This is a very simple, classic homemade cranberry sauce recipe. It’s sweet (but not overly sweet) and tart with a little touch of lemon that I think makes all the difference. It takes all of 3 minutes of active preparation time and 20 minutes on the stove – very low maintenance!
Cranberry Sauce recipe originally published November 2015. Post updated with new recipe video added. No change to recipe – it’s still the same one I use and love!
HOMEMADE CRANBERRY SAUCE IS AMAZING
I tried store bought cranberry sauce once many years ago and it turned me right off it. It just tasted like….jam. I may as well have slathered my turkey with strawberry jam!
It wasn’t until I started to take on the roast turkey centrepiece for holiday gatherings that I decided to give Cranberry Sauce another go….
and well, well, well, what do you know? Homemade cranberry sauce is sensational! It’s nothing like store bought. It tastes (shock horror) like cranberries!
WHAT IS CRANBERRY SAUCE USED FOR?
Well, the obvious answer is ↑↑↑ : turkey! But there’s so many other options too. It’s sweet and tart, so it’s ideal to use like a warm jam for things like Scones, French Toast, or Pancakes. Or to make a jam and whipped cream layered Vanilla Sponge Cake.
Because it’s a bit tart, it’s also ideal paired with savoury things. I serve it with Glazed Baked Ham at Christmas, on sandwiches piled high with leftover turkey (roast whole turkey, slow cooker or roasted turkey breast) or sandwich cold cuts (ham, turkey, chicken slices).
Try it on a grilled sandwich with brie – what a fabulous combination! Use it to make Cranberry Bars (switch out the raspberry jam in this Raspberry Jam Bars recipe) or swirl dollops of it through muffins – like these Apple Muffins or in place of blueberries in these muffins.
In short – your only limited by your imagination!
HOW TO MAKE THIS SIMPLE CRANBERRY SAUCE
A great Cranberry Sauce just needs cranberries (frozen, sold alongside other frozen fruit), sugar, water, and I like to add a touch of lemon zest which I think gives it a little edge. It lifts the flavour and gives it a tiny touch of freshness that will make your family and friends ask what the secret ingredient is!
Sometimes I use orange zest – and once I used both. All are great, but lemon is my base recipe!
I really love that I can control the sweetness of the sauce to my taste. I’m a savoury gal, so I’m not a fan of overly sweet cranberry sauces.
If you’re here for Thanksgiving, complete your menu with a browse through the new Thanksgiving Recipe Index! It’s sorted by category so it’s nice and easy for you to find what you’re after (and get ideas for things that you didn’t even know you needed in your life! 😂). Enjoy! – Nagi x
WATCH HOW TO MAKE IT
Easy Classic Cranberry Sauce
- 16 oz / 500g bag frozen cranberries (or fresh)
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/8 tsp lemon zest
- Pinch of salt
- Tip the cranberries in a saucepan set over medium low heat. Remove a heaped 1/2 cup of cranberries and set aside.
- Add remaining ingredients. Cook for 5 minutes or until sugar is dissolved.
- Increase heat to medium high. Cook for 10 minutes or until most of the cranberries have burst and the liquid is syrupy.
- Reduce heat to low, stir through reserved cranberries. Adjust sweetness to your taste with more sugar and add a pinch of salt.
LIFE OF DOZER
Perfectly positioned so he doesn’t get zonked every time I open the fridge door…