Homemade Cranberry Sauce is one of the easiest side dishes to make! All you need is 5 simple ingredients, and it tastes significantly better than the canned version you’d buy at the store.
Why You’ll Love It
It’s easy to make. Just add the ingredients to a saucepan and cook until the sauce thickens. It takes just about 10 minutes!
It tastes amazing. Fresh cranberry sauce tastes 100% better than the kind you’d buy at the store. The addition of fresh ginger, cinnamon, and orange juice takes the flavor over the top!
It’s naturally sweetened. Instead of using white sugar, this recipe is made with pure maple syrup. It adds a rich flavor you’ll love, without tasting too sweet.
You can prep it ahead of time. Cranberry sauce keeps well in the fridge for up to 7 days, and since you can serve it chilled, it’s easy to grab and set on the table in time for your Thanksgiving meal.
The leftovers are useful. Spread extra cranberry sauce on leftover turkey sandwiches, turn it into a salad dressing, or use it as a filling for cranberry crumble bars.
Ingredients You’ll Need
What’s in cranberry sauce?
- Fresh cranberries
- Orange juice
- Maple syrup
The fresh ginger makes the cranberry sauce absolutely delectable, so feel free to add more, if you love it!
You can also add in a little orange zest when you use fresh orange juice, or you can use lemon juice, instead. (The lemon will add a little more tartness to the overall flavor.)
How to Make Homemade Cranberry Sauce
1. Gather the ingredients.
Pour the cranberries into a fine mesh strainer, and rinse them well. Be sure to remove any berries that look soft or bruised.
Transfer the cranberries to a medium saucepan and add in the maple syrup, orange juice, cinnamon, and ginger.
Place the pan on the stove over medium high heat, and bring the liquid to a gentle boil. Lower the heat, and let the cranberries cook, stirring often.
The cranberries will start to pop and burst as they cook. After 5 to 10 minutes of cooking and stirring, they will be soft enough to mash against the side of the pot. Use the spatula to mash the cranberries as you stir. (Feel free to leave some whole, too. The texture is up to you!)
Tip: Don’t let the cranberries cook for longer than 15 minutes, or the pectin that the cranberries contain may start to break down. This can prevent the sauce from thickening up as it chills.
Once the cranberry sauce has thickened on the stove, remove it from the heat and let it cool. You can let it rest in a serving bowl if you plan on serving it soon, or transfer it to an airtight container, and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to serve.
The cranberry sauce will thicken even more when it’s cold. Serve the cranberry sauce chilled, or let it come to room temperature for an hour on the counter before serving.
Frequently Asked Questions
Homemade cranberry sauce should keep will in the fridge for up to 7 days. You can also freeze it for up to 3 months. To thaw frozen cranberry sauce, remove it from the freezer and place the jar in the refrigerator. Let it thaw for 48 hours before you plan on serving it.
You can swap the maple syrup for honey, if you don’t need a vegan recipe. Or, you can use 3/4 cup of granulated sugar, but in that case increase the orange juice to 3/4 cup total.
For more of a cozy holiday flavor, you can add in a pinch of nutmeg or allspice, and you can also add a pinch of salt to help boost the overall flavor.
More Holiday Recipes to Try
Holiday Salad. This salad is topped with apples, crunchy pecans, and a delicious apple cider vinaigrette that you can stir together in minutes.
Homemade Apple Cider. This recipe will make your house smell amazing as it cooks! Serve it warm with a cinnamon stick, for a festive holiday drink.
Sweet Potato Casserole. Featuring a crunchy oat & pecan topping, this recipe is a delicious alternative to the kind topped with marshmallows.
Easy Cranberry Sauce
Homemade cranberry sauce tastes a million times better than the kind you’d buy in a can. All you need is a few simple ingredients to make it!
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries
- ¾ cup pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup orange juice*
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger , finely grated
Wash the cranberries and discard any soft ones.
In a 1 1/2 quart sauce pot, combine the cranberries, maple syrup, orange juice, cinnamon, and ginger. Bring the mixture to a boil.
The cranberries should burst as they cook, and the sauce will thicken. Be sure to stir often, to make sure nothing sticks to the pan, and press the cranberries against the side of the pan to help them break down and thicken the sauce.
Make sure you don’t cook the cranberries any longer than 15 minutes, or pectin will start to break down and the sauce will not set as well. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a storage container with a lid.
Store in the fridge and allow to chill for at least 6 hours before serving. You can make this sauce up to 5 days in advance, to make your holiday meal a little easier!
* If you use the juice from a fresh orange, you can also add in some of the zest for extra orange flavor. It’s delicious, either way!
Calories: 105kcal, Carbohydrates: 26g, Protein: 1g, Fat: 1g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Sodium: 4mg, Potassium: 120mg, Fiber: 2g, Sugar: 20g, Vitamin A: 41IU, Vitamin C: 10mg, Calcium: 36mg, Iron: 1mg
If you try this cranberry sauce recipe, please leave a comment and star rating below letting me know how you like it.