This Fresh Cranberry Christmas Cake will fill you with Christmas cheer! Topped with the best cream cheese frosting and garnished with sugared cranberries!
Can we talk about baking with fresh cranberries for a second? Why am I so late to the game?
I have plenty of recipes using dried cranberries like these Dark Chocolate Cranberry Magic Bars (one of my all time favorites, btw), and these Cranberry Almond White Chocolate Brownies (yum!!), or these amaaaaazing Chewy Dark Chocolate Cranberry Cookies. But nothing using fresh cranberries! What in the world?
Since cranberries are in all the grocery stores now, and the holidays are fast approaching, I just had to create a festive recipe with fresh cranberries! Get excited!
Have you ever baked with fresh cranberries before? If not, you are in for a treat! Being surrounded by butter and sugar, the berries lose some of their tartness while baking. This is a good thing, because on their own, they are a bit strong for my liking.
They retain just the right amount of tartness that is paired so delightfully with the sweet, moist, and tender almond flavored cake.
You could leave the cake unfrosted and just dust with a bit of powdered sugar, and it would be a beautiful addition to your weekend or holiday brunch!
However, I could not resist slathering this cake with my favorite ultra creamy, perfectly sweet, cream cheese frosting.
To give this cake that holiday razzle dazzle, I garnished it with sugared cranberries. They are easy to make and look so elegant and pretty!
How to Make Sugared Cranberries:
- Add 1/2 cup water and 1/2 cup granulated sugar to a saucepan.
- Over medium heat, whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved.
- Turn off the heat and add cranberries to the sugar water and stir.
- Add about 1/2 cup granulated sugar to a small bowl and roll a few cranberries at a time in the sugar until they are all coated. Lay them on parchment or wax paper until the sugar hardens (about an hour).
These sugared cranberries are an easy way to add an elegant (and edible!) touch to your holiday desserts!
Here are some pro tips and answers to questions you may have about how to make this Cranberry Christmas Cake Recipe:
- Cream together the butter and sugars really well (about 3 minutes) to help ensure your cake is nice and fluffy!
- The addition of brown sugar and almond extract gives this cake a deeper flavor than granulated sugar and vanilla would on their own. It adds that extra something that makes you close your eyes and say “mmmmm”.
- How can I keep the cranberries from sinking to the bottom of the cake? Tossing the cranberries in flour before adding to the cake batter helps keep the cranberries evenly distributed throughout the cake.
- Can this cake me made in advance and frozen? Yes! Double wrap the cooled, unfrosted cake in plastic wrap and freeze up to 3 months. Thaw the cake at room temperature for a few hours and frost!
Products used to make this Cranberry Christmas Cake Recipe:
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More holiday dessert recipes you may enjoy:
- Easy Pumpkin Praline Cake From Scratch is a must make dessert for fall and the upcoming holiday season! Save this recipe now for Thanksgiving and Christmas!
- Homemade Spice Cake with Maple Frosting and Maple Glazed Pecans – the perfect Thanksgiving or Christmas dessert recipe! As easy as a box mix but tastes SO much better!
- No Bake Mint Oreo Cheesecake Pie is an easy dessert recipe you will make over and over again. One cool, creamy, bite and everyone will be begging for more!
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Fresh Cranberry Christmas Cake
|1 hours, 20 minutes
- 1 cup unsalted butter (softened)
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 eggs
- 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 2/3 cups sour cream
- 2 cups fresh cranberries (mixed with 1 TBS flour)
- 6 tablespoons unsalted butter (softened)
- 6oz cream cheese (softened)
- 2 1/2 cups powdered sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2/3 cups sugared cranberries (optional)
|Preheat oven to 350
In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugars until light and creamy.
|Add the extracts and salt and mix well.
|Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing after each addition.
|Add baking powder and half of the flour and mix to combine.
|Mix in the sour cream, then add remaining flour and mix again.
|Stir in floured cranberries and pour batter into a well greased 9" bundt pan.
Bake 50-55 minutes or until tester inserted into the cake comes to clean. Allow to cool 15-20 minutes in the pan, then carefully run a knife around the edges of the cake, and turn onto a cooling rack and allow to cool completely.
|In a mixing bowl beat the butter and sour cream until smooth.
|Add vanilla and sugar and beat until creamy and smooth.
|Frost the cooled cake and garnish with sugared cranberries, if desired.
Store leftovers covered in the refrigerator.