Posted by: Rachel | November 13, 2011

mmmmm, thanks!!

I want to take a moment to thank all my friends who have shared recipes (knowingly or not) with me this year. Some of you know who you are… I sat at your table and tried not to drool as I begged for the recipe for whatever délice you were featuring. Mmmm… many thanks for feeding me and for sharing!

Others have no idea what inspiration I got from their blogs, cookbooks and cooking “apps”, magazine articles, or just walking past their restaurants or bakeries or… you get the idea. Mmmm, indeed!

That said, (and I mean to thank you all year, but this is the season, so…) I thought you might enjoy this reworked cranberry nut bread recipe. More and more of my friends are going gluten-free, either by need or want, so I tried this “re-work” and it worked well; I thought I would share!

I usually just follow the standard recipe on the back of my bag of fresh cranberries. It starts with
2 C flour
1 C sugar…

and goes from there. A nice solid traditional recipe. This isn’t far off that mark, but it’ll do nicely when wheat flour isn’t an option. It is a bit crumbly, but if you make it a day ahead, cool it, and let it spend the night in the fridge well wrapped I think it’ll do just fine. Or, just be extra gentle when slicing!

The big change I made is to use rice and quinoa flours rather than wheat, and less sugar than the original. The friend I foisted some of this off onto this morning told me that she thought it was still a little sweet, ymmv. Anyway, if gluten-free is your thing, give this a go:

Moderately Traditional Cranberry Nut Bread

fresh out of the oven

ain't it purty?

Preheat your oven to 350F
generously butter and (rice) flour a loaf pan

1 C white rice flour
1 C quinoa flour
scant 3/4 C (or less) sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Armenian 7-spice or
1/2 teaspoon each cinnamon and ginger
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 cup orange juice
1 tablespoon grated fresh orange peel*
2 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
1 egg, well beaten
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries, coarsely chopped**
1/2 cup chopped walnuts

sliced and ready to eat

remarkably bread-like!

disclaimer about substitutions: I used dried cranberries this time, chopped them and reconstituted them in the orange juice. And I subbed candied orange peel for the “grated fresh”. Mmmm… perhaps that’s why it seemed a tad too sweet?

Whisk together all the dry ingredients, add the nuts and cranberries, add the liquid (juice and shortening) and the beaten egg, mix well. Pour it into the loaf pan, let it sit in the pan on the counter for 5 minutes before baking, then bake for about 55 minutes. Check with a toothpick, but don’t peek until you think it is done! Let it cool for a few minutes in the pan, then finish cooling on a rack. Mmmm…


If you don’t tell anyone, no one will know that this is gluten free! It is a bit more tender than a bread made with wheat flour, but it slices nicely, tastes just fine, and since you let it sit for a few minutes before baking it avoids that “gritty” feeling that rice flour can “bring to the party” (as they say). This’ll keep in the fridge (if there’s any left), and should freeze nicely (and more importantly thaw nicely!) although I haven’t tried it.

Enjoy this with your turkey, with a nice cup of tea or coffee for breakfast or a snack, with friends and family… and with good health and my thanks! Mmmm…



  1. This looks wonderful. I’ve never eaten cranberry bread, but this post has made me very tempted to try making it!

    • Can you even *get* cranberries “there”? If you can and they aren’t ridiculously dear, give it a shot (either GF or traditional…) and let us know what you think!

      • I think you can buy them frozen. Where I was born in Wales they grew wild in marshy ground near the lake and we used to make tarts with them every summer.

      • Frozen should work fine. Of, if you can find dried ones you can rehydrate them in orange juice with a little brandy or rum, or… mmmmm!! 🙂 Keep us posted!!

  2. What a great fall bread!

    • And how happy am I that it is cool enough to turn the oven on! 🙂

  3. looking good! c

  4. I am officially on the lookout for cranberries as I want to make cranberry sauce for Christmas – and would love to give this gorgeous recipe a go too!

    • Happy “hunting”! Will you share you sauce recipe? I like pretty much *anything* with cranberries…

  5. A nice seasonal recipe for my gluten free friend. I know she will love it.

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