Orange Cranberry Chicken Recipe Made with Bone-In Chicken Breasts

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Say goodbye to bland chicken with this Orange Cranberry Chicken Recipe which uses bone-in chicken breasts for extra flavor. With herbs and spices like sage, thyme, cinnamon, and ginger, it is a great recipe to make during the holiday season and pairs beautifully with our Apple Butternut Squash Casserole.

This post is part of Create the Holidays (formerly Create Christmas) – a series of festive recipes, crafts, printables, and more on The Purple Pumpkin Blog!

A plate with a roast chicken breast with apple and butternut squash casserole on the side. Text overlay says"Orange Cranberry Chicken Breasts". Similar photos of the recipe/dish from various angles are used throughout and with different text overlay unless otherwise described.

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Orange Cranberry Chicken Recipe

The full ingredients list and instructions are found in the printable recipe card at the end of this post. I highly recommend reading the blog post all the way through so that you don’t miss any tips or substitution suggestions; to ensure that you have all the ingredients and equipment required, and to understand the steps and timings involved.

If you are having a smaller Christmas celebration that usual and don’t want to cook a whole turkey, but still want all the flavors of the season, then this orange cranberry chicken recipe is definitely an option for you!

Sage and thyme are used to season the chicken before being browned off in a skillet. Then the chicken gets roasted in the oven with an orange and cranberry sauce that has been flavored with Christmas spices including cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and ginger.

Bone-in chicken breasts are used, but you could use other cuts of chicken like the drumstick or thighs, or whole legs. You could even use a whole chicken seasoned with the herbs, but skip the browning part and go straight to pouring over the sauce and roasting in the oven.

In the photos of this, you’ll see the apple butternut squash casserole that I mentioned at the top of this post, but most traditional Christmas side dishes will pair well with this orange-cranberry chicken.

However you choose to serve this Christmas chicken recipe, you will not be disappointed with the delicious seasonal flavors!

Orange Cranberry Chicken Recipe Made with Bone-In Chicken Breasts

Ingredients & Equipment Used In This Recipe

You may already have some of the basic ingredients for this recipe – the full list with measurements is found in the recipe card at the end of this post.

For your convenience, any specialized or notable ingredients and equipment needed for this recipe have been listed below and linked to Amazon if available online.

Recipes on The Purple Pumpkin Blog use both cup measurements and/or weighted measurements. American cups and kitchen food scales are handy pieces of equipment to have in your kitchen as it means you’ll be able to make all of the different recipes on my blog! I try to give American, imperial, and metric measurements in my recipes. You can mix cup measurements with weighted measurements, but never imperial (pounds, ounces, pints, etc.,) with metric (kilograms, grams, litres, etc.,).

Orange & Cranberry Chicken Breast - Ready in 1 Hour!

More Recipes Using Cranberries

One of the hero ingredients in this recipe is cranberries, so here are some more recipes using the same:

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How Do I Make Orange Cranberry Chicken Recipe?

Just check out the recipe card below with full ingredients, instructions, and demonstration photos. You can print the card out too (don’t worry, the pics don’t print to save your ink!).

Orange-Cranberry Chicken Breast Recipe

Orange Cranberry Chicken

Yield: 4-6
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Say goodbye to bland chicken with this Orange Cranberry Chicken Recipe which uses bone-in chicken breasts for extra flavor.


  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil
  • 2 lbs / 900g bone-in chicken breasts, with skin
  • 1½ tsp fresh sage, chopped
  • 1½ tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
  • ½ cup fresh (or frozen) cranberries
  • 2 Tbsp freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 Tbsp honey, preferably local
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ⅛ tsp ground nutmeg


  1. Preheat oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
  2. Melt the coconut oil in a large, ovenproof skillet or roasting dish over medium heat.
  3. Season the chicken with sage, and thyme, and season with salt and black pepper, to taste.
  4. Place the seasoned chicken skin-side down in the hot skillet and cook until browned, approximately 4-5 minutes, or until it releases easily from the bottom of the pan. Turn the chicken and continue cooking for another 4-5 minutes on the remaining side.
  5. While the chicken is browning, add the cranberries, orange juice, honey, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, and nutmeg to a small saucepan.
  6. Place over medium heat and bring it to a gentle boil. Cook until the cranberries pop open and the sauce becomes slightly thickened - around 4-5 minutes.
  7. Pour the orange-cranberry sauce over the browned chicken and transfer the skillet into the preheated oven.
  8. Roast until the chicken is fully cooked through and the sauce is bubbling, around 25-30 minutes or until chicken is cooked through and reaches an internal temperature of 160F/71C. (Internal temperature will continue to rise to 165F/74C as it rests.) If you don't have a meat thermometer check for doneness by inserting a skewer or sharp knife into the thickest part of the meat and press - the juices should run clear with no blood.
  9. Remove from oven and transfer chicken to a serving platter. Cover loosely and let rest for 5 minutes before serving topped with the warm orange-cranberry pan sauce and your choice of sides. Enjoy!
  10. Orange-Cranberry Chicken Breast Recipe

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 361Total Fat: 16gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 7gCholesterol: 126mgSodium: 156mgCarbohydrates: 7gFiber: 0gSugar: 6gProtein: 45g

This site uses Nutritionix to provide estimated nutrition. Nutritional information is always approximate and will depend on the quality of ingredients used and serving sizes. If you need exact calories and macros, please do your own calculations.

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