Skip the canned jellied stuff, grab a few simple ingredients and make your own slightly tart, slightly sweet easy Homemade Cranberry Sauce. Probably the most underrated side dish of Christmas and Thanksgiving dinner, but it really should be the star for bringing everything together in one bite.
What is cranberry sauce
Cranberry sauce more than likely wasn’t among the side dishes at the first Thanksgiving in American with the Pilgrims. They might have been used in a stuffing, but that’s not really known either.
Amelia Simmon published American Cookery in 1776. It is the first American cookbook every published and contains the first American recipe for cranberry sauce.
Cranberries are native to North American but are now enjoyed world wide. Those in the UK enjoy this sauce with their Christmas meals and a bit more tarty, whereas Americans tend to use it more for Thanksgiving and a whole lot sweeter.
- Cranberries — the star of the show! Grab a bag of fresh cranberries in the produce section of your local grocery store.
- Liquids — water and orange juice turn the berries into sauce.
- Seasonings — fresh zest from an orange, a pinch of salt, and cinnamon.
- Brown sugar — turns your tart berries sweet.
How to make Easy homemade cranberry sauce
Step 1 — Rinse and pick through the bag of cranberries, removing undesirable berries, and add to a 2 quart Dutch oven.
Step 2 — Add the orange juice and water and begin to cook on medium high heat.
Step 3 — Add the orange zest.
Step 4 — Add the brown sugar.
Step 5 — Add the salt and cinnamon. Stir well.
Step 6 — Stir frequently. As the sauce begins to boil, the berries will spit and pop. This is normal.
Step 7 — Allow to boil for about 10-15 minutes, or until you see it start to reduce and slightly thicken; stir frequently.
Step 8 — Reduce heat to medium low and allow it to simmer away for another 10-15 minutes, stirring often. It will not have a thick, gelled consistency at this stage. Remove from heat. Allow to cool down, then put it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours but overnight is best.
Homemade Cranberry Sauce
- 2-quart Dutch oven
- 12 oz fresh cranberries cleaned and sorted
- 1 cup orange juice
- ¾ cup water
- 1½ cups dark brown sugar
- ⅙ tsp cinnamon
- ⅙ tsp salt
- Add all the ingredients to the mini Dutch oven.
- Cook over medium high heat and bring to boil. The cranberries will begin to pop.
- Boil, stirring constantly for 10-15 minutes or until the sauce begins to reduce and thicken.
- Reduce heat to medium low and allow it to simmer away for another 10-15 minutes, stirring often.
- Remove from heat. Allow to cool down, then put it in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours but overnight is best.
Dutch Oven Daddy is not a dietician or nutritionist, and any nutritional information shared is only an estimate. We recommend running the ingredients through an online nutritional calculator if you need to verify any information.