Bright and bursting with citrus, Orange Bread brings the taste of sunshine to your breakfast! Call it a bread or an orange loaf cake if you prefer–either way this recipe is big time hit!
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Why This Orange Bread is Best
Orange Bread is one of my favorite loafs of all time. I even prefer it over this Lemon Loaf recipe!
Whenever I bring it to a potluck or serve it to friends, it disappears almost before I can even have a taste.
- Moist and bursting with orange flavor, this bread is unbelievably good.
- A shiny orange glaze poured on top of the bread fresh from the oven, takes this loaf to the next level.
- The pretty orange icing adds a special touch.
- The recipe makes 2 loaves, so it’s perfect for sharing – or storing a loaf away for later.
Once people try this, they never fail to ask for the recipe! It’s sweet enough to serve as a dessert but perfectly acceptable for breakfast, too.
I like this bread best served cold, right out of the refrigerator. A slice of ice cold bread is perfect for a warm summer morning, paired with my hot coffee.
- Unsalted Butter – I use unsalted butter in all of my baking, but if all you have is salted, that’s fine, too. Just reduce the amount of added salt from 1 teaspoon to 3/4 teaspoon. Also, make sure your butter is softened.
- Oranges – You will need FOUR oranges for that big, fresh citrus flavor. The zest is used in the bread batter while the juice is used in both the bread batter and the icing. Use our guide on how to zest an orange.
- Vanilla Yogurt – Yogurt gives the loaf a moist tender crumb and a hint of creamy vanilla flavor. This bread won’t dry out for days!
- Powdered Sugar – Also known as confectioner’s sugar or icing sugar, this gets whisked with some orange juice to create a thick glaze for the top of the loaf.
Step 1. Make the batter. Cream together the butter and sugar, then add the eggs one at a time and mix in the orange zest. Separately, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt and in a different bowl, combine 1/4 cup of the orange juice with the yogurt and vanilla. Add flour and yogurt mixtures alternately to the mixer in 3 additions.
Step 2. Bake the bread. Divide the batter between two greased loaf pans and bake at 350 degrees F for 45 to 55 minutes. Cool for 10 minutes in the pan then transfer to a wire rack.
Step 3. Make the orange syrup. While the bread is baking, cook the remaining granulated white sugar with the remaining orange juice over low heat, until the sugar dissolves. After moving the loaves to the wire rack, spoon the syrup all over each bread loaf. Allow to cool completely.
Step 4. Top with the orange glaze. Whisk together the powdered sugar with orange juice until well combined. Drizzle the glaze over the top of the cooled bread and let dry. Slice and serve!
Tips and Tricks
- Start with room temperature eggs and yogurt. They will blend in better to the bread batter. Be sure your butter is softened, too!
- Check out my tips on how to measure flour correctly so you avoid a dense bread.
- Make sure the bread is completely cooled before you add the orange glaze. And allow the glaze to dry before you serve.
- Use a serrated bread knife to cut this orange loaf for even, professional looking slices.
Once cooled, the bread can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. I love it served cold!
Yes, this recipe freezes great! Wrap the cooled bread in foil then place it in a freezer-safe ziplock bag. Label and date it and freeze for up to 2-3 months.
You can do it either way! The glaze tends to look best when added fresh to the bread after thawing, but freezing it won’t affect the taste.
More Quick Bread Recipes
- Sour Cream Banana Bread
- Apple Cinnamon Bread
- Cinnamon Swirl Zucchini Bread – reader favorite!
- Double Chocolate Zucchini Bread
- Pumpkin Bread
- Kringle Recipe
For the Bread
- 1 cup unsalted butter softened
- 2 ½ cups granulated sugar divided
- 4 large eggs room temperature
- 4 oranges zested and juiced, divided
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¾ cup orange juice divided
- ¾ cup vanilla yogurt room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Glaze
- 2 cups powdered sugar
- 3 Tablespoons orange juice
- Cream butter and 2 cup sugar in a mixer for 5 minutes. On medium speed, beat in eggs, one at a time. Add orange zest from all 4 oranges (about 1/3 cup).
- In large bowl, mix flour, baking powder, soda, and salt. In another bowl, mix 1/4 cup OJ (juice of 1 orange), yogurt and vanilla. Add flour and yogurt mixtures alternately to mixer in 3 additions.
- Pour into two greased loaf pans. I line my pans with parchment paper on the bottom, then grease pan. Bake in a 350 degree oven for 45-55 minutes.
- While bread is baking, cook remaining 1/2 cup sugar with 1/2 cup OJ (juice of 2 oranges) on low until sugar dissolves. Cool cakes ten minutes in pan. Remove from pans to a wire rack. Spoon syrup over cakes. Cool completely.
- To glaze, mix 2 cup powdered sugar with 1/4 cup OJ (juice of 1 orange) with whisk. Pour over cake and allow to dry. Store in refrigerator or freeze.
- To freeze, wrap loaf of bread in foil first then place the loaf in a freezer bag for storage. It’ll keep well this way for a couple of months, but I usually eat my second loaf within a few weeks.
Orange loaf is the sweetest way to start any day!