Make Fresh Cranberry Sauce

Fresh cranberry sauce
Keller & Keller Photography / Getty Images
  • Total: 20 mins
  • Prep: 5 mins
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Yield: 8 servings

As you're simmering the cranberries for this fresh cranberry sauce, you'll start to hear a popping sound. This is good — it means the berries are bursting and releasing their natural fiber, called pectin, which will thicken the cranberry sauce as you simmer it.

Some like a slightly tart cranberry sauce, so in this recipe, you add half the sugar at the start and sweeten to taste when it's finished cooking. But feel free to use more sugar if you like yours sweeter. Just add half at the beginning and the rest, a little at a time, at the end.


  • 4 cups/3/4 lb. cranberries (fresh, rinsed)
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup sugar

Steps to Make It

  1. Combine the orange juice and half of the sugar in a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium-low heat.​

  2. Stir in the cranberries and return to a boil. Lower heat to a simmer and stir occasionally (and gently) while simmering for about 15 minutes, or until all the berries have popped.​

  3. Remove from heat and use the remaining sugar to sweeten the cranberry sauce to your liking.​

  4. If you're serving the cranberry sauce warm, let it stand for at least 10 minutes before serving. Or cool and refrigerate for about 30 minutes if you prefer it a bit cooler.