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How to Make Cranberry Sauce. Easy Antioxidant Rich Cranberry Sauce Recipes!

Updated on August 9, 2009

Let's hear it for the humble cranberry.

It's absolutely loaded with antioxidants, is a pretty god source of vitamin C, etc. and it’s a fruit that we grow and harvest locally in the northern parts of the northern hemisphere in the late Fall months!

There's a reason cranberry sauce is traditional with your Thanksgiving food – it's harvest eating, but if you are only familiar with cranberries that slurp out of a can, then you're missing a lot.

You should incorporate more cranberries into your winter eating. They are super healthy and you do the world good by eating locally.

Cranberries are good enough to eat all winter long, (and not just as a side dish for 2 turkey meals a year, as they are most often currently) but if you're not familiar with cooking fresh cranberries, boasting a little homemade cranberry sauce alongside your Christmas dinner turkey is a great place to start out.

Making your cranberry sauce from "scratch" is a little touch that always impresses, it can be made as much as a week in advance and it is dead easy.

Cranberry Sauce Recipe

  • 1 liter or quart of fresh cranberries (about 4 cups)
  • 1 cup of both white sugar and plain water
  1. Add the sugar and water to a pot and bring it to a boil. When you see that the sugar has dissolved completely, toss in your cranberries, and turn the heat down to a simmer.
  2. Let the cranberries simmer away until they have all popped open – 5 to 10 minutes.
  3. Pour them into a bowl, and place in the fridge to cool.

Cranberries have a lot of natural pectin. Pectin is the stuff that is added to jam to make them, jammy or jelly like. Basically, you don't have to do anything tricky to get that rich jellylike thickness in a homemade cranberry sauce.

That's it that's all. Serve alongside a turkey dinner, and enjoy a fresh tasting change from canned sauce.

A note on seasoning

Cranberries, like any fruit, will vary in their sweetness's. It can be hard to taste test the sauce though as it lies in molten lava stage, just off from the heat. Taste it after it has cooled for a few minutes, and add more sugar, if it tastes too tart, and if it's too sweet, try adding in a little citric acid (this is great stuff for a natural sour taste).

Remember that cool foods taste less sweet, so if you plan on serving the sauce cool but are tasting it hot, it's perceived sweetness will lessen at the dinner table. Season accordingly!

As an aside – I am mental for dried cranberries. If you don't already have a dried cranberry addiction, try adding in a scant handful to your next green salad, and see how good winter anti oxidants can taste!


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    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Do you remove the skin while making the cranberry sauce?

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Im Not Old Im 21

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Why are old people on here!!!!???????:(

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Really it tastest just fine. I really appricait the help!!~!!!!!!!!!!! ;) ;P

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Wow, this is really terrible!!!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      John, I've made fresh cranberry sauce before but I can't get past the texture of the skin. Even after spending my whole life in MA, I can't seem to break the canned brainwashing. Do you have a good method for getting the skin out without completely negating the point of homemade sauce?

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      8 years ago from Sunny Florida

      I like this recipe. So simple to make I am going to try it. thanks.

    • John D Lee profile imageAUTHOR

      John D Lee 

      8 years ago

      Hi Devin - frozen cranberries work perfectly well here!

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      I'd like to give this recipe a try the next time I roast a chicken(which is fairly often in the winter). Here in Massachusetts along with the typical fall foliage, the bright red flooded bogs are a nice burst of color at the end of the year.

      Its nice to see a local crop being touted for antioxidants as opposed to exotic tropical fruits. Healthyness aside I think they taste great.

      Do you know if frozen cranberries can be used interchangeably in this recipe? I don't often see fresh cranberries for sale after the holidays(even in MA). I find compared to other berries they hold up to freezing very well.

      Dried ones are great too for snacking but I don't love how much sugar some makers cram into the dried ones.

    • marisuewrites profile image


      10 years ago from USA

      Positively super! We love "from scratch" sauces and anything anti-oxidant is on my list of must haves! thanks again!!


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