Can you imagine Thanksgiving dinner without cranberry sauce? I can’t. I have too many memories of my mom’s fresh cranberry sauce gracing the Thanksgiving table each year. But for many people, serving cranberry sauce means deciding between jellied or whole cranberry, then opening the can, and sliding it out into a dish and onto the table.
Yet cranberry sauce can be so much more. The canned variety has loads of added sugar – often from high-fructose corn syrup, and none of the vitamin C that’s in fresh cranberries. This Thanksgiving why not try an easy-to-make healthier, homemade cranberry sauce?
It’s naturally sweetened with a reduction made from frozen 100% fruit juice concentrate. The cranberries are not cooked and therefore retain some of the of vitamin C that’s naturally present in the fruit. Cranberries are also high in antioxidants. All this makes a fresh, homemade cranberry sauce a healthy choice to add to your dinner table.
This recipe makes about 3 1/2 c. fresh cranberry sauce. Nutrition information: 1/2 c. provides approximately 160 calories, 32 gm carbohydrate, and 3 gm fiber. By contrast, 1/2 c. canned, jellied cranberry sauce contains about 220 calories, 56 gm carbohydrate, and 2 gm fiber.
How do you like to serve cranberry sauce at Thanksgiving? Homemade or canned? Share your thoughts in the comments below and consider sharing this post on Facebook or Twitter.
Easy-to-make homemade cranberry sauce is naturally sweetened and a healthy, delicious addition to the dinner table.
15 minPrep Time
10 minCook Time
25 minTotal Time
- 12 oz. can frozen 100% fruit juice concentrate (I used cherry-pomegranate)
- 3 c. fresh or frozen cranberries (12 oz. bag)
- 1 apple, cored, peeled, and cut into chunks
- 1 peeled orange, sectioned
- 1 pkg. unflavored gelatin (about .25 oz.)
- To make the syrup, empty the frozen fruit juice concentrate into a small sauce pan.
- Bring to a boil using medium to medium-high heat, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let cool. I put the pan in the refrigerator while I made the rest of the cranberry sauce.
- Place the cranberries, apple chunks, and orange slices into a food processor and blend until smooth, or until desired consistency if you like cranberry sauce with larger pieces.
- Add cooled fruit juice syrup to the cranberry mixture and pulse all ingredients together.
- Pour into a medium bowl and sprinkle unsweetened gelatin on top, stirring to evenly distribute the gelatin.
- Cover and refrigerate overnight. Serve chilled the next day. Makes 3 1/2 cups.
- *My family liked the sweetness the fruit juice concentrate gave to the sauce. But if you prefer a sweeter cranberry sauce, it can be sweetened more with your choice of sweetener.