Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake

Just going to throw out that this is the first bundt cake recipe I’ve ever shared!! As much as I love making layer cakes, sometimes it’s nice to make other types of desserts. That is where this orange cranberry bundt cake comes in.

While pulling together my baking holiday gift guide, I stumbled across the most stunning bundt pan. And while I don’t REALLY have any room in my kitchen for it, I bought it anyways! What can I say, my impulse control is a work in progress.

I treated myself to this fancy new bundt pan in hopes it would inspire me to make something new. Clearly my plan worked, and the extra bag of cranberries in my fridge guided me toward this unique holiday flavor combo.

image of the best orange bundt cake with sugared cranberries

Less Common Holiday Flavors

When I think of Christmas, my first though isn’t orange and cranberry. I usually think of chocolate and peppermint, or even eggnog! That’s why my past holiday cakes (like my almond christmas lights cake, or my hot cocoa cake) haven’t really played around with these flavors.

But in the midst of heavy holiday dinners, it’s nice to have a refreshing, tart dessert.

I’m not really giving cranberries enough credit. They are an important part of most holiday dinners, and they are seasonally relevant. I think most people would be sad if they were missing from Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.

image of sugared cranberries, waiting to be added to my bundt cake

I’m not the biggest fan of cranberry sauce, but I do love baking with cranberries. They also make the most beautiful garnish when they’re sugared!

I love decorating cakes in a way that lets you know what flavor is hiding inside. That’s why I topped this orange cranberry bundt cake with loads of sugared cranberries and orange slices ๐Ÿ™‚

The Bundt Pan

The final component of this bundt cake recipe is the pan you use. That’s the fun of making a bundt cake, it’s shape is solely reliant on the pan it bakes in.

I think most people have their tried and true bundt pans, and I totally respect that. They’re those iconic curved pans we grew up with, with short grooves and fluted edges.

This recipe will work great in just about any bundt pan, as long as it has a capacity of at least 10 cups. Most 10-inch bundt pans can hold this much batter.

image of holiday cranberry and orange bundt cake

To make this bundt cake, I used my Nordic Wear heritage bundt pan, which has deep, beautiful grooves. One word of advice, if you use a bundt pan with a fun design or deep grooves, be sure you butter and flour them SUPER WELL before adding your batter.

Make sure you get a thin layer of butter into every nook and cranny. It sounds dramatic, but you’ll thank yourself later when your gorgeous bundt cake pops right out of the pan.

image of orange and cranberry bundt cake decorated with orange glaze and sugared cranberries

Tips to Make The Best Bundt Cake:

  • Be sure to mix your cake batter just until the ingredients are incorporated; this will ensure your cake turns out tender and fluffy
  • Bake time can vary a lot based on your bundt pan, so keep an eye on your cake and check in every 5 minutes once it’s been in the oven for 55 minutes.
  • To prevent the cranberries from floating to the top of the bundt cake, give them a rough chop and toss them in flour before adding them into the batter.
  • To ensure the cranberries are evenly distributed throughout the cake once it’s baked, pour 1/3 of the batter into the pan, and add half the cranberries. Repeat this, then top with the rest of your batter.
  • Be sure you butter and flour your bundt pan really well, to help your bundt cake pop out easily once it’s baked.
  • Use aย serrated knifeย to level the bottom of your bundt cake once it’s fully cooled, to help it sit flat on your cake stand or plate.
image of sliced orange bundt cake

Let Me Know What You Think!

If you try this orange cranberry bundt cake recipe, Iโ€™d love to hear what think of it! Please leave a rating, and let me know your thoughts by sharing a comment ๐Ÿ˜›

Yield: 20 servings

Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake

Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake

This orange cranberry bundt cake is the perfect balance of tart and sweet! It's packed with fresh cranberries and orange juice, and is perfect for the holidays!

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Additional Time 2 hours
Total Time 3 hours 25 minutes

Ingredients

Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (390 grams)
  • 2 cups granulated sugar (400 grams)
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder (10 grams)
  • 1 tsp salt (6 grams)
  • 5 large eggs, room temp (280 grams)
  • 1/2 cups buttermilk, room temperature (115 grams)
  • 1 cup sour cream, room temp (255 grams)
  • 1 cup vegetable oil, (224 grams)
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (115 grams)
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract (8 grams)
  • 2 Tbsp orange zest (12 grams)
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries - one 8 oz bag (213 grams) - roughly chopped and lightly tossed in flour

Orange Glaze

  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice (58 grams)
  • 2 cups powdered sugar (250 grams)
  • 2 Tbsp orange zest (12 grams)

Decorations

  • sugared cranberries
  • small orange slices

Instructions

Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake:

  1. Preheat oven to 350ยฐF. Butter and flour a 10 inch bundt pan (with 10 cup capacity), being sure to get into all the nooks and crannies of your bundt pan to ensure an easy release.
  2. Whisk together the dry ingredients (all-purpose flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, and salt) in a large bowl, and set aside.
  3. In another large bowl, add the eggs, buttermilk, and sour cream, and whisk until combined. Don't worry if it looks a bit separated, it'll come together as we add the dry ingredient.
  4. Next, add in the oil, orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla. Whisk until combined.
  5. Mix in half of the the dry ingredients, until only a few streaks of flour are visible. Stir in the remaining dry ingredients, being careful not to overmix the batter.
  6. Pour 1/3 of the batter into the pan, and add half the cranberries. Top with another 1/3 of the batter, then the remaining cranberries, and top with the rest of your batter. This ensures that the cranberries will be evenly distributed once the cake is baked.
  7. Bake for 55-65 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean. My bundt pan took about 63 minutes.
  8. Allow the pans to cool for a couple hours, until the cake reached room temperature.
  9. Carefully invert the pan, and flip the cake onto the plate or cake stand you plan to serve the cake on.

Fresh Orange Glaze:

  1. While the bundt cake bakes and cools, make the fresh orange glaze.
  2. Add powdered sugar and orange zest into a medium-sized bowl, the pour in the fresh orange juice.
  3. Mix with a spoon until the glaze is smooth.

To Decorate The Cake:

  1. Drizzle the orange glaze over the ridges of the bundt cake, covering as much of the cake as possible.
  2. Garnish with sugared cranberries and small orange slices in the center and around the base.

Notes

I used this Bundt Pan Mold to make this cake, which is 10 inches across, and has a capacity of 10 cups.

Bake time can vary a lot based on your bundt pan, so keep an eye on your cake and check in every 5 minutes once it's been in the oven for 55 minutes.

Sometimes cranberries float to the top of a cake because they're are so buoyant! A great work around for this is giving the cranberries a rough chop before adding them to the batter.

I'm going to add this note into the recipe to help prevent others from having this problem, thank you for you sharing!! <3

Be sure you don't skimp on the orange zest or fresh orange juice! It really elevates the flavor of the cake, and is worth a bit of extra work ๐Ÿ™‚

Nutrition Information

Yield

20 slices

Serving Size

1

Amount Per Serving Calories 347 Total Fat 15g Saturated Fat 2g Trans Fat 0g Unsaturated Fat 11g Cholesterol 54mg Sodium 224mg Carbohydrates 51g Net Carbohydrates 0g Fiber 2g Sugar 34g Sugar Alcohols 0g Protein 4g

31 thoughts on “Orange Cranberry Bundt Cake

    1. Hi Mal,

      This cake can be baked and decorated, then stored under cover at room temperature for up to 3 days. Hope that helps, happy baking!! <3

  1. I decided to make this recipe yesterday but instead of one large bundt cake I make several mini bundt cakes. I absolutely love the results!! The cakes came out perfect and the flavor is amazing!! Thank you for a wonderful recipe!

  2. Do you think this cake would work in multiple layers vs a Bundt? I love the flavors but need to make a layer cake! Thank you!!

    1. Hi Joan! I haven’t tried turning this recipe into a layer cake, but someone sent me a message that they did, and it does work! It should be enough batter to make 3, 7-inch or 8-inch cake layers ๐Ÿ™‚ Happy baking!!

  3. Hi!! I have this in the oven right now and it looks and smells AMAZING. Iโ€™m making this as a hostess gift and Iโ€™m worried about the glaze making it look messy once I wrap in cellophane. Do you think it would be delicious with just powdered sugar on top and the sugared cranberries?

    1. Hi Nora!! the cake tastes great in its own, but I do love the glaze!! You could definitely dust it with powdered sugar and add the sugared cranberries, or could spoon the glaze over the cake once you get there! It isnโ€™t a lot of glaze, so itโ€™d travel well in a small Tupperware container ?

  4. I am using frozen cranberries, the store is currently out. Do you use the same amount of frozen since it is a wet ingredient?

  5. Chelsea, I want you to know that we made this for Christmas dinner dessert with some tweaks ( my daughter is vegan so we switched out eggs, buttermilk and sour cream to be vegan friendly) and it was absolutely delicious! Everyone raved and my daughter was so happy to feel included. Happy holidays!

    1. That is wonderful!! I am so happy to hear that Leslie!

      Also very excited to hear that your swaps worked well to make it vegan ๐Ÿ™‚ Happy holidays to you too, thank you for sharing!!

  6. It was really, really tasty. Everyone loved it. For some reason every cranberry floated to the bottom. I followed the directions to a T so I don’t know why.

    1. Hi Christine,

      I am so happy to hear that this recipe tasted great, but so sorry the cranberries floated to the top! Sometimes if the cranberries are big they don’t stay put in the batter, because they’re so buoyant! A great work around for this is giving the cranberries a rough chop before adding them to the batter. I suggest trying that next time to help prevent them from floating.

      I’m going to add this note into the recipe to help prevent others from having this problem, thank you for you sharing!! <3

  7. I made this for Christmas dinner dessert and it was beautiful and everyone loved it! However, all of my cranberries rose to the top of the cake when I baked it and most got cut off when I leveled the cake before taking it out of the pan. When we cut the pieces there were no cranberries to be found in the cake. It still tasted great with the sugared cranberries. Just wondering what to do differently next time so they stay distributed in the cake.

    1. Hi Shari,

      Happy to hear that this recipe tasted great, but so sorry the cranberries floated to the top! Sometimes if the cranberries are big they don’t stay put in the batter, because they’re so buoyant! A great work around for this is giving the cranberries a rough chop before adding them to the batter. I suggest trying that next time to help prevent them from floating <3

      I’m going to add this note into the recipe to help prevent others from having this problem, thank you for you sharing!! <3

  8. Thanks, Chelsea! I chopped some cranberries in a quick bread that I made and it worked so I’m sure that’s the trick. Can’t wait to make this cake again and try that. Thanks again for the great recipe!

    1. YAY! I am so happy to hear that Shari! ๐Ÿ™‚ I updated my recipe to reflect that, so hopefully no one will have any issues going forward!

    1. So happy to hear that Safina!! Thank you for sharing, comments like this make my day ๐Ÿ™‚ Hope you had a wonderful holiday!

  9. That’ wonderful. Can you plz share the alternatives you used with quantity to make it vegan.
    Eagerly waiting for ur response

    1. Hi Tandeep,

      Dried cranberries will work just fine! Give them a rough chop though, to prevent them from floating to the top while the cake bakes <3

Let me know what you think!