Orange Cranberry Nut Bread: A Sweet and Tart Treat

Jump to the Recipe

I normally try to use seasonal ingredients as often as possible. And with the colder months nipping at our noses, that means pumpkins, cranberries, and nuts.

Need an easy treat to give as delicious gifts during the holidays? Make our homemade orange cranberry nut bread. We share the recipe:

One of my favorite recipes during this time of the year that uses some of these delicious ingredients is this orange cranberry nut bread.

With fresh cranberries being so widely available during the holiday season, it always makes for an easy and well-received homemade gift, especially for those who love a perfect sweet and tart combo.

For all you sweet-and-tart lovers this holiday season, make our festive orange cranberry nut bread for that perfect combo of fun flavors! We share the recipe:

I prefer getting the fresh variety of the red-hued fruit, though you could easily use frozen. With their characteristically strong tart flavor, it balances beautifully with hearty nuts and bright orange juice and zest.

So be extra giving this season, and bake this alongside all of your other favorite holiday sweets, like sugar cookies or fudgy brownie cookies decorated with pretty icing.

A delicious combination of sweet and tart, our fluffy orange cranberry nut bread is the perfect treat to give as gifts during the holiday season. We share the recipe:

Pucker up (no mistletoe required!), and make our recipe now.

The Recipe

Cranberry and Orange Bread Recipe |
The Best Orange Cranberry Nut Bread
Votes: 4
Rating: 4
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Need an easy sweet and tart treat to give as delicious gifts during the holidays? Make our homemade orange cranberry nut bread.
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 10 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 10 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Cranberry and Orange Bread Recipe |
The Best Orange Cranberry Nut Bread
Votes: 4
Rating: 4
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Need an easy sweet and tart treat to give as delicious gifts during the holidays? Make our homemade orange cranberry nut bread.
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 10 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
Servings Prep Time
1 loaf 10 minutes
Cook Time
50 minutes
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup white granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick) room temperature, cut in large cubes
  • ¾ cup fresh orange juice (about 3 large oranges)
  • 1 tablespoon fresh orange zest
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 cup coarsely chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans)
  • 1 large egg beaten
Servings: loaf
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Liberally grease a loaf pan with cooking spray. Set aside.
  2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a bowl. Transfer to a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the cubes of butter, and mix slowly until the butter is evenly distributed in small chunks throughout the dry mixture.
  3. Add the orange juice, zest, and egg. Mix slowly until just combined, making sure not to overmix. The batter will be thick.
  4. Gently fold in the cranberries and walnuts using a spatula.
  5. Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs still clinging to it.
  6. Remove from the oven and let cool for 15 minutes in the pan. Remove the loaf from the pan and let cool completely on a cooling rack. Cut and serve!

Nutritional Information*

Nutrition Facts
The Best Orange Cranberry Nut Bread
Amount Per Serving
Calories 691 Calories from Fat 243
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 27g 42%
Saturated Fat 10g 50%
Trans Fat 0.3g
Polyunsaturated Fat 9g
Monounsaturated Fat 2g
Cholesterol 64mg 21%
Sodium 518mg 22%
Potassium 178mg 5%
Total Carbohydrates 100g 33%
Dietary Fiber 4g 16%
Sugars 38g
Protein 12g 24%
Vitamin A 16%
Vitamin C 30%
Calcium 8%
Iron 20%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.


Cooking by the Numbers…

Step 1 – Prep

How to Make Orange Cranberry Bread |

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray.

Whisk together the all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt.

Slice the butter into large chunks. Zest and juice the fresh oranges. Break and lightly beat the egg in a separate bowl.

Coarsely chop the walnuts and cranberries. If using frozen cranberries, allow them to sit for 10 minutes at room temperature before chopping them.

Step 2 – Mix Butter with the Dry Ingredients

Homemade Cranberry and Orange Bread |

Transfer the whisked dry ingredients to a stand mixer bowl fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the butter and mix on low speed until the chunks are evenly incorporated throughout the mixture. It will still look dry.

Step 3 – Add the Liquid Ingredients

The Best Sweet and Tart Treat |

Add the orange juice, zest, and egg. Mix slowly until just combined. The batter will be thick. Do not overmix, or the final product will be too tough, chewy, and dense.

Step 4 – Fold in the Fruit and Nuts

Make the Best Sweet and Tart Baked Treat |

Gently fold in the chopped fruit and nuts until evenly distributed.

Step 5 – Bake

Recipe for a Sweet and Tart Holiday Treat |

Transfer the batter to the prepared loaf pan. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with just a few crumbs still clinging to it.

Step 6 – Cool and Serve

Cranberry Orange Nut Bread |

Remove from the oven, and allow the loaf to cool in the pan for about 15 minutes. Remove the loaf from the pan and place on a cooling rack to cool completely.

Cut in thick slices and serve!

A Sweet and Tart Delight

During the fall and winter seasons, this fresh and fluffy treat is the ideal gift to give to anyone who loves the fun combination of sweet and tart.

To spread even more yummy joy to your friends and family, you can easily double this recipe. And try using mini loaf pans or a muffin pan for smaller portions that are beyond adorable. Just reduce the baking time.

Fresh Orange and Cranberry Nut Bread |

If you’re looking for more recipe inspiration, take quick peek at some of our other quick breads:

And for another dessert featuring this gorgeous red fruit, try our upside down cranberry cake.

Are you a fan of fresh cranberries? What are your favorite recipes featuring this mouth-puckering fruit? Let us know in the comments below!

Don’t forget to Pin It!

A delicious combination of sweet and tart, our homemade orange cranberry nut bread is the perfect treat to give as gifts during the holiday season. Flavored with orange juice and mixed with fresh cranberries and walnuts, you might as well attach the recipe for this, too – everyone will be asking for it! Bake it now on Foodal.

Photos by Nikki Cervone, © Ask the Experts, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.See our TOS for more details. Originally published October 3rd, 2014 by Lynne Jaques. Revised and updated December 5th, 2017.

*Nutritional information derived from a database of known generic and branded foods and ingredients and was not compiled by a registered dietitian or submitted for lab testing. It should be viewed as an approximation.

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About Nikki Cervone

Nikki Cervone is a hungry foodie living in Pittsburgh. Nikki holds an AAS in baking/pastry from Westmoreland County Community College, a BA in Communications from Duquesne University, and an MLA in Gastronomy from Boston University. When she is not tearing through her city's best cheesesteaks, Nikki enjoys a healthy dose of yoga and chocolate. Lots of chocolate.

41 thoughts on “Orange Cranberry Nut Bread: A Sweet and Tart Treat”

  1. I love cranberry bread. I always get it at coffee houses but I’ve never made my own. I will have to soon! I like the sweetness mixed with the tart cranberries. My favorite kind of fall bread is pumpkin nut or pumpkin with chocolate chips. It’s so good with morning coffee or afternoon tea.

  2. I enjoy baking, but have never used cranberries before so will try it. I usually bake banana and nut bread, but this is quite colorful and cranberries are good for the health. A great combination idea and a nice snack option too with a cup of coffee or hot chocolate.

  3. I’m not usually a fan of cooked cranberries as I prefer them fresh. This looks like a good recipe, so I may just have to change my mind. That picture is making me hungry just looking at it.

    This looks like something my mother would love as it looks quite similar to banana nut bread, which is her all time favorite. Cranberries are easier to find this time of year so I’ll have to try it out. I think this would go great with a cup of tea in the morning for breakfast.

    I might make singles instead. I find them much easier for my mornings as I’m always crunched for time. I wonder if these might cook well in a cupcake pan? I hope so.

  4. Looks like a great recipe. I’m going to save it to make around Thanksgiving. Would be a perfect dessert to bring to dinner.

  5. This is absolute heaven to my palate. I like the way you presented this recipe and the pictures never fail to fuel my appetite. It’s currently midnight in my side of the world and somehow I feel like eating Cranberry Nut Bread for midnight snacks. I’m copying this recipe. Thanks a lot!

  6. This cranberry nut bread looks so heavenly, I think I may just go to the store to pick up the ingredients to make this right now. I have never tried nut bread before, and because it is also a fall recipe makes me want to make it that much more. I must try this!

  7. You had me at cranberries. This looks absolutely delicious. I think it is going to be a perfect option for Thanksgiving. Several members of my family don’t care for pumpkin pie, so I trie to have other options for them. This is going to fit in perfectly with my Thanksgiving menu. Thanks for yet another great recipe.

  8. Now that does look delicious! And very seasonal, as well. Over here, I rarely see fresh cranberries except in the few weeks before Christmas , but as it happens, I do have some frozen ones lurking in the back of my freezer…

    Sadly, I don’t think I would get anyone else in my house to eat it (except maybe the two-year-old, otherwise known as the human dustbin). Recognisable chunks of fruit in cakes tends to get suspicious looks from my husband and older daughter. And my dad and both sisters.

    • Sometimes that stuff at the back of the freezer can really surprise you, and really come in handy too. I am glad that you were able to get some good cranberries…all I ever tend to get is break like products.

  9. Aha! No yeast ( am I right?). I have fallen out love, I guess, because of my intimidation of yeast, but this recipe looks like a good one that will make me able make a bread without the yeast. This will be great for the Christmas season as a gift to my co-worker. I must pin this!

  10. This looks absolutely delicious. Never tried one before, so I’m definitely going to be making this. If it turns out right, I’ll be making it for me and my boyfriend’s one year anniversary! Thanks for the recipe.

  11. This looks delicious! I’m an avid fan of sweet breads, and this one is really festive; I think it would make a wonderful gift at Christmas, and would be a really indulgent Christmas breakfast option too. I like that you can use frozen cranberries as well as fresh – fresh cranberries have such a brief season! My local supermarket keeps a good stock of frozen cranberries, but I think I will freeze some of the beautiful fresh ones myself when they hit the shops soon. The arrive of fresh cranberries is when I really start to feel festive! I’ll be making one of these breads as soon as I can.

    Thank you for another delicious recipe!

  12. I have never been able to bake a banana bread, hence am asking myself whether this will be easy, but am so sure with zeal and confidence in tow, i ‘ll conquer. To begin with it looks delicious…i ‘ll try it out, as long as i have the recipe, am good 🙂

  13. What a beautiful, beautiful looking loaf of bread, just gorgeous. The crust looks so shiny and golden brown, ugh! The inside of the loaf looks like a work of art.
    I had some slices of cranberry nut bread just the other day, I had some about a couple of hours ago that I got from someplace, I didn’t make it homemade.
    I just might try out this recipe and serve this beautiful bread for breakfast in the not-too-distant future, as well as with our Thanksgiving meal. And beyond.

  14. Oh my goodness, this looks delicious! The picture alone made my mouth water and drew my attention from the front page.

    Thank you for this recipe, it actually looks doable for someone like me who doesn’t have much experience with baking beyond simple cookies. And I appreciate the details you put into each step, giving your recommendations for how to do this or that; a newbie such as myself needs all the instruction I can get.

    And I’m glad to hear that it can be a great make-ahead recipe as well. It’s nice to make something that will last, as I know my family and I would love to make something as good-looking as this last awhile.

  15. We grow our own cranberries in our backyard. Usually, we just turn it to juice. This sounds interesting. We never really thought about baking it for some reason, but that recipe sounds heavenly. I think we might try it for a spin.

  16. This sounds very yummy! I’ve never had cranberry bread – cranberries have only been in Australia a relatively short time, we certainly didn’t have them when I was a kid.

    Do you think this recipe would convert well to a bread machine? I struggle to get breads to rise very much in my house so the bread machine is an effective option!

  17. I love these kinds of bread. This recipe especially looks really good, but I’m wondering if I can use a blender instead of a food processor (I don’t have one) to chop up the cranberries? I’ll figure out something. Also, does anyone know if you can taste the difference between using fresh cranberries or frozen cranberries? I’m just curious. I agree wholeheartedly though that these breads make a great gift, too. They’re great to bring over to a relative’s house for the holidays, and it’s something that even kids will eat! All in all, you can never go wrong with cranberry bread.

  18. This sounds so delicious. I always make cranberry and banana bread for Thanksgiving Day, but it’s always from the box. This version of cranberry bread sounds so much better and it seems like it’s really easy to make. I’ve never thought to freeze this bread before. About how long with they last frozen? I am definitely going to add this to my list for special treats to give out this holiday.

    • I’ve never had cranberry banana bread. I’ve actually never heard of it, but cranberry orange is my favorite. The flavor combination is just so good. You should definitely try it, if you haven’t had it. It’s wonderful.

      The pictures are quite appetizing. Makes me want to go bake some right now. I usually do mine in muffin form instead of as a bread, but I have a mini loaf pan too. I think I’ll use it for this recipe.

  19. This looks absolutely delicious and soft or moist, like you can tell it won’t be dry. I am going to have to remember this recipe whenever I get the courage to make bread from scratch. I have always wanted to make bread but didn’t think I could do it without messing it up, but I am definitely going to have to try with this recipe. I like cranberries but I wonder if another type of fruit will do well in this bread too?

  20. I had the most over whelming craving this morning for a warm fruity quick bread. It was just one of those things I knew I couldn’t shake so I hoped online and found this recipe! It was perfect for my craving and it’s flavor profile reminded me of the holidays to boot. It all came together quick and easy. Before I knew it I had it in the oven, making the house smell amazing. The sweet touch of orange off sets the tart cranberries perfectly. It came out so well and was so easy I’m going to be making the mini loaves the recipe suggested as gifts.

  21. I’ve always got leftover fruits so this cranberry bread looks ideal. I like the fact I could batch cook it and freezer some if I had too much fruit. Another plus is the fact that is called a “bread”. Therefore it is NOT cake and is actually very healthy. Honest!

  22. I have never thought of putting cranberries in bread. Your description and perfect pictures make it seem quite delicious. The orange zest in the recipe is also making it quite appealing to me. As someone who struggles somewhat with baking bread, I appreciate the helpful guides to mixing and all. It gives me the confidence to try this recipe.

  23. I have made cranberry pumpkin bread, but haven’t tried cranberry nut. I love that this uses oranges. To me, it’s almost a necessity to pair the two.

    I might try substituting pumpkin puree for the shortening. Pumpkin is sweet so I could reduce the refined sugar. I absolutely love the tart cranberry paired with sweet pumpkin.

  24. I’d recommend using fresh cranberries instead of the frozen or dried ones. When I tried to make these with the frozen ones, the cranberries turned out to be ‘sugar bombs’ when you bit into them. Otherwisse, it’s a marvelous treat fit for fall.

  25. I love banana nut bread. Honestly, though, substituting anothe fruit or berry never even occurred to me before. This does look really yummy, and I think it’ll be really interesting to try this

  26. Christmas is my favorite time of the year so I’m always looking for things to make. I have never tried Cranberry Nut bread, I have only ever had Banana Nut bread which I absolutely love so I cant wait to try this out!

  27. The temperatures are cooling off, and so my mind is turning to baking again. I love nut breads, especially in the cooler months, and cranberries always remind me of Fall. This loaf looks delicious, and I think it would make a nice addition to my Thanksgiving table, rather than just serving cranberry sauce, like I usually do. I enjoy adding nuts and berries into my menus whenever possible, for their health benefits, and I’m looking forward to trying this recipe.

  28. This looks yummy and I bet it smells great when it’s fresh out of the oven! I like homemade bread with nuts in it. I’ve never tried the cranberry but I will be now!

  29. I stumbled across this recipe when searching for something yummy and different to make with cranberries – I can’t wait to try it! The nuts will really pep it up, and contrast nicely with the sharpness of the cranberries.

    I have a feeling this will become a firm favorite in my household.

    Thank you!

  30. This cranberry nut bread looks amazing! I love cranberries any way I can get them, even raw! LOL I really hope I can find time to make one of these yummy loaves for every person on my list this Christmas. That would be such a huge hit.

  31. I have no doubt that this bread will be absolutely delicious. I mean blending the nut and cranberry with orange juice is just brilliant. I’m writing off this recipe right now that way I do not lose it. Thanks a lot for this recipe.

  32. This is indeed the perfect fall dessert. I absolutely love cranberry bread and it’s so easy to make! Thanks for reminding me of such a tasty treat. I now know with certainty which dessert I’ll be serving during the Thanksgiving Holidays.

  33. Those look delicious! I’ve gotten super hungry. I guess I shouldn’t check this blog out when I’m at work, lol!
    Gonna try making those this weekend. I really like the idea of decorating them with ribbons and the like.
    Makes the dessert even more special.
    I love this blog for making me realize that dessers don’t have to he unhealthy and full of chocolate.
    It’s true that healthy food requires time and work, but your posts prove that it’s worth it.

  34. My goodness this is a delicious looking loaf and I am sure it tastes as good as it looks! I just love the holiday season because it is an excuse to make all sorts of lovely food that we don’t make throughout the year. This is the time to spoil our loved ones with these delicious treats!

  35. I love the taste of cranberries. I will usually buy them dried so I can eat them like I do raisins. As much as I love bread I don’t always like certain things in breads and fruit is one of them. I feel like it gets too mushy for my taste. The only exception being banana bread because the banana is more of a puree than in chunks like the cranberries are.

  36. I love Cranberry Nut Bread. I made it for the first time last year and it was a HUGE hit. I had a lot of people asking for the recipe for it. I like to add blueberries during the spring for a different taste. I haven’t made it with this recipe before, so I will definitely try it. I like to send my wife to work with a bunch of loafs of bread for her motorcycle techs so this will help in making sure I make enough loafs (or even thinning it a bit for muffins). This bread is the best when it’s slightly warmed with a thin layer of butter on it. Makes my taste buds dance thinking about it.

  37. This sounds great! I will most definitely be making this soon. We usually always have a loaf of banana nut bread in the kitchen, always fresh and of course, homemade, but we are getting tired of it. We like to have “flavored bread”, as the kids call it, but we want to change it up. We like cranberries, so I can imagine this cranberry nut bread loaf will be ideal.

  38. I made this recipe last night with leftover Thanksgiving ingredients (it was definitely time to clean out the freezer!) and it is SO delicious. Tangy cranberries, sweet citrus, a bit of texture from the nuts – I can’t tell you how happy I was to sit down to a slice of this bread for breakfast this morning.

    I’ll advise others out there who are ready to try it to DEFINITELY follow Nikki’s advice to grease the pan liberally. I apparently wasn’t liberal enough, and may have jumped the gun when I chose to remove it from the pan, so I lost a bit of the bottom crust. Next time, I will definitely grease even more liberally. I also wonder if greasing and then flouring the pan might help. I do this when I make pumpkin bread- had anyone else out there tried it for this recipe?

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