Thanksgiving: Three easy cranberry sauce recipes that you can make at home

Cranberry sauce can be made in just minutes night before Thanksgiving

Chelsea Ritschel
New York
Wednesday 27 November 2019 15:52
What is Thanksgiving?

Thanksgiving Day is full of delicious food - with roasted turkeys, stuffing, and marshmallow-covered sweet potatoes all fighting for room on your plate.

But, if there’s one dish that brings the meal together, it’s the cranberry sauce.

With a slightly-bitter-yet-still-fruity taste, the sugary sauce is a staple on Thanksgiving.

Fortunately, it’s also easy to make if you prefer your cranberry sauce homemade rather than slid out of a can.

Ina Garten’s make-ahead cranberry sauce

For a smoother Thanksgiving Day, Ina Garten recommends making her cranberry sauce the day before - so it’s perfect in time for your 3pm dinner.

To make the dish, the Barefoot Contessa advises gathering one 12-ounce bag of fresh cranberries, one and ¾ cups of sugar, one granny smith apple that’s been peeled, cored, and chopped, grated zest and juice of one orange, and the grated zest and juice of one lemon.

From there, you simply cook the cranberries, sugar, and water together in a saucepan for five minutes over low heat.


Once the skins pop open, add the apple zests, and juices and cook for 15 minutes more.

After removing from the heat and letting cool, the sauce is ready - but should be served chilled.

Bobby Deen’s recipe

For an easy cranberry sauce recipe with a bit more flavour, Bobby Deen incorporates orange juice into his - plus some ground cinnamon.

You can make cranberry sauce in minutes (Stock)

To create his homemade cranberry sauce, you need ⅔ cup sugar, ½ cup of orange juice with no added sugar, ¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon, ⅛ teaspoon of kosher salt and one 12-ounce bag of cranberries.

Cooking is as simple as combining the sugar, orange juice, ½ cup of water, the cinnamon, salt and cranberries in a medium saucepan.

Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium heat and cook for 15 minutes - and then let cool before serving.

Spiked cranberry sauce

To add a little fun to the Thanksgiving table, you can also make a spiked cranberry sauce recipe - complete with vodka.

To make the recipe, you need one tablespoon of unflavoured gelatin, ⅓ cup vodka, two tablespoons of orange-flavoured liqueur, such as Cointreau, a 14-ounce can of jellied cranberry sauce and cooking spray.

The first step is putting the gelatin in a small bowl, and pouring the vodka and liqueur over it. Let that sit for 10 minutes, until the gelatin is completely soft.

While the gelatin is sitting, transfer the cranberry sauce to a small saucepan and heat over medium-low heat.

Rinse out the can and coat the inside with cooking spray.

Once the cranberry sauce starts to bubble, “whisk it vigorously” until it’s smooth.

According to the recipe, it should darken and have a slight sheen.

Then remove the sauce from the heat, add the softened gelatin and all the liquid, and stir together.

Pour it into the can and let it sit at room temperature as it cools down. Then cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate - at least for four hours but overnight preferably.

Serve in slices.

Register for free to continue reading

Registration is a free and easy way to support our truly independent journalism

By registering, you will also enjoy limited access to Premium articles, exclusive newsletters, commenting, and virtual events with our leading journalists

Please enter a valid email
Please enter a valid email
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Must be at least 6 characters, include an upper and lower case character and a number
Please enter your first name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
Please enter your last name
Special characters aren’t allowed
Please enter a name between 1 and 40 characters
You must be over 18 years old to register
You must be over 18 years old to register
You can opt-out at any time by signing in to your account to manage your preferences. Each email has a link to unsubscribe.

Already have an account? sign in

By clicking ‘Register’ you confirm that your data has been entered correctly and you have read and agree to our Terms of use, Cookie policy and Privacy notice.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy policy and Terms of service apply.

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged in