I have a treat for you guys today, just in time for Thanksgiving: homemade cranberry sauce with orange juice!
This flavorful and unique cranberry sauce is free of refined sugar and as easy as it gets to make. Sweet, tangy, and bright, it can also be made days in advance to save time.
Homemade Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry sauce is one of those things that can be really awesome or really gross. You know what I’m talking about: cue the canned weirdly gelatinous cranberry sauce, made from a tiny bit of actual cranberries but mostly just corn syrup and who knows what else.
If you normally use cranberry sauce out of a can, please try this recipe instead. It’s super easy, much tastier, and way healthier, too, with actual real food ingredients and no refined sugar.
Healthy Cranberry Sauce Ingredients
To make this recipe, all you need is:
- fresh cranberries
- maple syrup
- a fresh orange
- a little fresh thyme (this can be omitted to make the recipe even simpler, if you like)
If you end up with extra cranberries, I highly recommend trying this cranberry orange bread!
How to Make Cranberry Sauce with Orange Juice
Once you have your ingredients, simply toss everything into a medium-sized pan. Stir over medium-high heat.
Reduce the heat to medium-low and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have popped and the sauce has thickened. This should take about 7-10 minutes. Then, it’s ready. Easy as that!
Just 10 minutes and you’ll have way better than store bought homemade cranberry sauce! Garnish with a little extra thyme to make it look super fancy.
Make this ahead of time if you like and store in the fridge for a few days, to free up stovetop space on the big day.
The full homemade cranberry sauce with orange juice recipe is at the bottom of this post. Enjoy it!
Looking for other Thanksgiving-worthy recipes? Here are few easy favorites already here on the blog:
- Spiced Mashed Sweet Potatoes – Delicious with no sugar added!
- Quinoa Salad with Pecans and Cranberries – This recipe is from our wedding, and is an old favorite.
- Healthy Mashed Potatoes – These taste (and look) like normal mashed potatoes, but the nutrition is amped up with mashed cauliflower and cannellini beans. They’re vegan, too!
- Lemon Garlic String Beans – Another old favorite. Delicious and easy, these make a great side!
- Pumpkin Bean Dip – This is one of my favorite appetizers!
A few extras:
- Want a really easy non-pie dessert? Try my Sweet Potato Whole Wheat Bread Pudding. The recipe works with canned pumpkin, too!
- Here’s How to Make Brussels Sprouts Delicious. You’re welcome.
- If you find yourself with extra mashed potatoes (or mashed sweet potatoes), these Leftover Mashed Potato Pancakes are delicious and super easy!
What’s on your Thanksgiving menu this year?
- 12 oz fresh or frozen cranberries (about 3 cups)
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- zest and juice of one fresh orange
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- Combine all ingredients in a medium pot.
- Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat.
- Reduce heat to medium-low and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have popped and the sauce has thickened (about 7-10 minutes).