Cranberry Sauce

Growing up I did not share everyone’s love for cranberry sauce, canned or homemade. But like many childhood picky eating habits this one too died. I have to admit I love the canned stuff. The ridges from the can add some weird appeal that I cannot explain. Maybe it is my simple fascination that it retains those ridges. Or it could be another childhood food aversion to mushy fruit therefore driving me towards the homogeneous blob.

I used to disliked pies due to the mushy fruit. My reasoning for this before I saw the light? Fruit is supposed to be plump and/or crisp! Only nasty rotten fruit resembled the texture of the fruit found in pies. My dad once told me it was good that I did not like pie. Just another dessert one shouldn’t be eating (as far as nutritional value – I was not a fat child by any stretch). But true to my family’s genetic predisposition for a sweet tooth, I came around. Today I am not sure there are many pies, let alone desserts, that I will not devour. I tend to look at desserts first on a restaurant menu, deciding which I want to ensure I do not order too large of an entree. But this post is not about pie, so I digress…

I have never made cranberry sauce before. I know you are probably wondering, why I am doing so after I professed my love for the canned version? Don’t fix it unless it’s broken, right? I’m a PhD student, I have to experiment! And the result: success! Although a bit more tart than the old-standby, still a wonderfully tasty alternative. The maple syrup and orange adds a little something extra. Looking forward to testing it out with tomorrow’s turkey.


1-12 oz bag fresh (or frozen) cranberries

3/4 cup cranberry juice

2/3 cup 100% pure maple syrup

1 orange, zested and juiced


  1. Wash the cranberries under cool water, then dump into a medium saucepan.
  2. Pour in the rest of the ingredients and stir.
  3. Turn the heat on high until it reaches a boil. The cranberries will begin to pop.
  4. Once at a boil, reduce heat and simmer uncovered for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, or until thickened.
  5. Remove from heat and allow to cool completely before serving.

Source: The Pioneer Woman

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