The Best Cranberry Orange Bread

5 from 13 reviews

The Best Cranberry Orange Bread is sweet, gorgeous, and perfect for giving as a gift! Made with tangy orange zest, melted butter, and fresh cranberries.

Picture of orange cranberry bread

This is one of my all-time favorite holiday treats. I make batches and batches of it to put on my friend and neighbor goodie plates, take to parties, have for dessert when friends come over for mom dates, and every other excuse I can think of. A few weeks ago, I picked up my first bag of fresh cranberries and I had just enough to make a double batch of this bread after making the other recipe I had planned for them (I did a cranberry orange pork roast that was fabulous! The recipe is in my Freezer to Slow Cooker ebook). It was so exciting to be making this recipe because not only is it really really good, but it reminds me of Christmas and the holiday season and giving. I may or may not have been jamming to my Christmas station on Pandora while baking, too.

I’m planning on having an intentional Christmas this year. Doing things because they mean something and because I want to and not just because I should or can. I know it might be crazy, but I just love making dozens of goodie plates for neighbors every year and that is for sure on my list for this season. This bread has made the list to go on them again, too! That’s saying something!

You can make this bread in just about any pan you have (including muffins)

I have made this recipe as traditional loaves, tea loaves (which are pictured), muffins, and mini loaves as well. It always turns out well and it always gets rave reviews. There’s something magical about those bright little pops of tart cranberry mixed in with all that sweet bread. Adding a little orange glaze to the mix really puts this bread over the top. You will love it!

How long to bake Cranberry Orange Bread based on pan size:

  • Bake in a 9×5 inch loaf pan  at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour and 10 minutes (70 minutes)
  • Bake in a tea loaf pan at 350 degree F for around 50 minutes.
  • Bake 12 muffins in a standard size muffin tin at 350 degrees F for 18-20 minutes.
  • Bake mini loaf pans at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes (depending on the size of your pan).

Cranberry Orange Bread is sweet, gorgeous, and perfect for giving!  Made with lots of orange zest, melted butter, and fresh cranberries.

Tips and Tricks for Making Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Isn’t it pretty? I got the tea loaf pan from King Arthur Flour last year for Christmas and I just love it. I do not like things that are battery or raw when they are supposed to be cooked (like undercooked pizza dough and quick breads; cookie dough is very much ok though). The tea loaf pan really helps to ensure a properly cooked quick bread and you bake it for less time, too, which is nice. No matter what you choose to bake this recipe in, adjust your cooking time as needed; it’s good all the ways.
  • Plan on buying a few extra cranberries for your cranberry sauce recipe. When they are hanging out in the fridge after Thanksgiving, you’ll be obligated to make this bread.
  • Mixing the orange zest with the sugar before you add anything is the secret of this bread. The sugar pulls the oils out of the zest and you are making orange infused sugar which really makes the orange flavor carry throughout the bread. Best trick ever!
  • Feel free to double this recipe; it works great.

Cranberry Orange Bread is sweet, gorgeous, and perfect for giving!  Made with lots of orange zest, melted butter, and fresh cranberries.

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Picture of Orange Cranberry Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread


  • Author: Melissa Griffiths - Bless this Mess
  • Prep Time: 10 min
  • Cook Time: 1 hour 10 min
  • Total Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • Yield: 1 loaf 1x

Description

The Best Cranberry Orange Bread is sweet, gorgeous, and perfect for giving as a gift! Made with tangy orange zest, melted butter, and fresh cranberries.


Scale

Ingredients

For the bread:

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • Zest of 1 large orange
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 large eggs, slightly beaten
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries, chopped

For the orange glaze:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and grease a 9×5 bread pan or a tea loaf pan well.
  2. In a large bowl, add the granulated sugar and the orange zest. Stir the mixture together until the sugar starts to turn a bit orange and is fragrant. Add the flour, salt, and baking powder to the sugar mixture and whisk to combine well.
  3. In a separate bowl add the buttermilk, butter, eggs, orange juice, and vanilla extract. Whisk to combine well.
  4. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Fold in the cranberries and then place the batter into the prepared pan.
  5. Bake until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean about 1 hour and 10 minutes for a traditional bread loaf pan (and about 50 minutes for the tea loaf pictured). If the top starts to brown too quickly, you might want to cover the bread with foil for the last 10 or so minutes of baking.
  6. Remove the bread from the oven and allow it to cool on a wire rack for 20-30 minutes before removing the bread from the pan. Run a knife along the edges of the pan before you turn it upside down to remove it from the pan.
  7. Whisk together the ingredients for the glaze until smooth. Drizzle the glaze over the warm bread and then slice to serve.

Notes

  • This recipe doubles well if you want to make 2 loaves.
  • Bake in a 9×5 inch loaf pan  at 350 degrees F for about 1 hour and 10 minutes (70 minutes)
  • Bake in a tea loaf pan at 350 degree F for around 50 minutes.
  • Bake 12 muffins in a standard size muffin tin at 350 degrees F for 18-20 minutes.
  • Bake mini loaf pans at 350 degrees F for 30-35 minutes (depending on the size of your pan).
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American
Nutrition Information: YIELD: 12 SERVING SIZE: 1 slice
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 215.8 Fat: 5.2g Cholesterol: 32.7mg Sodium: 199.4mg Carbohydrates: 39.5g Sugars: 26.3g Protein: 3.3g Vitamin A: 97.7µg Vitamin C: 3.7mg

Keywords: fun bread recipe, easy bread recipe, cranberry orange bread recipe, cranberry orange bread, holiday bread recipe, easy bread recipe

Want To Save This Recipe?

This recipe is adapted from and inspired by Two Peas and Their Pod.

Cranberry Orange Bread is sweet, gorgeous, and perfect for giving!  Made with lots of orange zest, melted butter, and fresh cranberries.

Love Cranberry Orange Bread?! You might also enjoy these recipes:

I’m totally wishing I had some of this Cranberry Orange Bread in the house still, but it sure didn’t last long. I can’t wait to make another loaf. Every time I make this and give it as gifts, I’ll have multiple people ask me for the recipe. It’s just so good. Enjoy from my kitchen to yours!

Orange Cranberry Quick Bread

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Chrissy
Chrissy

I make mini loaves of this deliciously moist cranberry orange bread every year for Christmas for my loved ones! They love it and look forward to it. Thank you for this recipe! It is THE BEST.

Jenn
Jenn

I have made this cranberry bread a few times now and nothing is as moist and delicious. I love the use of fresh cranberries and orange zest and the buttermilk gives it a real tang. My only issue is that even after 1 hour and 10 minutes, my 9 x 5″ bread still isn’t cooked in the middle! I had to cook it 1 hour and 20! I will buy a tea loaf pan and give that a try — it’s a prettier shape anyway. Thanks for the great recipe.

Lydia
Lydia

If I want to add chocolate chips to the recipe, how much is a good amount to include?

Rasa Martin

Best dessert I ever had !!! I’ve been making every day for a whole week My question can I use Bundt cake pan ??Or 11×7 Pyrex ?For me sweet enough without the glaze Making tomorrow again. Planning to take to the book club

Jennifer
Jennifer

I think cranberry orange combo is great any time of year! It’s one of my favorite combinations! I came across this recipe earlier this week, and have my first batch of muffins in the oven now! 😀 I am SOOOO excited!!

cdhpl

Thanks to The Best Cranberry Orange Bread for sharing with us

modapkx

I made this last Saturday, it was awesome, i will be giving it as gifts this year. i doubled the recipi, i used one 9×5 loaf pan, and two mini loaf pans.

Silent Tree Naturals

Sorry…dried cranberries “were” all I hand on hand…not “was”.
😀

Silent Tree Naturals

I just made this today and I have to say that this was the best Orange Cranberry Bread I have ever had, and I have had a lot!
An FYI, since dried cranberries was all that I had on hand, that’s what I used and it worked out perfect (I didn’t really measure, I just grabbed two handfuls out of the bag), but I do plan on making it again with fresh, to compare.

Thank you so much!
Blessings
Angie

Elaine M Jackson

I can not find fresh cranberry’s in any local stores at this time can dries cranberries with no added sugar be used ? If yes what would the measurement be for the dried cranberries?

lisa

can I substitue and use cranberry orange relish in this recipe if so how ?

Marilyn
Marilyn

I should have proofread my previous comment! Hoping you can make out what I attempted to write.

Bless This Mess - About Me

I’m Melissa, and I want to help you feed your family wholesome food.

As a hobby farmer and mom of five, I’m all about keeping it simple in the kitchen. I want healthy meals that feed my family well, and then I want to get back to my (messy) life. Let’s work together to find something yummy for your dinner table.