Cranberry orange poppy seed bread. A little bit sweet and a bit little tart, this quick bread is one that will keep them coming back for more.
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This cranberry orange poppy seed bread has quickly become one of my favorites. It’s light and tender with the sweetness of orange juice, the tang of dried cranberries, and the crunch of poppy seeds.
Like all quick breads, this bread mixes up more like a muffin batter. Instead of using yeast to rise, it uses baking powder instead. This means no waiting for the yeast to do it’s job. Simply mix it up, place it in a loaf pan, and bake it until it’s done.
In no time your house will be filled with the scent of cranberry and orange and your tummy will be grumbling too. It pairs great with a cup of Earl Grey tea for an afternoon treat.
In creating this quick bread I started by using my trusty recipe for Streusel Topped Blueberry Muffins. It’s my go to recipe for the basis of many of the quick breads I make in my kitchen. This one however, proved to be a bit tougher than most, because I just couldn’t get the orange flavor to be prominent enough using just juice – even with freshly squeezed juice.
After cleaning out my fridge and coming across a jar of lemon sugar, leftover from my last batch of Lemon Sugar Cookies, I was inspired. Instead of just adding orange juice to the recipe, I used orange sugar instead. Wow! It definitely provided the extra orange flavor I wanted.
After a couple more trials, and of course eating one slice too many, I found that the effort of making the orange sugar wasn’t really necessary. It’s much easier to just add the orange zest in with the rest of the ingredients and the flavor difference is so slight that in this case I’d definitely choose the easier route.
We are going to mix up this bread using the muffin method. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees then grab two medium to large mixing bowls. Measure the dry ingredients – flour, baking powder, and salt – into one bowl. Then measure the wet ingredients – eggs, vegetable oil, sugar, orange zest, greek yogurt, milk, orange juice, and vanilla extract – into the other bowl. In the interest of doing fewer dishes, grab your whisk and mix together the dry ingredients, then use the same whisk for the wet ingredients.
Once they are both mixed separately, add the wet ingredients and the dry ingredients together. It doesn’t matter which way you add it, just make sure that if your bowls are different sizes to put everything in the larger bowl. Mix until just combined, then add in the poppy seeds and dried cranberries. Mix again until just combined, but avoid over mixing.
Grab a 9″ x 5″ loaf pan and butter it liberally. You can always use a baking spray, but I like the flavor that butter adds to the bread. Pour the batter into the pan and place it in the hot oven on the center rack. Total bake time should be between 50 – 55 minutes. You’ll know it’s done when the top turns a golden brown, the bread starts to pull away from the edges of the pan, and a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean.
Let the bread cool in the pan for about 5 – 10 minutes, then turn it out onto a cooling rack to cool completely. Of course, if you are me, I’d ignore that part about cooling and slice a thick chunk off the end to eat while it’s still warm from the oven.
Stored in an airtight container this cranberry orange poppy seed bread will keep at room temperature for about 3 days. For longer storage it will keep in the freezer for 3 – 6 months. If you want single servings from the freezer, prior to freezing slicing it and separate the slices with wax or parchment paper. The whole loaf will thaw in about 30 minutes at room temperature, while a single slice can be microwaved for 10 – 15 seconds for a warm and comforting treat.
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Cranberry Orange Poppy Seed Bread Recipe
Cranberry Orange Poppy Seed Bread
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tbsp baking powder
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tsp orange zest
- 2/3 cup greek yogurt
- 1/3 cup milk
- 1/3 cup orange juice
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1 tbsp poppy seeds
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees then grab two medium to large mixing bowls.
- Measure the dry ingredients - flour, baking powder, and salt - into one bowl. Then measure the wet ingredients - eggs, vegetable oil, sugar, orange zest, greek yogurt, milk, orange juice, and vanilla extract - into the other bowl. In the interest of doing fewer dishes, grab your whisk and mix together the dry ingredients, then use the same whisk for the wet ingredients.
- Once they are both mixed separately, add the wet ingredients and the dry ingredients together. Mix until just combined.
- Add in the poppy seeds and dried cranberries. Mix again until just combined, but avoid over mixing.
- Liberally butter a 9" x 5" loaf pan or spray with your favorite baking spray.
- Pour the batter into the pan and place it in the hot oven on the center rack.
- Total bake time should be between 50 - 55 minutes. You'll know it's done when the top turns a golden brown, the bread starts to pull away from the edges of the pan, and a toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean.
- Let the bread cool in the pan for about 5 - 10 minutes, then turn it out onto a cooling rack to cool completely.