This glazed Cranberry Orange Bread has the perfect blend of sweet, tangy flavor! Bursting with juicy cranberries and orange zest, it’s a moist quick bread that you’ll love with your morning coffee.
Table of Contents
Why This Bread is Best
Nothing starts my day in a brighter way than a thick, moist slice of cranberry bread. The added citrus gives this bread a zing of flavor.
- Soft, tender crumb. This cranberry bread stays moist for days, making it a perfect for gifting!
- Made with cranberry sauce. The sweet and tart sauce is swirled into the bread so every slice looks as good as it tastes.
- Orange glaze. The hint of citrus in the simple glaze adds an extra special touch that makes this cranberry orange loaf taste like it came from a fancy bakery!
- Freezer friendly bread. This recipe makes two big loaves. One to enjoy now, one to freeze for later.
To make cranberry orange bread, you will need the usual baking suspects including all purpose flour, sugar, eggs and butter.
These key ingredients set this bread apart:
- Orange extract – A highly concentrated flavoring that gives this bread and glaze their recognizable orange flavor without adding extra liquid.
- Orange zest – The zest is the colorful layer of fresh orange peel. Its oils hold all the citrusy fragrance that gives oranges (and this bread) their familiar aroma. Use our guide on how to zest a lemon for best practices.
- Greek yogurt – My secret for cranberry orange bread that stays moist and soft! Vanilla flavor yogurt tastes best here but plain is fine too.
- Whole berry cranberry sauce – This canned sauce is cooked for a shorter amount of time than its jellied counterpart so the whole cranberries stay in tact. You can definitely use our homemade cranberry sauce for added flavor (or use up some leftover thanksgiving sauce)!
Orange bread batter. Beat together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs and extract and orange zest, followed by the remaining dry ingredients and the Greek yogurt.
Add the cranberry sauce. Pour 1 ¼ cup of batter into the bottom of two prepared loaf pans. Spoon a scoop of the cranberry sauce into each pan. Swirl it into the batter.
Cover the cranberry sauce with more batter and repeat with the remaining cranberry sauce. Finally, pour and remaining bread batter over the last layer of cranberry sauce.
Bake. Let the bread cool completely before adding the glaze.
How to make glaze for cranberry orange bread:
Whisk together powdered sugar, orange extract and a little bit of milk in a small bowl. Soon the orange glaze over the top of the cooled loaves.
Tips and Tricks
- Make sure to line your loaf pans with parchment paper and baking spray to prevent the bread from sticking.
- Let the glazed loaves set for about 15 minutes before slicing. This gives the glaze a chance to harden to the perfect (less messy!) consistency.
- Store your cranberry orange bread in the refrigerator or at room temperature. It keeps slightly longer in the fridge and I love the way it tastes cold!
Orange juice cannot be substitute for orange extract in this recipe. Orange extract is highly concentrated so one tiny spoonful contains the same intensity of orange flavor as several oranges worth of juice.
Yes, this bread freezes beautifully with or without the glaze. You can freeze it whole or in individual slices for easy serving.
Tightly wrapped in foil and freezer bags, this bread stays good for up to 3 months in the freezer.
You sure can! Simply halve all of the ingredients and you will have enough batter and glaze for one loaf.
If you are only baking one loaf at a time, check the bread for doneness at about 45 minutes to ensure you don’t over cook it.
More Quick Bread Recipes
- Lemon Loaf: delicious, sweet and full of lemon flavor!
- Coconut Banana Bread: sweet nutty bread filled with coconut and macadamia nuts!
- Banana Bread Recipe
- Pumpkin Bread
- Zucchini Bread Recipe
Cranberry Orange Bread
For the bread:
- ¾ cup unsalted butter softened
- 1 ½ cup granulated sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon orange extract
- 3 oranges zested
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 ½ teaspoons baking soda
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 ½ cups vanilla greek yogurt
- 1 can whole berry cranberry sauce 14 ounce
For the glaze:
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons milk
- 1 teaspoon orange extract
- For the bread, spray two loaf pans with baking spray. Line bottom of pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
- In a large mixing bowl, beat butter with sugar. Beat in eggs until fully combined. Add orange extract and zest from 3 oranges. Beat in flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and greek yogurt.
- Spoon about 1 1/4 cup of batter into the bottom of each loaf pan. Then spoon a large scoop of cranberry sauce onto batter, swirling it into the batter. Top with more batter, then another scoop of cranberry sauce. Finish with batter.
- Bake in a 350 degree oven for 60-70 minutes. Remove and cool on wire rack for 10 minutes.
- Remove from pan and cool completely before applying glaze.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the powdered sugar, milk and orange extract until smooth.
- Spoon over cooled bread. Allow to set (about 15 minutes). Wrap and store in refrigerator (or airtight container at room temperature) for up to 5 days.
Cranberry Orange Bread with glaze and cranberry sauce makes a delicious breakfast, dessert or homemade gift for the holidays!