“Mommy? Where does cranberry sauce come from?”
“Well it comes from a can darling.Where else?”
Oh how wrong we’ve been. This fast, amazingly flavorful homemade version takes 15 minutes and will knock your can on its backside.
Cranberry sauce takes all of 15 minutes to make. Are you shocked? Because I sure was. My traditional choice for the holidays is a cranberry and orange relish–freshly ground cranberries and oranges with sugar and that’s it. You don’t even cook it.
All the “regular” cranberry sauce in this house came from a can.
But homemade was amazingly easy, has very few ingredients and the taste is fresher, brighter, and doesn’t taste like the can. This is a whole berry version and I know a lot of you don’t like whole berries, but there’s just not a good way to strain them out here so just suck it up and go with it. Besides, I thought the cranberries in this version were much more tender than the canned kind and you didn’t spend all evening chewing and chewing.
It’s normal for this sauce to make a little foam as it cooks. You can gently lift it off with a spoon if it bothers you, but it’s perfectly fine to leave it there. Won’t hurt a thing. And don’t forget it will thicken more as it cools so if it seems thin, don’t sweat it. It will be fine.
I’m gonna need to stash a few extra bags of cranberries away in my freezer for more sauce later in the winter!
Homemade cranberry sauce
- 1 12-ounce package of fresh cranberries checked for stems and any squishy ones removed
- 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup water
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 slice orange with the rind and all about 1/2 inch thick
- Combine all the ingredients in a medium sauce pan and place over medium high heat.
- Stir well, and bring to a boil
- Reduce heat to medium low and boil until thickened; about 15 minutes.
- Remove the orange slice.
- Skim any foam from the sauce once it cools.
- Chill or serve warm.
- May be made up to 5 days in advance and stored in the refrigerator.