Orange-glazed Cranberry bread has a moist and tender crumb and is loaded with juicy cranberries. It has the perfect balance of sweet and tangy and just like our famous Banana Bread, this loaf stays moist for a few days (in case you needed a homemade Christmas gift idea).

This is a copycat version of my favorite bakery’s cranberry loaf and this one turned out even better – more cranberries and the orange glaze makes it truly special. You’ll love every bite. 

Sliced cranberry bread with fresh cranberries

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We love cranberry recipes during the holidays like Sugared Cranberries, Cranberry Bundt Cake, and of course this Cranberry Bread recipe. If you love tangy and juicy cranberries, this recipe is a must-try!

Cranberry Bread Video Tutorial

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Ingredients for Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Flour – use all-purpose to give the bread structure
  • Baking powder – leavening to make the loaf rise
  • Salt – balances the sweetness
  • Milk – best at room temperature
  • Orange zest and juice – be sure to zest the orange before juicing it. Reserve a teaspoon of zest for the glaze.
  • Butter – Adds moisture to the loaf. Use unsalted butter softened at room temperature.
  • Sugar – to balance the tanginess of the cranberries
  • Eggs – give the bread a moist, tender crumb
  • Cranberries – rinsed and dried then tossed in 1/2 Tbsp of flour to keep them from sinking in the batter (see substitution options in common questions section)
Ingredients for homemade cranberry bread with orange glaze

How to Make Cranberry Bread

  1. Whisk dry ingredients – whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.
  2. Combine wet ingredients – in a measuring cup, stir together milk, orange juice and zest.
  3. Cream butter and sugar together in a large mixing bowl then beat in eggs until well combined.
  4. Combine batter – Add flour mixture in 2 additions, alternating with the milk mixture, mixing just until combined.
  5. Flour cranberries – rinse and dry cranberries then toss them with 1/2 Tbsp flour to coat. Fold in cranberries just until incorporated. Spread batter into buttered and floured 8.5×4.5 bread pan.
  6. Bake the bread for 45-50 minutes until golden on top and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool in the pan for 10-15 minutes then transfer to a rack to cool completely.
Step by step how to make cranberry bread recipe

Pro Tip: Tossing cranberries in a little flour coats them lightly and prevents them from sinking to the bottom of the loaf as it bakes. This ensures cranberries are evenly disbursed in the finished loaf.

Cranberry Orange bread in loaf pan

The Best Glaze for Cranberry Bread

Orange and cranberry are complimentarily flavored just like peanut butter and jelly. Topping the cranberry bread with orange juice and the orange zest-infused glaze makes this bread irresistible. I’m not sure if it’s breakfast or dessert but I’ve served it both ways. All you need for this easy 3-ingredient glaze is:

  • Powdered sugar – I spoon it into the cup and level the top for a consistent measure.
  • Orange juice – Freshly squeezed is best and don’t worry about straining. A little pulp won’t hurt the bread.
  • Orange zest – do not skip the zest. It adds deep orange floral notes to the glaze.
Orange glazed cranberry bread slices

Common Questions

Can I use frozen cranberries?

Yes, you can use frozen cranberries in the same quantity and add them frozen (do not thaw). You may need to bake just a few minutes longer or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

Can I Substitute Dried Cranberries?

You can substitute with 2/3 cup dried cranberries and reduce the sugar in the recipe to 2/3 cup since dried cranberries aren’t as tart. The dried cranberries will be juicer if you soak them in very warm water for 10 minutes then drain and pat dry before using. 

Can I add nuts?

You can make this a cranberry nut bread by folding in 1/2 cup of coarsely chopped walnuts or pecans when adding the cranberries to the batter.

Close up slices of cranberry orange glazed bread

This sweet bread is total comfort food. All you need is a mug of tea or coffee to go with a thick, fresh slice of cranberry bread.

Make-Ahead

  • Room Temperature – wrap cranberry bread loosely in plastic wrap or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days.
  • Refrigerate – you can cover and store the loaf in the refrigerator for up to a week.
  • Freezing – cool the loaf completely to room temperature then place in a freezer-safe zip bag, removing any excess air. Freeze up to three months. Thaw in the refrigerator overnight before serving.
Slice of cranberry bread broken in half to show tender center

Pro Tip: Cranberries are only available for a season in grocery stores so buy extra and store them in the freezer so you can keep enjoying this cranberry bread year-round.

More Cranberry Recipes

These are our best cranberry recipes using both fresh and dried cranberries.

Natasha's Kitchen Cookbook

Cranberry Bread with Orange Glaze

4.99 from 805 votes
Author: Natasha Kravchuk
Cranberry Bread with Orange Glaze
Orange Glazed Cranberry bread is loaded with juicy cranberries with a moist and tender crumb. This stays moist for a few days after it’s made so it’s perfect as a homemade Christmas gift.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour

Ingredients 

Servings: 8 people (makes 1 loaf)

Cranberry Bread Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup milk, room temperature
  • Zest of 1 large orange, divided
  • 1/4 cup orange juice, freshly squeezed
  • 6 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, rinsed and patted dry
  • 1/2 Tbsp all-purpose flour

Orange Glaze Ingredients:

  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice, or to reach desired consistency
  • 1 tsp orange zest, reserved from the orange above

Instructions

How to Make Cranberry Orange Bread:

  • Prep: Preheat oven to 350˚F. Butter a 6 cup (8 1/2 by 4 1/2 bread loaf pan) then dust with flour, tapping out the excess flour.
  • In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together: flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
  • In a measuring cup, combine together milk, zest of 1 orange (Reserve 1 tsp zest for the glaze), and orange juice. Set aside.
  • In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter and granulated sugar on medium/high speed (2-3 minutes on high speed). It won’t be smooth, just combined. Beat in 2 large eggs, mixing until well incorporated.
  • Add flour mixture in 2 parts, alternating with the milk mixture and mixing on medium/low speed just until incorporated with each addition. Scrape the sides of the bowl with a spatula as needed.
  • Toss cranberries with 1/2 Tbsp flour then fold them into the batter just until incorporated. Spread the batter into your prepared pan and bake for 45-50 min at 350˚F until golden on top and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan 10-15 minutes then run a cake release tool or knife around the edges and transfer the loaf to a wire rack to cool completely before glazing.

To Make the Glaze:

  • In a separate bowl, stir together powdered sugar, orange juice and reserved teaspoon of zest. Stir until smooth. It should have a drizzling consistency. Add more orange juice to thin it out or powdered sugar to make it thicker.

Nutrition Per Serving

326kcal Calories56g Carbs4g Protein10g Fat6g Saturated Fat1g Polyunsaturated Fat3g Monounsaturated Fat1g Trans Fat64mg Cholesterol95mg Sodium144mg Potassium2g Fiber36g Sugar370IU Vitamin A8mg Vitamin C47mg Calcium1mg Iron
Nutrition Facts
Cranberry Bread with Orange Glaze
Amount per Serving
Calories
326
% Daily Value*
Fat
 
10
g
15
%
Saturated Fat
 
6
g
38
%
Trans Fat
 
1
g
Polyunsaturated Fat
 
1
g
Monounsaturated Fat
 
3
g
Cholesterol
 
64
mg
21
%
Sodium
 
95
mg
4
%
Potassium
 
144
mg
4
%
Carbohydrates
 
56
g
19
%
Fiber
 
2
g
8
%
Sugar
 
36
g
40
%
Protein
 
4
g
8
%
Vitamin A
 
370
IU
7
%
Vitamin C
 
8
mg
10
%
Calcium
 
47
mg
5
%
Iron
 
1
mg
6
%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Course: Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Cranberry Bread, Cranberry Orange Bread, Orange Cranberry Bread
Skill Level: Easy
Cost to Make: $
Calories: 326

Natasha Kravchuk

Welcome to my kitchen! I am Natasha, the blogger behind Natasha's Kitchen (since 2009). My husband and I run this blog together and share only our best, family approved and tested recipes with YOU. Thanks for stopping by! We are so happy you're here.

Read more posts by Natasha

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Recipe Rating




Comments

  • Karla
    April 5, 2024

    I very eager to try this bread recipe. I have dried cranberries left over from a previous baked good and I’d hate to waste them. Can you use dried cranberries in place of fresh ones?

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      April 5, 2024

      Hi Karla, yes you can, see the “Can I Substitute Dried Cranberries?” section in the recipe.

      Reply

  • Pina
    March 6, 2024

    Can I replace butter with EVOO or canola oil. I don’t like to use butter in baked goods

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      March 6, 2024

      Hi Pina, this really is best with butter as it adds moisture to the loaf. I haven’t tried that substitution yet but one of readers used canola oil and it worked for them.

      Reply

  • Ann Johnson
    March 4, 2024

    I followed the recepie exactly and although the taste was great it didn’t raise very much, a bit dense, what did I do wrong? The baking Powder was good so that couldn’t be it.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      March 5, 2024

      Hi Ann! A dense cake can also be because of using too much flour. Be sure to measure correctly. I have a tutorial on How to measure ingredients here.

      Reply

  • Lisa
    March 1, 2024

    Can you make muffins using this recipe? If so what temp and baking time. Loved this recipe my husband too.

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      March 1, 2024

      Hi Lisa! I’m sure it can be made into muffins but I haven’t tested it to know how many muffins it will yield or how long to bake. I would watch them in the oven since they will bake faster. My guess would be likely between 18-22 mins.

      Reply

  • Florence
    February 26, 2024

    Awful. Made exactly as stated. Pan is too small, edges came up first. Top was flat. After full bake the center was still dough. I have been making bread for 40 years. This was a wasted afternoon. FAIL

    Reply

    • Natasha
      February 26, 2024

      Hi Florence, I’m sorry to hear that – it’s never fun to have a baking project fail. This is the first time I’m hearing a complaint like this on this recipe and it’s been a very popular one. Did you check that your leavening was still active and not expired? Also, you might check that your oven is preheating and maintaining heat properly. An oven thermometer can really help with that.

      Reply

  • AG
    February 25, 2024

    I would love to try making this. I have leftover frozen cranberry sauce to use up. Can I use that in place of the fresh cranberries?

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 25, 2024

      Yes, you can use frozen cranberries in the same quantity and add them frozen (do not thaw). You may need to bake just a few minutes longer or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

      Reply

  • Mary L. Crawford
    February 19, 2024

    Today I helped my eight-year-old grandson stir up this bread. Unfortunately, he had to leave before he could eat any. Oh my! It is so delicious and THE best cranberry bread I’ve ever had. Throwing out my old crumbly cranberry recipe soon thank you very much.

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 20, 2024

      Thank you, Mary. I’m happy that you loved this bread!

      Reply

  • Mary L. Crawford
    February 19, 2024

    Today I helped my 8 year-old grandson stir up this bread. Unfortunately, he had to leave before he could try it. Oh my!!! It is THE best cranberry bread I’ve ever had. Recipe already printed. Can’t stop eating it – so moist and yummy. Throwing out my old crumbly recipe soon. Thank you!

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 20, 2024

      You’re welcome, happy to know that you enjoyed this recipe a lot!

      Reply

  • Sara
    February 5, 2024

    Has anyone tried making this yummy looking bread with Gluten Free flour?

    Reply

    • Natasha's Kitchen
      February 5, 2024

      Hi Sara, I haven’t tested that to advise. Let’s see if others here can share their experience.

      Reply

    • Sue Cotner
      March 24, 2024

      I made this with King Arthur’s Flour and it was delicious. I asked friends for their opinion and they didn’t know it was made with gluten free flour.

      Reply

      • Natasha's Kitchen
        March 24, 2024

        Great to hear that!

        Reply

  • Gail Neduzak
    February 5, 2024

    this was soooo good i make 2 loaves and freeze..love it ty..huggzz

    Reply

    • NatashasKitchen.com
      February 5, 2024

      That’s great to hear! It’s always nice to have a little extra on hand to defrost when the sweet craving hits or company comes over.

      Reply

  • Sandra
    February 2, 2024

    Can I make this bread using dried cranberries instead of fresh

    Reply

    • Natashas Kitchen
      February 2, 2024

      Hi Sandra, yes you can, see the “Can I Substitute Dried Cranberries?” section in the recipe.

      Reply

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