cranberry muffins 1

To me, it just doesn’t feel like the holidays until I have cranberry bread.  This is the one sweet-bread that the Tall Boy and I can agree on–it’s just tart enough for him, but still sweet enough for me that I don’t feel like I’m eating something healthy.  Because the holidays are all about indulging, right?  And then we all jump aboard the health-conscious train in January?

Or is that just me?

Anyway, when we were tasked with the ingredient combination of cranberries and eggnog for this month’s Improv Challenge, I knew this was as good excuse for me as any to make cranberry bread.

Except I’m fairly lazy and chopping up whole cranberries seems like such a chore.  So when my mother gave me a cranberry bread recipe she found in our local newspaper that actually called for whole cranberries, I felt like my prayers had been answered.  I adapted the recipe to make muffins, and topped each one with eggnog whipped cream–as if the muffins weren’t calorie-laden enough on their own.



cranberry muffins 2


Cranberry Muffins with Eggnog Cream
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 12
For the muffins:
  • ¼ cup butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ¾ cup fresh orange juice (about 3 large oranges)
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1½ teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1½ cups fresh whole cranberries
For the cream:
  • ⅔ cup heavy whipping cream
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons fresh eggnog
For the muffins:
  1. Cream butter, sugar and egg until smooth. Stir in orange juice, zest and vanilla.
  2. In another bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Add butter-egg mixture; stir just to blend. Add cranberries and mix until well combined.
  3. Transfer mixture to muffin pan. Bake at 350 until slightly golden, approximately 18 minutes.
  4. Cool on wire rack for about 10 minutes; remove from pan and cool completely.
For the cream:
  1. While your muffins are cooling, chill your mixing bowl. With the whisk attachment of your electric mixer, combine cream, sugar and eggnog, beating until mixture forms a thick cream. Dollop on top of your muffins right before serving.