Orange Cranberry Bread

Prep Time 15 mins
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Servings 12 slices

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This Orange Cranberry Bread is sweet, moist, and perfectly dense. It’s infused with so much orange flavor, has the perfect pop of tart cranberry flavor, and is topped with a simple and sweet orange glaze.

whole orange cranberry bread drizzle with orange glaze.
Table of Contents
  1. Ingredients Needed:
  2. How to Make Cranberry Orange Bread
  3. Orange Cranberry Bread FAQs
  4. Tips and Notes
  5. Variations
  6. More Sweet Bread Recipes You’ll Love
  7. Orange Cranberry Bread Recipe

If I’ve learned anything from my Cranberry Orange Trifle and my Slow Cooker Cranberry Apple Cider, it’s that I love cranberry and orange together. Especially in sweets!

I mean, what could be better than the tart flavor of cranberry and the tangy flavor of orange made better with some sugary sweetness?

This Orange Cranberry Bread is a new cranberry orange favorite! It’s moist and sweet, has just the right amount of cranberry and orange flavor, and is topped off with a super simple orange glaze.

It’s so good and takes just 15 minutes to prep! Perfect for Christmas breakfast or Thanksgiving brunch.

Ingredients Needed:

ingredients needed for cranberry orange bread.
  • Butter: melted butter gives the bread a moist, perfectly dense texture.
  • Plain Greek Yogurt: yogurt is the key to an ultra moist sweet bread.
  • Sugar: use 1 cup if you like it less sweet or 1 ¼ cups if you prefer it on the sweeter side.
  • Eggs: binds everything together so the Cranberry Orange Bread can hold its shape.
  • Vanilla: adds flavor depth and warmth.
  • Orange Juice: use freshly squeezed orange juice for the best flavor.
  • All-Purpose Flour: fluffed and leveled.
  • Baking Powder: keeps the bread lighter and fluffier.
  • Salt: cuts the sweetness and enhances the flavors in the bread.
  • Orange Zest: add more or less to taste. The zest of 1 or 2 oranges will do the trick!
  • Cranberries: fresh or frozen will work.
  • Glaze: we’re topping our bread off with a two-ingredient orange glaze made with powdered sugar and orange juice.

How to Make Cranberry Orange Bread

This Orange Cranberry Bread recipe takes a quick 15 minutes to prep before you pop it in the oven. So simple and so perfect!

  1. Make the batter: combine wet ingredients, then add the dry. Mix only until combined!
  2. Stir in cranberries: halving the large ones ensures that you get an even distribution of berries!
  3. Spread into a pan and bake: I like to dot with extra berries for a festive look!
  4. Bake: Transfer the batter to a greased loaf pan, then bake until a toothpick comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs. Remove from the oven to cool, then add the glaze.

Orange Cranberry Bread FAQs

Can I use dried cranberries instead of fresh?

You can, but you won’t get that pop of juicy cranberry flavor. Additionally, since dried cranberries are smaller than fresh, you’ll want to use ¾ cup rather than a full cup.

Why is my Cranberry Bread so crumbly?

If your Cranberry Orange Bread is dry and crumbly, then you likely over-measured your flour. The most accurate way to measure the flour is to weigh it (you will need 195-200 grams.) If you don’t want to weigh it or you don’t have a kitchen scale, I recommend spooning it into the measuring cup, then leveling it off gently with your finger to make sure it doesn’t get too packed in.

How long does Cranberry Bread last?

This Orange Cranberry Bread can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for 2-3 days, in the fridge for up to 1 week, or in the freezer for up to 3 months. If you plan to freeze it, I recommend leaving the glaze off. To serve again, thaw in the fridge, then add the glaze.

side angle of whole cranberry orange bread with two slices cut and orange slices and cranberries on the side.

Tips and Notes

  • Grease the pan. This makes it so much easier to get the bread out when it’s done baking.
  • Use 8×4 or 9×5. Either size of loaf pan will work, but it will bake more quickly in a 9×5 pan so it’s important to keep an eye on it in the oven.
  • Use a glass or light colored non-stick pan. Darker colored pans can cause the outside of the bread to burn.
  • Don’t over-mix. Overworked gluten can become tough and dry. Mix the batter only until just combined.
  • Check for doneness. The cranberries you use, the oven you have, the pan you use, and even the elevation can affect the baking time. So, it’s important to focus on doneness rather than time. To check for doneness, insert a toothpick into the center of the loaf. If it comes out clean or with a few moist crumbs, it’s good to go.
  • Halve the cranberries. Slicing your cranberries in half will prevent that big pop of sour cranberry flavor when you bite into one. I like that flavor to be more evenly distributed with smaller pieces.
two slices of orange cranberry bread cut from loaf.

Variations

  • Use another fruit. This recipe works great with any other citrus or any other berries.
  • Add nuts. Cranberry walnut is a classic! Feel free to add a handful of chopped walnuts (or another type of nut) to the batter OR sprinkle them over the top of the loaf.
  • Frost it. Swap the glaze out for cream cheese frosting to make it even more dessert-y.

More Sweet Bread Recipes You’ll Love

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Orange Cranberry Bread

5 from 11 votes
This Cranberry Orange Bread is sweet, moist, and perfectly dense. It's infused with so much orange flavor, has the perfect pop of tart cranberry flavor, and is topped with a simple and sweet orange glaze.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Cuisine American
Course Bread and Baked Goods
Servings 12 slices
Calories 239cal

Ingredients

  • ½ cup melted butter
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt (100 grams)
  • 1 cup sugar (200 grams) Use up to 1 ¼ cups for a sweeter bread
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice (1 navel orange)
  • 1 ½ cups all purpose flour (195-200 grams fluffed and levelled)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • zest of 1 orange (or 2, if you like things tangy!)
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (*I like to halve the large ones so they incorporate more evenly)

Glaze

  • ½ cup powdered icing sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons orange juice

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease an 8×4″ (or 9×5″ — it will bake a little more quickly) loaf pan (I recommend glass or light colored non-stick pan).
  • In a large bowl whisk together butter, yogurt and sugar. Add eggs, vanilla and juice and whisk until smooth.
  • Add flour, baking powder, salt and orange zest and stir just until combined. Fold in cranberries.
  • Spread into prepared loaf pan and dot with a few extra cranberries if desired.
  • Bake at 350 degrees F for 60-70 minutes, (covering loosely with foil after 40 minutes or when top is golden to prevent further browning), until a toothpick in the bread comes out clean or with moist crumbs.

Glaze

  • Gradually stir orange juice into powdered icing sugar until desired consistency is reached — you may not need all of the juice! For clean lines, you want a thicker glaze.
  • Drizzle over loaf before serving.Cool to room temperature before slicing and serving. Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 4-5 days.

Notes

Tips and variations:
*This recipe works great with any other citrus and any berries!
*Frozen berries can slow down the baking time slightly — watching for doneness is more important than the actual bake time as that can depend on oven, type and size of pan, elevation, etc. 
*Halving large cranberries will prevent that big pop of sour cranberry flavor when you bite into one — this is easily done when fresh or frozen. 
*Tint the glaze pink by using cranberry juice instead of orange!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 239cal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 4g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.3g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 173mg | Potassium: 156mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 24g | Vitamin A: 307IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 50mg | Iron: 1mg
Keywords cranberry orange bread

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Meet Ashley

My name is Ashley Fehr and I love creating easy meals my family loves. I also like to do things my way, which means improvising and breaking the rules when necessary. Here you will find creative twists on old favorites and some of my favorite family recipes, passed down from generations!

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Comments

  1. Liz D says

    This bread is amazing and a great way to use the extra cranberries from Thanksgiving. The greek yogurt and orange juice is a tangy combo with the buttery goodness. I baked it for only 55 min, but my oven runs a little warm.

    • The Recipe Rebel says

      Hi Roz! I’ve only tested the recipe with yogurt but I’m not sure that would work. Buttermilk is a liquid and yogurt is a little more firm. If you decide to experiment, I’d love to know how it goes!

  2. Gwenyth says

    I made 2 batches of this cranberry orange loaf. They turned out just gorgeous. The cooking time for my altitude was perfect. The 2nd batch, I baked in 4 mini loaf pans. I will be giving these beautiful little golden loaves as neighbor Christmas gifts. An absolutely terrific recipe.
    Thanks Ashley #thereciperebel.

  3. Gwenyth says

    I made 2 batches. The loaves turned out absolutely gorgeous. Second batch, I made into 4 mini loaves, to give as neighbor Christmas gifts. I am at higher altitude and cooking time posted was perfect. They are beautifully golden and so tender.

  4. Paul P says

    The aroma of this cake is marvelous. However, in spite of greasing my 8×4 and a toothpick coming out clean after 65 minutes, a portion has stuck to the bottom of the pan. Do you think a dusting of flour or almond flour in addition to the shortening on the pan would have made a difference? It’s cooling right now, and while I’m sure it will be delicious, but I wouldn’t call it a loaf anymore. I suspect some kind of trifle is in its future.

    • The Recipe Rebel says

      I’m sorry to hear you had trouble with your bread sticking to your pan. Loaf pans can be tricky and will all depend on which one you have in your kitchen. I would do whatever you normally do with your pan. The method in the recipe has worked well for myself. Hope you enjoyed it!

  5. Bunny Bard says

    So frustrating that you have to leave an amount of stars without even having tried the recipe … and more so that people choose to put less than 5 when they haven’t tried it . I was hesitant to try it based on the stars but then I read the comments. I will now ignore those and make it immediately and -as all of your recipes so far – I’m sure it WILL earn the 5 star rating I gave !

  6. Bryan says

    I’m the chief cook and bottlewasher in our home and my wife is allergic to cranberries, so any suggestions on a replacement in this recipe? Many thanks in advance!

  7. Josephine B says

    Hi Ashley, I have tried many of your recipes, but with this beautiful looking cake I haven’t as yet. Living in Australia we don’t have fresh cranberries, so I was wondering if I could use dried Cranberries instead. Thank you.

    • The Recipe Rebel says

      Hi Josephine, I haven’t tried it with dried cranberries but it might work. I would probably soak them first to hydrate them a little. If you decide to experiment, let me know how it goes!

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