Cranberry Orange Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread: A Flavorful Holiday Treat

Introduction to Cranberry Orange Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread merges the vibrant, tart flavors of cranberries with the sweet, citrusy zest of oranges. This delightful bread is a holiday favorite, offering a perfect blend of tangy and sweet that enhances any festive table.

Historical Background

The use of cranberries and oranges in baking has deep roots in American culinary traditions. Originating from practical uses of local produce, these ingredients have been staples in fruit bread since colonial times.

The evolution of fruit bread can be traced back to the ingenuity of early American cooks, who often combined whatever fruits were available to create varied baked goods through the seasons. For more insights, you might want to learn about cranberries and discover orange varieties which have been popular in recipes for generations.

Cranberry Citrus Bread Key Ingredients

The success of Cranberry Orange Bread largely depends on its key ingredients:

  • Fresh cranberries: Known for their sharp flavor and numerous health benefits.
  • Orange zest: Adds a robust citrus flavor that complements the cranberries.
  • Nuts (optional): Provide a crunchy texture contrast, typically walnuts or pecans. When selecting cranberries, ensure they are firm and vibrant in color. For a deeper understanding of choosing the best fruits for baking, see the dietary fibers in fruits.

Detailed Recipe Instructions

Creating the perfect Cranberry Orange Bread involves a series of well-defined steps:

  • Preparation: Preheat your oven and prepare your loaf pan.
  • Mixing Dry Ingredients: Combine flour, baking powder, and other dry ingredients with the cranberries and nuts if using.
  • Wet Ingredients: Cream together butter, sugar, and eggs, then incorporate the orange juice and zest.
  • Combining Mixtures: Alternately add dry and wet ingredients, ensuring not to overmix to maintain a tender texture.
  • Baking: Pour the batter into the pan and bake until golden brown. For a full recipe and step-by-step guide, consider exploring additional fruit bread inspirations on Pinterest.

Variations of the Recipe

Cranberry Orange Bread is versatile. Here are some popular variations:

  • Gluten-Free: Substitute all-purpose flour with a gluten-free blend. More tips can be found under gluten-free baking tips.
  • Different Citrus Fruits: Try using lemon or grapefruit zest for a different twist.
  • Vegan Version: Replace egg and butter with suitable vegan alternatives. For more vegan recipes, check vegan baking ideas.

Serving and Pairing Ideas

To serve, slice the bread while slightly warm and perhaps add a light glaze. Excellent pairings include:

  • Coffee or Tea: Complements the fruity, tangy flavor of the bread.
  • Sparkling Wine: Especially during festive occasions. For festive serving ideas, browse through these Christmas baking ideas.

Common Mistakes and Troubleshooting

Avoid common baking mistakes such as:

  • Overmixing the Batter: This can make the bread tough.
  • Overbaking: Keep an eye on the bread during the last minutes of baking. If you encounter issues like dryness or the bread not rising properly, checking the freshness of your baking powder or adjusting moisture content might help. More troubleshooting tips are available in the article History of Baking.

Orange Cranberry Loaf  Recipe Nutritional Information

A slice of Cranberry Orange Bread is relatively nutritious, offering:

  • Calories: Approximately 275 per slice.
  • Nutrients: Good source of vitamin C from oranges and antioxidants from cranberries. For those watching their diet, substituting sugar with alternatives like honey or agave might be beneficial. Detailed dietary adjustments can be explored through understanding gluten-free diets.


Some frequently asked questions include:

  • Can I use dried cranberries instead of fresh ones? Yes, but adjust the moisture content accordingly.
  • How do I store the bread? Wrap it in plastic and keep it at room temperature for a few days or freeze it for longer storage.
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Cranberry Orange Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Author:
  • Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes


Cranberry Orange Bread is a vibrant, flavorful loaf that combines the tartness of fresh cranberries with the citrusy zest of oranges. Perfect for holiday gatherings or a cozy breakfast, this bread brings a festive touch to any table.


  • For the Bread:
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
    • 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries
    • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
    • 1 cup granulated sugar
    • 1 egg
    • 3/4 cup orange juice
    • 1/2 cup chopped nuts (optional)
  • For the Glaze:
    • 1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
    • 1 tablespoon orange juice


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease a 9×5-inch loaf pan.
  2. Mix Dry Ingredients: In a bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Stir in orange zest and cranberries.
  3. Cream Butter and Sugar: In another bowl, beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and mix well.
  4. Combine Mixtures: Alternately add the flour mixture and orange juice to the butter mixture, starting and ending with the flour. Stir in nuts if using.
  5. Bake: Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 50-55 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
  6. Cool and Glaze: Cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then remove to a wire rack to cool completely. Mix glaze ingredients and drizzle over the cooled bread.


  • Variations: Consider adding a teaspoon of vanilla extract or a pinch of cinnamon for extra flavor.
  • Storage: Wrap the bread tightly in plastic wrap to maintain freshness. It can be stored at room temperature for several days or frozen for longer storage.
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


  • Calories: 275 kcal (per slice)
  • Sugar: 24 g
  • Carbohydrates: 44 g
  • Fiber: 2 g
  • Protein: 4 g

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