Cranberry Orange Bread

overhead photo of cranberry orange bread

This Cranberry Orange Bread is the best! One bowl baking, incredibly simple to whip up and SO much flavor. You’re going to love this! 

Well, friends, it’s the week before Christmas and I still have gifts to give. 

As I’ve gotten older, one thing I love to give during the Christmas season is something homemade! 

I feel like it shows such a level of thoughtfulness and care! Plus everything tastes better when it’s homemade, right?! Right 😉 

And one easy gift to give is homemade bread! And if you want to be super festive, this Cranberry Orange Bread is the way to go! 

Why You’ll Love This Bread: 

This bread is so simple.

There is nothing super fancy about it – it’s a very simple, throw everything into a bowl and mix type of recipe which I’m all for!

This Cranberry Orange Bread has the perfect combination of sweetness and tartness. 

I use fresh cranberries for this bread and each bite is just BURSTING with that classic tart cranberry flavor that’s so bright and needed during a dreary winter day. 

cranberry orange bread batter with cranberries on top

The orange is subtle but present in each flavor through using both fresh orange juice and orange zest in the batter.

The combination is perfect! 

I also love the crunchy sugar on top – for some texture, I added some sugar in the raw on top of the batter before I baked it and it turns into this beautiful crunchy sugary texture – the perfect way to compliment the soft bread!

close up of 2 slices of cranberry orange bread

It’s the ultimate bread to snack on for breakfast, with an afternoon cup of tea or at night for a dessert. 

So let’s get into what you need to make it!

Ingredients You Need: 

  • All-purpose flour + Baking powder – the two main components of our dry ingredients.
  • Whole Milk – you can use any milk you’d prefer.
  • Eggs – use large eggs for this recipe.
  • Freshly Squeezed Orange Juice – you only need ¼ cup so I just used about 1 large orange for this!
  • Cranberries – use fresh for this recipe!
  • Light brown sugar + Granulated sugar – a must for sweetening the bread!
  • Cinnamon – the perfect cozy spice to compliment the flavors.
  • Vanilla extract – you gotta have it!
  • Salted Butter – you can also use unsalted if desired!
  • Orange zest – you can use this in the batter and as a garnish! 
  • Turbinado Sugar – this is sugar in the raw, makes for a super crunchy top!

Step by Step Instructions on How to Make Bread: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and go ahead and grease a 9×5 baking pan. You can also use parchment paper. 
  2. In a large bowl, melt the butter and let it cool for a few minutes. To this, add in the brown sugar and granulated sugar and whisk together until combined. 
  3. Grab a large orange and zest it until you have about 1-2 tbsp. Once you’re done, grab a mason jar, slice it in half and use your hands to squeeze the juice out of it until you have about ¼ cup of fresh juice. Set aside for now! 
  4. To the bowl with the butter and sugar, add in the two eggs, milk, freshly squeezed orange juice, orange zest and vanilla extract. Mix together until combined. 
  5. Next, add in the all purpose flour, cinnamon and baking powder and mix until there are no streaks in the batter. 
  6. In a small bowl, add the fresh cranberries and 1 tbsp of so of flour. Toss the cranberries with the flour until they’re coated. 
  7. Gently stir in the cranberries until they’re well mixed into the batter. 
  8. Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan. Sprinkle a generous amount of raw sugar on top of the batter.before and after photos of baked cranberry orange bread
  9. Bake for 50-60 minutes, starting to check it around 45 minutes. It will be done when a toothpick can be inserted into the middle and only a few crumbs come out. 
  10. Let cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, and then carefully remove from the pan onto a cooling rack to let it cool fully. 
  11. Slice and enjoy! 

Best Baking Tips: 

I like both greasing the 9×5 pan with butter AND using a small strip of parchment paper to help easier release the bread from the pan. 

Nothing worse than having bread stuck in the pan, trust me, I’ve been there!

side view photo of 2 slices of cranberry orange bread

Zest the orange before you juice it! I’ve found that it’s much harder to zest the orange after the juice is all over everything, ha! 

I like to toss the cranberries in all purpose flour to make sure that they don’t just sink to the bottom of the bread – so be sure to not skip that step! 

If desired, you can add additional orange zest as a garnish to further the orange flavor, it’s delicious!

Ingredient Substitutions: 

You can use unsalted Butter instead of salted Butter – no worries here! Just add in a pinch of salt into the batter. 

close up of inside of a slice of cranberry orange bread with a cup of coffee in the background

I used fresh cranberries for this recipe and have not tested it with frozen. It should work, just be sure to toss the cranberries with the flour. 

overhead shot of sliced cranberry orange bread with butter on bread

You can use whatever milk you’d like, even dairy free! 

Storing Leftovers: 

To store leftovers of this bread, place the cooled bread in a tightly sealed container or bag for up to 3 days. Slice when you’re ready to eat and enjoy!

Did you enjoy this recipe? Here are a few other quick bread recipes you might like: 

Zesty Lemon Blueberry Banana Bread

Orange Loaf Cake

Brown Butter Cinnamon Swirl Banana Bread 

Thank you so much for following along here, friends! Want to see more? Be sure to follow ourbalancedbowl on Instagram and tag me with your photo if you end up making a recipe! You can also post a photo of your recipe to the Our Balanced Bowl Facebook page! Like a recipe that you saw? Follow me on Pinterest here! I always love to see your re-creations! If you do make a recipe, it would make my whole day if you were to rate and comment so I can get your feedback! Lots of love! – Haylie

5 from 1 vote
Print

Cranberry Orange Bread

This Cranberry Orange Bread is the best! One bowl baking, incredibly simple to whip up and SO much flavor. You’re going to love this! 

Course bread, Dessert, Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry bread, cranberry orange quick bread, easy quick bread
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Cooling Time 10 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 8 slices

Ingredients

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick, 8 tbsp) salted butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar 
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar 
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (juice of about 1 large orange)
  • 1.5 tbsp orange zest (plus more for garnish, if desired) 
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract 
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 1 and 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, tossed in 1 tbsp flour 
  • turbinado sugar (raw sugar) to top

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Generously grease a 9x5 glass baking loaf pan using either cooking spray, butter or parchment paper. Set aside for now. 

  2. In a large bowl, melt the butter and let it cool for a few minutes. To this, add in the brown sugar and granulated sugar and whisk together until combined. 

  3. Grab a large orange and zest about 1.5 tbsp for the inside of the cake.

  4. Grab a mason jar and slice the orange in half and using a citrus juicer or your hands, squeeze about 1/4 cup of juice out into the jar.

  5. To the bowl with the butter and sugar, add in the whole milk, 2 large eggs, 1/4 cup of the orange juice, orange zest and vanilla extract. Whisk together until combined. It makes it look a little odd but don’t fret! 

  6. To this bowl, add in the flour, baking powder and cinnamon and gently stir them until they are combined, and you can see no more flour pockets. 

  7. In a small bowl, toss the prepared cranberries with 1 tbsp of flour until they are coated. Gently stir them into the bowl with the batter.

  8. Pour the loaf batter into the prepared pan. Top with a generous sprinkle of the raw sugar.

  9. Bake for 50-60 minutes, starting to check at 45 minutes or until a toothpick can be inserted into the middle and comes out mostly clean, a few crumbs are okay!

  10. Let cool in the pan for 5-10 minutes, and then carefully remove from the pan onto a cooling rack to let it cool fully. 

  11. Slice and enjoy!

2 comments / Add your comment below

  1. 5 stars
    I made this recipe for Christmas this year, 2023. I substituted the all purpose flour with 1:1 gluten free flour as one of my sons has an allergy to gluten. It turned out amazing and I’m not the best of cooks! My entire family loved it! It was moist and the topping was amazing! Thank you Haylie!
    Happy New Year!

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