With comforting flavors and ultra soft texture, this tasty sweet potato bread is laced with dried cranberries, drizzled with frosting, and perfect for fall.
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Table of Contents
- About Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread
- What’s in cranberry sweet potato bread?
- Do you have to use self-rising flour?
- Sweet potatoes vs yams
- Can you substitute pumpkin for sweet potato?
- How long will this bread last?
- Can you freeze sweet potato bread?
- Notes & tips for cranberry sweet potato bread
- More delicious bread recipes
- Other great recipes with cranberry
- How to make sweet potato bread with cranberries
- Recipe Details
About Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread
There are plenty of fall flavors to explore in the cooler months, and two of my personal faves are cranberry and sweet potato.
So, naturally, this sweet potato bread recipe baked with cranberries and topped with sugary drizzle is a must-make once the weather gets cooler.
What’s in cranberry sweet potato bread?
In order to have your own festive loaf of cranberry sweet potato bread, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- Self-rising flour, granulated sugar, ground cinnamon, powdered sugar, vanilla, vegetable oil, eggs, salted butter, and milk – Classic ingredients for baked goods and homemade glaze.
- Mashed sweet potatoes – Half of the namesake of this recipe! You can either make your own mashed sweet potatoes (with minimal to no additional flavoring) or you can use canned.
- Dried cranberries – The other have of this bread’s flavor profile, dried cranberries add delicious texture and tart sweetness.
Do you have to use self-rising flour?
There are multiple types of flour out there, and this one calls for self-rising flour (as opposed to all-purpose flour).
So, what’s the difference? Why use self-rising flour?
Self-rising flour is all-purpose flour with a bit of baking powder and salt already mixed in. Using it helps speed up the baking process (less ingredients to measure, even if they’re small amounts) but it can also restrict you to the baking powder/salt ratio that’s built into the self-rising flour. Self-rising flour is common in southern recipes.
You don’t have to use self-rising flour in this recipe, but if you don’t, you’ll need to use all-purpose flour + measure out some baking powder and salt.
For every 1 cup of all-purpose flour, you’ll need also add 1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
Sweet potatoes vs yams
Although sometimes used interchangeably, there are quite a few differences between sweet potatoes and true yams that can impact your cooking. And notice I said “true yams”, as many American grocery stores add to the confusion by labeling some sweet potatoes “yams” despite the fact that true yams are nothing like sweet potatoes at all.
Confused? You and me both!
In short, this is the Cliff Notes version of what’s going on with these potatoes and how to tell them apart:
- True yams – These are more like a russet sweet potato. They have white flesh with brown scaly skin and a dry, starchy taste. They’re typically grown outside of the United States, making them difficult to find in American grocery stores.
- Sweet potatoes – A firm sweet potato with golden skin and light or purple flesh. This is the type of sweet potato that was originally grown in the United States.
- Sweet potatoes that grocery stores call yams – A soft sweet potato with copper skin and golden flesh. Odds are, this is the type of sweet potato you see most often, simply because the soft texture works so well with many of the sweet potato dishes Americans traditionally make. And as for why they’re called yams, it comes down to marketing. The softer sweet potato was the second type of potato grown in the United States, and grocery stores wanted to differentiate this somehow to their customers… and instead of simply calling them firm or soft, they decided to call them yams – a type of potato they are nothing like, but since the “true” form is not commonly sold in the US, the name was seen as “available.”
There are other differences (nutritional value, various names, etc) but the above three points are the ones you need to consider when making substitutions in your cooking.
Given the above, many of the vibrant and sweet-flavored sweet potato dishes you know and love will require just that: a sweet potato (or a vegetable that looks like a sweet potato but has been labeled a yam). A true yam would not have the same bold presentation or flavor that compliments ingredients like brown sugar or maple syrup.
So, in conclusion: always use a sweet potato (or vegetable that looks like a sweet potato but was labeled a yam) when you can, especially if it’s a sweeter dish with ingredients like brown sugar, maple syrup, vanilla, etc (like this sweet potato bread).
Can you substitute pumpkin for sweet potato?
Yes, you totally can!
For substituting, do a one to one ratio. So since this recipe calls for one cup mashed sweet potatoes, you would use one cup pumpkin puree. Be sure not to use pumpkin pie filling; it has seasons and flavors that will overpower this recipe.
How long will this bread last?
For storing this bread, it will depend on whether or not you’ve already drizzled it with frosting.
Without frosting: When stored in a sealed container (or covered in plastic wrap), this bread should remain good for up to six days. And like most homemade breads, the flavor of this loaf will intensify after two days.
With frosting: Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator for up to three days. If you would like the flavor of the bread to mature, leave on the counter (wrapped in plastic or in a container) for two days, then frost and store in the refrigerator.
Can you freeze sweet potato bread?
Yes, you totally can!
When properly stored, this sweet potato bread will keep its “best” quality for about two or three months. After that point, the texture of the bread might change, but it will remain good for up to six months frozen.
Notes & tips for cranberry sweet potato bread
- While pretty, the glaze is totally optional.
- If you’d like a more festive look, add a few drops of food coloring to the frosting.
More delicious bread recipes
Other great recipes with cranberry
How to make sweet potato bread with cranberries
This next part is only a photo tutorial of the recipe steps. If you’re looking for the full recipe measurements and instructions, scroll down to Recipe Details.
Step 1 – In a large bowl, add the following ingredients: flour, sugar, cinnamon, oil, milk, eggs, and mashed sweet potato. Mix all of the ingredients together until there are no clumps.
Step 2 – Add cranberries to bowl, then gently fold them into the batter.
Step 3 – Pour batter into a greased bread loaf pan, then sprinkle more dried cranberries on top.
Step 4 – Bake!
Step 5 – Allow bread to cool in the pan for 15 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool. While bread is cooling, whip up the frosting by mixing together powdered sugar, butter, vanilla, and milk.
Step 6 – Once bread is cool, drizzle with frosting and garnish with more dried cranberries.
Step 7 – Serve and enjoy!
Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread
Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread
Powdered Sugar Glaze (optional)
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons salted butter, softened
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 tablespoons milk
For the Cranberry Sweet Potato Bread
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Set bowl aside.1 1/2 cups self-rising flour, 1 cup granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Using a stand mixer (or a hand mixer + large bowl), whip oil, milk, eggs, and sweet potato until mixed, about 2-3 minutes.1/2 cup vegetable oil, 2 tablespoons milk, 2 egg, 1 cup mashed sweet potatoes
- Drop mixer speed to low and slowly scoop in dry ingredients, about 1/2 cup at a time. Continue until all dry ingredients have been added. Mix until there are no clumps, about 2-3 minutes.
- Remove bowl from mixer. Use a spatula to gently fold dried cranberries into batter.1/2 cup dried cranberries
- Pour batter into the prepared loaf pan, smoothing out the top. If desired, sprinkle additional dried cranberries on top.
- Bake bread for 1 hour 15 minutes or until a toothpick tester comes out clean with no crumbs.
- Allow bread to cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Gently remove bread from pan, then transfer to a wire cooling rack to cool completely.
For the Powdered Sugar Glaze (Optional)
- While bread cools, add powdered sugar, butter, vanilla, and milk to a bowl. Whisk until consistency is smooth with no clumps.1 cup powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons salted butter, 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 2 tablespoons milk
- If mixture is too thick, add up to 1 tablespoon more milk. If mixture is too thin, add up to 1/4 cup more powdered sugar.
Putting it all together
- Once cooled, drizzle glaze on top of bread and garnish with more dried cranberries as desired.
- Serve immediately.
I do my best to provide nutrition information, but please keep in mind that I’m not a certified nutritionist. Any nutritional information discussed or disclosed in this post should only be seen as my best amateur estimates of the correct values.