Orange-Cranberry-Nut Fruit Cake

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Recipe photo
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: Yield: 1 large bundt-style cake; 2 small bundt-style cakes; 2 standard loaves, or 5 to 6 smaller gif

Recipe photo

More of a cake with fruit than a traditional fruitcake, this will be thoroughly enjoyed by all. The picture at right shows a glaze made by stirring together confectioners' sugar with enough milk or cream to make it pourable. You might also enjoy a simple glaze made from orange juice and sugar, detailed in the recipe below.

Read our blog about this cake, with additional photos, at Flourish.

Orange-Cranberry-Nut Fruit Cake

star rating (43) rate this recipe »
Hands-on time:
Baking time:
Total time:
Yield: Yield: 1 large bundt-style cake; 2 small bundt-style cakes; 2 standard loaves, or 5 to 6 smaller gif
Published: 01/01/2010



  • 2 cups dried cranberries or orange-flavored dried cranberries
  • 2 cups dried fruit blend or dried apricots, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water, cranberry juice, or brandy
  • 1 3/4 cups candied red cherries


Optional glaze

  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1/3 cup sugar


see this recipe's blog »

1) To prepare the fruit: Combine the dried fruit (except the candied cherries) with liquid in a bowl. Cover and microwave for 1 to 2 minutes, stir, then set aside to cool.

2) Preheat the oven to 325°F. Lightly grease the pans of your choice: two 8 1/2" x 4 1/2" loaf pans; or five 7" wooden bakers; or six 7" paper bake & give pans; or one 12-cup bundt-style pan; or two 6-cup bundt-style pans.

3) To prepare the cake: In a large bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, baking powder, salt, and flavors.

4) Beat in the eggs one at time.

5) Stir in the flour alternately with the orange juice.

6) Add the undrained fruit, the candied cherries, and the nuts.

7) Spoon the batter into the lightly greased baking pans, filling them about three-quarters full. If you have a scale, dividing the batter evenly among the pans is simple math. If you've included the nuts, the batter weighs about 90 oz. (2552g).

8) Bake the cakes for 50 to 80 minutes; smaller pans will bake for the shorter length of time. Full- or half-size bundt-style cakes will bake the full 80 minutes. When done, the cakes will be a light golden brown all over, and a cake tester inserted into the center will come out clean.

9) If you're planning on using the glaze, stir together the orange juice and sugar while the cakes are baking. Set aside to rest at room temperature, stirring occasionally to help dissolve the sugar.

10) Remove the cakes from the oven. If you're removing them from the pan(s), wait about 10 minutes, then turn them out onto a rack. If you're using the glaze, brush the warm cakes all over with the glaze, continuing to brush until you've used it all. If you choose not to use the glaze, you may wish to brush the warm cake(s) with brandy or the liquor of your choice.

11) When completely cooled, wrap well and let rest at least 24 hours (or for up to a month, brushing with liquor or flavored syrup weekly), before serving.

Yield: 1 large bundt-style cake; 2 small bundt-style cakes; 2 standard loaves, or 5 to 6 smaller gift loaves.

Nutrition information

Serving Size: 1 slice Servings Per Batch: 28 (2 loaves) Amount Per Serving: Calories: 330 Calories from Fat: 110 Total Fat: 13g Saturated Fat: 5g Trans Fat: 0g Cholesterol: 45mg Sodium: 140mg Total Carbohydrate: 53g Dietary Fiber: 2g Sugars: 34g Protein: 4g

* The nutrition information provided for this recipe is determined by the ESHA Genesis R&D software program. Substituting any ingredients may change the posted nutrition information.


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  • star rating 02/22/2015
  • mrmoran from KAF Community
  • Made this cake late in the season, and I was thrilled with the depth of flavor it had, despite my just-in-time scheduling. Used Favorite Fruit Blend as the other fruit to accompany the cranberries. This is already on next Christmas' baking list.
  • star rating 12/30/2014
  • bg from DC
  • Fruitcake haters were won over by this recipe. First baked it as is with candied cherries. Second time just added more cranberries, raisins & apricots and left out cherries. Also used walnuts, since I used pecans up the first bake. Recipe made 6 of the foil mini loaf pans. Easy to make, great result.
  • star rating 12/18/2014
  • Kathy W. from Elgin, IL
  • Our favorite fruitcake. I have been making this cake at Christmas time for the past couple of years. My Father-in-Law calls it the Christmas Cake! It's become a tradition at our house.
  • star rating 12/13/2014
  • June from MA
  • I need to make more- they were such a hit last year! can this recipe be doubled?

    Hi June, so glad you (and it sounds like many others!) enjoyed this recipe. It certainly can be doubled and you would just double every ingredient and continue on according to the usual instructions. Happy baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  • star rating 12/09/2014
  • norden from KAF Community
  • Loved, loved this recipe, it's well written and so easy!!!! I have a few questions though, I'm planning to double up this recipe for gifting. Should I double the baking powder and salt? I live in a warmer weather, would cakes be OK [saran wrap] until the 25th? All that dairy makes me nervous, please help?!?! TIA.

    You can double this recipe in which case you would double every ingredient. However, I would only keep it at room temperature for a few days, so I would freeze the baled product if you are making them this far in advance. I hope that helps and if you have any more questions, please feel free to contact our Baker's Hotline at 1-855-371-2253. Happy baking! Jocelyn@KAF

  • star rating 12/08/2014
  • quackmail23 from KAF Community
  • It was very easy to put together, I followed the directions in mixing it. I made it without the liquor, (thanks for all the other options) The batter smelled yummy, baked it into 2 bundt style pans. I couldn't wait 24 hours to sample, It tasted wonderful! The texture (it was cuttable very little crumb) will be perfect once it sets in the refrigerator.
  • star rating 11/22/2014
  • Katie from Missouri
  • Fantastically delicious! One of my husband's favorites!
  • star rating 12/22/2013
  • LetMeEatCake! from Norfolk, VA
  • I just finished baking this beautiful fruitcake, and it smells, as delicious as it looks! I made one large cake as opposed to two smaller ones,to serve on christmas day. I just finished brushing mine with a mixture of pure vanilla, jamaican rum, orange marmalade (instead of the sugar)and a splash of Grand marnier! DIVINE! I used both candied and maraschino cherries, dried pineapple, dried diced candied ginger and orange pieces, walnuts, pecans and almonds in my batter...i soaked my fruit in rum and added a little extra to my cake batter...I also grated some fresh orange zest and added it to the cake batter....used powdered buttermilk instead of orange juice and used "a quality" high butterfat butter...I will cut into it bright and early tomorrow as I simply cannot wait to eat this masterpiece!!!!...thanks PJ for all your delicious recipes...Merry Christmas!
  • star rating 12/03/2013
  • Huntley51 from KAF Community
  • This cake is awsome, there is nothing that need to be changed about it. I have never made a fruit cake until I tired this and I was amazed at how it came out. I got so happy with it I ended up making three cakes and gave them as Christmas Gifts. This cake rocks...I will never try another fruit cake recipe this is my favorite.
  • star rating 11/23/2013
  • lkrummrich from KAF Community
  • This is my 3 year to make this recipe. It is so easy. I brush it with Irish Whiskey. I make it for my Mother in Law and her Sister, among others. They have always enjoyed it and they are true Fruit Cake lovers. Thanks for a great recipe
    Wow! Won't you be MY neighbor? Happy Holiday Baking! Irene@KAF
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