the glaze you’re about to add).
- Prepare glaze by whisking together the melted butter, powdered sugar and orange juice. If needed, add an additional tablespoon of powdered sugar to reach the desired consistency.
- Drizzle one layer of glaze over loaf and allow to set a few minutes, then add an additional layer of glaze.
- Slice and enjoy!
Leftover Orange Cranberry Bread should be stored at room temperature or in the fridge in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
To Freeze: Let the bread cool completely first. Then wrap in plastic wrap, followed by foil and then place in a freezer safe airtight container or ziploc bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator.
Cranberry Orange Bread Recipe FAQs
Can this bread be frozen?
Yes. Let the bread cool completely first. Then wrap in plastic wrap, followed by foil and then place in a freezer safe airtight container or ziploc bag for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator.
Can I use frozen cranberries?
Yes. Frozen cranberries can be used in place of fresh cranberries in this recipe.
When should I serve this bread?
This bread is wonderfully sweet so it of course works as a dessert but is also delightful with a cup of coffee or tea in the morning!
Can this bread be made ahead of time?
The bread can be frozen, see above, so if you’d like to make up a few loaves and freeze them before the holiday season hits, that would be great. I’d wait and glaze them the day before or the day you plan to serve.
Trish’s Tips and Tricks
- Make sure to toss the cranberries in flour before adding to the batter – that way, they won’t sink to the bottom while the bread bakes.
- Add a double glaze for added sweetness! The glaze can be thickened or thinned depending on your liking. More powdered sugar to thicken, more orange juice to thin.
- A mini loaf of this pretty Cranberry Orange Bread would make a lovely little neighbor or hostess gift, just be sure to make a loaf for yourself too!
I’m quite sure this recipe will become a holiday staple in your house! It’s just so bright and flavorful…. and it comes together quite easily!
More Holiday Recipes
- Perfect Sugar Cookie Recipe
- Hot Cocoa Cookies
- Chewy Ginger Molasses Cookies
- Chocolate Pecan Pie Bars
- Rice Pudding
How to Make Cranberry Orange Bread
Cranberry Orange Bread
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ⅓ cup unsalted butter melted
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons fresh grated orange zest
- 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
- ½ cup whole milk
- 1 cup fresh cranberries
- 1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Preheat oven to 350°F and line a 9"x 5" loaf pan with parchment paper (or lightly grease with butter).
- In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder and salt, and set aside.
- In the bowl of an electric mixer, blend together the melted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, orange zest and orange juice. Mix until well combined.
- While slowly mixing, add flour mixture and milk in two batches (some flour, then some milk, then the rest of the flour and the rest of the milk). Stop mixing as soon as it's just combined.
- Rinse off the fresh cranberries so they have just a bit of moisture on them, then, in a small bowl toss the cranberries with one tablespoon of flour. This flour coating will help prevent the berries from sinking to the bottom of your loaf while baking.
- Add the flour coated berries to the batter and gently but quickly stir, by hand, to combine.
- Immediately pour batter into prepared pan and bake for 55-65 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool bread in the pan for 15-30 minutes, then move to a wire cooling rack with a baking sheet below (to catch the glaze you’re about to add).
- Prepare glaze by simply whisking together the melted butter, powdered sugar, and orange juice. If needed, add an additional tablespoon of powdered sugar to reach the desired consistency. Pour one layer of glaze over loaf and allow to set a few minutes, then add an additional layer of glaze.
- Slice and enjoy!
Disclosure – I created this recipe as part of an ongoing partnership with Challenge Dairy. Partnering with brands I love allows me to provide you high quality content at no cost to you. I only work with brands I use and love. All images, text and opinions are my own.
Originally published December 13, 2017.