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  • Writer's pictureMadelaine

Orange and Cranberry Cake

Who says you can’t have a fresh fruit cake in the wintertime? Using simple, seasonal ingredients, such as cranberries, and budget-friendly pantry staples, this Orange and Cranberry Cake will be a showstopper!

Cranberries, often excluded from desserts, deserve a place in cakes too. They are delicate and tender and add a beautiful splash of colour to any dessert. The vegan buttercream I filled the cake with is creamy, light, fluffy and not too sweet. It has a delicate orange flavour, and it is heavenly smooth. I prepared the buttercream just as my Mum would. And boy, it makes all the difference! I learned that it is actually called Ermine Frosting. Scroll down for the step-by-step instructions and the full recipe.

I hope you will give this Orange and Cranberry Cake a go and enjoy making it and serving with your family and friends at Christmas time, just as much as I did sharing it with you today. Wishing you a lovely Christmas and hope to see you again soon! 🎄🌟❄️

Orange and Cranberry Cake covered with white buttercream, decorated with sugared cranberries,  rosemary trees and a tiny snowman, all on a wooden tree slice

PREP TIME: 30 min

TOTAL TIME: 2 hrs (incl. cooling)

SERVINGS: 12-14 slices


- 250g plain flour

- 50g coconut flour

- 150g sugar

- 10g baking powder

- pinch of salt

- 120ml veg oil

- 150ml plant-based milk

- 150ml orange juice

- zest of a large orange

- 1 tsp vanilla extract

- 100g frozen cranberry (thawed and squeezed)

- 20g corn flour

Orange buttercream:

- 250ml plant-based milk (rice, oat, or coconut)

- 100g caster sugar

- 33g flour

- zest of a large orange

- 250g vegan butter (room temperature)



1. Place the frozen cranberries into a sieve and let them thaw completely.

2. Add all the dry ingredients to a large bowl, and mix thoroughly. Add the wet ingredients, and the orange zest and mix until combined, but don't overmix the batter. Set aside for a few minutes.

3. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4.

4. Line two 8”/20cm cake tins with parchment paper, covering the sides as well.

5. Add the corn flour to a small bowl. Squeeze the excess juice from the cranberries and roll them in the corn flour until fully coated. Gently fold them in the cake batter.

6. Divide the batter between the two tins and even out their tops. Bake for about 40-45 minutes or until a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean.

7. Let the cakes cool in the tin for at least 30min, then transfer them onto a cooling rack. Let them cool completely before assembling the cake with the buttercream.

Vegan buttercream:

1. To make the buttercream, start by making a flour and plant-based milk paste. Add the plant-based milk, sugar, flour and orange zest to a saucepan.

2. Bring the paste to a boil, stirring continuously. Cook until it has a thick, custard-like consistency. Remove from the heat and let it cool completely. Give it an occasional stir to prevent the top to form a skin. You can also cover the paste with a piece of cling film, pressing the clingfilm into the paste. This will slow down the cooling process, but you won’t need to stir it.

3. Add the vegan butter to a bowl or a standing mixer and mix for about 5 min on high speed, until white and fluffy. Add one spoon of the paste at a time to the butter and continue mixing until you incorporated all the orange paste into the butter and your buttercream is ready.


Assemble the cake:

1. Place one cake layer onto a cake stand, add about 1/3 of the buttercream and spread it evenly. Place the other layer cake on top, turning it upside down to ensure the top of the cake is level. Divide the remaining buttercream between the top and the sides of the cake, spreading it evenly to cover the whole cake.

2. Decorate with sugared cranberries, sugared rosemary sprigs, shredded coconut, and pinecones. To decorate this cake, you will need around 50g of sugared cranberries, recipe here.

Orange and Cranberry Cake on a wooden tree slice  with white buttercream, decorated with sugared cranberries,  rosemary trees and a tiny snowman

Click on the below to download this recipe as a free, pdf recipe card:

Orange and Cranberry Cake
Download PDF • 2.10MB

Have you tried this recipe or want to say hi?

I would love to hear from you 😊 Comment below and/or share a pic on Instagram with the tag: #madelaineskitchen

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