This cranberry orange pecan bread, with its perfect balance of tart and sweet, is so lovely it doesn’t even need a schmear of butter. Lovely for breakfast on Thanksgiving morning—or any morning, for that matter.
This cranberry orange pecan bread has a subtle sweetness and slight tartness that makes it a welcome respite from whatever you’re doing any time of day, any time of year. It also makes a terrific gift, which is why the recipe makes not one but two loaves—one to gift, one to keep. Originally published November 10, 2009.–Renee Schettler Rossi
*How To Bake With Cranberries
We’re quite smitten with the jarring tartness that happens when you bite into a burst of cranberry in this cranberry orange bread. But don’t be tempted to leave the cranberries whole in this recipe or any quick bread or coffee cake recipe. Why? Whole cranberries tend to float to the surface rather than staying pleasingly dispersed throughout the baked good. There’s a simple way to remedy this. Simply pulse the cranberries in your food processor until coarsely chopped but not mushy and then toss them in your quick bread batter. [Editor’s Note: We advise against attempting to chop fresh cranberries with a knife on a cutting board given just how maddeningly roly-poly they can be. It’s not only frustrating but a wee bit dangerous.]
Cranberry Orange Pecan Bread
- Quick Glance
- 15 M
- 1 H, 30 M
- Makes 2 loaves
IngredientsEmail Grocery List
How To Make Cranberry Orange Pecan Muffins or Mini Loaves
- If you prefer to make muffins or mini loaves of cranberry orange pecan bread to gift, simply divvy the batter among 12- to 18-cup muffin tins or 6 mini-loaf pans and start checking for doneness after 15 minutes for muffins, 25 minutes for mini loaves.
Recipe Testers Reviews
Polish your best silver tray. This cranberry orange pecan bread deserves royal treatment. It’s the right kind of quick bread to serve along with your holiday spread. Morning, noon, or night, this bread is for any hour of the day when you just want to spoil yourself or your guests. Citrus scents and tart cranberries make this loaf a joy to eat.
You can make it in short order, and it’ll keep moist for days, or you can freeze it for later. Just be sure to pick up extra bags of fresh cranberries in the fall and freeze them. One loaf won’t be enough because your silver tray won’t stay full for long.
It’s beginning to look, taste, and smell a lot like Christmas. That’s how we feel every holiday season when I’m making this flavorful, extremely moist bread. I have been making this recipe for years.
It makes 2 loaves of bread, which ordinarily I would be hesitant about. Two loaves of bread for two people. Here it’s not at all a problem. Actually, it’s a necessity. One loaf we eat fairly quickly after I make it. I slice the other loaf of bread, wrap each slice separately, freeze each one, and then vacuum-seal the slices once they are frozen in one of those heavy bags made for such a purpose. All through the year, when we want to feel festive, or just have a special treat, we defrost a slice or two, and it’s Christmas morning all over again.
And, if the slices don’t make it till the next Christmas, I just make more bread. That’s enough of a reason to freeze a bag or two of fresh cranberries when they are available. Just don’t defrost them before using.
I use 1/4 cup of tangerine juice for this recipe because that's what we tend to have in the refrigerator.
I slice the cranberries by hand. I hold each cranberry between my thumb and index finger with my left hand, and then cut each cranberry in half diagonally with a sharp knife with my right hand. This works very well, goes very quickly, and my pieces have some substance.