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Orange Cranberry Bread

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This Orange Cranberry Bread is soft, fluffy, loaded with dried cranberries, and topped off with sliced almonds and an orange cream cheese glaze.

front view of a loaf of homemade bread

Orange Cranberry Pull Apart Bread

This Orange Cranberry Bread is my very first homemade sweet bread recipe. And I’d say I nailed it.

This pull-apart bread is infused with orange zest, loaded with dried cranberries, and topped with sliced almonds and an orange cream cheese glaze. Plus, since it’s a bread recipe with yeast, the texture is beautifully light and fluffy.

This simple sweet bread definitely hits the spot! You could serve this for breakfast or brunch and it would make a beautiful addition to your holiday table whether it’s Easter brunch or Christmas morning breakfast. This could also be packaged up in a cute bread pan with cellophane and a ribbon to gift to a neighbor or friend.

overhead of a loaf of cranberry orange pull apart bread topped with icing and almonds

Key Ingredients

  • Buttermilk – The buttermilk is the key to perfectly moist, fluffy bread. If you need a quick substitute, you can use this method.
  • Warm Water – You’ll need warm water at 105-115ºF to activate the yeast.
  • Active Dry Yeast – Make sure your yeast is fresh! If it’s too old, it won’t serve its intended purpose.
  • Almond Extract – A touch of almond extract adds flavor depth and the perfect amount of nutty flavor.
  • Cream Cheese – Soften the cream cheese before making the icing for the smoothest texture.
overhead of orange cranberry bread ingredients on the counter

How to Make Orange Cranberry Bread

This bread recipe with yeast requires a little extra time since you have to let the dough rise, but it’s super simple to make!

Step 1: Activate the yeast. In a large mixing bowl, stir together warm water and yeast. Let the mixture stand for 10 minutes until foamy.

Step 2: Make the dough. To the yeast mixture, add beaten eggs, buttermilk, sugar, melted butter, vanilla, and salt. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups flour, beating with an electric mixer on low speed just until combined (dough will be soft and slightly sticky). Beat on low speed for 5 minutes more. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining flour (dough will still be slightly sticky). 

Step 3: Rise: Cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).

Step 4: Roll the dough. Punch the dough down, then turn it onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in the dried cranberries, then roll the dough out into a rectangle.

Step 5: Slice. Cut into 4×3″ squares, then place the squares into a greased and lined loaf pan. Drizzle with melted butter, then cover and let it rise until nearly double in size (about 30 minutes)

Step 5: Bake. Bake the bread for 25-30 minutes or until golden. Cool Completely.

side view of a baked loaf of cranberry orange pull apart bread


Step 6: Add the icing. In a bowl, beat together cream cheese, milk, and vanilla until smooth. Add in the powdered sugar to make an icing consistency, then drizzle that over the bread. Garnish with almonds and orange zest, then dig in!

closeup of baked cranberry orange bread being drizzled with icing
a piece being pulled off of a loaf of pull apart bread

Recipe Tips and Notes

  • Use room temperature ingredients. About 30 minutes before making your bread, set the buttermilk and egg out on the counter. Room temperature ingredients create a smoother dough.
  • Activate the yeast. Letting the yeast sit in warm water for 10 minutes is essential for the dough to rise.
  • Grease and line the pan. I prefer using a combination of butter or shortening and parchment paper to prepare the pan. Both make it so much easier to remove the bread once it’s baked.
  • If you notice the top of your bread getting too browned, you can cover the pan with foil in the last 10 minutes of baking so it doesn’t burn.
  • Let it cool. Make sure the pull-apart bread is completely cooled before adding the topping. If it’s too warm, the icing will just melt and run off.

How to Store it

Finished orange cranberry bread will last at room temperature for 2-3 days. Wrap tightly or store in an airtight container.

It can also be frozen without the icing for up to 3 months. When you’re ready to serve, thaw overnight, then add the icing.

overhead of a slice of cranberry orange bread on a plate

More Easy Bread Recipes You’ll Love

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closeup of a loaf of pull apart bread

Orange Cranberry Bread

  • Author: Julianne Dell
  • Prep Time: 40 minutes
  • Rise Time: 1.5 hours
  • Cook Time: 25 minutes
  • Total Time: 37 minute
  • Yield: 6 servings

Description

This Orange Cranberry Bread is soft, fluffy, loaded with dried cranberries, and topped off with sliced almonds and an orange cream cheese glaze.

Ingredients

Bread Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • ½ cup warm water (105°F- 115°F)
  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 1 ½ teaspoons almond extract
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries

Cream Cheese Icing

  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1 ½  tablespoons milk
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ¼ cups powdered sugar
  • Sliced Almonds
  • Orange zest

Instructions

  1. Allow eggs and buttermilk to stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl stir together the warm water and yeast; let stand about 10 minutes or until foamy.
  2. Lightly beat the eggs. Add eggs, buttermilk, sugar, 1/4 cup melted butter, almond extract, and salt to yeast mixture; mix well. Gradually add 2 1/2 cups of the flour, beating with an electric mixer on low speed just until combined (dough will be soft and slightly sticky). Beat on low speed for 5 minutes more. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the remaining flour (dough will still be slightly sticky). Cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).
  3. Grease a 9×5 inch loaf pan, line the sides with parchment paper
  4. Punch dough down. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface, gently knead in the dried cranberries.  
  5. Roll dough into an 18×12-inch rectangle. Cut the dough into 4×3-inch squares. Place dough squares into a greased 9-inch loaf pan next to each other, staggering until pan is full.  Drizzle with 1/4 cup melted butter. Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly double in size (about 30 minutes).
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden. If necessary to prevent over-browning, cover loosely with foil for the last 10 minutes of baking. Cool in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Using the edges of the parchment, lift out of pan. Cool and then add the topping. 

Notes

Storing: Finished orange cranberry bread will last at room temperature for 2-3 days. Wrap tightly or store in an airtight container.

The recipe is adapted from Better Homes and Gardens. 

Nutrition Information:
1 serving
327
6.9g
134.1mg
16.7g
36.9g
2.6g
8.1g
56.9mg
  • Category: Bread
  • Method: Oven
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: pull apart bread, cranberry orange bread, orange cranberry bread, bread recipe with yeast

Leave a Comment

Recipe rating

22 Responses
  1. Cindy Voelkel

    Sad! This looks really good and I want to make it. When you click on the recipe HERE button, there is no link attached😩.

      1. ann

        Hi, I also tried to find the recipe for your cranberry orange BHG recipe. Your link also had NO recipe attached. Can’t you put your recipe on your site? I would love to try it after reading your post about it! It’s so frustrating reading about a recipe and then no recipe attached. Thankyou, Ann

  2. Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel

    Not only is this delicious, it’s picture perfect, too! The bread looks so light and fluffy; I can’t even handle the perfection!

  3. Renee@Two in the Kitchen

    I just got in under the wire and voted for you. This bread is gorgeous!!! Seriously, I have never seen anything like it!! You are going all the way girl!! 🙂

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