Orange Cranberry Twists

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These Orange Cranberry Twists are a beautiful recipe for a holiday morning.

Orange Cranberry Twists

How to Make Orange Cranberry Twists:

If you’re one who likes the feel of making bread, you’ll enjoy assembling these pastries.  They begin with an orange-scented  yeast dough with dried cranberries mixed in.  The dough is lovingly kneaded and left to rise and rest.

The dough is divided in half and rolled out.  A simple, sweet orange filling is spread onto each half of the dough.

Stack of Orange Cranberry Twists

After filling, the rolled out dough is folded in half and strips are cut.  A little twist to each strip, and they’re placed that way on the baking sheet.

Fresh out of the oven, the twists are drizzled lightly with a simple, sugary orange glaze.

Stack of Orange Cranberry Twists

These Orange Cranberry Twists are so pretty to display for a special breakfast or brunch.  They do take a bit of effort, but if you love being in the kitchen creating things like this then I say they’re worth the effort.  I personally get so much satisfaction out of baking beautiful pastries!

Think about Christmas morning.  How pretty would these be with coffee and fruit?

Orange Cranberry Twists

If you’re looking for more fall pastry recipes, you might also enjoy my Danish Braid with Apple Filling or these Starbuck’s Pumpkin SconesPumpkin- Nutella Cheesecake Danish, Baked Pumpkin Doughnuts and Cinnamon Apple Fritters are also delicious fall-themed pastries!

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5 from 1 vote

Orange Cranberry Twists

A beautiful pastry for fall breakfast or brunch.
Prep Time 45 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Rising & Resting Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes
Servings 28 pastries
Calories 173kcal
Course Breakfast
Cuisine American
Keyword orange cranberry pastry, pastries



  • 4 to 4 1/2 cups all purpose flour, divided
  • 2 .25-ounce packages active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1/3 cup salted butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 3/4 cup dried cranberries, chopped


  • 2/3 cup granulated white sugar
  • 1/4 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest


  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons orange juice



  • In a large bowl, combine 2 cups of the flour and the yeast; set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, heat and stir the milk, sugar, butter and salt until warm (120°F to 130°F) and the butter almost melts. Add to the flour mixture. Add the eggs, orange zest, and the orange juice. Beat with an electric mixer on low to medium speed for 30 seconds, scraping the bowl constantly. Beat on high speed for 3 minutes. Stir in the dried cranberries and as much of the remaining 4 to 4 1/2 cups flour as you can with a wooden spoon.
  • Turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Knead in enough of the remaining 4 to 4 1/2 cups flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total). Shape the dough into a ball. Place the dough in a lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease the surface of the dough. Cover and let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).
  • Punch down the dough; turn out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide the dough in half. Cover and let rest for 10 minutes. Line two baking sheets with foil. Grease the foil; set aside.


  • In a small bowl, stir together the sugar, butter, flour and orange zest. Roll each dough half into a 14x10-inch rectangle. Spread half of the filling lengthwise over half of each rectangle. Fold the dough rectangles in half lengthwise, covering the filling. Cut each filled rectangle into fourteen 1-inch-wide strips. Holding a strip at both ends, carefully twist the ends in opposite directions. Place the strip on the prepared baking sheet, pressing the ends down. Repeat with the remaining strips.
  • Cover and let rise in a warm place until nearly double (about 30 minutes).


  • In a small bowl, stir together 1 1/2 cups sifted powdered sugar, 1 teaspoon orange zest, and enough orange juice (2 to 3 tablespoons) to reach drizzling consistency.
  • Preheat the oven to 375°F. Bake the twists for 15 to 18 minutes or until light brown. Immediately remove the twists from the baking sheets and place on wire racks set over waxed paper. Drizzle warm twists with Orange Icing.


  • If you can squeeze fresh orange juice for this recipe, these will be even more delicious!
  • To make the rolls ahead, prepared as directed through step 5. Cover twists with oiled waxed paper, then plastic wrap, leaving room for twists to rise. Chill for at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours. Uncover; let stand at room temperature for 35 minutes. Break any surface bubbles with a greased toothpick. Continue as directed in step 7.
  • To bake ahead: Prepare as directed, except do not drizzle with Orange Icing. Place cooled twists in a freezer container or bag and freeze for up to 1 month. To reheat, preheat oven to 325. Place twists on two baking sheets. Bake 12 to 15 minutes or until warm. Drizzle with Orange Icing.


Serving: 1pastry | Calories: 173kcal | Carbohydrates: 31g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 4g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Cholesterol: 23mg | Sodium: 83mg | Potassium: 49mg | Fiber: 0g | Sugar: 16g | Vitamin A: 160IU | Vitamin C: 3.4mg | Calcium: 12mg | Iron: 0.9mg
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  • Lisa wrote:

    Hi I made these and they taste delicious. But did anyone have trouble making the filling? It didn’t cream together very well. It was like sugar paste and wasn’t very spreadable. Tips? Thanks!

  • Natalie wrote:

    These twists look so delicious and perfect for brunch!