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Delicious Kentucky Cranberry and Bourbon Recipes

Updated on December 20, 2017
fresh cranberries
fresh cranberries | Source

Why cranberries are so popular

Why are cranberries so popular today? There are many health reasons for using them as well as delicious recipes.Besides being rich in vitamin C, they are high in antioxidants and fiber, and low in calories.

I have compiled some cranberry recipes from a few cookbooks for any get together. Most of us think that cranberries are just for the winter holidays,but they can be enjoyed anytime.You can create these recipes all year long.

Did you know that cranberries started out as crane berries? That was on the Food Channel®

The cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) is native to the swamps and bogs of northeastern North America. It belongs to the Heath, or Heather family (Ericaceae), which is a very widespread family of about 125 genera and about 3500 species! Members of the family occur from Polar Regions to the tropics in both hemispheres.

The cranberry plant is described as a low-growing, woody perennial with small, oval leaves borne on fine, vine-like shoots. Horizontal stems, or runners, grow along the soil surface, rooting at intervals to form a dense mat. Its flower buds, formed on short, upright shoots, open from May to June and produce ripe fruit in late September to early October.

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twice baked cranberry sweet potato
twice baked cranberry sweet potato
twice baked cranberry sweet potato

Cranberry Recipes

This recipe came from Linda Allison-Lewis’ cook book;” Kentucky’s Best-fifty years of Great Recipes”.

Twice Baked Cranberry Sweet Potatoes

The ingredients and tools needed are as follows:

4 sweet potatoes

1 cup of fresh or frozen chopped cranberries

½ cup light brown sugar

3 tablespoons of divided butter

1/3 cup of orange juice

½ cup of chopped pecans

1 teaspoon of cinnamon

Salt and pepper to taste.

A large quart bowl

A large metal fork

A cookie sheet

A colander


Wash and bake unpeeled small to medium sweet potatoes until fork tender in a 350 ° oven, for 45 minutes to an hour.

Meanwhile, cook cranberries in a small amount of water, until tender and drain.

In a skillet, heat the pecans in 1 tablespoon of melted butter until lightly browned.

When cooled, cut cooked sweet potatoes, in half, lengthwise and scrape out the pulp,

into a bowl, leaving the shells intact.

Next, combine the remaining ingredients with the potatoes and mash with a fork.

Fill the shells evenly and return to oven, baking for 20 to 25 minutes. This will serve 8 people.

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Cranberry Scones
Cranberry Scones
Cranberry Scones

Cranberry Scones

This is a tasty little tart.

Ingredients and tools are;

2 cups of all purpose flour

1 tablespoon of baking powder

½ teaspoon of salt

2 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon of sugar

5 tablespoons of unsalted cold butter, cut into chunks

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons heavy cream

¾ cup of dried cranberries


Pastry cutter

Cookie sheet


Preheat oven to 400°.Sift together the first four ingredients. Using a pastry sifter or two forks, cut in the cold butter until mixture is crumbly.

Next, make a well in the center of the dough and pour in one cup of heavy cream.

Be careful to not overwork the dough. Gently combine the crumbly mixture with the cream.

Fold in the cranberries.

Then pat the dough out on a lightly floured surface, into a long rectangle about ½ inch thick.

You then cut the dough into four squares and cut each piece diagonally to form eight triangles.

Brush the pieces with the remaining heavy cream and bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly browned.

It will make eight servings and should be served immediately. Enjoy!

Cranberry scones with orange glaze video

caramel cranberry squares the gourmetproject
caramel cranberry squares the gourmetproject

Cranberry-Caramel Squares

1 cup fresh cranberries

2 tablespoons of sugar

1/2 teaspoon of fresh lemon juice

21/3 cup all purpose flour, divided

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

2 cups uncooked regular oats

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

1/4 cup toasted pecans, finely chopped

1 cup butter or margarine, melted

1 10 oz package chopped dates

3/4 cup chopped pecans

1 1/2 oz jar caramel sauce

Small bowl

Measuring cup

Baking dish

Wire rack

Two wooden spoons


Stir together cranberries, lemon juice and 2 tablespoons sugar in a small bowl; set aside. Combine 2 cups flour and next 5 ingredients. Stir in melted butter until crumbly.

Reserve 1 cup flour mixture. Press remaining mixture into bottom of a lightly greased 9"x13" baking dish.

Bake at 350°F for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with dates, pecans, and cranberry mixture. Stir together caramel sauce and remaining 1/3 cup flour, spoon over cranberries.

Sprinkle with reserved flour mixture. Bake 20 more minutes or until lightly browned.

Cool on a wire rack. Cut into bars. Prep time: 20 minutes Baking time: 35 minutes Yield: 2 dozen

This recipe can be found in Splendor in the Bluegrass cookbook from the Junior League of Louisville.Proceeds go to charity.

Bourbon straight from the bottle
Bourbon straight from the bottle

Bourbon Cranberry Sauce

Ingredients and tools needed are;

  • · 1 pound cranberries; (about 4 cups)
  • · 2 cups sugar
  • · 1/4 teaspoon Ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup Bourbon

Instructions for Bourbon Cranberry Sauce

Preheat oven to 350F. Combine first 3 ingredients in 9x13-inch baking dish.

Cover tightly with foil and bake until cranberries are tender and sugar is dissolved, stirring once, about 1 hour.

Remove from oven and stir in bourbon.

Refrigerate cranberry sauce until well chilled. (Can be prepared 1 week ahead.)

Transfer to bowl and serve. Makes about 3 cups.

photo credit  pomplemousse allrecipes
photo credit pomplemousse allrecipes

Bourbon and Bacon Stuffing

Here is a bacon and Bourbon lovers delight!

The preparation time is about 45 minutes and should cook about 30-45 minutes depending on your oven.

This is based on a 12 pound bird and will make approximately 12 servings. Adjust the amounts for a larger or smaller bird.

The breads should be a the darker kinds and a little stale. They can be different from the recipe but white bread isn't a good choice.

Ingredients :

  • 1/2 cup good quality bourbon whiskey

  • 1/2 lb chopped bacon

  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine

  • 3 celery stalks, chopped fine

  • 1 tablespoons dried rosemary or 3 sprigs fresh rosemary if you can get it

  • 1/2(1 pound) stale pumpernickel bread, 1” squares

  • 1/2(1 pound) stale dark rye bread, 1” squares

  • 3 eggs, lightly whisked

  • 1/2 tablespoon dried thyme or 3 sprigs fresh thyme

  • 1 and 1/2 tablespoons dried sage leaves

  • 1 quarts chicken stock (canned is fine but your own is best)

  • 1 large onion, chopped

Equipment needed:

iron skillet

2 -9 " square baking dishes


large metal spoon



  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F . Lightly grease two 9 “ square baking dishes.

  2. Place the bacon in a large, deep skillet, and cook over medium high heat until evenly brown. Drain on paper towels. Pour bacon fat remaining in the skillet into a bowl.

    OR Microwave for 5 minutes and save grease (depending on size)

  3. Next,melt the butter over medium setting, using the same skillet. Stir in the onions, celery, garlic, and rosemary, and cook until onions are soft and transparent, a few minutes. Now stir in the bacon fat.

  4. Next, place the bread cubes into a large bowl and mix in the eggs, sage thyme, and onion , and toss evenly.

  5. Mix the bourbon and chicken stock a in a bowl and then pour the mixture over the bread mixture, to desired consistency. You should use your hands to evenly mix the ingredients together. Fill stuffing mixture into the prepared baking dishes, patting it down lightly.

  6. Bake for about 30 minutes until a knife inserted into the center comes out clean. Bake for an additional 10 minutes for a darker crust on top,

Cranberry lemonade

This recipe is compliment sof the fine folks at the Chateau du Vieux Corbeau Vineyard and Winery in Danville,Kentucky.


1 jug "Simply lemonade"

1 bottle Chatteau du Viteux's own cranberry wine

Thin lemon slices


Frozen Cranberries;optional


In a large pitcher, mix the cranberry wine and lemonade, for individual taste.

Add sprite or frozen cranberries for a variety.

I think I would freeze this for a dessert.

Final thoughts on cranberries and bourbon

These are some favorite recipes among my Kentucky friends. They have been handed down and updated from one generation to the next.

You should try the Bourbon cranberry sauce, for sure! Since moving to Kentucky 7 years ago I discovered some new recipes.

Holidays meals such as Thanksgiving is informal in the rural parts of the state. People are more apt to cook outside, using a deep fryer or on a smoker such as the "Green Egg" for this holiday.

As in any family, everyone has a favorite and a holiday dinner wouldn’t be the same without them

The bourbon cranberry sauce is delicious and everyone should try it.

And I recently found a cranberry wine at a local winery in Danville, Kentucky. It's mixed with lemonade and I can tell you that is great!. You can enjoy this anytime of the year.

I guess each state may have their own variation and these are enjoyed all year long. Enjoy cranberry recipes everyday and don't forget the bourbon!

© 2008 Stacie L


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