The undertones of orange and cinnamon were not overwhelming, but complementary to the dried fruit; this Apricot Quick Bread was just delightful.

This Apricot Bread is easy to make and a nice change of pace from ordinary banana bread!

Cranberry Apricot Bread on a white tray with dried apricot garnish.

Why You Must Make

  • Since this recipe uses dried fruit, there’s no need to wait until cranberries and/or apricots are in season!
  • It’s a delightful loaf to serve with tea or for breakfast or brunch.
  • Apricot bread is a tasty change of pace from your more typical banana and zucchini bread!
2 slices of apricot bread on a square white plate with a red handle knife.

How to Tweak a Quick Bread Recipe

  • I adapted a recipe for Apricot Cranberry Bread from King Arthur Flour. The first time I made this loaf, instead of a whole cup of dried cranberries, I used a half cup of dried cherries and a half cup of Craisins.
  • I substituted orange extract for the orange oil/zest and eliminated the nuts and nutmeg. The flavorings and spices can be tweaked according to your palate.
  • Add in a half cup of chopped, toasted pecans or walnuts for some tasty crunch.
  • The crust was crisp and sweet and the abundance of fresh dried fruit provided deliciousness with every bite. The undertones of orange and cinnamon were not overwhelming, but complementary to the dried fruit; this Apricot Quick Bread was just lovely.
Apricot Quick Bread partially sliced with dried apricots to garnish on a white tray.

Expert Tips

Here are a few tips for making quick bread:

  • Quick bread can be sweet or savory, and it is a modern innovation; it became common after the introduction of baking powder and baking soda.
  • Baking powder is a combination of acid and alkaline that reacts together when moistened to form gases that raise the baked quick bread. Use 1 to 2 teaspoons per cup of flour.
  • Baking soda (an alkaline salt, sodium bicarbonate) is used when the liquid is acidic, such as buttermilk, honey, molasses, tomato sauce, etc. Usage ½ to 1 teaspoon per cup of acidic liquid.
  • Be sure your baking powder and baking soda are fresh.
  • PRO-Tip: Baking powder usually expires before it is all used. Make sure yours is fresh by checking the expiration date. If you’re still unsure, add a spoonful to a bowl of hot water. If your baking powder is fresh, it will bubble vigorously. If it doesn’t, buy a new can.
  • Measure ingredients accurately. Scoop the flour from a bin and swipe across the top of the measuring cup so only 1 cup is used. If you like to weigh your flour, 1 cup weighs 210 grams. Too much flour will make a dry loaf.
  • Add 1/2 cup toasted pecans or walnuts for some crunch.
  • Preheat the oven to the correct baking temperature. Arrange racks so that the bread will bake in the center of the oven which has the best heat distribution in the oven.
  • PRO-Tip: To allow for good air circulation while baking, leave at least 1 inch of space between pans and between pans and sides of the oven. If making more than one loaf, switch pan positions and rotate pans halfway through baking.
  • PRO-Tips: The two top secrets to moist, tender quick bread are 1) in the mixing: always use a quick light technique so you don’t over-mix the batter, especially after the dry ingredients are added. 2) don’t over-bake since this causes dryness in the final baked product.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Quick Bread?

Quick bread is a non-yeast bread that uses baking powder, baking soda, or eggs to leaven. Since there’s no yeast used, quick bread is ready to eat much sooner than with yeast bread.

Is a Quick Bread the Same as a Tea Loaf?

Yes, both are bread leavened with eggs, baking powder, or soda instead of yeast. Other names for quick bread include soda bread, tea bread, nut bread, and nut loaf to name a few.

Why is it Called A Tea Loaf?

A tea loaf is a sweetened bread that’s wonderful served with tea for breakfast, brunch, or at mid-day tea time.

Can Baking Soda be used instead of Baking Powder?

No, baking soda and baking powder are not interchangeable. Baking is a science, so make sure to use the exact leavening agent called for in the recipe.
Baking soda, unlike baking powder, does not contain any acid so needs an acidic ingredient in the recipe in order to work properly.

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Overhead view of cranberry bread slices on a square white plate with a red handled knife

Apricot Quick Bread

A sweet quick bread loaded with dried fruit!


  • 1/2 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon orange extract or oil
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots, diced
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, I used Craisins


  1. Preheat the oven to 350º. Grease a large loaf pan and line with parchment paper.
  2. Cream together the butter, sugar, and orange extract.
  3. Beat in the eggs one at a time, scraping the sides of the bowl after each addition. Mix in the buttermilk.
  4. In another bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, baking powder, and cinnamon until well blended.
  5. Stir in the flour mixture with a rubber spatula, then gently mix in the dried fruit.
  6. Spoon the batter into the loaf pan. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Remove the bread from the oven, and let it cool in the pan for 10 minutes before removing it from the pan to cool completely on a wire rack.


May use dried cherries, too, or in place of some of the apricots and cranberries.

If you don't have orange extract, use vanilla or half the amount of almond extract.

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Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:

1 slice

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 273Total Fat: 9gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 3gCholesterol: 68mgSodium: 215mgCarbohydrates: 44gFiber: 2gSugar: 27gProtein: 4g


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