White Chocolate Cranberry Bread

What is it about a slice of this quick bread that I find so appealing?…Maybe it’s the tender crumb or the sweetness of the white chocolate or the bright red little explosions of fresh cranberries baked in each slice?  Or maybe it’s because of the holiday tradition that dates back to my early memories of Christmas mornings gathered around a beautifully decorated tree opening gifts in pjs with family while munching on slices of sweet breads.  I’ve always loved to bake quick breads for family and friends at the holidays.  Our family favorites were the ones baked with apricots, dates, banana, nuts and cranberries.  After the gifts were opened a hot breakfast usually with bacon and eggs was served but my favorites were always the slices of sweet cranberry quick breads with the memories of Christmas morning in every slice.

Today I’m sharing a quick bread recipe that I tried this week from a new cookbook, Baking for Friends by Kathleen King.  I also made her recipe for cranberry sauce crumb bars with my left over homemade cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving.  Made with a rolled oat crust and crumb topping- those bars were killer.  I think I have enough fresh cranberries for one more small batch recipe, maybe cookies?

Baking with Friends is my kind of baking cookbook, filled with beautiful photos and sweet recipes for all my favorites, like cookies, cakes, breads and pies.  I have a few more recipes bookmarked for this holiday season and for Saint Patty’s day I have to try her recipe for guinness brownies.
Quick breads freeze well and make a fun baking project for the weekends before Christmas.  I sliced my white chocolate cranberry bread up for the pictures and to share with friends but my next loaf is going to my ‘littles’ for Christmas morning, to carry on a wonderful delicious family tradition.

White Chocolate Cranberry Bread

Yield: 10 servings

Adapted from Baking for Friends by Kathleen King.

Ingredients

  • 6 ounces white chocolate, finely chopped
  • 2 & 1/4 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 cup fresh whole cranberries
  • 1 cup toasted pecans, chopped
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350F.
  2. Lightly butter and flour a 9x5 loaf pan.
  3. Melt the chopped white chocolate, I used a bowl placed over barely simmering water, set aside to cool-giving it a few stirs- while continuing with the recipe.
  4. In a medium bowl whisk together the flour, salt and baking soda, set aside.
  5. In the bowl of a stand mixer beat together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, a few minutes.
  6. Beat the eggs in one at a time, scrape down the sides of bowl as needed.
  7. Beat in the yogurt, followed by the cooled white chocolate, orange zest and juice and vanilla.
  8. Turn the mixer to low speed and add the flour mixture.
  9. Stir in the whole cranberries, pecans and white chocolate chips.
  10. Spread the batter evenly into the prepared pan.
  11. Bake until skewer inserted in bread comes out clean, about 70-75 minutes.
  12. Cool on a metal rack for about 10 minutes.
  13. Remove bread from the pan and cool completely before slicing.
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Comments

  1. I’m not sure what I like better the pattern in your beautiful bread or the pattern in that pretty fabric. But I know which one I’d like to eat, for sure! Your bread looks fabulous!

  2. Sweet breads always evoke warm holiday memories in me too. :) Yours looks so scrumptious with all it’s chunks of cranberries and nuts!

  3. Beautiful bread, Patty! I love the white chocolate with the cranberries!

  4. Patty, this bread is gorgeous! And I love the flavors, I just want to grab a slice from your photo and eat it right up.

  5. There are so many reasons to love sweet, quick breads! The cranberry is perfect for the holidays- It’s nice to slice off a piece to enjoy with a cup of coffee. :)

  6. Those slices look so perfectly moist and well, just perfect. Christmas mornings with my husband are always very quiet until we see my family. There’s always plenty of food, too, but there would always be room for this gorgeous bread.

  7. As usual, what a lovely treat, Patty! Wish we were neighbours, hehehe…Your home must be full of tantalizing aroma from your wonderful food (especially the baked goods)!

  8. Absolutely irresistible! I want to live everyday eating wonderful baked goods you make. This cranberry and white chocolate combination may be a first time for me!

  9. What’s not to love this gorgeous bread?! Pecan, chocolate and cranberry….all my favoruites!

  10. It’s so pretty! Will look great on any holiday platter!!!

  11. What a delightfully beautiful bread, Patty! I’m taking a copy to serve on Christmas morning with our holiday strata.

  12. I adore a great quick bread recipe and this one fits the bill perfectly. I wish I had a slice right now since I am enjoying a cup of coffee while reading various blogs. Hope your Saturday is great!!!

  13. your bread looks so moist and light, and so darn good. I had to read to see what ingredient you added that was so orange, at first I thought it was citron but the zest really shines in this bread and makes the red of the berries pop so much more… really great contrast… and recipe too!

  14. Lora @cakeduchess says:

    I love your Christmas memories. They are so powerful especially when associated with food. Love the crumb of this bread. I can’t get enough of baking with cranberries these days and can’t wait to try this one, Patty:)

  15. Just beautiful! I can almost taste those cranberries!
    Rita

  16. I love making quick breads. I just put 2 bananas in the freezer, so I can do it soon!
    This looks like the perfect texture, and cranberry and white chocolate together is a great combination!

  17. I am bookmarking this cake recipe; love the idea of combining white chocolate and cranberries!

  18. Patty, Quick breads are so nice to have on hand over the holidays…perfect for drop in company…or with a cup of tea in the afternoon! This one is beautiful!

  19. That looks wonderful and so appropriate for holidays. I love using fresh cranberries. The bread sliced so perfectly too!

  20. I’m wishing upon a star for a slice of this bread to appear in front of me right now, to savor with my cup of afternoon coffee! Beautiful, Patty!!!

  21. This looks so delicious, Patty! And very festive for the holidays, too!

  22. This bread looks delicious, Patty! I always love the cranberry and white chocolate combination!

  23. What a beautiful and moist bread Patty…very festive :)

  24. Quick breads are like the only baked good that I’m comfortable with. Yours does really say Christmas. How nice to have had them as a special treat on Christmas morning. Thanks for sharing your memories and the new cookbook tip.

  25. Part of my Christmas baking tradition is to make a cranberry quick bread that I think I got off the bag of Ocean Spray cranberries and it is a family favorite. This version with the white chocolate looks delicious.

  26. can i divided this recipe equally in mini loaves? this bread looks amazing!

  27. Patty,

    Anyway this can be adapted and used in a bread machine?

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