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Orange Cake with Buttercream Frosting and Cranberry Glaze on Glass Serving Plate

Cranberry Glazed Orange Layer Cake

A rich orange cake is layered with a cranberry glaze and frosted with a brown sugar and orange buttercream, topped with more cranberry glaze. Beautiful and delicious.
Course Cakes, Cupcakes & Cheesecake
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Servings 12 Servings
Calories 781kcal
Author Creative Culinary


For the Cake

  • 3 cups sifted cake flour
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt 1 cup 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 3 ½ cups sifted powdered sugar
  • 6 large eggs separated
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange peel
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 ½ teaspoons orange extract
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ cup plain yogurt

For the Cranberry Glaze

  • 1 12- ounce package fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 ½ teaspoons grated orange peel

For the Brown Sugar Frosting

  • 16 ounces cream cheese room temperature
  • 1 cup butter room temperature
  • 1 cup packed golden brown sugar
  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 3 tablespoons orange liqueur Substitute 2 Tbsp orange juice concentrate if desired
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract

For Garnish (Optional)

  • Orange slice
  • Sugared Cranberries


  • Cranberry Sauce
  • Combine cranberries and sugar in processor. Using on/off turns, coarsely chop cranberries.
  • Transfer mixture to heavy medium saucepan. Add 1 cup water and orange peel and bring to boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat; simmer until mixture is reduced to 2 1/3 cups, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.
  • Cool to room temperature.
  • Cover; chill overnight or up to 2 days (mixture will thicken).
  • Brown Sugar Frosting
  • Using electric mixer, beat cream cheese and butter in large bowl until fluffy.
  • Add brown sugar; beat until well blended. Add powdered sugar 1/2 cup (scant) at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Beat in orange liqueur or orange juice concentrate and vanilla.
  • Chill until firm enough to spread, about 30 minutes.
  • Makes about 4 cups.
  • Cake Instructions and Finished Product
  • Preheat oven to 350°F.
  • Butter and flour two 9-inch-diameter cake pans with 2-inch-high sides.
  • Sift flour, baking powder and salt into medium bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter in large bowl until creamy. Gradually add sugar; beat until light and fluffy, occasionally scraping down sides of bowl. Add egg yolks 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.
  • Beat in orange peel, vanilla extract and orange extract.
  • Whisk milk and yogurt in small bowl to blend.
  • Add dry ingredients to yolk mixture in 3 additions alternately with milk mixture in 2 additions, beating well after each addition.
  • Using clean dry beaters, beat egg whites in another large bowl until stiff but not dry. Fold 1/3 of whites into batter, then fold in remaining whites.
  • Divide batter between pans. Smooth tops. Bake cakes until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 25-30 minutes.
  • Cool cakes in pans on rack 15 minutes. Run small knife around sides of pans to loosen cakes. Turn cakes out onto racks and cool completely. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Wrap in plastic and store at room temperature.
  • Place 1 cake layer, flat side up, on platter. Spread top of cake with 3/4 cup Creamy Brown Sugar Frosting. Spread 1 cup Cranberry Glaze over frosting, leaving 1/2-inch border all around cake.
  • Top with second cake layer, flat side down; press slightly to adhere. Spread 2 cups frosting over sides of cake
  • Spoon remaining frosting into pastry bag fitted with medium-size star tip. Pipe decorative border around top and bottom edges of cake. Refrigerate until frosting is firm, about 1 hour.
  • Spread remaining Cranberry Glaze over top center of cake. Chill until glaze is set. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with cake dome and refrigerate.)
  • Garnish Top with an orange slice and the bottom with whole cranberries.


For Sugared Cranberries, visit this page with a pumpkin roll decorated with the berries.
Adapted from original recipe in Bon Appetit Magazine.


Serving: 1grams | Calories: 781kcal | Carbohydrates: 112g | Protein: 10g | Fat: 33g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 177mg | Sodium: 448mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 81g