Mini Orange Cranberry White Chocolate Panettone

These mini orange cranberry white chocolate panettone are a fun twist on the classic Italian Christmas bread. Perfect for breakfast on Christmas morning!

Mini orange cranberry white chocolate panettone - a traditional Italian Christmas Bread with a twist

I can't wait to have these mini panettone for breakfast on Christmas morning with a big cup of coffee or tea. Since we usually have a large Christmas lunch we typically do not eat much for breakfast. These mini panettone will be the perfect festive treat to tide us over until lunch.I grew up eating panettone at Christmas. A Christmas visit to family was not complete without at least one panettone. 

Panettone is a traditional italian Christmas bread. It has an almost brioche like texture and is typically dotted with various dried fruit and candied citrus peels. I have had many different flavours of panettone over the years ranging from plain topped with a dusting of icing sugar to a panettone filled with ice cream. For a while, I knew I wanted to combine the flavours of orange, cranberry and white chocolate. I just wasn't sure what the vehicle was going to be.  Chewy cookie? Biscotti? Muffin? So many possibilities!  Surprise, surprise I decided to use these flavours in a mini panettone.  

Mini orange cranberry white chocolate panettone - a traditional Italian Christmas Bread with a twist

I was nervous about making panettone - it seemed daunting. The long list of ingredients, multiple rise times and the addition of yeast made it seem like there were too many factors that could go wrong. While researching and looking at various recipes some required that you make the panettone over multiple days, while others had extremely long rise times. I wanted something that could be made over an afternoon. I decided to adapt a recipe from one of favourite cook books, Butter Celebrates.  The dough will need to rise twice and each rise takes around 90 minutes which is something to keep in mind when making the recipe. It is the perfect to make on a Sunday afternoon.

Mini orange cranberry white chocolate panettone

Mini Orange Cranberry White Chocolate Panettone

Yield: 12 mini panettone  

Time: 30 minutes active time, 3 hours rise time


2 packages instant yeast

4 c all purpose flour

1 tsp salt

1/2 c warm milk

1/4 c warm water

1/4 c butter

1/2 c sugar

3 eggs

2 egg yolks

1 tsp vanilla extract

zest 1 orange

1 c cranberries

1 c white chocolate chips

1 egg

2 tbsp milk


Grease a large bowl with butter, set aside

In a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix together flour, yeast and salt on low speed for 5 minutes

In a small saucepan over medium heat combine milk, water, butter and sugar. Heat until all the butter is melted and mixture is warm

On low speed, slowly pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture. Mix until just combined. Add in eggs, egg yolks and vanilla. Stir in orange zest, cranberries, and white chocolate until just combined. The dough should be sticky to the touch. Transfer dough to prepared bowl, cover with plastic wrap. Allow dough to rise in a warm, draft free area until doubled in size (approx. 90 mins)

Line cupcake pan with parchment paper cupcake liners

Once dough is doubled in size, punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface. Cut dough into 12 even pieces. Roll into balls and place in cupcake liners. Cover with clean tea towel and let rise until doubled in size (approx. 90 mins).

Beat together remaining egg and 2 table spoons of milk to create egg wash. Brush on tops of each mini panettone.

Bake at 350F for 11-15 minutes or until tops are golden brown.

Notes: When melting the butter and heating the milk take care not to over heat it. If the mixture is too hot it will kill the yeast. To test if your milk mixture is too hot, dip a finger in it. If it feels too hot for you (or for a child) then wait until it cools down a bit before adding it to the flour mixture. 

Mini orange cranberry white chocolate panettone - a traditional Italian Christmas Bread

What are your favourite holiday traditions? Share them in the comments below or on Instagram with #byJaclyn