Cranberry sauce with orange juice is a tasty and easy-to-make condiment that is perfect for any holiday meal. The sauce is deliciously tart and sweet, with a lovely orange flavor and subtle notes of cinnamon and vanilla. It's the perfect addition to turkey or ham, and it's also great on its own as a breakfast or snack.
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This cranberry sauce with orange juice recipe is the perfect way to add a little zing to your holiday dinner table. The fresh cranberries and orange juice give it a tart flavor, while the sugar and spices balance out the flavors.
This dish can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until ready to serve. It also freezes well, so you can make a batch ahead of time and enjoy it all season long.
Whether you're serving it as an accompaniment to roasted turkey or spooning it over ice cream, this cranberry sauce with orange juice is sure to please.
Why You’ll Love This Recipe
This cranberry sauce with orange juice recipe is the perfect way to add a little sweetness to your holiday meal. The orange juice helps to balance out the tartness of the cranberries, and the sugar brings out their natural sweetness. The result is a delicious sauce that is perfect for spreading on turkey or ham. Here are three reasons why you will love this recipe:
- It is quick and easy to make with just a few simple ingredients.
- It is made with simple, fresh ingredients and skips the high-fructose corn syrup that many store-bought brands contain.
- It is a great way to use up leftover cranberries.
So whether you are looking for an easy recipe to make ahead of time or you want to use up those extra cranberries, this cranberry sauce with orange juice recipe is sure to please.
What You’ll Need To Make Cranberry Sauce With Orange Juice
Cranberries: You can use fresh or frozen cranberries for this recipe. If using frozen, there is no need to thaw them first. Avoid using dried cranberries, as they will not give the sauce the same tart flavor.
Orange juice: I recommend using freshly squeezed orange juice for this recipe. Bottled orange juice can be used, but it will not have the same fresh flavor. If using fresh oranges, make sure to zest them first as you'll need to save the zest for later.
Sugar: This recipe uses sugar to sweeten the sauce. You can use white sugar, brown sugar, or honey. I prefer to use white sugar as it dissolves more easily.
Cinnamon: Ground cinnamon is the perfect spice for this sauce and gives it a lovely warm, winter flavor. You can leave it out if you prefer, or replace it with another spice such as allspice or nutmeg.
Vanilla: A little vanilla helps to round out the flavors of the sauce. You can use vanilla paste, extract, or even a whole vanilla bean.
Orange zest: This is optional, but I like to add a little zest to the sauce for extra flavor. If you don't have any oranges on hand, you can leave this out.
Making cranberry sauce with orange juice is quick and easy. Simply simmer the ingredients together until the cranberries have burst and the sauce has thickened. Here's a step-by-step guide:
Step 1: Add the orange juice, sugar, and water to a small saucepan and bring to a gentle boil.
Step 2: Add the cranberries and cinnamon and stir to combine.
Step 3: Place the saucepan back over medium heat and cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have burst and the sauce has thickened. If needed, mash some of the berries with the back of a spoon towards the end of the cook time to help them burst.
Step 4: Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla and orange zest.
Step 5: Serve warm or cold. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
Enjoy with your favorite holiday meals!
Recipe Tips And Tricks
Here are a few tips and tricks to help you make the perfect cranberry sauce with orange juice:
- If using fresh cranberries, make sure to wash them thoroughly before adding them to the sauce.
- If the sauce is too tart for your taste, you can add more sugar to balance out the flavors.
- You can adjust the flavors of the sauce to your liking by adding more or less of the spices.
- This recipe creates a chunky sauce. If you prefer a smooth sauce, simply use a handheld blender to blend the sauce until it reaches your desired consistency.
- The sauce can be served warm or cold. If serving cold, place it in the fridge to allow it to cool and thicken.
Serving Suggestions And Substitutions
Here are a few ideas for serving cranberry sauce with orange juice:
- Serve it as a side dish with roasted turkey or ham.
- Use it as a topping for pancakes, waffles, or French toast.
- Stir it into oatmeal or yogurt.
- Use it as a filling for cookies, cakes, or pastries.
- Spread it on some bread or crackers with a soft cheese, like brie.
- Substitute it for raspberry jam in thumbprint cookies.
This cranberry sauce with orange juice is lovely as-is, but there are a few ways you can change it up to suit your taste:
- If you don't like orange juice, you can use cranberry juice instead.
- For a sweeter sauce, add more sugar or use honey instead of sugar.
- You could also add other fruits to the sauce, such as apples or pears.
- For a spicier sauce, add more cinnamon or a pinch of ground cloves.
- If you don't have any oranges on hand, you can leave out the zest and still have a delicious sauce.
How To Store Leftovers
Leftover cranberry sauce with orange juice can be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to two weeks.
You can also freeze the sauce for up to six months. Simply place it in a freezer-safe container and thaw in the fridge when you're ready to use it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Should cranberry sauce be served hot or cold?
A: Cranberry sauce can be served hot or cold. This recipe is best served cold or at room temperature, as the sauce will thicken as it cools.
Q: Is cranberry sauce healthy?
A: Cranberry sauce contains a reasonable amount of sugar so it should be enjoyed in moderation. However, cranberries are a good source of antioxidants and vitamins, so this sauce does have some health benefits.
Q: What can I do with leftover cranberry sauce?
A: If you have leftover cranberry sauce, you can use it as a topping for pancakes or waffles, stir it into yogurt or oatmeal, or use it as a filling for cookies, cakes, or pastries. You can also use it as a topping for this delicious puff pastry-wrapped air fryer brie.
Q: How do you know when cranberry sauce is done?
A: Cranberry sauce is done when the cranberries have burst and the sauce has thickened. Cranberries contain quite a bit of pectin, which helps to thicken the sauce as it cooks.
Tools And Equipment For This Recipe
Le Creuset Saucepan: This is my go-to pan for cooking small-batch recipes over the stove. It heats evenly and the enameled surface is easy to clean.
Ball 8oz Quilted Crystal Jelly Jars: These are the perfect size for storing this cranberry sauce and they're so pretty. I like to use the quilted jars because they add a touch of elegance.
Cranberry Sauce With Orange Juice
- ½ cup orange juice
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup water
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 12 ounces cranberries fresh or frozen
- 1 teaspoon orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla paste
- Add the orange juice, sugar, and water to a small saucepan and bring to a gentle boil.
- Add the cranberries and cinnamon and stir to combine.
- Place the saucepan back over medium heat and cook for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries have burst and the sauce has thickened. If needed, mash some of the berries with the back of a spoon towards the end of the cook time to help them burst.
- Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla and orange zest.
- Serve warm or cold. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
* Nutritional information is based on third-party calculations and should be considered estimates. Actual nutritional content may vary based on brands of ingredients used, measuring methods, portion sizes, and more.