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Sep 15, 2005 12:41 PM

Best Cranberry Sauce Recipe

  • s

What is your favorite Cranberry Sauce recipe. I will be making it tonight.

I am not looking for the normal, cranberries, sugar, water. I have made one before with the zest of orange, vinegar, etc. and it turned out divine, but can't seem to find the recipe.

Any help would be great!

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  1. This is delicious, I'm glad you reminded me of it.

    You will need to combine in a saucepan, 1 12oz. bag of cranberries, 1 C. Cabernet Sauvignon, 1 C. sugar, 2 tsp. finely grated tangerine zest and a 3" cinnamon stick. Cook stirring and bring too a boil then reduce heat and simmer 10-15 minutes. Remove from heat and discard the cinnamon stick. Serve warm or cool.

    This has converted people who believed that they did not care for cranberry sauce.

    13 Replies
    1. re: Candy

      I honestly think part of the conversion is that most people have never had home made (not to knock your recipe, mind you!). I thought I didn't like it until I made my home made recipe and realized how good cranberry sauce was when it wasn't molded into the shape of a tin can!


      1. re: smokey

        No, the people I served it to last year had made their own numerous times because that was the way it had always been done in their famlies homes. They just were convnced that thre was no good cranberry sauce to be had. There is something about the cab and cranberries that just works beautifully.

        My mom used to serve the canned stuff when I was a kid and while I liked that, fresh was a revelation to me when I first made it. But she grew up on a ranch in southern AZ in the 30's-40's and you can bet fresh cranberries were just not happening and then as an Air Force wife living all over, she got what she could in the commissaries.

        1. re: smokey
          Caitlin McGrath

          You may be right. A friend who'd never tasted any but canned and liked it okay was over while I was making my standard cranberry sauce, made with orange rind and raspberry vinegar. She smelled it cooking and immediately asked for the recipe. After T-day, she called me and said, "I'm never eating the canned stuff again!" Neither is the rest of her family [g].

          1. re: Caitlin McGrath

            I actually tried to mimic the little can ridges on my first homemade cranberry sauce in order to fool Mr. Pine. He didn't grow up eating any T'giving stuffs, but was sure he liked only canned cranberry sauce. Now he professes to be an expert in the "correct" (i.e., my) version of homemade. Ah, I've made a little influence on the world...

        2. re: Candy

          I make a similar one with zinfandel and additionally a couple cloves and whole allspice -- cooking the peel and spices with the wine and sugar for a while, then straining out the spices and cooking the berries in the syrup. I think I originally got the recipe from Bon Appetit/Epicurious. It's even better the second day, and it's true that it makes converts of cranberry haters.

            1. re: Tom Hall

              No,it is similar but mine does not have brown sugar, orange rind or allspice and uses Cabernet just as I posted.

              12 oz. cranberries, 1 C. cab, 1 c. sugar, 2 tsp. finely grated tangerine peel and 1 3" cinnamon stick, bring all to a boil then reduce heat and simmer 10-15 miinutes serve warm or cool.

              1. re: Candy
                Caitlin McGrath

                Tom was asking if it was the zinfandel/cranberry variation from Epicurious that jnovgirl mentioned, and I think he found it.

                I have used the Epicurious recipe linked below for cranberry-ginger-peach sauce, and it's great if you like a sweet sauce. Here is my Epicurious review, which includes my tweaking of the recipe, which I defintely recommend doing:

                "This is another tasty variation on the holiday staple, and would be good with all kinds of dishes. I added some subtle spice by steeping a cheesecloth bundle of cinnamon stick, whole cloves, and crushed cardamom pods in the sugar syrup for half an hour before proceeding."

                I actually canned this sauce a couple of years ago, and everyone who received it as a holiday gift seemed to think it was great.

                I intend to try the cabernet recipe this year; I usually make two or more sauces and chutneys because I'm cranberry sauce-obsessed.


              2. re: Tom Hall

                (just noticing the question a week later) Yep, that's the one.

                1. re: Tom Hall

                  I have to say that I tried this recipe for this year's Thanksgiving and it is awesome! I cut back on the sugars a bit and added a just about a tablespoon of orange marmalade. Thanks!

              3. re: Candy

                Yeah, posted the Cabernet Cranberries recipe...that is our all-time favorite! What a shame I ever ate that stuff from a can. The tangerine zest is fabulous in it.

                1. re: Candy

                  Do you know if you can make this ahead and freeze?

                  1. re: Candy

                    Candy, I just used your recipe this morning and it is delicious! The color is gorgeous and the flavor excellent. I'll be thrilled to add it to our Christmas table.

                    Thanks for posting this!

                  2. I toss in some toasted, coarsely chopped walnuts for a nice texture contrast. I normally do a bit or orange zest too.

                    1. I make the cranberry/sugar/water and add slivers of crystalized ginger and toasted almond slivers. Tastes even better if it has a couple days to sit.

                      1. This is a recipe I've posted before in response to the same request. I think it's fabulous and so do my friends and family. (In another recent post, asking for ideas for desserts involving pears, I suggested poaching them as in this recipe, but not mixing with the cranberries.)

                        Cranberry/Pear Relish

                        4 ripe Bosc pears
                        6 cups very strong coffee
                        3 cups sugar (1½ cups for pears, 1½ cups for cranberries)
                        1 teaspoon vanilla
                        1 lemon, cut in half
                        1 (8-oz.) bag of cranberries

                        Poach the pears: Peel and slice the pears lengthwise, rubbing with lemon to keep them from turning brown. Core the halves and remove the stem & bud ends with a paring knife.

                        Pour the coffee into a large sauce pan. Stir in 1½ cups of sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla and bring to a boil. Add the halved pears. When it comes back to the boil, reduce to a simmer and cook for about 15 minutes. Remove the pears and set aside to cool a bit. Discard the coffee.

                        Cook the cranberries: While the pears are cooling, prepare the cranberries according to the directions on the bag, (i.e., cover with water, add about 1½ cups of sugar, bring to a boil, then simmer ‘til they’ve all ‘exploded’ and the mixture is thick). It doesn’t take very long... Remove from heat and put into a large bowl.

                        Mix cranberries & pears together: When the pears are cool enough to handle, cut them into small chunks and put them into the bowl with the cranberries. Toss to mix well, transfer to a serving dish, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve (or at least a couple of hours).

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: Deenso

                          I'm all for the pears!
                          I have made a similar cran-pear sauce for the past severl years.

                          I tried tossing the pears in olive oil and roasting them at 400 until golden brown edges form- just toss 'em into the berry slurry just after they all burst until everything is pink and ymmy.

                          I also have poached my pears in everthing from port to chardonay to orange zinger tea! It's all delicious!

                          If you can stand the suspense, make the pears yummy however you like, but refrain from mixing them into the cranberries unti leverything has chilled. The texture and flavor differences will be more pronounced.

                          Have fun!

                          1. re: Deenso

                            I know I am commenting on a seven year old thread. I've done that same recipe several times. I think it is from Food & Wine magazine in the mid 80's. I replace the sugar with maple syrup.

                            1. re: JMF

                              "7 year old thread..." Its Thanksgiving time and comments about good cranberry sauce are always worth posting! (Some recipes are 'timeless,' or something like that.) There are many other posts here from 2012. Its all good.

                          2. My favorite is cranberries, sugar, port, a bit of orange juice and rind, and cardomom. I usually just estimate the proportions. I adore this, and my mom, who is fussy, likes it, but my boyfriend, who usually isn't fussy, dislikes it rather strongly. Not sure what to make of that.