Cranberry Orange Nut Bread

Delicious cranberry orange bread! With chopped cranberries, walnuts, and orange zest. Perfect for the holidays.

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 55 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 8


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup chopped fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
  • 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 Tbsp orange zest


1 Pre-heat oven to 350°F.

2 Combine dry ingredients: Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a large bowl. Stir in the chopped cranberries and walnuts to coat with the flour mixture. (Coating with flour will help suspend the nuts and cranberries in the dough and keep them from sinking.)

3 Combine wet ingredients: In a separate bowl combine the orange juice, sugar, melted butter, egg, and orange zest.

4 Add wet ingredients into dry: Pour the orange juice sugar mixture into the flour nut cranberry mixture and fold until just blended. (Don't over-mix!)

5 Bake: Transfer dough into a well buttered 8x4 or 9x5 loaf pan. Bake at 350°F for 50 to 55 minutes or until done (a tester inserted into the center comes out clean).

cranberry-nut-bread-method-1 cranberry-nut-bread-method-2

6 Cool: Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack.

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  • Victoria

    I made 3 loaves just this week!!!This bread is amazing. Thanks for sharing your recipe.


  • Carolyn

    This bread brings back wonderful memories of my childhood, during the winter l freeze bags of fresh cranberries. Great recipe

  • Rose

    Excellent! Made Christmas Day 2017!

  • Carol Godfrey

    Made this this morning & it is just perfect. Made as directed with no changes. Just love that it’s so easy to put together. A keeper for sure.

  • Susannah

    This looks amazing! Do you think I could make it in a bundt Pan?

    • Emma Christensen

      Hi, Susannah! We haven’t tested it in a bundt pan, but I feel like it would work. Check the proportions of ingredients against other bundt cake recipes — I’m not certain, but you may want to double the loaf recipe to fill the whole bundt cake. Let us know how it turns out!

  • Neha

    Hi. Will using dried cranberries make much difference?

  • marguerite morley

    Can I bake this in large muffin tins with paper liners??

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Marguerite, sure! You’ll just need to adjust the baking time down. I’m not sure about the timing. I would start with 12 minutes and add time from there.

  • Jean Elkins

    Can I use self rising,,,,,does not say what kind of flour…

    • Elise Bauer

      Hello Jean, any recipe on this website that calls for flour means all purpose flour, not self-rising. The recipe includes leavening—-baking soda and baking powder. If you use self-rising flour, you likely do not need to add as much of the baking soda or baking powder.

  • Kathy

    Made this recipe today as 5 mini (3 1/2 x 5 ) breads and they came out great. I baked them for 40 min. and decorated them with royal icing. I lost my family recipe but this was very similar so thanks.

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Kathy, I’m so glad you liked the recipe and made it work as mini-breads!

  • Autumn

    I make this bread every year at Christmas to give away small loaves as gifts. Everyone always raves at how good it is. I left the orange out in one batch and it was still good. But keeping the orange makes it *amazing*.

  • Archana

    what else can i include in this recipe to reduce the amount of granulated sugar by half? and will almod flour work well with this recipe?

  • Sasha

    Hi! Which type of cranberry do we use here? Fresh, frozen or dried?

    • Elise Bauer

      Hi Sasha, great question! I’ve clarified in the ingredient list. We use fresh cranberries for this recipe. If you use frozen cranberries, defrost them first.

  • Reir

    Just made this. So delicious, big hit with the family!

  • Evan

    Wondering if you create your own recipes? This nut bread recipe was delicious!

    • Elise

      Hi Evan, thanks for your comment! We create most of our own recipes. This particular recipe though, I’m not sure about. I first posted it in 2006 and remade it a few weeks ago for a better photograph, and I changed the method a little. I don’t remember what the source of the recipe was 10 years ago, probably from my grandmother’s recipe box and who knows where she got hers? It’s a classic recipe, very similar to this one here on the Ocean Spray website:

  • Anne Thompson

    Can these be frozen?

  • Marion Krause

    I have allergies issues with orange. Could I substitute lemon for the orange? So many cranberry recipes include orange.

  • Steve Straub

    This is a fantastic recipe. I don’t usually bake but thought I’d give this a shot. I tried it and it came out perfect and my 5 year old daughter can’t get enough of it. I did leave out the nuts to make it more kid friendly.One thing I did learn was that chopping cranberries is not as easy as it sounds. They roll…

  • Rebecca Q. T.

    This bread was very very yummy but it could use a bit more sweetness for my taste. It’s great as a breakfast bread as-is, but if you are looking for a dessert, adding a glaze to the top of the bread would do the trick. I think a glaze might also help keep the bread moist. Be sure to check your bread at 45 minutes–depending on the heat of your oven, 55-60 minutes might be too long. Thanks, Elise, for another great recipe!

  • Anne Marie

    I’ve made 8 loaves this year using fresh cranberries from Cape Cod…to absolutely RAVE reviews. Thanks for sharing.

  • Patti

    Just made this and added some dark chocolate chips. AMAZING!

  • Brooke

    Hi, I am so excited to try this bread with a bag of cranberries we have left over from Thanksgiving! I have one question, though. I will be using self-rising flour so I will leave out the salt and baking powder but do I also leave out the baking soda? Or do I add the baking soda? Thanks for your help! By the way, I LOVE your site! I have been making your banana bread for a couple years now and I always come here first when looking for a recipe! Thank you!

    I think if you are using self-rising flour I would still keep in the baking soda, which will react with the acidity in the orange juice and egg to help with the leavening. ~Elise

  • Cindy

    Just put the bread in the oven, but oh my is that batter delicious! The orange flavor is fantastic, and I can’t wait to taste the finished product!

  • char

    Just wanted to say I bought new baking soda and baking powder and tried it again, delicious. The bread still did not rise like my banana bread does but that is probably normal. I did only bake the bread for 50 min. Came out delicious !! Thanks !!!

  • char

    Thanks …. I was just thinking that ….

    I will buy some today and try the bread again . I appreciate your input. :)

  • char

    Thanks for you fast reply. This is the same pan I use for all my breads and never had a problem ..same with problem…I will try this again and check the bread early..By the way I also had a flat bread like another person mentioned. Is this the way it should be ??


    No, it shouldn’t be flat. Check your baking powder. Baking powder tends to go dead after about 6 months. If your baking powder is older than 6 months it may not have much leavening capabilities left. ~Elise

  • char

    I tried this bread and although the taste is delicious, I found it to be dry. Is it something I did ?? Anyone else have this happen.

    I love your recipes and I just made your garlic bread for company and it is out of this world !

    If dry, the loaf likely got cooked a little too long, given the conditions of your loaf pan and oven. ~Elise

  • Debbie

    I’ve made this bread several times and while delicious it always came out a little squished/short. I upped the baking soda to 1 teaspoon and the final product filled my loaf pan perfectly to the top.

    Good to know, thanks! ~Elise

  • April in CT

    I’ve been making this for a few weeks now and it’s fantastic!! I’ve made it for family and friends and everyone loves it. I just baked a loaf tonight for my husband’s boss as a thank you gift.
    A few substitutions I make just because it’s what I do/don’t have on hand: Leave out the orange zest and use dried cranberries soaked in warm water for about 10 minutes, no chopping needed.

  • Kristen

    I love this bread. I first made it on Thanksgiving as an alternative to rolls…it disappeared in minutes. The second time I made it as oversized muffins and again they were delicious! Both times I used dried cranberries that I soaked in orange juice and they worked perfectly. Thanks for sharing this great recipe, it is definitely on our keeper list!

  • Ela

    The bread has just come out of the oven and I could not wait… had to take a bite. It is wonderful! Full of flavor, thick with cranberries and nuts, and moist. Thank you for a great recipe! I’ll be sharing both the bread and the recipe with friends tomorrow (Thanksgiving).

  • ROZ

    Dear Elise
    I just made the Cranberry nut bread tonight &
    since I made it, I’ve eaten half of a loaf all by myself. I made it according to the recipe with a few changes. First I soaked the dried Cranberries instead of Orange Juice, I used Cranberry juice and soaked them for a few days. Second instead of
    1/4 cup melted butter, I used 1/4 cup of vegetable
    oil. I used the orange peel in the batter, but added some to the top of the batter in the loaf pan and sprinkled extra sugar on top. I used two
    mini loaf pans which I sprayed with nonstick cooking spray & they came out perfect. One went
    into the freezer, & the other one is history!
    When I soaked the dried Cranberries I measured out 3/4 cup of cranberry juice instead of the orange juice and used it as part of the recipe which added to the cranberry flavor.
    elise, I want to thank you again for this great, great recipe site.

  • Roz

    I make this bread all the time, and it one of
    mine and friends favorite.
    To give it a little zing, I use syrups that is used to flavor coffee’s, as a substitute for some of the liquids. There is a syrup flavor for just about anything. I try to match up the flavor with what I am making and it works out just great. I do this every time I make brownies I just add the Chocolate flavor syrup for the liquid.
    The syrups are not expensive and you can use it for baking or for coffee or even in smoothies to match the fruit.

  • Roz

    If you think this cranberry nut bread is great
    please try elise’s Banana Bread it is out of this world. I can’t go to any of my friends homes unless I bring a loaf.
    One question when I make the banana bread instead of using the melted butter, I substitute vegetable oil and It comes out great. Can I do the same for the cranberry nut bread.
    This site has great receipes thank you Elise!

    Thanks Roz. No idea about the cranberry bread, but if you try it, please let us know how it turns out for you. ~Elise

  • Nicole

    It is one of the best breads I have ever tasted! So delicious!

    I was out of fresh oranges so I used very good quality bottled orange juice and lime zest. And the nuts I used were pistachios. Frozen cranberries were perfect.

  • Karen

    I made this bread tonight and it turned out beautifully. I made it in 4 mini loaf pans and baked them for ~30 mins. I then glazed each loaf with an icing of powdered sugar, freshly squeezed OJ and the zest of 1/2 an orange. They turned out so pretty–I am giving them to family members in their Christmas baskets–if I can keep my husband away from them! Thanks Elise, for always coming through for us with the perfect recipe. I love your site. Happy holidays to you and your family.

  • Fay

    Just wanted to say thanks, this is so GOOD!
    I had made this with mashed bananas instead of the Butter (1 to 1 ratio) and it turned out perfect!

  • Natalie

    I made this recipe twice in one week because the first loaf disappeared so quickly. I was able to find fresh cranberries and it was wonderful. Cranberries and walnuts really make this a wonderful holiday treat without being too sweet. A slice of this with a glass of milk is a great dessert.

  • Janice

    What if I want to make small breads from the batter, what cooking time should I use?

    Hello Janice, having not made the bread in small loaves I don’t have an answer for you. I suggest experimenting to see what time works best for your loaf pans. ~Elise

  • Blaine

    I made this today. There were no fresh or frozen cranberries at the store (I guess too soon after Thanksgiving). I bought dried cranberries and rehydrated them in fresh squeezed OJ for about an hour. Then strained them to use the cranberry infused juice in the bread. Also toasted the walnuts first. Excellent. I love it. I am making another loaf tonight to take to a friend.

  • Sarah

    Made this yesterday for the first time and turned out wonderfully. Guests asked for the recipe and went home with cranberry nut loaf gift bags!

  • Beth

    How long are mini loaves to be baked?

  • lola

    I have a similar recipe, but i use 1 1/2 cups of halved cranberries and 2 tblsp of orange zest. i am diabetic so I use 1/2 cup oj and 2 tblsp of hot water. I make them in mini loaf pans. it makes 3

  • diane

    I add 1/4 cup of grand manier and 1 cup white chocolate. my friends love it……..very good

  • Marie

    I made this yesterday, and it turned out just wonderfully. This is so much better than the recipe on the back of the Ocean Spray bag. I love cranberries and nuts, so I increased the amounts to 1 1/2 c. cranberries and 1 c. nuts. At first it seemed there wasn’t enough liquid, but it suddenly came together in a very stiff batter and was fine. It’s gorgeous and delicious!

  • jennifer fields

    Hi, Elise
    Thank you so much for keeping me from going crazy. I have been searching my house looking for a recipe card of my grandmothers for cranberry nut bread. It was a recipe she found on a box of bisquick over 60 years ago. A good friend suggested that I try the internet and I am sure glad I did. But, there is a slight difference in the recipes. My mother said, instead of the flour,baking powder and baking soda, 2 1/4 cups of bisquick was used. I am still looking for that recipe and I know I will find it someday. At least I have a breather now. Again, Thank You!
    P.S. My mom always spread cream cheese on a slice

  • Jim

    I made the recipe using 1 cup of whole wheat flour and 1 cup of white flour. The bread was a bit dry and crumbly. Should I have used less whole wheat flour, or perhaps a bit more orange juice?

  • Cecila Tan

    I tried this recipe last sunday, 18 nov 07. I baked it at 180 degrees for less than 50 mins and found it to be a bit dry, but overall its a nice recipe. Can it be improved further. Also I found the flour coated onto the cranberry and walnut even after baked. can this be solved?Thanks

  • sandra

    It was a big hit with everyone. The best recipe around. Won’t even try another one.

  • Sanam

    This bread was fantastic and so easy to make. I made several and gave to family and friends over the holidays. Everyone loved it. I love the fact that it is light and it is not too sweet. Best of all, I loved the fact that I didn’t need to use my mixer. The whole recipe was quick and easy!

  • Janice

    Very good bread! I also left the cranberries whole because I like that little bit of tart surrounded by the sweetness of the bread. Moist and delicious!
    Thanks Elise


  • Anonymous

    Even out here in the flyover zone of Oklahoma, I managed to cobble this recipe together with ingredients from the local supermarket and it is indeed yummy!

  • Chris

    I made this yesterday and my guests loved it. The bigger cranberry chunks are great and there isn’t too much fat.

  • MonkeyBites

    Hi Elise,
    I had been searching for a recipe just like this one. So glad I came across it. My picture wasn’t nearly as nice as yours, but it sure was tasty.

    Thanks for sharing!


  • Elise

    Hi Shuna – I had completely forgotten about that post! Thanks for the reminder, I’ve added a link to it on the recipe. Yours has proportionally more egg, more cranberries, and fewer walnuts, though the sugar/flour/orange juice proportions are about the same. I’ll have to try your recipe the next time I have a craving for cranberry nut bread.

  • Shuna

    I wrote about this (almost) exact same recipe around Thanksgiving! But in mine the cranberries are left whole because I like those little acidic jabs to balance out the sweet of the bread.

  • Elise

    Hi Janice and Lauren, if I were to use dried fruit instead of fresh or frozen cranberries, I would start with 1/2 a cup and soak them in orange juice or water for half an hour first.

  • Janice

    This looks great. Do you think you could use dried sweet cherries instead?

    Love your site and your posts!

  • Elise

    Hi Cheryl – I measure out a heaping cup of frozen cranberries and then roughly chop them (just in half). The result is about a cup. You do not have to be entirely precise with this particular measurement.

  • Cheryl

    Is it a cup of cranberries before you chop them, or did you roughly chop the cranberries and then measure out a cup? Thanks!!