Cranberry Orange Bread

12 Servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes

Cranberry Orange Bread loaf is a fun, quick, and easy Holiday bread. It’s perfect for breakfast with orange juice and dried cranberries!

This Cranberry Orange Bread is a delicious and easier twist than the classic Cranberry Bread which is perfect for the holidays because it uses dried cranberries in place of fresh cranberries like in the Pumpkin Cranberry Bread and the amazingCranberry Bread Pudding!

Cranberry Orange Loaf Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread is a delightful and flavorful quick bread that brings together the tanginess of cranberries and the bright citrus notes of orange. This bread is delicious because of its moist and tender crumb, making it a perfect treat for breakfast, an afternoon snack, or even dessert. The combination of cranberries and orange zest creates a refreshing and vibrant taste, while the addition of orange juice in the batter ensures a moist and tender loaf. The orange flavor and the delicious, tart, yet slightly sweetened dried cranberries soaked in orange juice work really well together!

The ease of making Cranberry Orange Bread is one of its key factors. With just a few simple steps and common ingredients, you can whip up a scrumptious loaf in no time. This recipe is perfect for home bakers of all skill levels and requires minimal preparation, making it a great option for busy days or last-minute gatherings. Since it has a relatively quick baking time you can make it a day ahead of time too!

Cranberry Orange Bread is unique because it combines sweetened dried cranberries and fresh orange zest in a perfectly balanced sweet and tangy loaf. The use of orange juice for soaking the cranberries adds an extra layer of flavor and helps to keep the bread moist showcasing the versatility of cranberries beyond their traditional use in sauces. If you love the combination of fruit and citrus in baked goods, you’ll also enjoy this Blueberry Lemon Bread

How to Make Cranberry Orange Bread

This homemade Cranberry Orange Bread is a delightful, easy-to-make treat, perfect for enjoying the combination of fresh, tart cranberries and zesty orange. Check it out!

  • Step One: Prepare the cranberries and preheat the oven. Soak the cranberries in the orange juice for about 20-30 minutes before using them in the recipe. This will help them plump up and absorb the orange flavor, enhancing the overall taste. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and generously spray a 9×5 loaf pan with baking spray.
  • Step Two: Combine dry ingredients. Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a separate bowl.
  • Step Three: Mix wet ingredients. In a medium bowl, whisk together vegetable oil, egg, soaked cranberries, orange juice, and orange zest until well combined.
  • Step Four: Combine wet and dry ingredients. Gently whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined, making sure not to overmix.
  • Step Five: Pour the batter into the greased loaf pan and place into the preheated oven for 1 hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean. Allow the bread to cool for 15 minutes before removing it from the loaf pan. You can use a wire rack if preferred. Enjoy your delicious homemade Cranberry Orange Bread!

More Delicious Quick Breads

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does my Cranberry Orange Bread sink in the middle?

If you overfill the loaf pan it won’t have room to rise, this causes the bread to fall. Leave at least an inch of space on the top of the loaf pan.

Does Cranberry Orange Bread need to be refrigerated?

It can stay out for up to 2 days, but to keep it fresh and moist you should refrigerate it, especially if you are in a warm climate.

Can you substitute the dried cranberries for fresh ones?

Yes, you can, but this may influence how much moisture is in the bread. You can substitute frozen cranberries in equal amounts which will make the bread more moist. 

How can I make it more moist?

You can always add 3 tablespoons of milk, 3 tablespoons of sour cream,  or 3 tablespoons of Greek yogurt if you want it more cake-like.

How long do I soak the cranberries in orange juice?

oak the cranberries in the orange juice for about 20-30 minutes before using them in the recipe. This will help them plump up and absorb the orange flavor, enhancing the overall taste of your homemade Cranberry Orange Bread. You’ll be using the same orange juice in the recipe too. 

How do I keep the bread from sticking to the pan?

Line your pan with parchment paper or cooking spray to keep it from sticking. 

Slice of Cranberry Orange Bread

Key Ingredients in Cranberry Orange Bread

Homemade Cranberry Orange Bread is a simple, delightful, and quick bread that brings together tangy cranberries and zesty oranges. The ingredients are easy to find in your local grocery store and combine effortlessly to create a flavorful treat.

  • Cranberries: These dried, sweet, and tangy fruits are the star of the recipe, adding a burst of flavor and beautiful color to the bread. You can find them in most grocery stores or online.
  • Orange: Freshly squeezed orange juice and orange zest add a vibrant citrus flavor, balancing the sweetness of the cranberries. You can substitute store-bought orange juice if needed, but using fresh oranges will give the best results. Blood oranges are okay to use as well.
  • Flour: The base of the bread, all-purpose flour provides structure and helps the loaf rise. If you prefer, you can use a gluten-free flour blend as a substitute.
  • Sugar: Adding sweetness to the bread, sugar also helps to create a tender crumb. You can experiment with different types of sugar or even use your preferred sugar alternative if desired.
  • Baking Powder and Baking Soda: These leavening agents help the bread rise and create a light, fluffy texture. Make sure they are fresh for the best results.
  • Egg: Eggs help bind the ingredients together and provide structure to the bread. If you need an egg-free option, try using a flax egg or egg replacement product. You can substitute with mashed bananas, applesauce, or ground flax seed mixed with water. ¼ cup for each egg.
  • Vegetable Oil: This provides moisture to the bread, resulting in a tender crumb. You can substitute with other neutral oils or even unsalted butter for a richer flavor. Note that substituting the oil may produce a different consistency.

Can Cranberry Orange Bread be made ahead of time?

Yes, Cranberry Orange Bread can be made ahead of time. Prepare the bread as instructed and allow it to cool completely. Once cooled, wrap the loaf tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and store it at room temperature for up to 3 days. If you’d like to store it for a longer period, you can freeze the bread. To do this, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place it in a freezer-safe bag or container. The bread can be stored in the freezer for up to 3 months. To reheat, simply let the bread thaw at room temperature and warm it up in the oven at 300°F for about 10-15 minutes if desired, or cut it into individual slices and toast it! 

Substitutions in Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Cranberries: You can use equal parts frozen cranberries. Note that the moisture in the frozen cranberries will make the bread more moist. If you don’t have dried sweetened cranberries, you can substitute them with dried cherries, raisins, or chopped dried apricots for a similar texture and flavor.
  • Orange Juice: There is no substitution for orange juice or orange zest. But, you can add 3 or 4 drops of orange oil (food grade) to boost the flavor!
  • Flour: If you need a gluten-free alternative, use a gluten-free all-purpose flour blend in equal amounts. Make sure to check the packaging for any additional adjustments required.
  • Sugar: You can use a sugar substitute like erythritol, Stevia, or coconut sugar in place of granulated sugar. Be sure to follow the conversion rates on the packaging for the appropriate substitution amount. Add a dusting of powdered sugar on top to give it a beautiful coat. 
  • Vegetable Oil: Substitute vegetable oil with melted coconut oil, melted butter, or applesauce for an alternative fat source. Note that using applesauce will result in a slightly denser bread texture.

Variations on Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Muffins: You can easily make Cranberry Orange Bread into yummy muffins by dividing the batter equally into a muffin tin. You’ll want to leave a little bit of room at the top of each cup so that they don’t fall. Remember that muffins have a shorter cook time than a loaf of bread. 
  • Mini loaves: If you have a mini loaf pan kicking around that you’ve wanted to break out, this is a great recipe for them. Divide the batter between the mini loaf pans and put them in the oven. Make sure you keep an eye on them to keep them from burning since the size difference will influence the baking time.  
  • Add-ins: A favorite thing to add to Cranberry Orange Bread is a handful of white chocolate chips. The white chocolate goes really well with the tartness of the fresh cranberries, and the baking process melts them enough to give the bread around them a rich, almost buttery flavor.
  • Toppings: You can top your Cranberry Orange Bread with a dusting of powdered sugar, brown sugar, granulated sugar, or confectioner’s sugar to make it look fancy and delicious. You can also serve your Cranberry Orange Bread with glaze. Make a little sweet orange glaze in a small bowl and drizzle it over the top of the loaf. To make it look extremely fancy, you can make patterns with the glaze.    
Cranberry Orange Bread

More Fun Cranberry Dishes

How to Store Cranberry Orange Bread

  • Serve: You can leave Cranberry Orange Bread out at room temperature for up to 2 days. To keep it fresh, keep it wrapped in plastic wrap or in an airtight container. 
  • Store: You can keep Cranberry Orange Bread in the fridge for up to 1 week. Let it cool down to room temperature before you seal it up, and keep it wrapped tightly enough to keep any moisture out. 
  • Freeze: You can keep your Cranberry Orange Bread in the freezer for up to 3 months. Again, you should always let the bread cool to room temperature before putting it away. 
Cranberry Orange Loaf

Pin this recipe now to remember it later

Pin Recipe

Cranberry Orange Bread

Cranberry Orange Bread loaf is a fun, quick, and easy Holiday bread. It's perfect for breakfast with orange juice and dried cranberries!
Yield 12 Servings
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Course Bread
Cuisine American
Author Sabrina Snyder


  • 1 cup dried sweetened cranberries
  • 3/4 cup  orange juice
  • 2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon  baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 orange , zested


  • Soak the cranberries in the orange juice in a small bowl.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and spray a 9×5 loaf pan with baking spray.
  • Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together vegetable oil, egg and soaked cranberries, orange juice and orange zest until well combined.
  • Whisk in the dry ingredients until just combined.
  • Pour into greased loaf pan.
  • Bake for 1 hour, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  • Let cool for 15 minutes before removing from loaf pan.


Calories: 223kcal | Carbohydrates: 37g | Protein: 3g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 18mg | Sodium: 206mg | Potassium: 136mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 19g | Vitamin A: 232IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 34mg | Iron: 1mg
Cranberry Orange Bread Pin 1

Photos used in a previous version of this post.

Cranberry Orange Bread collage

About the Author: Sabrina Snyder

Sabrina is a professionally trained Private Chef of over 10 years with ServSafe Manager certification in food safety. She creates all the recipes here on Dinner, then Dessert, fueled in no small part by her love for bacon.

Sabrina Snyder is a professionally trained personal and private chef of over 10 years who is the creator and developer of all the recipes on Dinner, then Dessert.

She is also the author of the cookbook Dinner, then Dessert – Satisfying Meals Using Only 3, 5 or 7 Ingredients, published by Harper Collins.

She started Dinner, then Dessert as a business in her office as a lunch service for her coworkers who admired her lunches before going to culinary school and becoming a full time personal chef and private chef.

As a personal chef Sabrina would cook for families one day a week and cook their entire week of dinners. All grocery shopping, cooking and cleaning was done along with instructions on reheating. As a private chef she cooked for private parties and cooked in family homes in the evenings for families on a nightly basis after working as a personal chef during the day.

Sabrina has been certified as a ServSafe Manager since 2007 and was a longstanding member of the USPCA Personal Chef Association including being on the board of the Washington DC Chapter of Chefs in the US Personal Chef Association when they won Chapter of the year.

As a member of the community of food website creators Sabrina Snyder has spoken at many conferences regarding her experiences as a food writer including the Indulge Food Conference, Everything Food Conference, Haven Food Conference and IACP Annual Food Professionals Conference.

Sabrina lives with her family in sunny California.

Dinner, then Dessert, Inc. owns the copyright on all images and text and does not allow for its original recipes and pictures to be reproduced anywhere other than at this site unless authorization is given. If you enjoyed the recipe and would like to publish it on your own site, please re-write it in your own words, and link back to my site and recipe page. Read my disclosure and copyright policy. This post may contain affiliate links.


Leave a comment & rating

Have you checked the FAQ section above to see if your question has already been answered? View previous questions.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


    1. I have never tested this recipe in a bread machine. Make sure to follow the steps for the cranberries if you decide to try this recipe in your bread machine.

  1. Excellent – have made twice. Both times I added a handful of chocolate chips. This time I put a chocolate glaze all over it. Just eating a piece now – still slightly warm – absolutely wonderful. This is a real winner not only for taste but for the simplicity of the recipe.

  2. This is THE BEST recipe. I used frozen Orange juice concentrate
    But I made it strong. I also added pecans and used an orange glaze. I baked a loaf for a friend and she was crazy about it. My favorite and so simple to make.

  3. I only gave four because I changed it up so I couldn’t really rate the original recipe. I used commercial orange juice since I had some in the fridge. I cut the sugar to 1/2 cup. I substituted blood orange olive oil for half the oil. I didn’t have a fresh orange so I added dried zest. I also added a third of a cup of yogurt and a quarter tsp almond extract. (The olive oil and yogurt had me on a Mediterranean track.) I baked two small loaves. The crust caramelized to a nice golden color on the bottom and sides, but wasn’t hard or dry. The top really didn’t get a lot of color. The crumb was very tender and moist. It ate almost like a cake and was plenty sweet even with the reduced sugar. I made sure I did not overbake and it probably baked in about 30-35 minutes in the smaller pans. There was a nice balance of the almond, orange and cranberry with the slight earthiness of the olive oil. I will definitely make again.

  4. I loved this and would have given it 5 stars but I made substitutions and additions so I wasn’t truly ranking the recipe I guess. I didn’t have fresh orange but I had commercial juice so I used that. I cut the sugar back to 1/2 cup, also added some dried orange zest and substituted blood orange olive oil for about 1/3 of the veg oil. I also added about 3 Tbsp Greek Yogurt. Because the yogurt and olive oil brought the Mediterranean to mind I added about 1/3 tsp almond extract for an added dimension. It had a very moist, delicate crumb and you could taste the orange and cranberry and the almond (I would probably only use 1/4 tsp next time) and thought it was plenty sweet even with the reduced sugar. Delicious.

  5. Bread came out amazing. It’s difficult to find fresh cranberries year round, and since I’m not around family, I do a lot of shipping. This worked out perfect. The only tweak I added was some orange oil, really amped up the orange flavor!

  6. Thank you for this recipe.. The taste is really amazing! The first time I made it, the result was really dry. But since the bread tasted really good, and I have a lot of dried cranberries, I baked it again. I made adjustments, I added greek yogurt and the result was just fantastic. Same great taste but now it’s moist! Thanks again!

    1. I am so sorry, I am just seeing this tonight. I am sure the recipe has long been cooked/or not but I still want to try to help.

      No, they shouldn’t be tough, like a slightly juicier raisin?

  7. I loved this recipe – easy to make and very moist. I used fresh cranberries l so I decreased the orange juice to slightly less. I also added chopped pecans. It was wonderful, would definitely make this again.

  8. I didn’t see the orange zest mentioned in the directions. Is this just getting mixed in with all the dry ingredients?

  9. hi, this recipe sounds amazing and i’m so excited to try it, i was wondering if i can use fresh cranberries instead of dried?

  10. Made this a few weeks ago. My family loved it! I’m making again for Christmas gifts for my friends and family . I added walnuts and baked in mini loaf pans.
    Can you double this recipe?

    1. Though I haven’t tested it, you can substitute with mashed bananas, applesauce or ground flax seed mixed with water. 1/4 cup for each egg. Good luck!

      1. Hi!

        The recipe sounds great! Thanks for sharing it. I’m curious, how much milk can I add to the batter and would I have to reduce or take out anything (ie the orange juice) if I did? Thanks!

  11. There are no instructions for adding the sugar or orange zest in this recipe. Good thing my sugar canister was still closed. Not good

    1. Oh no, It must not have saved correctly. I’m so sorry. Thank you for letting me know. I just corrected the recipe card. Hopefully it sticks this time.