Would you like to know how long it took me to bake two loaves of this Cranberry Orange Pound Cake? Well I’ll tell you. It took me exactly two whole days! You see, that’s what happens when you have newborn twins at home. And while we’re on the subject of time…what day of the week is it? Did I mention my newborn twins?
I always get super excited when fresh cranberries arrive in the grocery store. It means that the holiday season has begun, cranberry sauce and all! And just thinking about all of my favorite cranberry desserts has me doing a happy dance. (If you haven’t made these Cranberry White Chocolate muffins you must!)
Anyway, back to my two-day pound cake. This pound cake is a cranberry lovers dream. It’s moist and dense with a bright and fresh orange flavor bursting with tart cranberries and drizzled with a sweet orange glaze. Perfection!
And I promise it will only take you 2 hours total to make these cakes. That is unless you happen to have newborn twins at home…then all bets are off!
- 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 2 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
- 4 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
- 1/3 cup grated orange zest (5-6 oranges)
- 2 cups fresh cranberries, washed and dried
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, divided
- 3/4 cup buttermilk, at room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons freshly squeezed orange juice
- Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour two 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/2-inch loaf pans. Line the bottoms with parchment paper.
- Cream the butter and 2 cups of the granulated sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment for about 5 minutes, or until light and fluffy. With the mixer on medium speed, beat in the eggs, one at a time, and the orange zest.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. In another bowl, combine 1/4 cup of the orange juice, the buttermilk, and vanilla. Add the flour and buttermilk mixtures alternately to the batter, beginning and ending with the flour.
- In a bowl, toss washed cranberries with a couple tablespoons of flour just to coat. This will help prevent the cranberries from settling in the batter. Mix cranberries into the batter by hand using a wooden spoon or spatula.
- Divide the batter evenly between the pans, smooth the tops, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, until a cake tester comes out clean.
- While the cakes bake, cook the remaining 1/2 cup of granulated sugar with the remaining 1/2 cup orange juice in a small saucepan over low heat until the sugar dissolves. When the cakes are done, let them cool for 10 minutes. Take them out of the pans and place them on a baking rack set over a tray. Spoon the orange syrup over the cakes and allow the cakes to cool completely.
- To glaze, combine the confectioners' sugar and orange juice in a bowl, mixing with a wire whisk until smooth. Add a few more drops of juice, if necessary, to make it pour easily. Drizzle over the top of cakes and allow the glaze to dry. Wrap well, and store in the refrigerator.
photos by Leah Bergman / walnut cake stand available here