Quick and Easy Cranberry Sauce

Easy Cranberry Sauce

The Spruce / Diana Rattray

Prep: 3 mins
Cook: 12 mins
Total: 15 mins
Servings: 16 servings
Yield: 2 cups
Nutrition Facts (per serving)
66 Calories
0g Fat
17g Carbs
0g Protein
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 16
Amount per serving
Calories 66
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 1mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 17g 6%
Dietary Fiber 1g 3%
Protein 0g
Calcium 4mg 0%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
(Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate.)

This fresh cranberry sauce is quick and easy to prepare and cook. It only takes about 15 minutes from start to finish and is a welcome addition to any holiday or winter family meal. Cranberry sauce is tart and sweet and a classic accompaniment to turkey—the fruit plays nicely off the savory, salty flavor of the bird.

Make this simple, classic cranberry sauce your own with a dash of cinnamon or add some freshly grated orange zest for extra flavor. Serve the delicious sauce with a chicken or turkey dinner, ham, or pork. Leftovers are also delicious used for sweet applications—try using the sauce as a filling for a winter cake, as a layer in a trifle, in hand pies, or just swirled into yogurt or labneh.


  • 1 (12-ounce) package cranberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 2/3 cup sugar (granulated)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar (packed)
  • Optional: 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • Optional: 1 dash cinnamon

Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.

  2. Rinse, drain, and pick over the cranberries, discarding damaged berries. Set aside.

  3. In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring the orange juice and sugars to a boil and cook, stirring, until sugars are dissolved.

  4. Add the cranberries and orange zest or cinnamon (if using) and bring back to a boil.

  5. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 to 12 minutes, or until the cranberries are popping.

  6. Let cool to room temperature. It will thicken as it cools. If not serving right away, store in the fridge in an airtight container.


  • Note that the cranberry sauce will thicken greatly as it cools. If you want to make sure your cranberry sauce is extra thick, cook it for a few extra minutes to let some of the juice evaporate.
  • You can make this recipe ahead of time for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or any other meal. Since cranberry sauce is best when served at room temperature or cold, there's no need to reheat it for serving. Store in the fridge for up to five days.