Cranberry Orange Juice Bread

Cranberry Orange Juice Bread

The countdown rests at T-minus eight days until the biggest food day of the year. It’s a day when skinny jeans get the boot, elastic waistbands rule the dinner table and second servings aren’t just encouraged, but required. Are you ready to usher in Thanksgiving 2012 in all its big-flavored glory?

It may come as no surprise, but I am a Thanksgiving enthusiast. An entire day dedicated to cooking and caloric intake? Sign me up. And that’s why I’m hard at work this week dreaming up not one but two delectable confections for your dessert table. This sweet and tangy Cranberry Orange Juice Bread does double duty as a dessert or breakfast favorite. The light sprinkling of turbinado sugar on top creates a crunchy crust that gives way to an incredibly moist bread studded with fresh cranberries. And you know what else is a great use of turbinado sugar? Candied bacon.

Alternately, if you’re looking to lighten up between the big feast and the sweet finale, try a scoop of refreshing Red Wine Cranberry Sorbet, and give thanks because there’s no ice cream machine required!

Cranberry Bread

Cranberry Orange Juice Bread

Slices of Cranberry OJ Bread

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Cranberry Orange Juice Bread

Yield: one 9-inch loaf

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 1 hour


1 large egg, well beaten
3/4 cup orange juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 Tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup fresh cranberries, rinsed and thoroughly dried
1 Tablespoon turbinado sugar (optional)


Preheat oven to 350ºF. Grease a 9x5-inch loaf pan with butter or cooking spray.

In a small bowl, combine the beaten egg with the orange juice and vanilla extract.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add the pieces of butter to the flour, blending the ingredients together with your fingers until the mixture becomes the consistency of wet sand.

Fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, and then stir in the cranberries. Pour the batter into the prepared loaf pan and sprinkle the top with the Turbinado sugar (optional).

Bake the bread for 50 to 60 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.

Let the bread cool for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Recipe adapted from Joy of Baking.


  1. says

    I make a similar recipe every year-it’s not the holidays without it. I love how you add sugar on the top to create a crunchy texture-I never thought of doing that before, but I will from now on. Have a lovely Thanksgiving Kelly! So happy to have met you through our food blogs. :)

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 14th, 2012 @ 11:03 am

      I’m so glad we’ve been able to connect, Flavia :)

  2. says

    Yum! Cranberry and orange are perfect together, and who doesn’t love a quick bread? I love adding turbinado sugar to the top of quick breads as well…makes an awesome crunch without the hassle of a crumble topping. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  3. Nicole says

    In the recipe you call for 4tbsp of butter, but then say 1/3 of a cup in parentheses, which is actually a little more than 5tbsp. I’m not sure how much butter I should add.

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 14th, 2012 @ 5:11 pm

      Thanks for catching this typo, Nicole! It should just be 4 tablespoons. Enjoy!

  4. purplelady304 says

    We don’t have fresh cranberries….but we have the dried ones. Can I use that?

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 15th, 2012 @ 10:07 am

      Absolutely! Dried, fresh or frozen cranberries will work in this recipe.

  5. Sara says

    Can I use canola oil instead of the butter?

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 15th, 2012 @ 10:24 am

      Hi Sara, I wouldn’t recommend substituting canola oil for the butter in this specific recipe, as the butter has a different fat and water content than oil, which will affect how the flour acts. Hope this helps!

  6. says

    Yum! I love cranberries. I’m trying to think up something different and cranberry-related for my Thanksgiving dinner, and this may be just the thing, especially because it doubles as breakfast the next day. Love the shot of the plump cranberries on top of the batter.

  7. C. Cobr says

    I made this bread. While it was good, I was looking for more of a medly of flavor with the oj and cranberries. Will make again and add orange zest as well to see if that helps with the flavor I think it should have. The final product is beautiful and looks gorgeous.

    P.S. I added a little more than half cup of cranberries :)

  8. Cheri says

    I have baked many different recipes of cranberry bread over the years. I doubled this recipe & made two loaves of bread this morning. My husband said this cranberry bread is excellent and so good. I love cranberry bread with the grated orange rind in it too, but this recipe is so quick to make and so yummy. Definitely will make again!

  9. Michelle says

    This looks amazing. Is it possible to make in a bread machine or should I just use the regular ole oven?

    • Kelly Senyei replied: — November 27th, 2013 @ 11:33 am

      Thanks, Michelle! I have never made this in a bread machine so I’m not sure if that would work. Your safest bet is to use the regular ol’ oven :) Hope that helps!


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