Orange cranberry sauce recipe with cinnamon and honey! Sweet and tangy flavors that you must have on your holiday menu.
Put away those can openers because you’re making homemade orange cranberry sauce from scratch this year! Why? Because this recipe is incredibly quick (less than 30 minutes) and tastes a thousand times better than the can version.
Cranberry sauce in a can is just an afterthought to the Thanksgiving feast, where everything is made with so much love and attention. Why not give these ruby red berries a little TLC by cooking them in a sweet citrus syrup, creating a delicious and fresh sauce in a matter of minutes!
I started making homemade cranberry sauce over a decade ago (wow I’m starting to sound old, haha). Before then I always thought it would be something difficult to tackle. That is until my stepmom Lynne convinced me how easy it was and boy was she right!
Fresh cranberries are rarely eaten raw, and for good reason, it may look shiny, bright red, and enticing on the outside, but it sure is mouth-puckering sour. To sweeten up the sauce flavor, I use fresh orange juice, honey, and a whole cinnamon stick.
Using my 2-quart saucepan, I simmer the berries down in a sweet citrus syrup until you can hear all of the berries “pop.” In less than 30 minutes, you have a beautiful naturally sweetened orange cranberry sauce.
Are your days leading up to turkey day slammed? The best part of this recipe is that you can make this orange cranberry sauce up to a week before the big feast. The beautiful cranberry and citrus flavors get even better over time and are ready to top in heaping spoonfuls on your turkey when the big day comes.
Fast, delicious, and easy, music to a busy host’s ears! If you are looking for more holiday side dish ideas, try my super quick and healthy citrus green beans with almonds, cranberry almond quinoa, or a little more indulgent foolproof mashed potatoes. Happy Holidays!
How does cranberry sauce naturally thicken?
When making fresh cranberry sauce from scratch, magic happens when you combine sugar, water, acid, and pectin (naturally found in the cell walls of cranberries) and cook those ingredients together. As the cranberries open from the high cooking temperature, the pectin inside the skin is exposed. The pectin molecules separate from the fruit cells and reconfigure to form a stiff network of complex carbohydrates. What you get is a fruity jelly that makes for one delicious jammy pot of cranberry sauce! (Source: Education.com- Cranberry Sauce)
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Orange Cranberry Sauce
- 12 ounces cranberries, washed
- ½ cup honey, or maple syrup
- ½ cup orange juice
- 1 teaspoon orange zest, freshly grated
- 1 cinnamon stick
- In a medium-sized pan add cranberries, honey, orange juice, zest, and cinnamon stick.
- Bring sauce to boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes or until cranberries pop and mixture has slightly thickened.
- Make sure to stir occasionally, about every 5 minutes. Taste sauce and add more honey if desired.
- Discard cinnamon stick and cool sauce.
- Serving Size: 1 tablespoon
- Sauce can be stored in an airtight container refrigerated for up to 7 days.
- MAKE IT VEGAN: Substitute maple syrup for honey.
Percent Daily Values are based on a 2000-calorie diet. All nutritional information is based on estimated third-party calculations. Each recipe and nutritional value will vary depending on the brands you use, measuring methods, and portion sizes per household.
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