The “Clockwork Orange”


{Cranberry Orange Cupcakes With Orange Cream Cheese Frosting and Orange Sawdust}

Instead of pumpkin or apple flavors for Thanksgiving, I went for the citrus fruits of the season – cranberry and orange. I got a great cake recipe from Lady Behind the Curtain (minus the walnuts), used a modified version of this orange cream cheese frosting from (again, minus the walnuts – we have co-workers with allergies!), and topped it with the home-run orange sawdust from the “Don Draper” cupcake.

The result is a moist, not-too-sweet, citrus cupcake to end a heavy Thanksgiving meal!

Yields 36 cupcakes.

For the cupcakes:

  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 c. sugar
  • 3 tsp. baking powder
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 4 tsp. grated orange rind
  • 1 1/2 c. orange juice
  • 1/2 c. canola oil
  • 2 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 c. coarsely chopped fresh cranberries

For the icing:

  • 3 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2 tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1 tsp. orange zest
  • 2 tbsp. fresh orange juice
  • 2 1/2 c. confectioners’ sugar

For the sawdust:

  • 2 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. grated orange zest


Cupcake directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and baking soda in a large bowl; make a well in center of mixture.
  3. Combine rind, juice, oil, and egg in a small bowl, stirring well with a whisk.
  4. Add to flour mixture, stirring just until moist.
  5. Fold in cranberries.
  6. Line cupcake tin and fill each with batter.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes or until the cupcakes spring back when lightly touched in the center.
  8. Let them cool completely.


Icing directions:

  1. Beat cream cheese, butter, orange peel, and orange juice until creamy.
  2. Beat in confectioner’s sugar until blended and smooth.
  3. Frost the cupcakes.

Sawdust directions:

  1. Mix together the sugar and the orange zest.
  2. Sprinkle on top of the frosting.

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