Cranberry orange muffins have a pop of flavor thanks to the tart cranberries and zesty orange. These muffins are ready in 30 minutes!

cranberry orange muffin with glaze and orange zest on open paper muffin liner

If you’re looking for an easy recipe that uses seasonal flavor, these cranberry orange muffins will do the trick. The fresh cranberries add tart flavor while the orange adds a nice citrus taste. The muffins are ready in 30 minutes and are topping with an orange glaze.

Why this recipe works: The addition of sour cream guarantees a moist and flavorful muffin. Fresh orange juice and zest provide plenty of flavor. The muffins are baked at a high temperature of 400 F so they get nice and fluffy too!

cranberry orange muffins with glaze in a pile next to fresh cranberries and orange slices
cranberry orange muffin ingredients in bowls labeled with text

How to make cranberry orange muffins

  1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Line a muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. Whisk dry ingredients: In a large bowl whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
  3. Make the batter: In a separate bowl, beat butter both sugars and zest until light and fluffy. Add sour cream, eggs and vanilla extract, then mix until combined. Mix in half the flour mixture just until combined, then the orange juice. Mix in remaining flour mixture. Stir in cranberries by hand.
  4. Bake the muffins: Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Bake for 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with little to no crumbs.
  5. Make the glaze: Whisk confectioners’ sugar and fresh orange juice together. Drizzle glaze over muffins and serve.

Want a streusel topping? You can use the streusel recipe from my apple crumble muffins.

photo collage demonstrating how to make cranberry muffin batter in a glass mixing bowl
photo collage demonstrating how to make cranberry muffin batter and add it to muffin tin

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use frozen cranberries in this recipe?

Yes, but do not defrost the cranberries. Toss them in a tablespoon or two of flour to prevent them from sinking in the muffins as they defrost while baking.

Can I use dried cranberries in this recipe?

Yes, but use 2/3 cup dried cranberries. You can also add 1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans if you like.

Can you freeze cranberry orange muffins?

Yes, once the muffins have cooled completely, store them in an airtight container in the freezer for up to 1 month. Defrost in the refrigerator before bringing to room temperature. Add glaze once defrosted.

Can I use store bought orange juice?

In a pinch, yes, but fresh orange juice adds much more flavor. You’ll have to buy an orange for the zest anyway!

cranberry orange muffins with glaze piled on wood tray

Related recipes

This recipe is derived from my blueberry muffins with lemon. They are tender, sweet and perfectly fluffy. I definitely recommend trying them if you liked this recipe! Another good one is my cranberry orange scones. It uses dried cranberries and has a similar orange glaze to these muffins.

If you have a lot of fresh cranberries, try my cranberry apple crisp. The cranberries are bursting with flavor, which pairs well with the fresh apples. Around Christmas I enjoy baking with dried cranberries too. They mix well into these cranberry pistachio cookies.

cranberry orange muffin with a bite on open paper muffin liner

Cranberry orange muffins with orange glaze are a simple, yet flavorful recipe to try in the winter. The orange zest and fresh cranberries will wake up your taste buds! The seasonal flavors work well for Thanksgiving and Christmas too. If you enjoyed this recipe, leave a review below and tag @ifyougiveablondeakitchen on social media.

cranberry orange muffin with glaze on open muffin liner

Cranberry Orange Muffins

Cranberry orange muffins have a pop of flavor thanks to the tart cranberries and zesty orange. The muffins are ready in less than 30 minutes!

Ingredients

Muffins

  • 2 cups (250 g) all purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ cup (113 g) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • ½ cup (100 g) granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • ¼ cup (50 g) packed light brown sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh orange zest
  • 2 large eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup (113 g) sour cream, room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup (60 ml) fresh orange juice
  • 1 ½ cups (170 g) fresh cranberries

Glaze

  • 1 cup (120 g) confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1-2 tablespoons fresh orange juice

Instructions 

  • Preheat oven to 400° F. Line a standard 12-cup muffin tin with paper liners. Set aside.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon. Set aside.
  • In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer to combine butter, sugar, brown sugar and orange zest until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, sour cream and vanilla, mixing just until combined. Add half the flour mixture and mix just until combined, then add the fresh orange juice and mix just until combined. Add remaining flour mixture and mix just until combined. Stir in cranberries by hand.
  • Use an ice cream scoop to divide batter evenly among prepared cups. Sprinkle with sugar if desired (sprinkle high above pan so sugar disperses evenly). Bake muffins for about 25 minutes or until the tops are golden and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with little to no crumbs. Allow muffins to cool in the pan for a couple minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.
  • For the glaze, whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and fresh orange juice. Drizzle over muffins with a spoon. Garnish with more orange zest if desired.

Notes

Store cranberry orange muffins in an airtight container for up to 5 days. 
Freeze cranberry orange muffins for up to 1 month. Let the muffins cool completely (do not add glaze). Store in an airtight container. Defrost in the refrigerator before bringing to room temperature and adding glaze.
Recommended tools: Muffin tin, kitchen scale, mixing bowls, hand mixer
High altitude adjustments (Denver, CO 5,820 ft): The recipe above is written for sea level. If you are baking at high altitude, oven temperature and baking times may vary. I made these ingredient adjustments. Decrease baking powder to 1 teaspoon. Decrease granulated sugar to 1/3 cup.
Serving: 1muffin, Calories: 273kcal, Carbohydrates: 42g, Protein: 3g, Fat: 11g, Saturated Fat: 6g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g, Monounsaturated Fat: 3g, Trans Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 53mg, Sodium: 119mg, Potassium: 151mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 24g, Vitamin A: 362IU, Vitamin C: 6mg, Calcium: 57mg, Iron: 1mg

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