Why? Why do we make it hard? And the most important question of all, who loves how the cranberry sauce from the store plops out of the can and remains forever in the shape of the can? How do they do that, anyway?
Don’t answer that. I already know. It’s made with gelatin. I could make my cranberry sauce with gelatin too, if I wanted. It might be kind of fun, actually. I could use a tin can to make a cranberry sauce mold and I could plop it out on Thanksgiving morning. It would bring back fun memories of my childhood, because that was one of my favorite holiday jobs. I could re-live that suction sound it made as the jellied variety of cranberry sauce came out of the can. That would be way, way, way better than my memories of the sound a can of biscuits makes when it opens. I can’t even handle thinking about that one. (I’m a canned biscuit big baby scaredy cat chicken.)
So homemade cranberry sauce. It is so easy. I’d never even made it before last week because I figured it might be hard. Really, Laura? You put cranberries and sugar in a pot and you cook it for a few minutes to create cranberry sauce. Well, I had no idea.
This recipe is a total no-brainer. It’s as easy as Stir-and-Pour Bread. In fact, this sauce tastes very good on top of a slice of that particular bread. I promise to continue to make all of our real food cooking as easy as possible.
Please note though that while this is easy and made with real food – this recipe is very full of sugar. I tried to cut down the sugar – you know – to prove like so many other recipes that all the sugar is ridiculous. Unfortunately, this dish mocked me to my face. (Literally, to my very puckered up face.) It was like, “I dare you to cut the sugar down and not make weird faces. Go ahead. Try it. Heh. Nice face.”
Fine. My face was unbecoming. Make this cranberry sauce of the low sugar variety at your own risk. Keep your camera handy. Your cranberry sauce face photos will be a delight for years to come.
Whatever your sugar content choice, I promise you will love how ridiculously easy this side dish is to make. I will be making mine a couple days before Thanksgiving so that I can simply pull it out of the fridge to serve. I got my fresh cranberries for 99¢ so I was very excited. You probably wanted to know that.
2-Ingredient Cranberry Sauce
- 1½ cups fresh cranberries (12 ounce bag)
- ⅓ to 1 cup sucanat or sugar
- Rinse cranberries.
- Combine cranberries and sucanat in a small sauce pan.
- Cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 10-15 minutes. Your work here is done.
- Place cranberry sauce in a serving dish, cover, and refrigerate for at least two hours before serving.
Make this several days before serving if you wish. Yes! It is another make-ahead dish to save you time on Thanksgiving or Christmas (or some Friday in February). Add this recipe to your Getting Ahead for the Holidays Check-List.
Have you tried making Cranberry Sauce? Ever tried it low sugar? Whoa. Who loves the canned, jellied cranberry sauce suction plop? Ah, the memories.
While I’ve got you, I am pleased to announce the three Getting Ahead for the Holidays winners of the $25 Gift Certificates good toward any of our eCourses or downloadable items in theHeavenly Homemakers Shop!
- Jane J.: [email protected]
- Shelby: [email protected]
- Karen: [email protected]
Winners, email me (laura at heavenlyhomemakers.com) and I’ll send you a certificate!
I do love the jellied cranberry suction plop noise! It’s synonymous with thanksgiving. But the good news is, I don’t have to miss out on it. And instead of being shaped like a can, my cranberries come out shaped like my lovely quilted jelly jars. And they still make the noise! Yay! They are very easy to make and still only have 2 ingredients… well 3 because I add orange zest. I make and jar up a bunch because my kids love jellied cranberries all year. Not just at Thanksgiving. if you’re interested in the recipe, I’d be happy to share. Then you can make your cranberries weeks before Turkey day. And pull a jar out of your pantry whenever you feel like it:)
I’d love it!
Ali Stewart says
Sorry it took me so long. I was with out a computer for a couple of days. Sigh:/ Here is the recipe I use every year and it works like a charm. She says if you water bath can it, it might not be as jelled but I have not found this to be true. I water bath can a winter’s supply and they all come out lovely. Just like the corn syrup filled stuff from a can. Except, you know… home made with organic sugar and love :D It is totally worth the little bit of extra effort to have a bunch on hand. The most time consuming part is putting them through the sieve. You could use your victorio food mill but, honestly, I find it more work the set that up and clean it afterwards than the time it takes to mush them through the sieve. I read my kindle while I’m mushing ;)
A note on cleaning cranberries. Fill a sink or large bowl with cold water and your cranberries. Swirl them around and scoop them up with your fingers. You will easily find any mushy berries. Throw them out. You don’t want mushy berries. Or you could compost them for your garden next year. Just don’t put them in your yummy cranberry sauce :) Also, I have not tried making any jelly yet with sucanat so I’m not sure how it would come out with this versus organic sugar. If you use it, please reply and let me know. Happy Turkey Day!
Thank you so much!
I made cranberry sauce today. It is so easy! I actually make it both ways because a couple of my guys like it chunky and a couple prefer the jelled. Cranberry skins have so much pectin in them naturally that after I cook them on the stove for the 10 minutes I just blend up in my Blentec (any blender would do) and pour into mason jars. Then you can water bath can them or just chill for a couple hours in the fridge. Slides right out of the jar and can be sliced or otherwise enjoyed just like the cans from the store but so much better. ????
Not sure where the question marks came from. I didn’t add those. Lol I actually had a smiley face there.
I had no idea you could can this with a simple water bath. Oh man. This will be fun!
We like to sweeten our cranberry sauce with maple syrup. I also add an orange rind and all that I chop up in a food processor. So easy and so much better than store bought!
Great idea to do that in a food processor to make it smooth. So yum!
You can cook it with some orange rind for some extra yummyness!
So glad you mentioned that. I meant to add that info to the post and forgot. I think orange rind would be a great addition. :)
Hey Laura, I am from Kenya and a regular follower of your blog. yThough I can’t prepare some of the recipes because we don’t have the ingredients here (like these canberries), I still love reading your blog coz of how fun, simple and humourous they are. If I was to host just one new guest before the year ends, I’d choose you. Love you!
You completely made my day. Thank you. :)
I read you can freeze it so here goes!
I didn’t know that. I’ll have to try it!
Regarding the biscuits in a can–I am scared of them, too. I make my kids open them. Yes, yes I do! Even if they are outside playing, I’ll call one in or take the can to him/ her to crack it open….far, far away from me(because it makes me scream). Thanks!
Ha! Glad I’m not the only one. :)
Michele M. says
It is cool how the cranberry sauce comes out shaped like the can. For several years, my family would ask, “who is bringing the traditional cranberry sauce that’s shaped like the can?”. After a while, we just called it canberry sauce!
Ha! Canberry sauce. I love it.
I’ve made the homemade kind for years but our table also included the canned kind for my Grampa. He passed in January so this will be the first year we don’t plop any out of a can. I won’t miss the processed-ness, but Thanksgiving won’t be the same without that suction-y sound – – and don’t forget trying to catch it before it plop-slides right out of the dish and onto the floor.
Thankfully, with the can shape, we could just pick the whole thing up off the floor, run it under the faucet and set it back into the dish, with Grampa none the wiser.
Thanks for the chuckle. :) I’m sure you’ll miss your Grampa this season. Blessings to your family. :)
I started making homemade cranberry sauce several years ago. To neutralize some of acidity, which is the reason your face puckers, add a 1/4 tsp of baking soda. (You may need to adjust this up or down depending on the tartness of your berries. It will cause your sauce to foam a bit, but you’ll be able to cut the sugar in half with no difference in taste. This trick works with tomato-based dishes as well.
BUSY MOM IN AL says
We make it homemade as well, but have to include the canned variety for my Dad! I can just hear it . . . SHHHLLLLOOOOP! LOL!
We make a Holiday Cranberry Conserve which is just basically cranberries, sweetener, onions, raisins, apple juice and toasted pecans. We have made this every year for 15 years. :) It smells like the holidays while it is cooking!
If you want to make it, here is the recipe. Saute 1 cup coarsely chopped onions in 2 tsp vinegar (yes vinegar), 1/3 cup brown sugar (I use sucanat) and 5T butter (yes, Laura! There is butter in it!!) for about 10 minutes. Add 4 cups cranberries, 3 cups of sweetener (I use sucanat) and 1/2 cup raisins. Add 1/4 tsp cloves and 1/4 tsp all spice. Next, add a 1/4 cup apple juice and cook about 25 minutes until all the cranberries are cooked and no longer floating. Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup toasted broken pecans. Makes close to 3 pints. You can freeze this or water bath can it also. I usually make a batch before Thanksgiving and freeze one jar for Christmas. It is AMAZING on leftover turkey sandwiches!! :)
I’ve been making my own cranberry sauce for several years now as it is so easy and a lot healthier for us. But this year we will be going back to the canned version. My 12 yr old daughter surprised me yesterday–she saw some canned cranberries while we were shopping and decided that she wanted to help out with the Thanksgiving dinner. I had no idea she had bought them until after the fact. With her own money at that! The grin on her face was priceless. I’ll enjoy the shloppy sound this year and smile as I think about it.
Here’s a recipe with just 3 ingredients and a lot less sugar. No sour faces!! It’s adapted from a Weight Watchers recipe.
1 cup fresh cranberries
2-3 clementines, peeled
1-2 TBSP organic sugar
Mix together in chopper until diced consistency (don’t blend, or you’ll have a thick cranberry juice that is too watery). We make it with 2 clementines and 1 TBSP sugar first, then add more sugar if needed. Enjoy!!
This has ALWAYS been the way we’ve eaten cranberries for Christmas and Thanksgiving! However, we’ve always used EQUAL PARTS SUGAR AND WATER in the recipe to make it more “saucy”. Yours looks rather thick. Also, we have canned it in the past using a water bath, but find that we prefer to just freeze extra bags of cranberries to use throughout the year – they seem to keep FOREVER in the freezer. That way, the sauce is always fresh. The canned version cooks much longer, so it loses some of the fresh taste. Since it only takes such a short time to make, why go through all of the mess and work of canning it?!
Jennifer G. says
This is really a simple way to make homemade cranberry sauce. Thank you for the recipe I look forward to trying it this year and skipping the canned. Just out of curiosity if you put the ingredients in a crock pot do you think it would come out the same?
I imagine so! :)
I have a recipe I’ve used for years that calls for orange zest and ginger. It’s a holiday staple at my house. I never thought of canning it though! With my limited freezer space I just might have to do that while cranberries are reasonable prices… :)
My family really likes cranberries prepped the way you’ve described…except with several spices added: Cinnamon; clove powder; allspice; nutmeg, etc. This week our Aldi had bags of the national brand for cents = exactly half of what we paid at Walmart last week door the very same thing.
I don’t like cranberries except if they’re with some kind of meat or stuffing. Leaves more for all of them!
Vickie Houser says
I may have to try those spices next year. That sounds delicious!
Vickie Houser says
I LOVE cranberry sauce! And I also make homemade cranberry sauce every year. We only have one other person who eats it at the family gathering – but it’s worth it. I usually make two bags worth and can it like jam to use all year long. This year I added an orange, zest and pulp, to the mix. My recipe is almost the same as yours, just add a cup of water too. Then boil it for 10 minutes and put it in the jelly jars. There are two jars on the counter right now and I am dying to break in and have me some cranberry sauce!