I had a few extra bags of cranberries that I didn’t get around to using over the holidays, so I put them in the freezer. Then last week I came across a recipe on the Ocean Spray® website and decided this would be a great way to use some of those cranberries!
I love banana bread and cranberry bread, so I was pretty sure I would like this Cranberry Banana Bread recipe. It’s a really good, moist quick bread. I just changed the recipe very slightly and added a glaze on top, sprinkled with pecans (you can also use walnuts). The glaze gives the bread a little extra sweetness, but it’s also good without the glaze, too.
So if you happen to have extra cranberries in your freezer, you need to try this out! Or you can buy frozen cranberries. You could even try it with dried cranberries–I haven’t tried it that way myself yet, but I’m sure it would be just as good. This recipe makes one 8 1/2 x 4 1/2″ loaf or one 9 x 5″ loaf. I doubled the recipe and made one of each size. The 8 1/2″ loaf comes out a little taller and narrower–it also needs to bake a few minutes longer than the 9″ loaf. Either size works well, so use the loaf pan size you like best.
CRANBERRY BANANA BREAD (adapted from Ocean Spray®)
Makes 1 loaf (or double the recipe for two loaves like I did)
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup mashed banana (about 2 medium)
- 1/2 teaspoon banana extract (optional, if you want a stronger banana flavor)
- 1/4 cup milk or half and half
- 2 eggs
- 2 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans (or walnuts)
- 1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped fresh or frozen cranberries
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8 1/2 x 4 1/2″ or 9 x 5″ loaf pan. Cream sugar and butter together in a medium mixing bowl until well blended. Add banana, banana extract (optional), milk, and eggs, mixing well. Add flour and baking powder, mixing just until moist. Stir in nuts and cranberries. Spread batter evenly in loaf pan.
Bake at 350 degrees for 65 to 75 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in center of bread comes out clean. Let loaf cool a few minutes in the pan and then remove from pan and cool completely. Makes 1 loaf.
If you’d like to add a glaze, here’s what you need…
SIMPLE CREAMY GLAZE (double the recipe for two loaves)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 Tablespoons half and half
- 1/3 teaspoon banana extract (optional, if you want a banana flavor in the glaze)
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans or walnuts (for sprinkling over the glaze)
Mix powdered sugar and half and half together, blending well. Add banana extract, if desired. This will make a thicker, creamy glaze. Spoon glaze over the top of your cooled loaf, then sprinkle with nuts. Let glaze set and serve.
You’ll probably have a little glaze left over, but it’s better to have too much than not enough, right? 🙂 Save the rest of the glaze for something else, like muffins. You could thin it out with a little more half and half or milk and probably have enough to glaze a dozen muffins. Happy baking!