Sourdough Cranberry Walnut Bread (2024)

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Cranberry sourdough bread is a delicious, crusty boule filled with sweetened cranberries and crunchy walnuts for a wonderful festive bread. Enjoy this rustic bread that is perfect for the holiday season.

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Table of Contents

I’ve had this sourdough cranberry walnut bread recipe rolling around in my brain for a while. It’s a really fun and festive take on a traditional loaf and is perfect for Christmas. It is also really beautiful and graces the table during the holiday season wonderfully.

Not only can it be served as a side or an appetizer, but it would make an amazing bread for a turkey sandwich.

This may be my new favorite bread recipe. It is so delicious. The crunchiness and flavor of the toasted walnuts paired with the tartness of the sweetened cranberries is a scrumptious combination.

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Tips:

  • Your sourdough starter should be bubbly and active. Learnhow to make a sourdough starterandhow to care for onehere.
  • During the stretch and folds, bulk rise, and second rise, you will want to cover the dough with a damp towel, beeswax wrap, or plastic wrap to ensure that an unpleasant crust doesn’t develop. For the second rise in the fridge, I usually just use a plastic bag.
  • Use a kitchen scale for the most accurate way to measure the ingredients.
  • Fermentation time depends on how active and mature your sourdough starter is and also how warm your environment is. The cooler the environment, the longer the bulk fermentation.
  • If you do not have a Dutch oven, you can technically bake this recipe on a baking sheet, baking stone, or even a loaf pan (bake times may need to be adjusted). You will want to add steam during the baking process to create that crust. Add ice cubes to an oven safe baking dish on a rack below the dough. Spritz the top of the loaf with water.
  • During the final rise in the fridge, the dough will look like it didn’t rise at all. It will make you question everything, but trust me, it bakes up perfectly. It is like magic.

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Ingredients:

Unbleached all purpose flour

Whole wheat flour:I use freshly ground.

Bread flour:This contains more protein and helps with a sturdier crumb.

Active sourdough starter:Active and bubbly. This is starter that has been fed 12-24 hours before starting the recipe. It will have roughly doubled in size and will be at its peak. It should also pass the float test.

Water

Salt

Walnuts:Shelled, chopped and toasted. I just toast them on a cast iron skillet for a few minutes until they start to smell nutty. These earthy walnuts add such a delicious flavor and pop of texture. These are optional.

Dried cranberries: I love using the sweetened cranberries to add a burst of sweetness.

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Tools you may need to make this recipe:

Large bowl

Kitchen scale

Bannetonbasket (optional). You can also just use a small round basket or bowl lined with a tea towel.

Dutch Oven

Bench scraper

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How To Make Sourdough Cranberry Bread

Start by feeding your sourdough starter 4-12 hours before starting the bread, ensuring it is active, bubbly, and about doubled in size. This could even take longer if the house is cool. To speed up the process, you can place it in a warm place.

In a large bowl, combine warm water and flour. Allow to autolyse for 30 minutes (this allows the water to hydrate the flour).

Add the active starter and mix in.

Sprinkle salt on top and mix the dough with your hands for about 5 minutes to bring the shaggy dough together.

Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

Stretch And Fold

Stretching and folding the dough, rather than kneading, is how you get that fluffy crumb with large holes.

With the dough in the bowl, grab the edge of one side and pull the dough firmly up, stretching it upwards. Then place the dough that is in your hands back into the center of the bowl. Turn the bowl a quarter turn and do this technique again, repeating one to two more times.Dip your hand in water if the dough is too sticky.

Cover the dough and allow to rest according to the time frame below.

First 3 stretch and folds – allow the dough to rest for 15 minutes before starting the next round.

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In a skillet over medium heat, cook the walnuts for a few minutes to toast them. Cool before adding to the bread dough.

Complete another round of stretch and folds, cover and set aside for 30 minutes.

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Add the toasted walnuts and dried cranberries to the dough.

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Complete a round of stretch and folds. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes.

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Finally, complete one last stretch and fold.

Bulk Rise

Cover the sourdough cranberry bread dough with a wet towel or plastic wrap and allow the dough to bulk-ferment until doubled.

The amount of time it takes for the dough to double will vary depending on the temperature of the environment and maturity of your starter.

Place the dough on a lightly floured surface.

Split the dough in half down the middle. I like to use my dough scraper. This recipe yields two loaves.

Shape into a ball by gently spinning it forwardon the counter.

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Let the dough sit out 15-20 minutes uncovered. This creates a skin on the surface to help reduce the risk of the dough sticking to the towel.

Turn the dough over, smooth side down, and shape. I do this by folding the sides over to meet in the middle and pinching together. This creates tension on the outside of the dough which helps it rise.

Repeat with the other half of the dough.

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Transfer to a floured banneton or bowl with tea towel, seam side up. A lot of bakers use rice flour, but I usually just use all-purpose.

Cover with plastic (I like to use a plastic grocery bag and tie it) and proof 12-15 hours in refrigerator (or longer). It can also be done at room temperature for 3-4 hours or until doubled.

Bake

Preheat the oven to 500 degrees with a Dutchoven for 1 hour.

Right before baking, remove the dough from the fridge and transfer to parchment paper with smooth side up.

Optional: Dust the top of the dough with flour. This helps the scoring pattern stand out more

Score with a razor. Find some of my favorite scoring patterns here.

Transfer the dough and parchment paper to the pre-heated Dutch oven. Be careful – it is really hot. Cover with a lid.

Bake for 20 minutes at 500 with lid on.

Take lid off, turn the oven temperature down to 475, and bake an additional 25 minutes or until browned.

Allow the bread to cool completely.

Slice and serve. I love to serve thick slices with some butter and a drizzle of honey.

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Baking Schedule

8 am:Feed sourdough starter.

12 pm:If sourdough starter has doubled in size, then proceed to creating the dough.

Combine the warm water and flour. Rest for 30 minutes.

12:30-ish pm:Add sourdough starter and mix in.

Sprinkle salt on top and mix dough for 5 minutes.Cover with damp towel or plastic wrap. Allow to sit for 30 minutes.

1:00-ish pm:Stretch and fold.

First 3 stretch and folds – every 15 minutes
Last 3 stretch and folds – every 30 minutes. Add in toasted and cooled walnuts and dried cranberries during the second to last stretch and fold.

Allow the dough to bulk ferment until doubled, covered tightly.

8:00 pm(may be much sooner): Dividethe dough in two equal parts and shape into a ball.

Allow it to sit for 15-20 minutes, uncovered.

Turn over and create tension in the dough.

8:30 pm:Transfer to a banneton or bowl with a floured tea towel and cover with plastic. Place in the refrigerator for 12-15 hours or longer.

The Next Day

9:00 am:Preheat Dutch oven for 1 hour.

10:00 am:Take dough out of fridge, dust with flour, score, and bake.

Find More Sourdough Recipes:

  • Easy Sourdough Pretzel Buns Recipe
  • Sourdough Stuffing Recipe
  • Easy Sourdough Crumpets Recipes
  • Sourdough French Toast Casserole with Apple, Cinnamon, and Raisin
  • Sourdough Herb And Cheese Rolls

If you try this recipe and love it, I would love if you could come back and give it 5 stars!Tag me on Instagram @farmhouseonboone

Sourdough Cranberry Walnut Bread (13)

Sourdough Cranberry Walnut Bread

Cranberry sourdough bread is a delicious, tangy sourdough filled with sweetened cranberries and crunchy walnuts for a wonderful festive bread.

4.45 from 34 votes

Print Pin Rate

Prep Time: 1 hour hour

Cook Time: 45 minutes minutes

Additional Time: 20 hours hours

Total Time: 21 hours hours 45 minutes minutes

Servings: 10

Author: Lisa Bass

Ingredients

  • 500 grams unbleached all purpose flour 3 1/2 cups
  • 200 grams freshly ground whole wheat 1 1/2 cups
  • 250 grams bread flour 1 3/4 cups
  • 200 grams sourdough starter active and bubbly (1 cup)
  • 650 grams water 2 3/4 cups
  • 20 grams salt 1 tablespoon
  • 120 grams walnuts shelled, chopped and toasted (1 cup)
  • 85 grams cranberries sweetened and dried (3/4 cup)

Instructions

  • Start by feeding your sourdough starter 4-12 hours before starting the bread, ensuring it is active, bubbly, and about doubled in size.

  • In a large bowl, combine warm water and flour. Allow to autolyse for 30 minutes (this allows the water to hydrate the flour).

  • Add the active starter and mix in.

  • Sprinkle salt on top and mix the dough with your hands for about 5 minutes to bring the shaggy dough together.

  • Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a damp towel and let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

  • Stretching and folding the dough, rather than kneading, is how you get that fluffy crumb with large holes.

  • With the dough in the bowl, grab the edge of one side and pull the dough firmly up, stretching it upwards. Then place the dough that is in your hands back into the center of the bowl. Turn the bowl a quarter turn and do this technique again, repeating one to two more times. Dip your hand in water if the dough is too sticky.

  • Cover the dough and allow to rest according to the time frame below.

  • First 3 stretch and folds – allow the dough to rest for 15 minutes before starting the next round.

  • In a skillet over medium heat, cook the walnuts for a few minutes to toast them. Cool before adding to the bread dough.

  • Complete another round of stretch and folds, cover and set aside for 30 minutes.

  • Add the toasted walnuts and dried cranberries to the dough. Complete a round of stretch and folds. Cover and set aside for 30 minutes.

  • Finally, complete one last stretch and fold.

  • Cover the sourdough cranberry bread dough with a wet towel or plastic wrap and allow the dough to bulk-ferment until doubled.

  • The amount of time it takes for the dough to double will vary depending on the temperature of the environment and maturity of your starter.

  • Place the dough on a lightly floured surface.

  • Split the dough in half down the middle. I like to use my dough scraper.

  • Shape into a ball by gently spinning it forward on the counter.

  • Let the dough sit out 15-20 minutes uncovered. This creates a skin on the surface to help reduce the risk of the dough sticking to the towel.

  • Turn the dough over, smooth side down, and shape. I do this by folding the sides over to meet in the middle and pinching together. This creates tension on the outside of the dough which helps it rise.

  • Repeat with the other half of the dough. This recipe yields two loaves.

  • Transfer to a floured banneton or bowl with tea towel, seam side up. A lot of bakers use rice flour, but I usually just use all-purpose.

  • Cover with plastic (I like to use a plastic grocery bag and tie it) and proof 12-15 hours in refrigerator (or longer). It can also be done at room temperature for 3-4 hours or until doubled.

  • Preheat the oven to 500 degrees with a Dutch oven for 1 hour.

  • Right before baking, remove the dough from the fridge and transfer to parchment paper with smooth side up.

  • Optional: Dust the top of the dough with flour. This helps the scoring pattern stand out more

  • Score with a razor.

  • Transfer the dough and parchment paper to the pre-heated Dutch oven. Be careful – it is really hot. Cover with a lid.

  • Bake for 20 minutes at 500 with lid on.

  • Take lid off, turn the oven temperature down to 475, and bake an additional 25 minutes or until browned.

  • Allow the bread to cool completely.

Notes

  • Use a kitchen scale for the most accurate way to measure the ingredients.
  • Fermentation time depends on how active and mature your sourdough starter is and also how warm your environment is. The cooler the environment, the longer the bulk fermentation.
  • If you do not have a Dutch oven, you can technically bake this recipe on a baking sheet, baking stone, or even a loaf pan (bake times may need to be adjusted). You will want to add steam during the baking process to create that crust. Add ice cubes to an oven safe baking dish on a rack below the dough. Spritz the top of the loaf with water.
  • During the final rise in the fridge, the dough will look like it didn't rise at all. It will make you question everything, but trust me, it bakes up perfectly. It is like magic.

Nutrition

Calories: 441kcal | Carbohydrates: 77g | Protein: 13g | Fat: 9g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 781mg | Potassium: 211mg | Fiber: 5g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 11IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 33mg | Iron: 4mg

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Sourdough Cranberry Walnut Bread (2024)

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