Gift Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread this season to spread joy

This recipe for Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread is really a ‘loaf of kindness’; a sweet treat baked with love to share with friends, family, and special community members who you appreciate.

A loaf of Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread. tied with a ribbon sits on a wooden table.

Baking is a joy when you are in the kitchen creating a loaf of delicious Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread! The best part about this recipe is that this bread is made with 100% fresh ingredients- fresh cranberries, oranges, and nuts.

Two slices of Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread up close to show the color and texture.

How to make Cranberry Nut Bread

I highly recommend you use a food processor for this recipe, it makes chopping the nuts and fresh cranberries a breeze. I also strongly recommend you prep all your ingredients first before continuing with the recipe. You could even prep them the night before.

Chopped pecans in a rimmed baking sheet being toasted in an oven.

First, Toast pecans in your oven for just a few minutes to give their mildly-sweet flavors some depth.

Wet and dry ingredients are being mixed together to make Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread.

Next, combine the wet and dry ingredients in separate bowls first before gently folding them together. Then add the chopped berries and nuts.

Chopped nuts and cranberries are added to bread batter to make Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread.

Empty your Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread batter into a greased and floured loaf pan and smooth the top. Pop it into the oven to bake for about an hour (ee recipe below).

A loaf pan is filled with bread batter.

Don’t slice into this bread until it has cooled for at least 1 hour! It will not slice pretty. Trust me.

A freshly baked loaf of Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread still in the loaf pan.

Smother your Cranberry Nut Bread with Orange Glaze

You can skip the ‘Frosted’ part of Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread, but seriously, it’s soooo good, and really adds to this bread being a special treat for a special person! Spoon frosting (or glaze) onto warm bread that has cooled for at least 30 minutes.

A loaf of bread sits on a wooden table and is covered with a white melty glaze that has dripped down the sides of the loaf.

I love to fancy this bread up with adorable Sparkling Sugared Cranberries (recipe coming soon), cute ribbon, and a few sprigs of fresh clipped rosemary herb (it has that piney, holiday look to it).

A loaf of Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread sliced open revealing it's colorful interior.

This lovely recipe is just perfect for Christmastime baking with it’s bright colors and flavors.

A loaf of Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread sits on a table surrounded by slices of cut bread, sugared cranberries, whole pecans and sprigs of green rosemary.

Trust me, this is the holiday baking recipe you’ve been looking for. Enjoy this delightful bread and I’d appreciate your support in leaving a recipe rating and a comment below. It helps my google ranking and in turn, helps others to find this recipe!

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Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread


Sweet, tangy, bright and delicious, this recipe for Frosted Cranberry Nut Bread is perfect for baking up and sharing with friends and neighbors. 


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1/3 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2/3 cup clabbered milk (or buttermilk)
  • 6 tablespoons butter, melted and cooled
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 and 1/2 cups chopped fresh cranberries (a food processor comes in handy for this)


  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon sour cream


  1. Move your oven rack to the middle position and set the oven to heat to 350 degrees F. Prepare a bread pan by greasing the bottom and sides with Crisco, then dust with flour, tapping out the excess. Place chopped pecans on a rimmed baking sheet and place in the oven to toast for about 5 minutes, then remove them and set them aside to cool.
  2. Stir together all the wet ingredients; the orange zest, orange juice, butter, egg and buttermilk, into a small mixing bowl. Stir together the dry ingredients; the flour sugar, salt , baking powder, and baking soda in another bowl. Pour the mixed wet ingredients into the dry and gently fold together with a spatula or large spoon until no more white streaks remain. Then gently stir in the chopped cranberries and nuts just until incorporated. Don’t overmix this bread batter or it won’t rise.
  3. Bake for about 1 hour, or until the crust is light golden and a toothpick comes out clean from the center. Cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes, then remove from the baking pan and let cool for 15 minutes.
  4. Stir together the icing ingredients and spoon icing over the top of the warm bread. It will drip down the sides a bit, this is ok. Leave the bread loaf to cool for another 45 minutes before slicing and serving. Alternatively, once the loaf is iced, it can be placed into a refrigerator for about 30 minutes to expedite cooling.


I strongly recommend you use a food processor to chop up the cranberries if you have one. Pulse cranberries about 15 times to get the correct chopped consistency. (Or chop them to a finer consistency if you prefer, it doesn’t matter that much).

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