It’s taken three years of trial and error to get this cranberry orange bread recipe perfected. Not that I’ve worked on it for three years straight.
Cranberries are only in season from mid-September through mid-November. You get what I’m saying, though. Three years of recipe testing during cranberry season.
This moist cranberry orange bread is sweet, a little tart, and wonderfully dense. It’s the perfect dessert for any holiday dinner table.
Of course we’re also partial to our apple crisp and cherry crisp, too! We’ve even turned this bread recipe into cranberry orange muffins with streusel topping, so it’s ok to enjoy it for breakfast and dessert!
2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 Cup Granulated Sugar
1 Tablespoon Orange Zest
1/2 Cup Buttermilk
1/2 Cup Canola or Vegetable Oil
1/2 Cup Orange Juice
2 Large Eggs
1 Teaspoon Vanilla
1 1/2 Cups Fresh Cranberries
1 Cup Powdered Sugar
2-3 Tablespoons Orange Juice
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and grease a 9 x 5 – inch loaf pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt until well combined. Set aside.
In a separate small bowl, use a spoon to mix the sugar and orange zest until the sugar becomes light orange in color. Set aside.
Add to the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large bowl and hand mixer), the buttermilk, oil, orange juice, eggs, and vanilla. Mix on low speed until the ingredients are combined.
Add the flour mixture and the orange zest/sugar mixture. Continue to mix on low speed until all the ingredients are smooth like muffin batter.
Next, add the cranberries and use a wooden spoon or spatula to stir until well incorporated.
Transfer the batter to the greased loaf pan. Place in the oven and baked for 70-75 minutes. If the bread begins to become too brown, place a piece of aluminum foil loosely over the top to prevent burning.
The bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a very light crumb. Remove the bread from the oven and allow to cool for 5-7 minutes before transferring from the pan to a cooling rack.
While the bread cools, make the glaze.
In a medium bowl, combine the powdered sugar and orange juice.
Whisk or use a hand mixer on low until the glaze is smooth and creamy. Adjust the amount of orange juice to reach desired consistency.
After the bread cools completely, drizzle the glaze over the top, slice, and serve.
Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
*Calories listed are approximate based on ingredients used and serving size listed. *Bread bakes with a light brown crust which was removed for the photos and the video to show the inside and cranberries.
*Please be sure to see the post and the comments section for additional tips, substitutions, and baking variations. Our readers have provided several wonderful comments regarding changes they’ve made to this recipe that might be helpful for others.