Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (2024)

60 Comments | Jill Winger | Last Updated: November 23, 2020

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Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (1)

*Slurp* *Plop!*

Ah… the lovely sound thatcanned cranberry jelly makes as you delicately extract it from the can…

Even back before my real food transformation, it always seemed out of place. I mean, you spent all day basting the turkey, and making the rolls, and mashing the ‘taters, only to have thelast item you put on the table be this bizarre ridged cylinder of store-bought cranberry jelly.But hey– who was I to argue with tradition?

As a young newly-married cook,I had a life-changing moment: I realized you could make cranberry sauce FROM SCRATCH. (Ok, ok… I know those of you who grew up with homemade cranberry sauce are rolling their eyes right now… but you have to realize I had my head in the sand for a good many years…)

Ever since then, I look forward to making this homemade cranberry sauce recipe every year. It’s sweet enough that you won’t pucker, but sweetened with honey and orange juice so you don’t get a sugar-rush from it either. It’s pretty much cranberry perfection. And here’s the recipe—>

How to Make Homemade Cranberry Sauce (video tutorial)

Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (2)

Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup orange juice (about 2 large oranges if you are freshly squeezing it, or something like THIS)
  • 1/2 – 3/4 cup honey (see note below) (where to buy- affiliate link)
  • 12 ounces whole cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

Instructions:

In a medium saucepan, combine in the orange juice, honey, and zest. Bring to a gentle boil, and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Stir in the cranberries and continue to cook them until they burst and the mixture thickens (about 15 minutes).

Spoon the cranberry sauce into a mold (or bowl, or whatever you want) and refrigerate for 6-8 hours, or until set.

Kitchen Notes:

  • I like to use freshly squeezed orange juice, but if that’s not available, premade orange juice will work too.
  • The amount of honey you use will depend on your taste. 1/2 cup yields a pleasantly tart sauce, while 3/4 cup is a bit more palatable for those who are unsure if they really like cranberries or not… Also, I’ve found that my cranberry sauce tends to lessen in sweetness the longer it sits in the fridge, so take that into consideration as well.
  • I love that you caneasilymake this recipe a day or two in advance– so it makes Thanksgiving day preparations a wee bit easier.
  • I adore the combination of orange and cranberry– they are the perfect complement to each other.

So there you have it, a delicious homemade cranberry sauce recipe — mayyourhomestead table be full of delicious, from-scratch foods this year, without a single jiggly red mass of canned cranberry sauce in sight.😉

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Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe

Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (3)

  • Author: The Prairie Homestead

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup orange juice (about 2 large oranges if you are freshly squeezing it)
  • 1/23/4 cup honey (like this)
  • 12 ounces whole cranberries
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest

Instructions

  1. In a medium saucepan, combine in the orange juice, honey, and zest. Bring to a gentle boil, and simmer for about 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in the cranberries and continue to cook them until they burst (about 15 minutes).
  3. Spoon the cranberry sauce into a mold (or bowl, or whatever you want) and refrigerate for 6-8 hours, or until set.

Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (4)
More Holiday Food Recipes:

  • Honey-Sweetened Pumpkin Pie Recipe
  • How to Cook a Pastured Turkey
  • The Best Mashed Potatoes Recipe
  • Buttermilk Biscuits Recipe

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Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (5)

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60 Comments

  1. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (10)Dee says

    Is it possible to can this recipe? I like to make a recipe called cranberry chicken and would love to have homemade cranberry sauce on hand.

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (11)Ann says

      Hi,

      I’ve canned cranberry sauce for years, just as my mother did, as I like having it all year too. I ‘used’ to use sugar 🙁 but for the last several years, have been using Stevia or honey. I also buy raw, organic honey, and hate heating it in that boiling water, but I also don’t want the sugar, even if organic. The Sucanut sugar should work also.

      When I can it, I use a food mill to separate the skins. That takes some extra time, but is so much tastier without the skins to chew.

      We just bought cranberries yesterday at Sam’s, who has a good price, but they aren’t organic. 🙁 One of our grocery stores does have organic cranberries, but they are very expensive. At Sam’s, the price is $4.?? for 3 lbs. My only complaint is that the popular brand they sell no longer has the ‘all ripe’ RED berries they used to have. Each year, it seems they have too many very light and even white berries….! You can also freeze the berries for later.

      Hope this helps.

      reply to comment

      • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (12)Barbara says

        I made this cranberry sauce and ite the best I’ve ever made! So easy and a beautiful additive color to my me All!

        reply to comment

  2. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (14)Peggy Barnett says

    I would also love to have homemade Cranberry sauce available year round. Wish they did not just sell this from Oct through Dec. After that you cannot find the berries.

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (15)Ann says

      Peggy, I just answered above what I do in order to have cranberry sauce all year. If you don’t want to can the sauce, you can buy larger amounts and freeze the berries. If you have a FoodSaver, it works wonderfully to keep them fresh for a very long time. With any berries I freeze, I put them on trays to flash freeze individually so they don’t all freeze together, and then freeze so you can take out what you want.

      reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (16)Jill Winger says

      The berries freeze super well though!

      reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (17)Sissy Williams says

      I buy lots of Cranberries when they’ in season and freeze or dehydrate them for use later in the year. Don’t know how to can but, if I had loads of money, I’d buy that Harvest Right Freeze Dryer.

      reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (19)Susan says

      I just put them in the freezer in whatever bag or container they come in. The berries are dry, so they don’t stick together. Then I have them year-round for baking, saucing, or whatever.

      reply to comment

  3. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (20)Tracy @ Our Simple Homestead says

    For as many things as I make homemade I have to say I have never made homemade cranberry sauce….silly me! Thanks for the quick and easy recipe!

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (21)Jill Winger says

      I think you’ll enjoy it Tracy! 🙂

      reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (22)Rita says

      Home Made is WONDERFUL!!! I’ve never liked cranberry Sauce until my niece made the homemade kindnfor Thanksgiving one year! I tasted it not knowing it was Cranberry Sauce! WOW, WHAT a Difference!!! DELICIOUS!!! Her recipe was different! Not sure exactly without looking. But I think it’s 1 lb cranberries, bring to rolling boil and they start popping open (almost like popcorn) with 2 cups of sugar.
      Her’s doesn’t have the orange zest and I’m sure you could use honey instead of the sugar. Whatever recipe you chose it’s delicious I’m sure!!! And VERY Easy and worth every bit of the few minutes you spend to make it!!!

      reply to comment

  4. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (23)TracyEllen Carson Webb says

    I love homemade cranberry sauce. In fact my children call the canned stuff “the abomination”. I always try to buy extra berries and store in the freezer for later in the year.

    reply to comment

  5. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (24)Jedonne says

    I buy extra berries when they go on sale (or even if they don’t). I just throw them – bag and all – into the freezer. They don’t stick together b/c they aren’t wet from washing. When I’m ready to use them, I dump them into a colander and wash them just before I use them! Works great – especially for recipes such as this. I’ve GOT to try this one! My old one has the naughty “s” word in it! (sugar)

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (25)Jill Winger says

      Yes– they freeze beautifully!

      reply to comment

  6. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (26)Ann says

    Jill, forgot to say thanks for all your great recipes. I love your statement: The Newsletter for People who Love Farm Animals, Mason Jars, and Dirt Under Their Fingernails

    I wish we’d had the opportunity earlier in our lives to have a small farm. With all that’s going on in today’s world, it is vital to be self-sustained and prepared for the worst. My parents both grew up on farms in PA and although they didn’t farm, it was a small town and I had the benefits of being on the farms and my folks gardened all their years. We’re not at a place in our lives now where we could start all over, but know the Lord will provide our needs.

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (27)Jill Winger says

      You are welcome Ann! And yes, He will provide. 🙂

      reply to comment

  7. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (28)cassia says

    LOVE the latest email format linking to this post. simplicity is best 🙂 thanks for the recipe, too! love the blog!

    reply to comment

  8. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (29)Sarah says

    We make everything from scratch but haven’t made cranberry sauce from scratch yet! I will definitely try it because I don’t like all the sugar in the canned stuff.

    reply to comment

  9. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (30)Joanne B says

    This is my basic recipe. The only difference? I take my hand-blender stick and smooth it out. It is beautiful.

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (31)Jill Winger says

      I like that idea Joanne!

      reply to comment

  10. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (32)Diana says

    My husband’s family always used the canned stuff and served it sliced so that it looked like beets. The first time we made cranberry sauce from scratch, we were blown away by how easy it was and how much better it tasted. We couldn’t understand why anyone would use the canned stuff.

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (33)Jill Winger says

      My thoughts exactly! 🙂

      reply to comment

      • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (34)Jill Winger says

        And the canned stuff totally looks like beets, lol!

        reply to comment

  11. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (35)Sheri says

    Yep! So easy and simple! My daughter has the job of doing the cranberry sauce. She makes one basic batch and a new recipe. My daughter like to experiment with the sauce. Sometimes she throws in other berries. It’s on if my favorite parts if the meal! I like tart and sour things. After Thanksgiving, I will use the cranberry sauce like jam. I spread some cream cheese on bread, then the cranberry sauce. Yum! I love leftovers!

    I buy plenty of bags of cranberries for the freezer. I throw them into smoothies or eat them raw. Yep! Raw! The first one zings, but after a few, they don’t feel so tart and I’m used to it.

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (36)Jill Winger says

      I like using like jam too!

      reply to comment

  12. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (37)Susan O says

    Jill – Thanks for this! I have made a similar sauce (with orange, but mine also has a little bit of fresh ginger) for years, but this year I really wanted to use honey instead of ALL that sugar. I was going to experiment with ratios before next Thursday, but now I won’t have to!

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (38)Jill Winger says

      ooooh…. I love the idea of adding fresh ginger!

      reply to comment

  13. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (39)Gina says

    I made this for our Thanksgiving dinner this weekend and oh my…. Simply wonderful!!! Will definitely make this cranberry sauce a family tradition!!!

    reply to comment

  14. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (40)mrsdmk says

    I made this recipe last Thanksgiving & I’ll be making it this year too. My husband loves cranberry sauce and unfortunately he missed it last year because he was out of town. I’m looking forward to making it for him. I’m not a big cranberry sauce person myself but leftover sauce is great for making cranberry muffins!???? Happy Holidays everyone…

    reply to comment

  15. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (41)Debra says

    Hi Jill 🙂 Just love love love ur site! Love the content, love ur vision n passion, n love ur heart! Thx for all u do to provide us with all this valuable information!

    Im so excited to try this cranberry sauce recipe 🙂 How much does it make? Wondering if I need to double it to fill a mold?

    Thx so much! May God continue to bless you for all you’ve done to bless us!

    reply to comment

  16. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (42)Charlotte Moore says

    I just made this today. I used 1/2 cup honey and it seems tart to me. My husband says it is just right. I have never cared for cranberry sauce. All I had ever seen was the canned stuff. Last year I made my first and I think it had pineapple in it. I wanted to try yours this time.

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING !! GOD BLESS!!!

    reply to comment

  17. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (43)Sheri K says

    At our church Thanksgiving this year, several people commented there was no cranberry sauce. I want to make a big pot full next year. How many times would you multiply this recipe to make say a gallon? I know crazy question but it does sound good and I would love to surprise my church family.

    reply to comment

  18. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (44)JenZ says

    This is simmering on my stove right now! I also made a sugar-free version earlier using xylitol and orange oil, so now everyone in my family can have a delicious orange-cranberry sauce!

    reply to comment

  19. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (45)SweetJeanette says

    I love turkey, bacon, smoked Gouda and cranberry sauce sandwiches … AND I have 5 lbs cranberries in the freezer! Woot!!! This is so timely. I can’t wait to do this. Thank you!

    reply to comment

  20. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (46)Lanita says

    My moms recipe uses one whole orange , 1 bag of cranberries .throw everything in the processer and sometimes organic walnuts for crunch , she used sugar but organic honey sounds good to me . Do not cook .

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (47)Bumblebee says

      Lanita, I had eaten this type of recipe once at my old boyfriend’s mom’s house and adored it! Couldn’t find a recipe for it, maybe this is it? I have organic raw honey too, to try. Thanks for posting. Mmmm….. The store I usually shop at, doesn’t have OCEAN SPRAY brand cranberries this year. First time I haven’t seen them. They carry another brand and this week is 2 for $4 and I think next week is 2 for $3. Our sales change every Sunday.

      reply to comment

      • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (48)Susan says

        Thanks for the recipe, it sounds delicious and I love trying a new one every year. Orange zest is always good with cranberries, so is grated fresh ginger!

        reply to comment

        • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (49)Kayla- Prairie Homestead Assistant says

          Yay! We hope you love this one! 🙂

          reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (50)Jill Winger says

      Sounds yummy!

      reply to comment

  21. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (51)Katerina says

    I wander if I could use maple syrup instead of honey, do you think that would change the consistency?

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (52)Jill Winger says

      Hmmm.. I haven’t tried it– I would think it would work– just would impart a slightly different flavor.

      reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (53)Claudia says

      Hmmm, maple and cranberry doesn’t sound like a good couple combination.

      reply to comment

  22. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (54)LeeAnn says

    Love this recipe! I really like that it is made with honey instead of sugar. I end up licking the spoon after I make it. Perfect every time!

    reply to comment

  23. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (55)Vickie says

    How much is 12 oz. in cups? I have a large bag of berries and don’t know how much to use to get 12 oz.

    reply to comment

  24. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (56)E. J Atkinson says

    So – pardon my ignorance…if I make this cranberry sauce ahead and refrigerate? Do I heat to serve? Serve it chilled? Room-temp? Please advise. Sincerest Thanks!

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (57)Wrefordmama says

      It’s all a matter of preference. I make the homemade cranberry sauce and serve warm as a side dish, then cold as a topping for homemade cheesecake!

      reply to comment

  25. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (58)Shirley says

    I also grew up eating the cranberry sauce out of a can. I am 59 years old and this is my first time making it from scratch. I just want to know what is considered a serving…..I’m scratching my head trying to figure this out!

    reply to comment

  26. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (59)Briana says

    Thank you so much for the recipe. This was my first time making homemade cranberry sauce. I put the whole 3/4 cup honey and feel like the end product was too honey tasting. Any ideas how to drown it out a little? Maybe add more orange? Thank you.

    reply to comment

  27. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (60)Debbie says

    I will have to try cooked cranberry sauce this year. We make ‘raw’ cranberry sauce and eat it with cottage cheese. Same ingredients as cooked except we chop the cranberries and not as much o.j. Add sweetener to taste. It’s a favorite around here. ?

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (61)Kayla- Prairie Homestead Assistant says

      Glad to hear it’s a hit! 🙂

      reply to comment

  28. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (62)Mary Abramczyk says

    Third year making this, this time with lots of additions because I felt creative. The recipe, as it, though, is fantastic!

    reply to comment

  29. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (63)Linda Bartos RN says

    Could this be served with cream cheese and crackers to nibble on?

    reply to comment

  30. Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (64)Melisa Burke says

    I have made this sauce for a few years now and absolutely LOVE it! I am wondering if anyone has ever made the sauce and froze it. I have alot on my plate the week of Thanksgiving and am trying to prepare some things ahead of time. I thought I could make it a week ahead and throw it in the freezer. Any thoughts?

    reply to comment

    • Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (65)Cheryl Dellinger says

      I was just wondering the same thing. I read through the comments but it’s not been mentioned yet, other than freezing the fresh berries.

      reply to comment

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Cranberry Sauce Recipe | The Prairie Homestead (2024)

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