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  • Writer's picturedeborahreinhardt

Orange Cranberry Quick Bread

Holiday flavors of cranberry and orange come together in an easy bread that's perfect as a gift or to enjoy yourself.

loaf of quick bread made with fresh cranberries and oranges
Orange Cranberry Quick Bread

Woo! What a week this has been. I’m a choral singer and participated in four holiday brass concerts over two days with close to 6,000 people attending. It was marvelous fun.


I’m also helping my daughter with a move, which means for several days this month, I’ll be knee-deep in packing boxes and paper. I have holiday shopping, baking, and cooking to finish, too. Your “to do” list may be even longer. Simply put, December is a busy and beautiful month! Let’s not waste time and move into another recipe in my “Gifts in Good Taste” series.


I really love this one, Orange Cranberry Quick Bread, because whether you give it as a gift (as Mom did) or make it to enjoy yourself when you can steal a quiet moment with a cup of tea and a slice of this comforting treat, it’s a winner. Infusing beautiful holiday flavors of orange and cranberry, this quick bread is a classic for two reasons: it’s delicious and easy!


I remember the cutest mini loaves of this bread—along with poppy seed bread and Boston brown bread—were lined up on our dining room table during the holidays. Wrapped in cellophane and tied with red or green ribbons, these little loaves were given to friends from church and work or neighbors. It comes together in a snap and freezes beautifully. As it bakes, you can wrap a present or two!


To make Orange Cranberry Quick Bread, which makes one 9-inch loaf (or two mini loaves) you’ll need these ingredients:

  • 2½ cups all-purpose flour + 1 tablespoon

  • 1 cup granulated sugar

  • 1 cup fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped

  • 1 tablespoon baking powder

  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1 cup buttermilk

  • 1 egg

  • ¼ cup orange juice

  • ¼ cup canola oil


If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, stir in 1 tablespoon of white vinegar into milk and let it stand 10 minutes. You won’t even need to get the mixer out for this quick bread!


Directions to make Orange Cranberry Quick Bread

 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and orange zest in a large bowl. Set aside.


In a smaller bowl, whisk together egg, buttermilk, oil, and orange juice. Stir into flour mixture until it’s just moistened. This helps to create a lighter bread.

Toss the chopped cranberries with 1 tablespoon flour. This helps to keep the fruit suspended inside the batter. Gently fold the cranberries into the batter.


Transfer the batter into a buttered and floured 9x5x3-inch loaf pan. You also could split the batter between two 4-inch mini loaf pans. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.


Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes and remove from pan(s). Finish cooling bread on rack.


Holiday embellishments

If you’re presenting this bread as a gift, wrap tightly in plastic wrap. Using clear cellophane, place bread in middle and gather at the top. Tie cellophane with a holiday ribbon and, if available, add a sprig of fresh rosemary. Present as a gift within two days. You also can make bread and freeze it; be sure to wrap it in aluminum foil and place in a zipper-top bag.

About the blog

Three Women in the Kitchen is an award-winning food blog offering today’s home cooks comforting, hearty recipes with a personal touch. The website also pays tribute to Deborah’s mother, Katie Reinhardt, and paternal grandmother, Dorothy Reinhardt (the “three women” in the kitchen). Whether you’re an experienced or a novice cook, you’ll find inspiration here to feed your families and warm your heart. Subscribe today so you won’t miss a single delicious detail.


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