posted in Christmas

Easy Cranberry Sauce Recipe

Today I’m sharing the Easiest Cranberry Sauce Recipe EVER.  I promise!

Easy Cranberry Sauce Recipe

Seriously, if you think you cannot cook- you totally CAN.  Cranberry sauce is just about the easiest thing to make, and I’m not even kidding.  I grew up on the canned stuff- the jellied canned stuff if you want to get specific.  I actually loved it.  I loved eating little bites of the gelatinous blob on my plate, and I loved slicing it to add to “next-day” turkey sandwiches too.  Nowadays, the cranberry sauce they sell in the can tastes a lot like the can to me.  It’s funny how you can detect things like that when you begin to make more recipes from scratch.  Here’s the (very simple) way to make basic, delicious cranberry sauce:

Cranberry Sauce 1

1.  Cranberries in the pan.

Cranberry Sauce 2

2.  Add orange juice (if you take the time to freshly squeeze your orange juice, that’s the best way to do it).

Cranberry Sauce 3

3.  Add sugar.

Cranberry Sauce 4

4.  Stir and bring to a boil…

Cranberry Sauce 5

… until the cranberries begin to pop and break down.  The mixture will begin to thicken, and it will thicken more when it has a chance to sit too.

Easiest Homemade Cranberry Sauce Recipe Ever -

See?  Easy!  There really isn’t any excuse for buying the cans this year.  Try it homemade.

Do you make your own cranberry sauce?  Do you have a secret method or ingredient that you like to add to your recipe?  Let us know!

Yield: About 2 cups

Prep Time: 10 min

Cook Time: 10 min

Easy Cranberry Sauce Recipe


One 12-ounce bag fresh cranberries (about 3 cups)
1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 cup granulated white sugar


1. In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries, orange juice and sugar. Bring to a boil. Continue to boil until the cranberries begin to pop and break down. Simmer until slightly thickened. It will thicken more when left at room temperature or refrigerated. Transfer to a bowl, cover and refrigerate until ready to serve.


30 Responses to “Easy Cranberry Sauce Recipe”

  1. postedNov 25, 2013 5:42 AM

    Easy is very good right now. Especially since I have not a thing planned for Thanksgiving and a lot of hungry boys to feed! Looks perfect and delicious, Lori!

  2. postedNov 25, 2013 10:00 AM

    There really isn’t any excuse for buying the cans this year. <— AMEN! And yours looks great!

  3. postedNov 25, 2013 11:04 AM
    Rita Sherman

    Hi Lori,

    I love the simplicity of your recipe.
    If I really don’t want to use white sugar is there another sweetener such as coconut nectar that might taste good? Also, do you have a simple recipe for a cooked or raw apple pie? thanks

    • postedNov 25, 2013 9:00 PM

      I’ve seen honey used in cranberry sauce recipes before, so you might try that. Do a search for “apple pie” in my search bar and you’ll see a few that come up.

  4. postedNov 25, 2013 12:23 PM

    I make my own sauce using this same recipe. I also add 1/2 tsp of cinnamon. I just saw another recipe where they also added 1/2 tsp of vanilla. I may try that this year too.

    My husband loves the jellied cranberry sauce too and I’ve come to appreciate it. We end up having 3 different kinds of cranberries at our dinner, including a recipe of my mom’s.

  5. postedNov 25, 2013 2:11 PM

    I make the jellied sauce, which has one more easy step. I’ve made it with orange juice. I loved it and everyone else complained about the orange taste!

  6. postedNov 25, 2013 2:14 PM

    Is there a specific chemical reason for a 3:1 cranberry:sugar ratio in this? Will it still ‘gel’ if I use half or 3/4 of that 1 cup of sugar?

  7. postedNov 25, 2013 2:21 PM
    Beverly Kaye

    Brown sugar is better and add some of that orange zest for a gourmet taste!

  8. postedNov 25, 2013 2:41 PM

    I also add apple pieces to my cranberry sauce

  9. postedNov 25, 2013 4:43 PM

    An even easier method and a true cranberry taste, is to make it just as the recipe on the back of the bag. (if you buy them bagged)
    1 cup of sugar, 1 cup of water and 1 bag of cranberries or 12 oz.
    Same cooking directions.
    My son makes this and uses it as jam on his toast as well as on turkey.
    If you buy cranberries on sale after Thanksgiving or Christmas, just throw them in the freezer until you need to make more jelly. They will get sweeter with the freezing.

  10. postedNov 25, 2013 9:20 PM

    This is my recipe too. I add the orange pulp also usually from 2 navel oranges.
    Happy Thanksgiving.

  11. postedNov 26, 2013 7:44 AM

    Happy Thanksgiving. Thanks for all the delicious recipes!! Love your site.

  12. postedNov 26, 2013 8:15 AM
    Cheri Godoy

    I use brown sugar instead of white. Be sure to use a GOOD orange juice! I have also added finely chopped apples to the hot mixture after removing it from the heat. This is a great recipe!

  13. postedNov 26, 2013 11:42 AM

    I don’t even like cranberries, but the simplicity of this makes me want to make it anyway!! 🙂

  14. postedNov 26, 2013 6:44 PM

    Oh, I love how simple it is! And with Thanksgiving so busy it is nice to have something easy to fix on the menu. Happy Thanksgiving!

    • postedNov 27, 2013 6:48 AM

      Happy Thanksgiving to you too!

  15. postedNov 26, 2013 7:46 PM

    I used chopped cranberries, a navel orange (with rind), minced apple and chopped pecans mixed with sugar for a fresh relish

  16. postedNov 27, 2013 7:44 AM
    Diana Morgan

    I use 1/2 cup water 1/2 cup blueberry juice 1 bag of cranberrys and 1 cup of blueberrys. yum the kids would never eat it now they go for it.

  17. postedNov 29, 2013 11:28 AM

    I love cranberry sauce 🙂 this recipe really is so simple!

  18. postedDec 1, 2013 12:58 PM
    joam pool

    Hi. I was looking for a basic recipe because my pkg. didn’t have one. Couldn’t remember from many times I’ve made them, but it is so basic I felt embarrassed to have to look up a recipe. Anyway, I ended up putting too much sugar (11/2 cups per that recipe on pkg.) and it is really sweet. Hope my husband will not notice.
    Thanks for your help.

  19. postedDec 3, 2013 3:43 PM

    My WW leader had this recipe for cranberry sauce, I was going to try it too.
    1 Bag cranberries
    1 apple, peeled, cored & chopped
    1 orange, peeled, separated
    2 cinnamon sticks
    1 cup water
    sweeten to taste

    Boil all until cranberries pop, cool, remove cinnamon sticks and serve.

  20. postedDec 12, 2013 8:40 AM
    S francis

    How long does it last for ?? Can it be frozen .

    • postedDec 12, 2013 7:02 PM

      I think it would be fine for about a week. I’ve never tried freezing cran sauce.

  21. postedDec 14, 2013 4:34 AM

    I can ony get dried cranberries in a packet. Can they still be ued for cranberry sauce?

    • postedDec 14, 2013 7:33 AM

      I don’t think so…

  22. postedJul 4, 2014 2:59 PM

    Yes you may use dried cranberries,I did and it was delicious,also I used navel oranges with pulp..Yum yum!!

  23. postedNov 26, 2014 3:03 PM
    Mary K. Wessling

    Been making this same recipe for years, YUM!!

  24. postedOct 26, 2015 12:40 AM

    I am making Thanksgiving dinner for the Family this year. First time any of us are going to try this, and this look like a really good recipe. But, how many people are it for? Would hate to make too little.

    • postedOct 26, 2015 3:40 PM

      The recipe makes two cups- so it all depends how much you want. My family LOVES cranberry sauce, so I always double the recipe so we have plenty!

  25. postedNov 11, 2015 8:45 PM
    Jack Shannon

    Made this last year and will be making it again this year.
    I have 4 bags and will be canning 2 of them when finished.
    Thanks for making it so easy for us.

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