Cranberry Orange Muffins with Pecans

Cranberry muffins
James Baigrie/Photodisc/Getty Images
  • 40 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 25 mins
  • Yield: 18 muffins (18 servings)

Orange zest adds bright flavor to these tasty cranberry muffins. The muffins are made with fresh cranberries. Chopped pecans or walnuts add texture. Consider toasting the pecans or walnuts for some extra flavor. 

See the tips and variations and the reader comments for more suggestions.

What You'll Need

  • 1 1/2 cups chopped fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange peel

How to Make It

Heat the oven to 400 F.

Grease muffin cups or line with cupcake papers. (About 18)

Toss the cranberries with 1/4 cup of sugar in a bowl; set aside.

In a mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt, and remaining 1 cup sugar. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs.

In another bowl combine eggs with milk; stir into flour mixture until just moistened.

Gently fold in nuts and orange peel and cranberries.

Fill the prepared muffin cups about two-thirds full.

Bake in the preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes.

Makes about 18 muffins.

Tips and Variations

  • Add extra orange zest and some orange extract for more orange flavor.
  • To toast the pecans or walnuts, spread them out in a baking pan in a single layer. Bake in a preheated 350 F oven for about 6 to 10 minutes, turning and stirring frequently. Transfer them to another pan or bowl to cool. When they're done they will look slightly darker and will have a toasted aroma.
  • Sprinkle the muffins with cinnamon-sugar just before baking.

Reader Comments

"I am always a little skeptical with cranberries. We like the flavor but sometimes they are a bit tart. This recipe is fantastic!! We all love it!" — G.N.

"I loved these. I used buttermilk and added 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda. I toasted the pecans before chopping them and added 1/2 teaspoon of orange extract to the egg and milk mixture to give them a little more orange flavor. Baked some regular size and some mini muffins. Both were great." — B.R.

"Cranberries are hard to use, because of their tart, unique taste. I had a dinner party and everyone loved these! I love to bake, and I must say that these are in the top ten favorite recipes of mine." — R.F.

"This is going to be a Christmas Favorite. I did add a little extra milk and a small squeeze of the orange I zested. Thank you for the recipe!!" — M.S.

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