Fresh Cranberry Bread.

A thick slice of moist fresh cranberry bread, bursting with tart berries, and slathered with butter.

Moist, sweet, tender bread stuffed full of bright, tart cranberries – this is the most festive little loaf! Who wouldn’t want a slice for breakfast? Or a snack? Or as a bribe to make your children eat fun dinner component? I love holiday baking, but so many of my favorites require individual rolling of cookies (like gingersnaps), or individual rolling plus not-one-but-two powdered sugar dustings (see Russian tea cookies) or individual rolling plus a melted chocolate dunk (see cookie dough truffles) <–all 100%, utterly worth the effort, btw. I’m thrilled to add something to the lineup that you can stir with a whisk and even make ahead and freeze! Fresh cranberry bread would make a great gift for neighbors or friends, too.

bright red cranberries in a bowl and chopped in the food processor for fresh cranberry bread

So: rinse and chop up your cranberries. I had never bought fresh cranberries before (um, our family has QUITE the affection for cranberry sauce from a can), and Costco has a great deal on a big ol’ bag. I also found them at Trader Joe’s! I used my food processor to pulse them into pieces, but you could hone your knife skills and chop the cranberries by hand, too.

Mixing the batter for fresh cranberry bread.

Whisk together the dry ingredients in a big bowl, the wet ingredients in a big measuring cup, and then combine it all! It really only takes a few minutes to mix up. (…Unless you have helpers. I have so many helpers these days. My 18-month-old just figured out she can climb up on our bar stools, so she thinks she’s a chef now, too. #hideyoknives)

I recommend either lining your pans with foil or parchment paper, especially if you’re giving bread as a gift or freezing it for later! If you leave enough foil overhang, you can wrap the loaves right in the foil once they’re cool, and I always think parchment looks so classy and bakery-y. Plus: not having to scrub the pans.


 

A thick slice of sweet-tart fresh cranberry bread…a slather of butter…that tiny crunch from the sugar topping…well. Merry Christmas to me! Would you say the appropriate serving size is half a loaf? Asking for a friend.

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A thick slice of moist fresh cranberry bread, bursting with tart berries, and slathered with butter.

Fresh Cranberry Bread.


  • Author: Bet
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 45-60
  • Total Time: -25320408.833333 minute
  • Yield: 2 loaves

Ingredients

  • 1.5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1.5 cups white whole wheat flour (or more all-purpose)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 to 1-1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • 2/3 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 3 cups fresh cranberries, chopped (about a 12-oz bag) – I use a food processor to quickly chop the cranberries
  • 2 Tablespoons turbinado sugar (optional)

Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 and line 2 loaf pans with foil or parchment paper (or grease/spray them).

Whisk together flours, baking soda, cinnamon, baking powder, and salt in a large bowl.

In a separate bowl or large measuring cup, whisk together eggs and sugar, then whisk in vanilla, oil, and milk.

Add wet ingredients and chopped cranberries to the flour mixture and stir gently with a spatula until combined.

Divide the batter evenly between the pans and sprinkle the top of each with 1 Tablespoon of turbinado sugar. Bake for 45-60 minutes, or until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the center of the loaf comes out clean.

Notes

This recipe came to me from my sister Laurie, who got it from her friend, Meredith! Thanks, Meredith!

The original recipe calls for 1.5 cups of sugar. I tried it with both 1 and 1-1/4 cups and liked it both ways (especially if you add the sweet crunch of turbinado sugar on top!) – if I’m giving the loaves as gifts I use a little more; if I’m planning to call it breakfast, I use a little less!

Here are the quantities for a double batch (4 loaves) – perfect for freezing or wrapping up as tasty gifts:

3 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups white whole wheat flour (or more all-purpose)
4 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
8 eggs
2 to 2-1/2 cups sugar
4 teaspoons vanilla
1-1/3 cup oil
1 cup milk
6 cups fresh cranberries, chopped
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6 comments

  1. Best bread ever! I’m so glad you like it! I may or may not have just purchased three bags of cranberries from costco (they only sell them at the holidays) so that I could make sure to have cranberry bread in my life until at least March and then realized I already had some in the freezer so now we have cranberries coming out of our noses. (And I always cut the sugar too. )

    1. Bahaha! YES, this is the kind of thing I do ALL THE TIME. Freezer hoarding! (See also: fridge and pantry. I think I have an actual phobia of running out of peanut butter.)

  2. LOVE this- always looking for something new and delicious to do with all of the fresh cranberries this time of year. This bread looks perfect!

    1. Thanks, Karly!! We love it!

  3. Just about to bake this, but thanks for the jump to recipe button! That is so helpful when referring back!!

    1. Yay!! I added it because “you’re supposed to” but I’ve already used it a ton, too! (Yes, I use my phone to get recipes I have written down.🤷🏽‍♀️) Hope y’all love the bread!!

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