Best Cranberry Sauce Recipe

December 24, 2021Sew White

This traditional cranberry sauce recipe is so easy to make and is perfect to store in the fridge until you need it or even freeze for later. There is nothing better than making your own in my opinion, you can make a lot without spending much money and I think it tastes so much better too.

If you want to adapt this recipe you can. You can add some orange zest, Christmas spices or even some vanilla. This cranberry sauce recipe UK is one that you will make time and time again.

Why you’ll love this traditional cranberry sauce recipe for turkey

You can keep this recipe very simple and only use three ingredients – cranberries, sugar and water or you can expand it from there.

It’s so quick to make.

You can store it in the fridge, pantry or freeze it for later.

Homemade cranberry sauce is just the best.

Top Questions

What are the ingredients in cranberry sauce?
How do you get the bitterness out of cranberry sauce?
Is cranberry sauce bad for your heart?
How long does homemade cranberry sauce last?

top view of a jar of homemade cranberry sauce

Ingredients

What is so fabulous about making my cranberry sauce recipe is that you only need 3 ingredients!

  • fresh cranberries (or frozen and defrosted)
  • granualted sugar
  • water

Scroll down to the recipe card for the full recipe.

How to make – step by step

red fresh cranberries in a saucepan
fresh cranberries and light brown soft sugar for cranberry sauce
fresh cranberries in a saucepan with sugar and water
  • Add the fresh cranberries to a saucepan.
  • Place the saucepan on the hob and cook on a medium-low heat.
  • Measure out the light brown soft sugar and water. Add it to the cranberries and mix together.
bubbling cranberries in a saucepan
fresh Cranberry Sauce Recipe for freezing
Cranberry Sauce Recipe
  • Keep stirring the cranberry mix on the hob until the cranberries have softened and fallen apart slightly. I prefer it slightly lumpy but you can reduce it down further if you want.
  • Take a spoon and remove a little of the sauce, allow it to cool before tasting it. It might need a little more sugar so add some to taste.
  • Place the cranberry sauce in prepared and sterilised jam jars or in a bowl ready to serve.

Top Tips for a cranberry sauce

You can make cranberry sauce just before you need it if you have time in the kitchen or you can make it ahead of time.

Whether you are making this traditional cranberry sauce recipe in advance or last-minute it will still work and taste wonderful.

Serving Suggestions

Best served with roast dinners at Christmas. Cranberry sauce works very well with turkey, goose, beef and even chicken.

Add some to a leftover turkey sandwich.

fresh cranberry sauce for turkey recipe uk in a jam jar.

Equipment

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Storing / Making ahead of time options

Cranberry sauce is a great part of the Christmas meal to prepare a week if not longer before you need it.

If you make this recipe you can put it into sterilised prepared jam jars and store it in the pantry for over a year. Once open put it in the fridge and use within 10 days.

Freeze the cranberry sauce once it has been made and has cooled down. Place the sauce into freezer-safe bags and freeze until needed.

Substitutions and variations

NUTMEG

Adding nutmeg to your Christmas cranberry sauce is a stroke of genius and adds such a wonderful flavour. Freshly grated is best but already ground works perfectly too. I think I just love the smell of the freshly grated nutmeg a lot. Be careful though as it’s easy to grate your fingers too.

CINNAMON

It’s the most Christmassy spice in my opinion and a little sprinkling of cinnamon in cranberry sauce is a lovely addition. If can be added with the nutmeg.

ORANGE

Cranberry and orange are a wonderful mix of festive flavours. The citrus and juicy orange adds a freshness to the cranberry sauce.

LIME

More unusual but adding lime instead of orange to cranberry sauce can work too. It makes it feel more exotic while also retaining that warmth and flavour with the cranberries.

PORT

Instead of using water, you can add port to make the cranberry sauce a little richer and more alcoholic too.

fresh cranberries spilling out of a jam jar on a white tray

Cranberry sauce recipe to freeze

The best part about this cranberry sauce recipe is that it freezes beautifully. Make the recipe as per below. Once it is cold place it in freezer-safe bags and put it in the freezer until you need it. Then defrost and enjoy.

FAQS

What are the ingredients in cranberry sauce?

The main ingredients for cranberry sauce are fresh cranberries (frozen whole cranberries can work too but defrost first), sugar and water.

From this basic trio of ingredients you can add citrus, spices or other flavours too. It’s a lovely recipe to adapt and make to your own favourite flavours.

How do you get the bitterness out of cranberry sauce?

When making the cranberry sauce you add granulated sugar to reduce the bitterness. I think the best cranberry sauce is sweet with a hint of bitterness. It works so well as a cranberry sauce recipe for turkey.

Cranberry Sauce Recipe in a glass jam jar ready for Christmas on a red background

Is cranberry sauce bad for your heart?

Cranberry sauce is low in fat and full of vitamins, antioxidants and contain beneficial fibre. However the sugar used to sweeten the cranberry sauce should be considered depending on different diets.

How long does homemade cranberry sauce last?

Home-made cranberry sauce lasts about 10 days in the fridge once open. If you put it into a jam jar you can store in the pantry for a lot longer. If you have the freezer safe put the home-made cranberry sauce into freezer safe bags and freeze. Defrost and enjoy later.

Other Christmas Recipes you might like

Goose Fat Roast Potatoes
Honey Mustard Sausages
Cranberry Sausage Rolls

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Cranbery Sauce Recipe UK

Sisley White
This cranberry sauce recipe is so easy to make and is perfect to store in the fridge until you need it or even freeze for later. There is nothing better than making your own in my opinion, you can make a lot without spending much money and I think it tastes so much better too.
5 from 1 vote
Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 10 mins
Total Time 15 mins
Servings 6 small portions

Equipment

  • Kitchen Scales
  • saucepan
  • measuring jug

Ingredients
  

  • 300 g fresh cranberries (or frozen and defrosted)
  • 150 g light brown soft sugar (or caster sugar or granulated sugar)
  • 150 ml Water

Instructions
 

  • Add the 300g of fresh cranberries to a saucepan.
  • Place the saucepan on the hob and cook on a medium-low heat. If too hot the fresh cranberries may pop so it might be worth adding a lid to the saucepan.
  • Measure out the 150g light brown soft sugar and 150ml water. Add it to the cranberries and mix together.
  • Keep stirring the cranberry mix on the hob until the cranberries have softened and fallen apart slightly. I prefer it slightly lumpy but you can reduce it down further if you want.
  • Take a spoon and remove a little of the sauce, allow it to cool before tasting it. It might need a little more sugar so add some to taste.
  • Place the cranberry sauce in prepared and sterilised jam jars or in a bowl ready to serve.

Please note that the nutrition information provided above is approximate and meant as a guideline only.

Keyword cranberry sauce, cranberry sauce recipe uk, fresh cranberry sauce, frozen cranberry sauce, homemade cranberry sauce
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

2 Comments

  • Choclette

    December 28, 2021 at 3:31 pm

    5 stars
    I nearly always make my own cranberry sauce. Only I didn’t this year as we weren’t at home. But it’s so worth the effort, especially as actually there’s not much effort involved at all. Wish I’d had some of yours this year as we had none at all.

    1. Sew White

      December 30, 2021 at 11:34 am

      It is definitely worth the effort, especially as it isn’t much effort at all.

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