Happy New Year! If you’re like me, you’re still not quite ready to give up sweets, despite any resolve. These mini cakes are a sweet, tart transition to giving up (or maybe just cutting back) on sugar post-New Year’s. This dessert is both adorable and easy and you probably already have most of the ingredients (except maybe the fresh cranberries). It can even double as a muffin (and muffins = healthy, right?) if you’re in a rush at breakfast time. Just grab a Bundt and bounce!
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries (larger pieces halved, smaller pieces left intact)
1/4 cup butter, softened
1 cup white sugar
1 tsp of vanilla extract
3/4 cup orange juice (we used fresh squeezed — 3 Florida oranges gave us exactly 1 cup — save leftover for glaze)
1/4 cup orange juice
6 tablespoons powdered sugar (roughly)
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour a mini Bundt pan, being sure to get into every crevice. If you don’t have a mini Bundt pan, you can also use a muffin tin to make mini cakes. If you’d rather make a cranberry orange loaf, you can use a 9×5 inch loaf pan.
2. Whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl.
3. In a large bowl, mix together the sugar and orange zest until combined. Add in the butter and mix until well combined — we found a hand mixer worked best for this. With a spoon, stir in the egg and combine until smooth. Stir in orange juice and vanilla. Beat in flour mixture until just moistened (don’t overmix); fold in cranberries.
4. Scoop into prepared pan. We filled the mini bundt pans to the top and they do rise a bit, so you may want to fill them almost to the top. We were able to fill a 12-space mini-bundt pan as well as two spaces in a regular-size muffin tin.
5. Bake for 18-22 minutes, or until the bread springs back when lightly touched and a toothpick comes out clean. Let stand 10 minutes; turn out onto a wire rack to cool. If you can’t get the cakes out, gently slide a knife around the edges of each one and then try again.
6. When the cakes are cooled, drizzle on the powdered sugar glaze. To make the glaze, combine orange juice, powdered sugar, and orange zest. We slowly added powdered sugar by the tablespoon to the orange juice, mixing in between to reach the consistency we wanted. We let the glaze soak into the cakes for a bit and the sweetness was a great contrast for the tart cranberries.
What is your favorite holiday dessert that you can’t give up?