Treat your family to this delicious Cranberry Orange Sauce this holiday season! This easy sauce is made with fresh, simple ingredients and ready in minutes ... perfect for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any seasonal meal!
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Are you pro Cranberry Sauce? Personally, I LOVE it. But I just can't get behind the canned stuffed ... I mean, what is even in that canned jelly?
Thankfully, it couldn't be simpler to make from scratch, and I'm so excited to share my favorite recipe with you today!
Whether you've never made your own sauce before, or you're looking for an easy twist on the classic recipe, you are going to love this homemade Cranberry Orange Sauce. If you can stir a few ingredients together, you can make this recipe. It's so fast and easy!
The best thing about this scrumptious sauce though—especially when you're serving it with a multi-course Thanksgiving meal—is that it can be made ahead! And fewer things to cook on the big day means way less stress. Which is never a bad thing during the holidays, right?
Ready to try this recipe for yourself? You'll find all the details below!
This easy recipe is made with simple ingredients you'll find in any grocery store. Here's what you'll need:
- Cranberries - You can find fresh cranberries in the produce section around holiday time. My grocery store always seems to be running short though, so I'd recommend stocking up when you see them. They'll keep for about two to three weeks refrigerated.
- Orange - Look for a big, juicy naval orange. You'll be using the zest and the juice, so make sure the exterior is fresh and unblemished.
- Sugar - Basic granulated sugar provides a sweet counterpart to the bitter berries. Other sweeteners, such as brown sugar, maple syrup, and honey, can also be used. For a sugar-free sauce, swap in your favorite sugar substitute.
- Ginger - Surprise, this recipe's secret ingredient is fresh ginger. I love the bright, spicy flavor ginger adds to holiday foods. If you're not feeling it though, you can skip it for a more traditional sauce that's still super tasty.
You'll Also Need
To wash the cranberries, you'll need a colander or strainer. These fine mesh strainers are perfect for the job! To cook the sauce, you'll also need a medium pot, preferably one with a heavy bottom. Finally, a microplane zester will come in super handy when zesting the orange and grating the ginger.
How to Make Cranberry Orange Sauce
Let's get started on this simple sauce! You'll find a detailed recipe card below, but here's an overview of the steps:
- Prep the ingredients. Start by picking over your cranberries and removing any that are soft or shriveled. Then, give the cranberries a quick rinse. Next, zest and juice your orange. Then combine the juice with enough water to equal one cup liquid. (For example, if you have ½ cup juice, you'll add ½ cup water to it.) Finally, grate the ginger. Tip: If you have a microplane zester, hold it upside down as you zest the orange and grate the ginger, and it will "catch" your zest.
- Combine the cranberries, orange zest and juice, sugar, and ginger in a small saucepan. Mix well.
- Cook the sauce. Bring the cranberry mixture to a boil over high heat, then reduce the temperate to a simmer. As the sauce simmers, the cranberries will get tender and start to pop. You'll know the sauce is done when it has thickened slightly and most of the berries have popped. It should take about 10 minutes or so.
And that's all there is to it ... time to enjoy your scrumptious Cranberry Orange Sauce! This fresh sauce has an amazing sweet-tart flavor that's the perfect counterpart to heavier holiday foods. You are going to love it!
This Cranberry Sauce with Orange is a tasty addition to any fall / winter meal, but it's especially at home on the holiday table at Thanksgiving or Christmas time!
Serve it paired with all your favorites, or enjoy this special vegetarian holiday meal plan:
- Baked Ricotta – A crave-worthy start to the meal that’s so easy to prepare!
- Garlic Mashed Potatoes – These yummy potatoes are the BEST. Serve them drizzled with melted butter or with my fave Mushroom Gravy.
- Mushroom Stuffing – No holiday meal is complete without an awesome dressing recipe, and this one is a fave.
- Vegetable Pie – This show stopping entree will be the talk of your party.
- No Bake Pumpkin Cheesecake – You’re going to love this fun, easy twist on the classic pumpkin pie!
This homemade Cranberry Sauce will stay fresh for about one week when stored in an airtight container in your refrigerator. You can also freeze leftovers for up to three months.
Have leftover Cranberry and Orange Sauce after the big meal? Serve it over waffles or pancakes, with Greek yogurt and granola, drizzled on poundcake, as a sandwich spread, and so much more. You can also use it to make this Cranberry and Brie Grilled Cheese, Cranberry Jalapeño Dip, Cranberry Parfait, and Baked Brie, or serve it with these Leftover Stuffing Muffins.
Looking for similar recipes? Make sure to check out my Basic Cranberry Sauce recipe, which is perfect for picky eaters, this unique Cranberry Relish, which is made with raw berries, and this scrumptious Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce!
Craving more of that classic cranberry-orange flavor profile? Then you have to try my Cranberry Orange Overnight Oatmeal (makes a great, no fuss holiday breakfast), Cranberry Walnut Cookies, and my Cranberry Cheesecake Parfait, too!
If you're looking for even more cranberry recipes, make sure to try my Wheat Berry Salad, White Chocolate Cranberry Cookies, Roasted Butternut Squash with Cranberries, Kale Cranberry Salad, or my Cranberry Sage Stuffed Acorn Squash.
Cranberry Orange Sauce
- 1 large orange
- 1 (12-ounce / 340 grams) bag cranberries
- ½ cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger (optional)
- Zest orange, then mince zest. Juice orange, then add enough water to juice to equal 1 cup.
- Combine orange juice and zest, cranberries, sugar, and ginger in a small saucepan.
- Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to a simmer, then cook until cranberries have softened and most have popped, stirring occasionally (about 10 minutes).
- Refrigerate sauce until ready to serve. Enjoy!