Cranberry Orange Cream Trifle

I am about to share a recipe with you that will have everyone who eats it begging you for the recipe.

This trifle is OUTRAGEOUS! Outrageously delicious that is :) I mean, there are very few things I lose complete self control over and this would be one of them. I will not admit how much of this trifle I ate all by my lonesome. I was caught spoon in hand sneaking into the garage fridge on more than one occasion ;)

The secret about this trifle, the longer it sits in the fridge, the BETTER it gets. The cake just sponges up all the amazing cranberry orange flavor and each bit is bursting with perfection.

The orange cream is truly THE BEST! It adds such a refreshing flavor to the dessert that can’t be beat :)

If you are looking for a show-stopping dessert for your holiday company, let this be it! It is perfection in a bowl!

Cranberry Orange Cream Trifle from chef-in-training... okay. This recipe is truly OUTSTANDING! People will be begging you for it! Trust me, it is THAT GOOD!

Cranberry Orange Cream Trifle

The orange cream is truly THE BEST! It adds such a refreshing flavor to the dessert that can't be beat. If you are looking for a show-stopping dessert for your holiday company, let this be it! It is perfection in a bowl!
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Servings 20
Calories 314kcal


  • 2 10 ounce pound cakes cut into one inch squares

Cranberry Filling

  • 12 ounces fresh cranberries
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest

Whipped Cream Filling

  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 Tablespoon orange zest
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

Sugared Cranberries

  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 3/4 cup sugar


Cranberry Filling

  • In medium sauce pan combine cranberries, sugar, orange juice and orange zest. Cook on medium high heat and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally, Reduce heat and simmer until berries pop. about 10 to 15 minutes. Sauce will thicken as it cools.

Whipped Cream Filling

  • While cranberry filling is cooling beat heavy cream, orange zest, and sugar until stiff. Add vanilla.


  • Divide cake into 3 portions and begin the first layer by placing 1/3 of the cake on the bottom a trifle bowl. Spoon 1/3 of the cooled cranberry filling over the cake. Next spoon 1/3 of the whipping cream over the cranberry filling and repeat 2 more times. Top trifle with sugared cranberries and orange zest.

Sugared Cranberries

  • Place cranberries in a medium bowl. Set aside.
  • In a small sauce pan, combine sugar and water over medium heat until it reaches a simmer and sugar dissolves.
  • Remove pan from heat and let it cool for 10 minutes.
  • Once syrup has cooled for 10 minutes, pour the syrup over the top of cranberries. Let cranberries cool completely. Once completely cooled, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.
  • The next day, drain cranberries.
  • Place 3/4 cup sugar in a shallow dish and add the cranberries in small batches coating well with the sugar.
  • Remove from sugar and place cranberries on a a baking sheet. Let stand for 1 hour. Can be stored in an airtight container for 1 week in the refrigerator.


Note that the sugared cranberries must be made a day ahead of when you plan to assemble the trifle. They are not necessary to the trifle but take it up 10 levels in appearance and add a fun pop to each bite! In my opinion, they are well worth it and so easy, it just requires some time.


Calories: 314kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 13g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 3g | Cholesterol: 40mg | Sodium: 13mg | Potassium: 83mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 48g | Vitamin A: 568IU | Vitamin C: 11mg | Calcium: 29mg | Iron: 0.2mg
Tried this recipe?Tag @nikki_chefintraining in your picture on Instagram so we can see what you have been up to in your kitchen!


Cranberry Orange Cream Trifle from chef-in-training... okay. This recipe is truly OUTSTANDING! People will be begging you for it! Trust me, it is THAT GOOD!

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #chefintraining and/or #chefintrainingblog. I would love to see how these recipes take shape in your kitchens.

Filed under: cake, dessert

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  1. Darlene


    This is spectacular! How beautiful it would be on my Christmas dinner menu! Thank you!

  2. michelle

    It looks as though there are chunks of orange in the photo as well...not just orange zest. Did i miss something?Should I be adding this?

    1. Ying

      A year late. But any one reading this after the fact, the chunks might be broken up pieces of pound cake.

  3. Ying


    Made this for Thanksgiving and everyone loved it! I cut the sugar from 1.25 to 1 cup and it was plenty sweet. I will be making this again for a Christmas pot luck get together with friends.

  4. Mary

    Does anyone know the homemade equivalent to 2 10 oz poundcakes?

    1. Stephanie

      I made two loaves of homemade pound cake (loaf pans were 9x5x3) and used one and a half loaves in the trifle.

      Also, I found out that cranberries are out of season and hard to find by January 1st, so I used whole cranberry sauce (canned) and boiled it with the Orange juice. the trifle turned out delicious, but I will definitely try again next season with fresh cranberries!

    2. David Regan


      amounts of anything when assembling a trifle can be "loose" or "shifty!" When I made it, I used a couple of vanilla cake layers that I had in the freezer from the previous summer when I made my niece's wedding cake. Bottom line is, it all melds together into yumminess and a little more of this or that is not a big deal.

  5. Lauren

    Hi there! I'm so excited to try this. It looks lovely! I'm working on the sugared cranberries now and will prepare the rest of the trifle later. I was wondering though, do you use freshly squeezed orange juice in this recipe or is it premade from the store? Thank you!

  6. Cathy

    Does anyone know if this can be made a day ahead?

    1. David Regan


      A year later, but I'm about to find out-- just finished assembling this trifle to take to a party tomorrow. Shouldn't be a problem, though. the cake will just have more time to absorb the other flavors. Also, sometimes whipped cream will break down somewhat if it is made too far ahead. What I often do is to add a little instant vanilla pudding powder to the cream when whipping-- it acts as a stabilizer and keeps the cream from breaking down any time soon. Very useful, for instance, when filling a wedding cake with berries & cream a couple days before the event. For this trifle, I added 4 1/2 tablespoons of powder to 3 Cups of cream and omitted the sugar and vanilla called for in the whipped cream recipe...still delicious.

    2. Jan Wilson


      This is beautiful, light and delicious. I made it to take to our large family Christmas Eve dinner, where it was a major hit! Each step is easy and the entire thing is made at least 24 hours ahead, leaving just a final topping of whipped cream, the sugared berries and more orange zest before serving.

    3. Angie

      Any chance you made this a day ahead and have any insight? I want to make it for dinner tomorrow but would need to make it tonight do to time restraints..

  7. Wendy Thress

    I'm planning to make this for Christmas. I noticed that the caked does not have liqueur poured on the cake, like other trifle recipes I've used. Do you think it would be OK to add a little Triple Sec, or would that mess up the consistency? Thanks!

  8. David Regan

    Long-delayed response-- I made this last Christmas for a big family gathering (knowing that, among others, my sister-in-law from England would love the idea of a trifle.) I admit that I added a custard layer, just because, well, custard! In hindsight, I'm not sure it was necessary. Anyway, this trifle was a HUGE hit, with everyone taking seconds and almost everyone taking some home. (In typical fashion, I made gigantic amount.) Folks were crazy over it. And the incredibly decadent orange whipped cream has become my new favorite topping. In fact, I'm using it tomorrow to top a no-flour, no-sugar almond-lemon-ricotta cake for a friend's birthday. thanks much for yummy stuff!!

  9. L Hauser


    Sorry, I didn't take a picture of it but I made this for Christmas 2017 dinner dessert yesterday and it was a hit! Gorgeous and delicious. I'm glad I found it in my search. I will definitely make it again. Perfect end for a heavy meal. Thank you for sharing.

  10. Jenie

    I made your orange cranberry loaf in mini bundt silicon pans that stuck! So now I am turning them into this trifle! Wish me luck!

  11. Jill

    Can this be made and assembled a day ahead of serving?

    1. Chef in Training

      yes it for sure can! Just cover tightly with plastic wrap and store in the fridge :)

  12. susan

    This is sooo very good. I have made it several times and always have then begging for more. I add a homemade vanilla pudding because I like things moist but everything else I did the same as the recipe. This is my favorite fruits combined. Love it, thanks for sharing.

  13. Denise

    When I make a trifle, I typically brush my cake with a simple syrup. It makes it a bit more moist. I am going to be making this for Thanksgiving. I'm going to save the syrup that the cranberries were covered in and brush that on to the cake. Hoping for success. And use a white chocolate pudding layer.

  14. Diane Raymond

    I’m a little confused about the sugared cranberries, are they just on the top layer or do you incorporate them into the whole dish as well as the first cranberry mixture?

  15. Holly


    I made this as is for a family gathering for the holidays and it was devoured! Everyone LOVED it! The sugared cranberries are a nice touch. I used store bought pound cake to make the prep faster. I did use fresh orange juice from the oranges that I zested, but I do think you can substitute with any OJ. It looks incredibly festive and got rave reviews from everyone who ate it - I will definitely be making it again!

  16. Barbara

    How many would you say it serves?

    Going to be making it!