How to Make Homemade Cranberry Sauce

There’s something that everyone always needs for it to be Thanksgiving. Be it the turkey, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, rolls, or stuffing. For my mom (much to my father’s chagrin), it’s cranberry sauce. And we’re talking the cranberry sauce straight out of the can that is still shaped like the can from whence it came. Truth be told, it always kind of grossed me out. I then tried making this cranberry sauce and realized that I actually liked putting cranberry sauce on my turkey, just the kind made from actual cranberries! If you want to put a twist on your family’s staple side dish, try this on Thanksgiving!

~ Theresa

What you need:



  • 4 c. (12 oz.) fresh cranberries
  • 1 c. water
  • 1 c. sugar
  • juice from 1 orange
  • zest from 1 orange


  • medium saucepan
  • microplane zester

Time:  15-20 minutes plus cooling time

Freezeable: Yes! Prepare it in advance and get it out when it’s time for the big feast.

Serves: Makes over a quart of cranberry sauce

Multiplying the recipe: If you need more cranberry sauce than this at your Thanksgiving dinner I would be surprised! But yes, you can double it.

Homemade Cranberry Sauce:

Mix water, sugar, and fresh-squeezed orange juice in a saucepan. Stir until the sugar dissolves, and heat it to boiling. Add the cranberries and orange zest and continue to cook until the cranberries begin to pop and release juices. Cook for a total of about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and let return to room temperature. Refrigerate until ready to use. Sauce will thicken as it cools. Serve cold with turkey.


About Cooking for the Fam

Katie and Theresa are sisters-in-law who are passionate about food, passionate about family, and passionate about making and sharing food with their families. The Fam needs to eat. Make it good!
This entry was posted in DIY, Meals, Sides. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to How to Make Homemade Cranberry Sauce

  1. Jasmine S. says:

    Love homemade cranberry sauce! It’s great all year long 🙂 Thank you for sharing!


  2. Pingback: Weekly Menu Plan #55 | Cooking for the Fam

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