Cranberry-Orange Crunch Muffins and My Holiday Trees

The flavor combination of cranberry and orange has been appearing quite frequently this holiday season.  There are many recipes using these two ingredients and I found the perfect muffin by King Arthur Flour (KAF). These will be delicious with my Christmas Day brunch of eggs, kielbasa, roasted hash browns and fresh fruit. They are on the lighter side not using any butter and also the topping does not have any butter. Still very good and just sweet enough…



These flavorful muffins filled with cranberry and orange will be a favorite at the BIG FIESTA FRIDAY 100 PARTY! Today is the beginning of a 2 week celebration; Fiesta Friday has reached a milestone – 100 weeks of blogging fun! Thanks to Angie who started this great group and the four co-hosts; Judi (me), Mollie, Steffi and Suzanne.

I also have included all of my holiday trees to share and maybe start a tradition in your family. When the kids were young I gave them their own tree and each year an ornament or two. They loved their “special nightlights”.

Cranberry-Orange Crunch Muffins and My Holiday Trees

  • 2 cups Mellow Pastry Blend or AP flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, or fresh or frozen cranberries finely chopped (frozen or fresh will give you a slightly “tarter” muffin) I did use fresh and will add more cranberries next time, maybe an extra 1/2 cup
  • 1 large egg
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 3/4 cup milk (I used 2%)
  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 1/8 tsp. orange oil or 1/2 tsp. orange peel, zested

In a bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt; then toss the chopped cranberries in the mix and stir to coat.

Whisk together the egg, oil, milk, orange juice and orange oil or zest. Gently and thoroughly mix the west ingredients into the dry ingredients.

Scoop the batter into 12 lightly greased muffin wells.


  • 1/4 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed (can use light or dark)
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon

Combine the three ingredients and sprinkle a little topping on top of each muffin. Bake at 400°F for 20 minutes or until a cake tester inserted into the center of one comes out clean.

This is a wet batter and that’s why the recipe says to tilt the muffins after removing from the oven so steam does not collect underneath as they cool. After 10 minutes remove to a wire rack to finish cooling. There was definitely beads of moisture in the bottom of each well.

If you would prefer to drizzle an icing on top of the muffins after baking instead of the sugar/pecan mixture combine 1 cup confectioners’ sugar and 3 tbsp. orange juice. Mix well and drizzle over the warm muffins.

Recipe by  

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My 6 foot gingerbread tree…

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My Santa mini tree…

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My garden tree…

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My trains tree…

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My kitchen tree…

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Just another tree…


One of my sister’s made this ceramic tree many years ago in a class. This is one of my most treasured trees…

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My snowmen tree…

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46 thoughts on “Cranberry-Orange Crunch Muffins and My Holiday Trees

  1. Wonderful recipe, great trees – you really know how to party, Juju! I absolutely love the fact that we’re co-hosting this event together! Have a wonderful Christmas, and a great Fiesta Friday!
    Ginger x


    • Thanks Steffi – I’ve been collecting ornaments for a very long time and all of the lights just brighten my holiday. We’re having lots of fun at the big 100 aren’t we? I keep thinking about the dessert you brought wondering if I might make it for New Year’s. Happy Holidays and Happy Fiesta Friday!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Juju, I’ve been staring at your wonderful 6foot tree and toys for a .. for a long time! 😀 You’ve got so many beautiful toys! And you know, I thought they are made from real gingerbread 🙂
    Wishing you and yours Merry Xmas and bright holidays!


    • Thanks Suzanne – I really love all of the lights on the trees – they just look so festive and bright. The muffins are very good with the cranberry and orange – of course I always like a topping too. Happy Holidays, Happy Fiesta Friday #100 and Happy to be co-hosting with you.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Those muffins look fabulous Judi! And your trees, oh my gosh, they are beautiful! The gingerbread one is my favorite 🙂 Thank you for hosting FF #100 and Merry Christmas!!


    • Thanks Liz – my trees are a favorite decoration (took a lot of years to get to this point). Everyone enjoys looking at the different trees – I know Santa took time to appreciate them as he left his goodies under the tree. The muffins are great, not so much fat but everyone liked them. Happy Holidays to you and your family 🙂


  4. Lovely muffins Judi and wow you’ve certainly spruced up the place for Santa’s arrival :). Great decorating, love all the wee touches of Christmas around. Have a bright and healthy New Year 2016.


  5. Your post really gave me a smile when I saw all those trees. I made my mother a ceramic Christmas tree years ago that she put out each December.


  6. I’m glad my post made you smile Karen. Do you still have the ceramic tree? I handle mine with kid gloves. My sister made a real big one for herself and the small one for me. I love it as it has good memories and it’s old!


  7. I love the look of the muffins, and I’m very impressed by your ceramic tree. It must be great to get it out every year. The decorations on your gingerbread tree are lovely, too. Gingerbread at Christmas has never been a tradition in the UK, but I’ve noticed quite a lot in the shops this year. Lovely post, Auntjuju.


    • Thanks – I love all my trees but my sister was young when she made it and it is extra special. Gingerbread is a big thing in my home – in addition to decorations, always cookies and for 20 years we made gingerbread houses.


  8. Oh my gosh, now I want to make muffins! Yum! Such a great treat for Fiesta Friday – coz, yeah, on a two week party, we have to think about breakfast/brunch, too, right? And I’m so happy to be co-hosting with you, Steffi and Suzanne!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Your trees are amazing, I love the gingerbread tree. Cranberry and orange are my favourite flavours this time of year, perfect in muffins, thanks for sharing your recipe. Enjoying the 2 week Fiesta party, so many delicious recipes to try. All the best for 2016 🙂


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