Cranberry Orange Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread made with fresh cranberries and orange zest.  The secret ingredient is the buttermilk.  It makes the bread so moist.
Cranberry Orange Bread

Cranberries are in season once again!  I love these tangy little red berries.  Something about cranberries and oranges seems to say, “It’s the holidays!”  I am a sucker for cranberries!  I love them in pastries, in salsas, in juices, salads and to eat with my turkey.  This bread is tangy with cranberries and orange zest.  It has just the right mix of sweet and sour with a delicious powdered sugar glaze on top!

I have had this recipe for years.  I tweaked it a little by adding buttermilk.  (It works in my banana bread, why not in my cranberry orange bread?)  This recipe is so good because it includes the orange zest and the juice from the orange.  I do not know why, but it bothers me when I have to zest an orange and then not use the inside.  This recipe calls for both, so I am a happy camper!  Buy up all the cranberries you can and bake like crazy.  They will be gone before you know it!

How To Make Cranberry Orange Bread

1. Put flour, salt, baking powder into a large bowl.  This will be the bowl you pour the wet ingredients into and the rest of the ingredients.

2.  After zesting both oranges put contents in a bowl and mix with the sugar.  It enhances the flavors when the orange peel and sugar sit together for a minute or two.

3.  Put the cranberries in a food processor and chop or chop by hand.  I press the pulse button 10 – 15 times until the cranberries are the consistency I want.  I do not want whole berries, but I do want them to disappear either, somewhere in between – half sized and too small.  

4.  Juice the oranges and then strain.  My oranges, even naval oranges, seem to have little tiny seeds.  Pour the juice through a small strainer to get rid of them.

5.  Put eggs, buttermilk, orange juice and oil in a bowl.  Mix this together with a wire whisk or a small hand mixer.  After it is all incorporated,  take sugar and zest mixture and add to the dry ingredients and mix.  Then pour the wet ingredients gradually into the dry ingredients as you continue to mix.  Then fold in the chopped cranberries.

6.  Turn oven to 350 degrees and grease two 9 x 5 loaf pans.  I like to grease the loaf pans then line with parchment paper.  One skinny piece going the length of the pan and another piece going the other way.   I leave  2 inches of paper above the rim of the pan so I can lift out the loaf of bread when it is cooled.  Make sure to spray the corners well as the parchment paper will not be there.  You will need to loosen the corners with an offset spatula/knife before trying to pull the loaf out of the pans.

7.  Pour cranberry mixture evenly into the two pans.  Place the pans into the oven and set the timer for 60-65 minutes.  If the loaves look like they are getting too brown, place a piece of tin foil, that fits over both loaves, and continue to bake.

8.  Mix the orange juice with the powdered sugar.  If you like your glaze thinner, go ahead and add more orange juice.   When the timer goes off and you take the loaf out of the oven, let it sit on the counter/cooling rack for 10 minutes before removing.  Peel off the parchment paper and then apply the glaze.  I like to have drips of glaze down all sides. 

Let me know on Instagram or Pinterest if you make this.  Post a picture and then tag me @dinasdiner.  I want to know how it turns out.

Cranberry Orange Bread made with fresh cranberries and orange zest. The secret ingredient is the buttermilk. It makes the bread so moist.

Cranberry Orange Bread

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Course Breads
Cuisine American


  • 3 Cups Flour
  • 1 tsp. Salt
  • 2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • 2 Cups Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp. Orange Zest (2 whole oranges)
  • 1/2 Cup Buttermilk
  • 1 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 2 Tbsp. Orange Juice
  • 4 Eggs


  • 1 1/2 C. Powdered Sugar
  • 3 Tbsp. Orange Juice


  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • Put flour, salt, baking powder into a large bowl.
  • Finely chop cranberries in a food processor and or by hand.  
  • Zest oranges and put both zest and sugar in a bowl and mix. 
  • Juice the oranges and then strain. Use this for both the bread and glaze.
  • Put eggs, buttermilk, orange juice and oil in a bowl and mix until smooth.  
  • Add sugar and zest into dry ingredients.
  • Then gradually pour wet mixture into dry ingredients. 
  • Now gently fold in cranberries.
  • Pour cranberry mixture evenly into two greased loaf pans.  Place in oven  and bake for 60-65 minutes.  When bread is done, take out of the oven and place on a cooling rack for 10 minutes.
  • Remove bread from the pans and while hot, brush on glaze.


  • Mix powdered sugar with orange juice. Brush on hot bread with a pastry brush.
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Cranberry Orange Bread

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