Cranberry Orange Bread with Simple Glaze

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Cranberry Orange Bread with a simple glaze is a delightful treat that combines the tartness of cranberries with the sweet, citrusy flavor of orange. This moist and flavorful bread is perfect for breakfast, brunch, or as a dessert. The orange syrup and glaze add an extra layer of sweetness and citrus flavor that makes this bread irresistible. Let’s dive into this delicious recipe and learn how to make it step-by-step.


For the Loaf:

  • 1 1/2 cups + 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour, divided
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup plain whole-milk yogurt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups cranberries, fresh or frozen, thawed and rinsed

For the Orange Syrup:

  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/3 cup sugar

For the Orange Glaze:

  • 1 cup confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fresh orange juice


Step 1: Prepare the Loaf

  1. Preheat the Oven:
    • Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Grease and flour a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
  2. Mix the Dry Ingredients:
    • In a medium bowl, whisk together 1 1/2 cups of flour, baking powder, and kosher salt. Set aside.
  3. Mix the Wet Ingredients:
    • In a large bowl, whisk together the yogurt, sugar, eggs, orange zest, and vanilla extract until well combined.
  4. Combine Wet and Dry Ingredients:
    • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients, mixing until just combined.
  5. Add the Oil:
    • Fold in the vegetable oil until fully incorporated into the batter.
  6. Prepare the Cranberries:
    • Toss the cranberries with the remaining 1 tablespoon of flour to prevent them from sinking to the bottom of the loaf. Gently fold the cranberries into the batter.
  7. Bake the Loaf:
    • Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and smooth the top. Bake for 50-60 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Step 2: Make the Orange Syrup

  1. Prepare the Syrup:
    • In a small saucepan, combine the freshly squeezed orange juice and sugar. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar has dissolved completely.
  2. Saturate the Loaf:
    • Once the loaf is baked, remove it from the oven and allow it to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Transfer the loaf to a wire rack and place a baking sheet underneath to catch any drips. While the loaf is still warm, use a skewer or toothpick to poke holes all over the top of the loaf. Slowly pour the orange syrup over the loaf, allowing it to soak in. Let the loaf cool completely.

Step 3: Make the Orange Glaze

  1. Prepare the Glaze:
    • In a small bowl, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and 2 to 3 tablespoons of fresh orange juice until smooth and slightly thickened.
  2. Glaze the Loaf:
    • Once the loaf is completely cooled, drizzle the orange glaze over the top. Allow the glaze to set before slicing and serving.

Cooking Notes and Tips

  • Yogurt: Use plain whole-milk yogurt for the best texture and flavor. Greek yogurt can also be used but may result in a slightly denser loaf.
  • Cranberries: If using frozen cranberries, make sure they are fully thawed and patted dry to prevent excess moisture in the batter.
  • Orange Zest: Use freshly grated orange zest for the best citrus flavor.


Nutty Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Add 1/2 cup of chopped walnuts or pecans to the batter for added crunch and flavor.

Spiced Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Add 1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg to the dry ingredients for a warm, spiced flavor.


Q: Can I use dried cranberries instead of fresh or frozen? A: Yes, you can use dried cranberries. Rehydrate them in hot water or orange juice for about 10 minutes before adding them to the batter.

Q: How do I store leftover cranberry orange bread? A: Store the bread in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days, or in the refrigerator for up to a week.

Q: Can I freeze cranberry orange bread? A: Yes, you can freeze the bread. Wrap it tightly in plastic wrap and foil, then freeze for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before serving.

Q: Can I use a different type of flour? A: You can experiment with whole wheat flour or a gluten-free flour blend, but the texture and taste may vary slightly.

Q: What can I serve with cranberry orange bread? A: This bread is delicious on its own, but can also be served with a dollop of whipped cream, a scoop of vanilla ice cream, or a spread of butter.

Cranberry Orange Bread with a simple glaze is a delightful and versatile treat that’s perfect for any occasion. With its moist texture, tart cranberries, and sweet citrus flavor, it’s sure to be a hit. Whether you stick to the classic recipe or try one of the variations, this bread is easy to make and always delicious. Enjoy baking and sharing this wonderful treat with your family and friends!

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