No Knead Cranberry Walnut Bread

Discover the delightful combination of tart cranberries and nutty walnuts in our Cranberry Walnut Bread. A simple yet delicious treat that adds a burst of flavor to your everyday moments.
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A loaf of walnut cranberry bread, sliced.
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There’s something so special about homemade bread baking in the oven—lovely fragrance, extra cozy warmth in the kitchen, and the feeling of incredible accomplishment. This delicious cranberry walnut bread is packed with the perfect combination of tart cranberries and crunchy walnuts, along with a hint of orange.

This delightful treat is sure to become a monthly (or weekly!) family favorite. Once you bake your first loaf, you’ll realize that this recipe is a must-have for any baking repertoire. It’s an easy-to-follow recipe that brings a burst of flavor that will brighten up anyone’s day.

If your mouth is watering for a bite of sweet and tangy goodness, let’s get baking!

An interior shot of baked cranberry walnut bread.

Why You’ll Love This Vegan Cranberry Walnut Bread

Baking your own bread is not only satisfying, but it’s also one of those activities that brings peace and comfort to your day. If family or friends take part in either the making or the eating of this bread, that’s even more reason to give it a try!

  • Easy and Enjoyable to Make: Mix the simple dry and wet ingredients together and you’re good to go. No need to knead! (he he)
  • Tangy, Slightly Sweet, and Heavenly: The combination of tart cranberries and crunchy walnuts is delightful. The perfectly balanced bread is not too sweet or too sour.
  • Excellent for Meal Prep: Make a day or two before and you’ll have a tasty ready-made breakfast or snack whenever hunger strikes.
  • Great for Breakfast, Snacks, or On-the-Go: All you need to do is slice and enjoy! This bread is incredible as is—warm, cool, or room temperature. Add a topping of choice, if desired. Our favorites include vegan butter, vegan cream cheese, thick jams, or even nut butter.
  • Free of Dairy, Eggs, and Preservatives: Because you’re baking this bread yourself, there’s no added chemicals or any animal products to be wary of. You can also swap out or substitute any ingredient that you are sensitive to for even more versatility.
A sliced loaf of walnut cranberry bread.

Key Ingredients

Explore the heart of this cranberry walnut bread recipe with a closer look at its key ingredients, where the vibrant notes of cranberries and the rich texture of walnuts come together to elevate this simple, delightful snack.

  • Cranberries: These beautiful little berries are high in antioxidants and a good source of vitamins C, A, and K. Fresh cranberries are used in this recipe, but if fresh are not in season, feel free to use frozen berries thawed in the fridge. Dried cranberries can also work, but it would be best to reduce the amount of sugar to ½ (or ¾) of a cup instead.
  • Walnuts: Full of omega 3s fats and fiber for a healthy heart and brain. Also high in iron, zinc, copper, selenium, vitamin C, and niacin. They’re an excellent choice of nut to add to your daily meals. Feel free to add an equal amount of nuts, if walnuts aren’t your favorite. A mix of unsalted nuts would also work well and taste lovely in this bread.
  • Orange: The orange zest and juice add a small amount of bright sweetness to this fruity bread. It not only complements the tart cranberry flavor but you’ll get a tiny boost of vitamin C, as well. For an unusual twist, try using tangerine or clementine instead.
  • Flaxseeds: This nutty bread is just full of healthy fats. Along with the walnuts, the flaxseed adds even more omega 3s to every bite. A ground flax “egg” acts as a binder to keep the bread dough together. You can swap out the flaxseeds (if needed) for mashed ripe banana, a powdered egg alternative, applesauce, or soaked chia seeds. Check out this vegan egg replacement guide for even more suggestions.
Key ingredients for cranberry walnut bread with labels.

How To Make No Knead Cranberry Nut Bread

These simple steps are all you need to know to get started on this luscious loaf. Once you get the orange and flax egg prepped, everything else is a cinch. Just add to the bowl, mix, and bake. No need to knead!

Step 1: Zest and juice the orange. Set aside the 3-4 tablespoons of juice and zest for later.

Orange zest and bread batter.

Step 2: Make the flax egg using 3 tablespoons of warm water and 1 tablespoon of ground flaxmeal. Leave to thicken.

Step 3: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F and grease the loaf pan. You can also line it with parchment paper.

Step 4: Mix up the dry ingredients well. The flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and sugar should be incorporated fully.

Dry bread ingredients in a glass bowl.

Step 5: Into the same bowl, add in the wet ingredients of orange zest, orange juice, flax egg, melted vegan butter, vanilla, and boiling water. Stir well until the batter is smooth.

Step 6: Add in the nuts and cranberries. Mix just enough to combine.

Step 7: Sprinkle with optional chopped walnuts and dried cranberries. Place in oven and bake for 1 hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan and sit for at least an hour before removing the loaf and cutting the bread. (Note: Bread is even better the next day. It’s totally worth the wait.)

Helpful Tips and Suggestions for Serving

The best part of making a fresh loaf of bread is deciding how to enjoy it! This cranberry walnut bread is very versatile, especially with ingredients. Here are our favorite tips on ways to swap ingredients and how to serve this bread most successfully.

  • Best Made Ahead: This wonderful walnut cranberry bread is even better the next day. Although it tastes delicious right out of the oven, the flavor and texture are best after resting for a day.
  • Toasted vs. Chilled: Sliced and toasted (with extra vegan butter) or eaten right from the fridge slathered with vegan cream cheese are both super tasty options. Toasted tastes best with a hot cup of tea, while chilled is perfect for taking it on-the-go or with a cool beverage.
  • Four Fruity Flavors: Instead of fresh cranberries, try swapping for big juicy blueberries, sliced strawberries, peeled peach halves, or in-season chopped apples.
  • Go Nuts!: If walnuts aren’t your favorite, how about adding in slivered almonds, pistachios, macadamia nuts, or pecans? You could also add a sprinkling of chocolate chips to the top as well before baking.
  • Feel Free to Use Gluten-Free: We’ve tested this recipe with Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 baking flour with excellent results.
  • Lower-Fat Version: For a low-to-no fat version, replace the 2 tablespoons of vegan butter with an equal amount of applesauce.
  • Reduced Sugar Substitute: If you’d rather not use granulated sugar, try substituting for an equal amount of ripe, speckled, mashed bananas. Other options include date sugar, coconut sugar, or monk fruit.
Walnut cranberry bread sliced on a plate.

Cranberry Walnut Bread Simple Storage

Store this no knead cranberry walnut bread in the fridge if you think you may not be able to eat the entire loaf in one week. If the bread will be gobbled up in less than a week, you can simply keep it covered on the counter.

A freshly baked loaf of bread will keep fresh for up to a week at room temperature, up to two weeks in the refrigerator, or for 2-3 months in the freezer. Make sure to wrap the bread in freezer paper (or parchment paper) and add it to a sealed, freezer-safe container before freezing. Thaw in the fridge a day or two before serving the bread or slice carefully and warm in the toaster.

More Easy Bread Recipes to Try

Cranberry Walnut Bread (Easy + No Knead)

Author: Gina House | World of Vegan
5 from 7 votes
This cranberry walnut bread is a sweet and satisfying crowd favorite! Bursting with the vibrant flavors of dried fruit and crunchy nuts, this festive loaf will steal the spotlight on your holiday table. With simple pantry staples and a little bit of cheerful cranberry flavor, our cranberry walnut bread is the perfect bake-ahead bread for any celebratory occasion.
A loaf of walnut cranberry bread, sliced.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 10 slices

Equipment

  • Loaf Pan 5" x 9"
  • Sifter
  • Zester
  • Orange Juicer or a simple fork will do

Ingredients

  • 1 medium orange
  • 1 tablespoon ground flaxmeal
  • 3 tablespoons warm water
  • oil or spray oil, for greasing the pan
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, gluten-free 1-to-1 baking flour also works well
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegan butter , melted
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ cup boiling water
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts, plus a handful for topping (lightly toast in a dry, preheated pan, if desired).
  • 1 cup whole fresh cranberries, or thawed and drained frozen cranberries
  • 3 tablespoons dried sweetened cranberries, for topping (optional)

Instructions

  • Using a zester, zest the orange peel and set the zest aside. Cut the orange in half, squeeze the juice into a small bowl to make 4-5 tablespoons orange juice, and set aside.
  • In a small ramekin, mix 1 tablespoon of ground flaxmeal with 3 tablespoons of very warm water. Let sit for at least 10 minutes until it thickens. This will be your flax egg.
  • Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  • Spray or rub the sides of the loaf pan with oil and line with parchment paper.
  • In a large mixing bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and sugar. Then stir to fully combine the dry ingredients.
  • To the same bowl, add the orange juice, orange zest, melted butter, flax egg (flaxmeal and water mixture), vanilla extract, and boiling water. Mix well.
  • Add the nuts and cranberries, reserving a small amount of nuts for topping, and mix just enough to combine.
  • Spoon batter into the prepared loaf pan, sprinkle the top with the walnuts and dried cranberries (this is optional), and bake for one hour, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in the pan and sit for at least an hour before removing the loaf cutting the bread.

Notes

  • Lower-Fat Version: Feel free to substitute 2 tablespoons of applesauce for the plant-based butter for a lower-fat version.
  • Gluten-Free Option: Tested with Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour with excellent results.
  • Add Some Pizzazz: Sprinkle some toasted walnuts, dried cranberries, white or dark chocolate chips, or  Turbinado sugar over the top before placing it into the oven to bake.

Nutrition

Calories: 294kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 11g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 7g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.4g | Sodium: 255mg | Potassium: 120mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 25g | Vitamin A: 38IU | Vitamin C: 9mg | Calcium: 59mg | Iron: 2mg
Course Baked Good, Breakfast or Snack
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry walnut bread

Thanks to our amazing recipe testers Jessica Sabbagh, Nicole Benson, and Taylor Allred for testing this recipe! Cranberry Walnut Bread photos by Amanda McGillicuddy for World of Vegan, all rights reserved.

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Recipe Rating




7 comments
  1. Andrea White says:

    5 stars
    Love how easy this bread is to make!

  2. 5 stars
    This cranberry walnut bread is so yummy! Love that it’s no-knead. Fantastic timing for the holidays!

  3. 5 stars
    I hope you all love my Cranberry Walnut Bread! I’ve been making various versions for about two months and it’s now a staple in our family to have a slice with a warm cup of tea in the evening. Give it a try using orange icing, too!

  4. 5 stars
    Ah, love the walnuts, cranberries and all the flavors here. Such a gorgeous looking bread!

  5. 5 stars
    Love walnuts in bakes. Not sure I’ve ever paired them with cranberries before, but now I’m sold.

  6. 5 stars
    This bread is delicious! I love the combination of tart cranberries and crunchy walnuts.

  7. 5 stars
    Your No Knead Cranberry Walnut Bread recipe was a delightful surprise in its simplicity and flavor. The texture was perfectly balanced with the tartness of the cranberries and the earthy crunch of the walnuts. It’s refreshing to find a bread recipe that doesn’t require hours of work but still delivers such amazing results. Enjoyed every slice, especially with a cup of tea!

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