Coming off of the holidays, I’m finding myself with fridges and freezers that are overflowing with produce and left-overs. We had family visiting from out of town and since everyone was leaving the country to be able to return home, no food could be taken with them. So in an effort to reduce some of the produce on-hand before it spoils I decided to bake up a loaf with some of the extras in fridge.
I ended up with half a bag of leftover cranberries in the fridge seeing as the recipe I made for Christmas only called for a cup… Add that to the left over oranges and apples and this loaf came together rather quickly and with wholesome ingredients to boot. January has struck and the gyms are being filled with New Year Resolutionists determined to make this year the year they get fit and healthy. If you’re one of them, as am I, this is a healthy recipe you can feel good about without throwing your new healthy eating habits in the pooper. A good afternoon snack to bring with you to the office, or to treat yourself after a good workout. I’m sure I’ll be having some tonight after yoga… maybe before too…
This loaf is low in fat, and made with better for you coconut oil. The white sugar is substituted with maple syrup, orange juice, and the natural sweetness of grated apples. I used a combination of both empire and granny smith because that’s what I had, but any combination would work. This is also a “one bowl” recipe, so clean up is pretty minimal.
Once you’ve baked the loaf, resist all temptation to cut slices off while its still warm. The texture of quick breads improves greatly once they’ve cooled, especially breads which are free of wheat which can sometimes be rather delicate.
Cranberry Orange Loaf
Makes 1 loaf
- 1 tablespoon ground flax seeds
- 1/2 cup unsweetened cashew milk, or other non-dairy milk
- 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted
- Zest of one orange, finely grated
- 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup grated apple, firmly packed (about 2 medium apples)
- 3/4 cup grated carrot, firmly packed (about 1 medium carrot)
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 1 1/2 cups spelt flour
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 cup fresh cranberries
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a loaf pan and set aside.
In a large bowl stir together the cashew milk and ground flax seeds, set aside while you grate the apples and carrots.
Add the grated carrots and apples to the cashew milk mixture along with the coconut oil, maple syrup, orange juice, orange zest, and vanilla. Stir to combine.
Add the oats, spelt flour, salt, baking powder, and baking soda. Stir in the dry ingredients with a spatula until just combined. Fold in the cranberries.
Pour the mixture into the loaf pan and smooth the top. The batter will be quite thick. Top with a sprinkle of oats and cranberries if desired.
Bake for 45-48 minutes until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack to cool completely.
The loaf can be kept at room temperature for 4 days in a airtight container or frozen for up to a month.