Holiday Cranberry Sauce – Fruit Juice Sweetened

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Homemade Cranberry Sauce with Orange no Sugar

Every year at my family’s Thanksgiving table, we have two cranberry sauces.  A homemade version from my grandma, and the sliced canned stuff for my sister – she just loved it.  Tart cranberries are a great addition to a holiday table, and are a perfect compliment to all of the savory side dishes, but the traditional jelly-types can tend to be on the sweeter side.  Instead of sugar, this recipe uses (unsweetened, but very naturally sweet) orange juice and zest, brightening the flavor of the berries while keeping their tartness.  Three ingredients (plus some spices) and 15 minutes…that’s all you need to pull this recipe together!

Cranberry Sauce with Orange Juice no Sugar


-2 cups raw, washed cranberries

-½ cup fruit juice – I used blood orange, but anything sweet (orange, pineapple, even apple) will work

-zest of 1 orange

-½ t ground cinnamon

-¼ t ground nutmeg

-¼ t ground cloves


Heat the berries and juice in a sauce pan over medium heat, and stir often.  Once boiling, reduce to a simmer.  After 10 minutes, add the zest and spices, and cook for 5 more minutes.  Remove from heat and let cool.

Cranberry Sauce No Sugar

Serve like a traditional cranberry sauce, as a yogurt or ice cream topper, on cornbread, or pancakes!  I mixed some in cream cheese, refrigerated overnight, and added to my morning oatmeal.  It was tart and delicious, and just a little bit really boosted the flavor of the oats. I think I’ll be experimenting with fruit sweetened recipes in the future.  Next time, try adding the cranberries in a batter instead of a topping!

Cranberry Orange Cream Cheese


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