Orange Glazed Cranberry Bread

This moist & flavorful orange cranberry bread is packed with orange zest and tart cranberries, topped with cinnamon streusel, and finished with orange glaze. It’s one of my favorite quick bread recipes to prepare because it always draws a crowd!

orange cranberry bread

Welcome back, cranberry orange bread! I’ve made this quick bread at least 5x the past month (honestly, I’ve lost count… it’s one of my favorites!) and decided to add a few updates to the original post. By the way, it freezes beautifully.

When I think of the fall season, many flavor duos come to mind, but no flavor combination is more delicious than orange + cranberry. I love tart cranberries paired with sunshine-sweet orange. Over the years I’ve shared recipes for cranberry orange muffins, cranberry orange bundt cake, and cranberry orange scones— all incredible, but nothing rivals today’s quick bread. It’s the original and I recommend making two loaves because trust me, it will disappear quickly!

cranberry orange bread

sliced loaf of orange cranberry bread

3 Parts to Orange Cranberry Bread

  1. Bread: To ensure a moist and flavorful bread, we turn to my cinnamon swirl chocolate chip bread recipe– readers love this bread and I do, too. Using that batter as the base, it’s easy to create new and exciting flavors.
  2. Streusel: Homemade cinnamon streusel comes together with simple everyday ingredients and is a welcome addition to this quick bread. You’ll love the textural variation in each bite. While I believe streusel is never optional, this bread is still dazzling without!
  3. Orange Glaze: A drizzle of orange glaze on top heightens the bright orange flavor of this orange cranberry bread.

Craving plain cranberry bread? You can leave off the streusel and/or orange glaze. Same bake time and temperature.

cranberry orange bread batter in a glass bowl

2 images of orange cranberry bread streusel topping

Cranberry Bread Ingredients

Don’t be overwhelmed by the ingredient list below– you’ll notice most of the ingredients are repeated in each part of the recipe.

  • Flour: All-purpose flour is the base of this quick bread recipe. Because we’re loading it up with lots of add-ins, we need a sturdy flour.
  • Baking Soda: Baking soda helps the bread rise.
  • Salt + Vanilla Extract: Salt and vanilla extract add flavor. (Try using homemade vanilla extract.)
  • Cranberries: We use 1 cup of chopped cranberries. I recommend using fresh or frozen cranberries, though dried cranberries will also work. If using frozen cranberries, do not thaw.
  • Pecans or Walnuts: While optional, chopped nuts are a wonderful addition and compliment the flavors of the bread. I always use them!
  • Egg: One egg binds everything together.
  • Sugar: We use both brown sugar and granulated sugar to sweeten this bread.
  • Buttermilk: We use buttermilk for added moisture, but also because the lactic acid in buttermilk is what helps the baking soda do its job. Want to use sour cream and milk instead? You definitely can. See my cinnamon swirl quick bread, which is another favorite recipe of mine. This bread batter recipe is similar and you can use 1/3 cup sour cream and 2/3 cup whole milk here too.
  • Oil: While butter provides unbelievable flavor, nothing beats the moisture that oil brings. We use oil in this quick bread recipe to produce a moist and soft bread, and also because the flavor of butter would get lost with all of the other flavors.
  • Orange Zest: Orange zest adds a lovely punch of flavor to the bread. Save the juice for the orange glaze!

orange cranberry bread in a loaf pan

How to Make Orange Glazed Cranberry Bread

  1. Make the streusel. Use your hands, two forks, or a pastry cutter to cut the cold butter into the other streusel ingredients. The colder the butter, the less likely the streusel will sink down into the cooking bread.
  2. Make the batter. Mix the dry ingredients together in one bowl and the wet ingredients together in another. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and mix until no lumps remain. No electric mixer needed!
  3. Pour into prepared pan. Top with streusel.
  4. Bake. This bread can take anywhere from 45 minutes to over an hour in the oven. Why the huge gap of time? All ovens are different. Oven air flows, oven hot spots, etc. Quick breads are thick and having the center baked through properly takes time.
  5. Make the glaze. Combine ingredients together and drizzle over cooled bread.
  6. Slice, serve, and enjoy!

Similar to banana bread and carrot cake, this bread was even more flavorful and moist on day 2. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love it warm out of the oven, but I especially enjoy it the next morning. It’s a perfect treat to serve guests because you can make it the evening before.

orange cranberry bread

Two Baking Tips

  1. Buy an oven thermometer. Unless you have a brand new or regularly calibrated oven, your oven’s temperature is likely inaccurate. Incorrect temperature ruins baked goods and you waste hours spent on the recipe and money spent on ingredients. The inexpensive remedy to this mess is an oven thermometer. While cheap, they’re irreplaceable in a baker’s kitchen. Place it in your oven so you always know the actual temperature.
  2. Cover your bread with aluminum foil. I note this in the instructions below as a reminder. About halfway through baking, loosely cover the loaf with aluminum foil. This will allow your bread to bake evenly on all sides and prevent the top from getting too brown before the center bakes through.
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orange cranberry bread

Orange Glazed Cranberry Bread

  • Author: Sally
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Total Time: 2 hours
  • Yield: 1 loaf
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: American


This is moist and tender orange cranberry bread with buttery streusel and a zingy orange glaze. It’s perfect for guests or with a warm cup of tea in the early morning or afternoon. See notes for freezing instructions.



  • 1/4 cup (31g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 2 Tablespoons (30g) granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 Tablespoons (45g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed


  • 2 cups (250g) all-purpose flour (spoon & leveled)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup (105g) packed light or dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
  • 1 cup (240ml) buttermilk, at room temperature*
  • 1/3 cup (80ml) vegetable oil (or melted coconut oil)
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 1 cup (110g) cranberries, fresh or frozen (do not thaw)*
  • optional: 1/2 cup (65g) chopped pecans or chopped walnuts


  • 1 cup (120g) confectioners’ sugar
  • 12 Tablespoons orange juice


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F (177°C). Spray a 9×5 inch loaf pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Make the streusel first: Whisk the flour, sugar, and cinnamon together in a medium bowl. Cut in the cold butter with a pastry cutter, your hands, or two forks until mixture resembles pea-size crumbs. It’s important to keep the streusel cold, so place in the refrigerator (covered or uncovered) until ready to use in step 4.
  3. Make the bread: Whisk the flour, baking soda, and salt together in a large bowl. In a medium bowl, whisk the egg, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together until combined. Whisk in the buttermilk, oil, vanilla, and orange zest. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients, then whisk to completely combine. Avoid over-mixing. Fold in the cranberries and nuts (if using).
  4. Pour the batter into prepared loaf pan. Top evenly streusel, pressing the streusel down gently into the top of the bread so it sticks.
  5. Bake the bread for 45 minutes to 1 hour. Cover loosely with foil about halfway through to ensure even browning. Poke the center of the bread with a toothpick. If it comes out clean, the bread is done. Oven times will vary between ovens. My bread usually takes 1 hour. Cool bread completely in the pan set on a wire rack.
  6. Make the glaze: In a small bowl, whisk the confectioners’ sugar and orange juice together. Add more orange juice depending how thick you want the glaze. Drizzle over cooled bread.
  7. Slice and serve. Cover and store leftover bread at room temperature for 1 day or in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.


  1. Freezing Instructions: For longer storage, you can freeze the glazed or unglazed bread for up to 3 months. Allow to thaw overnight in the refrigerator and bring to room temperature before glazing (if needed) and serving.
  2. Cranberries: 1 cup dried cranberries may be used instead of fresh/frozen. You can slice the cranberries in half, if desired. I leave them whole.
  3. Buttermilk: Buttermilk (an acid) is required for this quick bread recipe. If you don’t have any, you can make a DIY sour milk substitute. Add 2 teaspoons of white vinegar or lemon juice to a liquid measuring cup. Then add enough whole milk to the same measuring cup until it reaches 1 cup. (In a pinch, lower fat or nondairy milks work for this soured milk, but the bread won’t taste as moist or rich.) Stir it around and let sit for 5 minutes. The homemade “buttermilk” will be somewhat curdled and ready to use in the recipe. Another option is to use sour cream and milk instead of buttermilk. See my cinnamon swirl quick bread. This bread batter recipe is similar and you can use 1/3 cup sour cream and 2/3 cup whole milk here too.
  4. Muffins: Grease a 12-count muffin pan or line with liners. Prepare streusel and batter in steps 2 + 3. Spoon the batter evenly into each liner, filling each to the top. Press streusel into the tops of each. Bake the muffins for 5 minutes at 425°F (218°C) then, keeping the muffins in the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (177°C). Bake for an additional 15-17 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. The total time these muffins take in the oven is about 20-22 minutes, give or take. Cool muffins for 5 minutes in the muffin pan, then transfer to a wire rack to continue cooling. Makes 18 muffins.

Keywords: orange cranberry bread

Quick Bread Recipes

I welcome easy recipes around the holidays. What I love most about quick breads is that they’re universally delicious and, best of all, they’re QUICK! Here are a few seasonal quick bread recipes to make next:

See all of my quick bread recipes.

slices of cranberry orange bread on a plate

Super-moist cranberry bread with orange zest, orange glaze, and sweet streusel on top! No mixer required for this homemade cranberry bread recipe.
Super-moist cranberry bread with orange zest, orange glaze, and sweet streusel on top! No mixer required for this homemade cranberry bread recipe.
Super-moist cranberry bread with orange zest, orange glaze, and sweet streusel on top! No mixer required for this homemade cranberry bread recipe.
Super-moist cranberry bread with orange zest, orange glaze, and sweet streusel on top! No mixer required for this homemade cranberry bread recipe.


  1. Hello Sally,

    Alot of your quickbreads call for vegetable, canola or coconut oil. This may be a silly question, but I’m anal like that, can you use sunflower oil? Any idea if this will throw off the taste?

    1. Sunflower oil is fine, though a more neutral tasting oil like vegetable or canola is preferred.

    2. I think safflower oil gives the best taste for baked goods. canola makes things have a fishy taste because the cooking temperature ruins canola oil.

  2. I wanted to try the cranberry bread. Is it possible to reduce the amount of sugar in the bread by increasing the amount of cranberries? Can I also substitute all purpose flour with 100 % whole wheat flour ?


    1. I don’t suggest making any changes with regards to the sugar or flour used. The end result won’t be the same and the bread may taste tough. If you are interested in healthier recipes with lower sugar, here are some options:

  3. I just made this. cut a piece as soon as it was cool enough. excellent while warm. can’t wait to try another slice tomorrow when it sits a little.

    it is really really really good. I used SPELT instead of wheat ( I am allergic) and cut 1/8 cup of millk out since spelt requires less moisture. I used half coconut oil and half safflower oil.

    I didn’t make the strussel or the glaze. I will try that way another time when it’s more for special.

    It sure was sweet without the topping any way. I made double batch an dit turned out perfect. thank you so much!! yummy yum yum

  4. Nice blog! I will definitelly have to try this recipe over the holidays. I have a severe food allergy (sesame) and can’t buy many breads and pastry, so having a safe and easy to make recipe would be breat. And I love cranberries!

    Cheers from Ontario, Canada

  5. your bread sounds delicious! thanks for letting me know how much you loved it Austria.

  6. Bread is great and super easy to make. Can the recipe be doubled?

      1. Thank you SO MUCH – makes life so much easier!

  7. If I were to bake these in smaller bread loaf pans, or a mini loaf pan, what would you recommend for how long?

    1. Erin Vosburgh says:

      I made 4 mini loaves from this recipe this morning.  And I cooked them until a toothpick came out clean, which was about 35 min.  Since my oven does not bake evenly I turned them 1/2 through.  

  8. I did not read all of the comments, but I plan to make this bread today, but will substitute orange with lemon. Hopefully it will turn out.

    PS- I made your brownies and added your salted caramel to them. Perfect and the best recipe so far for brownies. I will make those again for sure!


  9. I made this a couple of weeks ago and OMG sooooo good! I actually thought it tasted better the next day!

    I was wondering if its possible to use whole wheat flour in this as opposed to all purpose; and if so do I/should I adust measurments and/or baking times.

    Thanks in advance!

    1. Stephanie, if you were to use whole wheat flour, I would use whole wheat pastry flour. And only sub half of the all-purpose flour for it.

  10. I made these and they are AMAZING. I don’t like streusel so I omitted it. Thank you so much.

  11. De-freaking-licious! My house smells like divinity. I was too lazy to make the streusel and I’m waiting til tomorrow to glaze, but I just had to sample it fresh out of the oven — and even without the extra toppings it is perfection!
    I am fairly new to baking so this might be an obvious question, but I was a little disappointed at how much it shrunk down. Did I do something wrong? Or is hight a necessary sacrifice for the moistness? Either way it’s fabulous!

  12. Hi, I really want to try this recipe but I always make my bread in 2s and I use a medium size loaf pan. Is there any way you can post the measurements one or two medium loaf pans instead of a large. Thanks! 🙂

  13. Can I substitute butter for canola oil?
    This looks delicious!

    1. I don’t suggest it.

  14. Katherine McFarlane says:

    I don’t usually post comments (usually no time). I just had to for this bread!
    Sally, this bread is the BEST Orange cranberry bread EVER! I make bread every year for gifts and I think cranberries make bread look so pretty! However it is usually prettier than it tastes. Not this time, this is truly the most moist delicious flavorful Orange Cranberry Bread on the face of the earth(I am a bit dramatic) but seriously, deliciousness! Thanks for the recipe, IT IS A KEEPER!

  15. Leslie Bryant says:

    Hi Sally. I plan on making this loaf today to use up some cranberries I have. Do you think it would be ok to use cake and pastry flour instead of regular flour? I’ve made many loaves using the pastry flour and though dense, they have all turned out incredibly moist. Thoughts?

    1. That should be fine, Leslie.

  16. How come you have mentioned Coconut oil (tahts stays solid at room temperature) or canola oil ( which is liquid at room temp) ?
    Would using coconut oil have solid coconut oil pieces in the cake? My family LOVES the taste of coconut oil so I would like to use it but wanted to make sure the oil will be thoroughly mixed in and solid frozen oil pieces won’t show.

    1. Hi Anu- if using coconut oil, make sure it is melted. It will not solidify after being baked in the bread.

  17. Being overly ambitious, I purchased fresh cranberries before Christmas. I spent a lot of time baking, but I ran out of time and energy before using the cranberries! Yesterday I perused your site looking for recipes using fresh cranberries. Wow! The bread is a winner! It is moist, flavorful, and out of this world good. Out of self preservation, I brought most of the bread to work today. Needless to say, the container is now empty! Thank you for another awesome recipe.

  18. Hi Sally,
    This sounds delicious!! Need to make this soon 🙂
    Is Baking soda Same as bicarb soda? Or baking powder…

    1. Baking soda is bicarb soda.

  19. A few days ago, I was hoping that a Google search for “recipe+cranberry+orange+quick bread” would lead me to a great, easy recipe. Clicked on your website link and was thrilled with the result! Absolutely fabulous recipe–loved it! Will make it many times over, including again this weekend to take to friends to share. Returned to your website today to see what else I might find and I’m simply overwhelmed by how many recipes I want to try! Your photography is to die for! I rarely post commentary, but I just couldn’t ignore the opportunity to tell you how happy I am to have found your site! Thank you so much for having the energy and generosity it takes to share your creative gift freely with others!

    1. Thank you so much Donna! This was so nice to read. Let me know any other recipes you try.

  20. Thanks for reporting back Katie. Here are the storing instructions from the recipe. Make sure it’s covered tightly: Unglazed bread stays fresh covered tightly at room temperature for 5 days or in the refrigerator for 6-7 days. Glazed bread must be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

  21. Found your site looking for a cranberry bread recipe. Yours sounded really tasty. Decided to make three loaves, one for me and my finance and each of our mom’s. Toothpick came out clean on all three, let them cool. As they cooled, the center of all three loaves sunk in. Cutting a couple slices off one loaf, they are indeed done and quite delicious. The only thing I can think of for the sinking is too much streusel or it was too cold. I kept the streusel in the fridge to keep the butter from melting while I made the three loaves. Have your loaves ever sunk in the middle?
    That said, I see a lot of stiff to try here. Glad I found your website.

    1. Dave, the sinking in the middle is usually a sign that the bread is not cooked through. However, that’s not the only reason and certainly does not apply to your loaves as you describe them. It could mean that your leavener had expired or was too weak. Or that the oven’s door was opened/closed too often and there was not even heat throughout the bake time. I truly don’t think the cold streusel has anything to do with it. Glad you like the bread though!

  22. carolyn kauffmann says:

    Hallo! Thanks for this delicious recipe. Can I make this bread using  a eggsubstitute and which would you suggest? Thanks.

  23. What do you think about adding toasted coconut to this recipe? Maybe sprinkled on top of the glaze? Thanks!

    1. That sounds amazing to me!

    2. Erin Vosburgh says:

      Can’t go wrong with toasted coconut as far as I’m concerned.  

  24. I just tried your cranberry orange bread and I was absolutely thrilled with how very good it is. I had tried the streusel topping somewhat against my judgment. But, I must admit, it really did enhance the taste experience. I did not use the glaze, perhaps the next time. Meanwhile, as soon as this loaf is finished, I will be baking another! Very good! Thank you for sharing your wonderful, creative recipes with those of us whom God has not gifted with such an ability, But, I can follow a recipe. Thanks again! I will be trying some other things on your site.

    1. This is a fabulous recipe to make time and time again! One of my personal favorites for sure. Thanks Nita!

  25. This recipes is AMAZING!!! I made it tonight and it was a joy to make as well as I love all the components (streusel topping, the moist flavorful bread and the glaze….excellent combination!!) I do have a question though, I baked for 48 min and did the tester stick and it came out clean, however after it cooled the middle sunk a little and when I cut into it the very middle was not quite done. Do you know if I should have waited til it pulled away from the sides of the pan to really know it was done? I am at 4600 feet in elevation so that may be a factor and need to bake longer anyway. Thanks again for the amazing recipe!!

  26. WOW!  I made this for yesterday’s breakfast and the entire loaf went right away.  This is an excellent recipe.  Thanks, Sally!  Happy Thanksgiving.

  27. I know I’m a little late to the orange glazed cranberry bread party, but have you ever tried baking these in the smaller paper muffin pans? If so, do you know how the bake time would be affected? I was thinking of giving these away as gifts and have some of the paper pans lying around 🙂

    1. I sure have! About 20-22 minutes for standard size muffins.

  28. I made two batches of the cranberry bread. I had rapid rise and overflow each time. Huge mess. Is it possible the baking soda listed in the recipe is supposed to be baking powder? Or possibly the amount of baking soda is too much? 

  29. I made this cranberry bread for Thanksgiving morning and it was delicious. I followed the directions exactly. The bread is very moist and has lots of flavor. The chopped fresh cranberries are so much better than canned or dried. The orange zest and flavor in glaze adds extra flavor. Delicious!!!!! I will definitely be making this again. Thanks for the recipe.

  30. Oh my goodness!!! this is the best cranberry bread I have ever eaten!! I added about another handful more of the cranberries and I accidently melted my butter for the streusel but I used as is and loved it!!

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