It's hard to beat the combination of orange and cranberry, especially when talking about baked goods like muffins, quick breads and cookies. These muffins are filled with the sweet and tangy flavors, and the extra crunch of chopped pecans add a little something extra special. The original recipe called for the zest from one orange but you can never have too much orange in breads and muffins like these, so I doubled this. The muffins are all the better for it. I also substituted the all purpose flour for a gluten-free blend. A cup-for-cup style gluten-free flour works perfectly for this flexible recipe.

This recipe was adapted from

ingredients for orange cranberry muffins

Prep time: 20 minutes

Total time: 45 minutes

Yields: 10-12 muffins

Orange-Cranberry Muffins With Pecans (Vegan)
  • 2 cups all purpose flour (or 2 cups Multi-Blend Flour from Authentic Foods for a gluten-free version)
  • 3/4 cup gently packed brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/3 cup grapeseed oil (for a healthier version, substitute this with 1/3 cup apple sauce)
  • 2/3 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • 1 very ripe banana, mashed until smooth (about 1/4 cup)
  • 1/3 cup water
  • zest from two large oranges
  • 1 cup dried cranberries
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
Finished Orange Cranberry Muffins

Cooking directions

  1. Preheat the oven at 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a muffin tin or line them with nonbleached muffin papers.
  2. In a large bowl mix together the flour, brown sugar, and baking powder. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the oil (or applesauce), orange juice, water, banana, and orange zest. Stir until combined.
  4. Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until just moistened. Gently fold in the cranberries and pecans, but avoid over-mixing.
  5. Spoon batter into the muffin tins and place in the preheated oven.
  6. Bake for 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Let the muffins cool for 5 minutes in the tins, then remove them and finish cooling on a wire rack.

Jaymi Heimbuch ( @jaymiheimbuch ) focuses on wildlife conservation and animal news from her home base in San Francisco.

Orange-Cranberry Muffins with Pecans
These muffins are filled with the sweet and tangy flavors.