Cranberry Orange Chicken – One Pan [Video]

Catalina Castravet
By Catalina Castravet
4.56 from 9 reviews

Chicken Thanksgiving Recipes

Cook time Cook time: 30 minutes

Cranberry Orange Chicken is the perfect one pan, a seasonal meal made with juicy, tart cranberries and fresh orange juice and zest.

I can say that this Cranberry Orange Chicken is simply the best you can have! It tastes amazingly good with a sweet and savory kick to it. I highly recommend you try two of my most popular recipes: Instant Pot Orange Chicken and this Slow Cooker Brown Sugar Orange Ham!

Best Cranberry Orange Chicken

Cranberry Orange Glazed Chicken is one of the easiest and most delicious fall dinners you can make. I am a huge fan of cranberry orange desserts, I recently made these Cranberry Orange Muffins that are the perfect start of a crisp fall day.

The Cranberry Orange Chicken is so good, the tart and juicy cranberries are roasted with the chicken, creating an amazing sauce. The orange zest and orange juice add a lot of favor and brighten to the dish. This is the perfect weeknight meal, or you can even make it for a party, as it looks gorgeous garnished with extra fresh cranberries.

I like serving this chicken topped with homemade Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce and some Sweet Potato Soufflé or Sweet Potato Casserole. Crispy Rosemary Roasted Potatoes are great on the side as well.

Why you will enjoy this Chicken with Cranberry Orange Sauce:

  • Easy to make and it takes only around 30 minutes!
  • Perfect fall-flavored dish with cranberries and orange zest.
  • It uses only one pan – so minimum dishes to use and clean.
  • The dish is packed with amazing flavors and protein.
  • Perfect for busy weeknights and also for entertaining guests.
  • You will have delicious leftovers that can be stored in the fridge, in an airtight container for 3-4 days.

One Pan Cranberry Orange Chicken Recipe Tips:

  • I like making this dish with chicken thighs, but it works great with chicken breasts as well.
  • Also, for the best flavors, it’s better to marinate the chicken for a few hours or overnight.
  • Don’t skip the fresh orange zest, because it’s what makes this dish pop-up.
  • For a spicier kick, add 1-2 teaspoons of red pepper flakes.
  • In addition, 10 minutes before the chicken is ready, add a handful of more cranberries to the pan, this will add a pop of color to the dish.
  • Serve the chicken garnished with orange zest.

Can I substitute pork for chicken?

Yes, pork or ham is a great alternative for chicken in many recipes including this one. If you are going to use pork or ham instead of chicken, I would recommend using pork chop or pork loin. The cooking time will also very best on the cut that you choose.

Can I make Cranberry Orange Chicken in the Slow Cooker?

Yes, you can! Prepare the sauce and the rub as directed in the recipe. Add the chicken to the slow cooker and add the sauce around it. Then, cover and cook on low for 4 hours or on high for about 2 hours. The internal temperature of the chicken tights or breast should be at 165 F degrees.

How to make Orange Zest?

  1. Rinse the orange.
  2. Set your tool over a cutting board. A microplane produces a very fine zest, perfect for baking and cooking. If you don’t have a microplane, use the smallest holes on an ordinary grater.
  3. Grate the skin of the orange only. Grate just enough to get through the orange skin, this way you can avoid the bitter white pith underneath.
  4. Rotate the orange and repeat. Once the white pith is exposed, rotate the orange and zest the next strip of peel. Repeat until most of the peel is removed, or until you have enough zest for your recipe.

Can you use orange juice instead of orange zest?

Yes! Orange zest adds a citrus flavor to your recipes, including desserts, main dishes, and more. If you don’t have an orange and a zester handy, you can use regular orange juice. 1 medium-size orange = approximately 1 tablespoon of orange zest = 2 to 3 tablespoons of orange juice.

Other great chicken recipes:

Cranberry Orange Chicken Recipe Video:

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4.56 from 9 reviews

Cranberry Orange Chicken

Cranberry Orange Chicken is the perfect, one pan, seasonal meal made with juicy, tart cranberries and fresh orange juice and zest.

Author: Catalina Castravet Serves: 4 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes Total time: 40 mins




Prepare Marinade:


Nutrition information

0 Calories: 408 Carbohydrates: 16 Protein: 18 Fat: 29 Saturated Fat: 6 Cholesterol: 110 Sodium: 235 Potassium: 251 Fiber: 0 Sugar: 14 Vitamin A: 90 Vitamin C: 2.5 Calcium: 9 Iron: 0.8
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Making this tonight! Have the chicken in the fridge marinating.


Let me know how you like it!


Taylor Ewing

Could you use dried cranberries?


Yes, you can, but the end result will be a bit different, and also not as tart.



If using frozen cranberries do they need to thaw first?


Yes, thaw them.


Kimberly Baxter

Look absolutely beautiful! I will try to make this soon for my daughter. Hope it will come out great.



Cranberries are out in the store again! Finally I can make this dish again. Went right up to the top of the favorite list last year.



This is such a perfect dish. My husband made it and it was very good. We love orange chicken and with cranberries is also delish! I guess we will be making it more often going forward! Might use this recipe for turkey as well since its that good!



Can you use skinless chicken breasts? 


yes, you can.



Hi, do you think this would work for a whole chicken? Any tips?


Yes, it should work. I would definitely double the marinade and if you have time marinate the chicken in it. When ready to roast, lift some of the skin and add some butter under it, stuff the chicken with rosemary, fresh orange slices and some cranberries for extra flavor. Add to a baking dish, and pour about half of the marinade on top. Cover and roast for about 60 minutes, basting the chicken with the marinade juices from the PAN, from time to time. If the chicken starts to brown too quickly, cover it with foil loosely. Broil before removing from the oven. Hope this helps.


Tammy Weaver

I made this dish last night for my husband and myself. It's really quite delicious. I made two slight alterations to it - I did not add garlic and I used a raspberry balsamic vinegar. I used chicken thighes and marinated them for about 10 hours before baking. It was pretty and festive looking with the bright colors of the orange and cranberry. Thanks for sharing your recipe.


I am happy that you enjoyed it!



Hi, This recipe sounds delicious! I wanted to make it from Christams Eve and was wondering about how many pounds of chicken you used since thighs/breasts can vary in size quite a bit. Thank you!


I used regular chicken thighs, not sure exactly how many lbs, I guess about 2 lbs. I hope you enjoy the recipe.



Hello!!! I want to make tonight but I don’t have balsamic vinegar. Any substitution? Can I use a regular vinegar?


hi, no - regular vinegar won't work, sorry.



This is one of our favorite fall recipes. I use breasts, omit the garlic, and add a sprinkle of cinnamon on top. Trying it in the crockpot tonight instead of the usual oven method.


Crystal Emerick

First time we had no leftovers in our house after dinner! I used apple cider vinegar in place of balsamic because it's what we had on hand, what a wonderful heartwarming dish. will be making this again in the future and added this recipe to my own cookbook of favorite recipes, thank you!


Glad you loved it crystal. Thanks for your feedback!


Susan moore

I made this & it was wonderful ! Could you use canned whole cranberry sauce instead of fresh?


Hi Susan, yes you could. Thanks for your comment!


Pam Lizzio

I've used canned while cranberries. Works great!


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