Cranberry Orange Buttermilk Coffee Cake is made with fresh Orange zest, orange juice, and tangy seasonal fresh cranberries in a delicious moist buttermilk cake batter topped with a sprinkle of sparkling sugar. It’s the perfect Holiday breakfast dish!
Several years ago I stumbled upon this amazing recipe on Pinterest.
I’m not 100% sure of the exact origin or creator of this recipe, and there are several versions on the internet now… some say the original came from one blogger, some say another, one states that she found the blueberry version of this on an old photocopied piece of paper of her mother’s.
Regardless, It has become a favorite seasonal recipe at this Nest!
This delicious moist & tender buttermilk coffee cake recipe is jam packed with fresh tangy cranberries and orange zest. One of my favorite Holiday flavor combinations!
One of the best things about this recipe? Not a fan of cranberries and orange (We’ll get ya tested…sleep easy! It’s gonna be okay! Lol) You can switch out the cranberries for blueberries, and the orange zest for lemon! Either is outstanding! For the sake of this post though…and all the photos I’ve taken…I’m gonna stick with the Cranberry Orange version!
Let’s make Cranberry Orange Buttermilk Coffee Cake
One reason I love this breakfast cake is how easy it is to make! It comes together quickly which is perfect for those busy Holiday mornings and family gatherings!
Begin by preheating your oven to 350°. Prepare a 9 x 9 square baking dish by spraying the bottom of the pan with non-stick cooking spray.
Tip: I like to use glass, but you can use a metal baking pan too. Both work equally well.
In the bowl of your mixer add 1/2 cup softened butter and the zest of one orange. The smell of orange zest is heavenly and I love my new zester! I’ve attached a link in the recipe card below if you’re looking for one!
Cream together until light and fluffy. (I’d like to be lighter…but I also like this cake!)
Add 1 cup of sugar, 1 teaspoon vanilla, and 1 egg.
Beat until well combined and fluffy. The mixture should be a light & creamy.
In a small bowl add 2 cups fresh cranberries, or thawed cranberries, with 2 Tablespoons of flour. Toss gently to coat the cranberries.
TIP: The reason for coating the berries in flour is to help them stick to the cake batter better and prevent them from sinking to the bottom.
In a bowl combine 2 Cups flour, 2 teaspoons baking powder, and 1 teaspoon salt. Add the flour mixture to the butter and sugar batter. (butter, batter…say that three times fast my friends) alternating with the buttermilk.
At the end I toss in a 1/4 cup of orange juice…just fer fun! Plus we have that naked orange lying around…might as well use it!
Scrape down the sides of the bowl and mix again for 1–2 minutes to make sure all the cake batter ingredients are well combined.
Go hunt down those beautiful floured orbs of tartness you set aside earlier! Better known as cranberries! Fold them into the buttermilk batter.
Spread the cake batter into the bottom of your prepared 9 x 9 baking dish.
Don’t worry about making it all pretty and smooth on top! This isn’t that type of cake y’all. This is a splendid rustic cranberry cake! Let’s allow it to wallow in its charm!
I like to place a few extra fresh cranberries on top of the cake. Press a few here and there. Bakes up so pretty! I’m all about the pretty my friends.
Sprinkle with 1 Tablespoon of sugar…a little bit of country “holiday glitter”, as I like to call it, before baking!
Bake in preheated oven for 35–45 minutes. Check for doneness with a toothpick. I find it generally takes about 45 minutes to bake this coffee cake. Oven temperatures vary so be sure to do the ol’ stick ’em check first before pulling it out of the oven.
Cool for 15 minutes before cutting and serving. Then just get out of the way of this cake and let it do it’s THANG!
The lumps and bumps add delicious little nooks and crannies for flavor to hideout in. The cake is ultra moist. It practically melts in your mouth. The tiny sprinkle of sugar on top helps to take the edge off the tartness of the cranberries. The little bits of orange zest blend beautifully with the juicy cranberries. YUM!
I make this cake every Thanksgiving and Christmas morning! It literally takes minutes to throw the ingredients together!
TIP: This cake batter can even be made the night before, covered, refrigerated, and baked in the morning. Wait to add the sugar until right before baking!
This cake ALWAYS receives RAVE reviews! Cranberry lovers are going to fall in love all over again! Non-cranberry lovers are gonna fall in love. It’s THAT good! I know it’ll become a tradition at your Nest too!
I hope this Cranberry Orange Buttermilk Coffee Cake makes an appearance on your Holiday menu!
Here are some other Holiday Breakfast Recipes we enjoy!
- Easy Fried Apple Cider Donuts
- Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Pancakes
- Cranberry Orange Scones with Orange Glaze
- Breakfast Casserole
- Blood Orange Sweet Rolls
- Bakery-Style Fresh Cranberry Orange Streusel Muffins
- Asparagus, Mushroom, and Bacon Quiche
- Blueberry Brioche French Toast Bake
- Cranberry Orange Walnut Bread from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
I’d love to have you follow me on Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook where I share all my favorite recipes, new and past, each and every day!
As always, thanks so much for stopping by, and I hope you enjoy this recipe at your Nest!
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- zest of one orange
- 1 Cup, plus 1 Tablespoon Sugar
- 1 egg, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup or orange juice, use juice of zested orange
- 2 Cups all-purpose flour, plus 2 Tablespoons
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 Cups fresh cranberries (or thawed from freezer)
- 1/2 cup buttermilk
- Preheat oven to 350°. Prepare a 9 x 9 baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
- Cream butter and orange zest together. Add sugar, egg and vanilla. Whip until light and fluffy.
- Toss fresh or thawed cranberries with 2 Tablespoons of flour. Set aside.
- In a medium bowl mix together flour, baking powder and salt.
- Add flour mixture to the batter a little at a time, alternating with the buttermilk. Add orange juice, mix until well combined. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl and mix for an additional 1-2 minutes making sure all the ingredients are well incorporated.
- Fold in prepared cranberries.
- Spread batter in prepared baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining sugar. Bake 35-45 minutes. Check for doneness with toothpick. Cool 15 minute before serving.
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M KITCHEN WORLD Heat Resistant Silicone Spatulas Set - Rubber Spatula Kitchen Utensils Non-Stick for Cooking, Baking and Mixing - Ergonomic, Dishwasher Safe Bakeware Set of 4, Orange
OXO 1169600 Good Grips 3-piece Mixing Set, White Bowls Brown Handles, Blue/Green/Yellow
KitchenAid KSM150PSER Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield, 5-Quart, Empire Red
Best Cheese Grater & Zester - Stainless Steel Lemon Zester Tool - Best Zester for Kitchen - Cheese Grater Handheld - Chocolate, Coconut, Nutmeg, Ginger, Lemon Zester - Citrus Zester - by Zulay Kitchen
USA Pan Bakeware Square Cake Pan, 9 inch, Nonstick & Quick Release Coating, Made in the USA from Aluminized Steel
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 256Total Fat: 11gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 4gCholesterol: 48mgSodium: 476mgCarbohydrates: 35gFiber: 2gSugar: 10gProtein: 5g