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Healthy Cranberry Muffins with Orange Zest

Healthy cranberry muffins with orange juice that are lower in sugar than others but just as fluffy and flavorful. Easy breakfast treat even my kids love. If you went crazy over our leftover cranberry cobbler, this is another dish you can make with these red fruits.

Cranberry Orange Muffins

You don’t have to wait until the holidays to make healthy cranberry muffins. Since the main ingredient is sweetened and dried you can enjoy these babies all year long. Yep, that is right. One of the best muffin recipes ever whether you glaze them or not. (affiliate links present)

Cranberry Orange Muffin Recipe

The orange zest is optional for these but is a nice addition for sure. You can use navels, or tangerines for the juice and zest. Or…leave it out if you’d rather. Some of these had a simple glaze added to the top. Of course this would sway it away from being healthier so use it or skip that part at the end. As “regular” size or mini muffins they sure are yummy.

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Now if you wanted to make healthy cranberry bread you could use this same recipe or our banana cranberry bread. Just use a 9×5″ loaf pan and fill 3/4 of the way full. Bake for closer to 50 minutes for that. Ovens vary slightly so 45-60 minutes is the range to ensure it bakes all the way thru.

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Now let’s talk a bit about my favorite things when it comes to muffins though shall we?

  1. You really should get a 24 cup muffin pan, or opt for a quicker baking time with mini muffins.
  2. I ALWAYS use muffin liners and you should too. They make cleanup easier and grab and go breakfasts a thang. 😉
    1. No pan, no problem! Use these self standing muffin cups instead!
  3. This is the best way to store leftovers so they don’t get smushed!
muffin recipe

Orange Juice Muffins

Use a hand or stand mixer to blend together. I love my KitchenAid so I go with that. Make sure that with any baking project you combine the wet ingredients and dry ingredients separately. This is important as baking is sorta’ a science and mixing the two too early will mess things up.

More than anything it will likely make things more dense and not as fluffy as you’d like them to be. Preheating is always an important step to not skip as well. To make a quicker cleanup, use muffin cup liners.

  1. All purpose flour
    1. another tip is to always measure flour properly
    2. you could substitute for white whole wheat flour
  2. Milk
  3. Oil, olive oil is healthiest
  4. Egg
  5. Sugar
  6. Baking powder and salt
  7. Muffin tin

Then you add your dried cranberries, juice and zest if you want that added shebang. I have even just used a spoonful of leftover cranberry sauce recipe with orange juice if that was all I had on hand.

Cranberry Orange Muffin

You can adjust things to be healthier than others, like using olive oil vs. vegetable. Keep in mind that will alter the flavor slightly as it has a stronger flavor than it’s counterpart. Fat free milk can also be used instead of whole which will make them low fat but with that there will be a difference too. More fat = more moist, take your pick.

These are lower in sugar than many other varieties for sure. Our pumpkin cranberry bread is a huge favorite but definitely has more fat and calories than these do.

Cranberry Muffin Recipe

If you want to add a muffin glaze to the top of some of them you can by just whisking the following ingredients together:

  • 1/2 cup of powdered sugar
  • 1 tsp orange juice
  • 2 tsp milk or maple syrup

I have used this at times for these and our lemon muffin recipe when I want it to be more like a cupcake. 😉

Cranberry Muffins

Orange Muffin Recipe

Using fruit is a great way to add lots of flavor to baked goods. We usually use naners like our coconut banana bread muffins but during the holidays we’ll change it up with these. We have a printable recipe available at the bottom of this post but here is a quick rundown;

  • Start by preheating your oven to 400 degrees. Squeeze and zest orange. In a cup mix that fresh orange juice and milk together. Set aside.
  • In a bowl mix together egg, oil and sugar. Then add your orange/milk mixture.
  • Mix together dry ingredients in another bowl, then fold into wet mixture until well blended. Fold in dried cranberries.
  • Line the muffin pan with papers or spray lightly with non stick spray. Fill 3/4 of the way full. Bake 10-12 minutes or just until tops are very lightly browned and middle springs back when gently touched.
  • You can test with a toothpick inserted in middle too. If only crumbs are attached and insides aren’t wet they are done too.

You never want to over-bake them or they will dry out. The best way to do this is take out immediately once middle is cooked thru and transfer to a cooling rack. If not the hot pan will continue baking them essentially and dry them out.

healthy cranberry muffins

Fluffy Cranberry Orange Muffins

You can drizzle the frosting on when they’re still warm or at room temperature. Leave plain for healthier versions. I have not used fresh cranberries or frozen cranberries for these but I imagine that would work just as well. Those are harder to find and not always found in grocery stores year round so I stick with this version.

I will make my own Instant Pot cranberry sauce every year though because it’s so much better than canned.

muffin glaze
Orange Muffins

Want to see a few of my favorite things that I am totally obsessed with?? Take a peek and see how many you might already have…twinsies!

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Healthy Cranberry Muffins

Healthy cranberry muffins with orange juice that are lower in sugar than others but just as fluffy and flavorful. Easy breakfast treat.
Course Breakfast, Dessert
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry, healthy, muffins, orange, orange juice
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 194kcal
Author The Typical Mom

Equipment

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. and zest orange. In a cup mix orange juice and milk together. Set aside.
  • In a bowl mix together egg, oil and sugar. Then add milk mixture.
  • In another bowl mix together dry ingredients, then fold into wet mixture until well blended. Fold in dried cranberries.
  • Line muffin pan with papers and fill 3/4 of the way full. Bake 10-12 minutes or just until tops are very lightly browned and middle springs back when gently touched in the center.
  • Remove from pan and set on cooling rack, enjoy. If you want to make a glaze, whisk together 1 cup powdered sugar with just enough orange juice or water to make the thickness you want. Drizzle on top with a bit of zest.

Video

Nutrition Facts
Healthy Cranberry Muffins
Amount Per Serving (1 oz)
Calories 194 Calories from Fat 54
% Daily Value*
Fat 6g9%
Saturated Fat 1g6%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 15mg5%
Sodium 108mg5%
Potassium 124mg4%
Carbohydrates 34g11%
Fiber 1g4%
Sugar 16g18%
Protein 3g6%
Vitamin A 49IU1%
Vitamin C 3mg4%
Calcium 48mg5%
Iron 1mg6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000 calorie diet.
Recipe Rating




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