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Easy to make Orange Cranberry Sauce is bursting with bold, bright flavors! Fresh cranberries sweetened with honey and maple syrup make this an outstanding no-sugar recipe to serve with turkey or ham. Why open a can of the store-bought stuff when you can make your own sauce infused with delicious flavors perfect for the holiday season.
I’ve been making homemade Orange Cranberry Sauce for so many years that’s is become a tradition. There’s something a bit thrilling about getting just the perfect bite of slightly sweet sauce with savory turkey and dressing. That bite is even more delicious when you get that little pop of fresh cranberry that’s soaked up amazing flavors of honey, maple syrup, and orange.
I started making my own sauce or as some folks call it, relish, because I wanted fresh flavors of cranberries, not something that was full of sugar. It took me a bit, but I hung in there, to come up with just the right combination of ingredients to add a bit of sweetness while letting the tart berries take center stage. I found that the blend of honey and maple syrup is the ideal marriage of sweetness giving a rich flavor to the sauce that you just can’t get with sugar.
This sauce is made even more flavorful with the addition of fresh orange juice and zest. The bright citrus punch actually softens the tartness of the cranberries in an unexpected way that’s absolutely mouthwatering.
Ingredients Needed To Make Orange Cranberry Sauce
- Fresh Cranberries
- Fresh Orange Juice
- Orange Zest
- Maple Syrup
How To Make Orange Cranberry Sauce
Making this sauce is simple and straightforward. First, start with fresh cranberries. Wash them then sort through the ones that are “squishy” and bruised. Throw those out! Next, zest the orange. Make sure to do this before you juice the orange. If you’ve ever tried to zest citrus after juicing, you know why this is crucial.
Put the cranberries in a medium-size saucepan along with the orange juice, zest, honey, and maple syrup. Bring everything up to a boil then reduce to simmer and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes until the mixture has thickened. The sauce will thicken on its own due to the natural pectin in the cranberries. That’s it, you’ve got homemade Orange Cranberry Sauce!
Can You Make Orange Cranberry Sauce Ahead of Time?
Yes! You can make this recipe up to four days before serving. It’s actually better once you’ve let all the flavors hang out together. Just whip it up then store in the fridge. I let the Orange Cranberry Sauce come to almost room temperature (about 15 minutes) before serving. It’s the perfect make-ahead recipe for the holidays.
Tasty Additions To Orange Cranberry Sauce
- To mix things up a bit, you can add fresh ginger, ground cinnamon, chopped apples or pears.
- If you want to get a little fancy sprinkle chopped walnuts or candied pecans over the top before serving.
What To Serve With Orange Cranberry Sauce
- Air Fryer Baked Potatoes
- Brown Sugar Mustard Baked Ham
- Cranberry Pecan Slaw
- Air Fryer Roasted Turkey
- Grape Salad
- 2 12 ounce package fresh cranberries
- 1 orange – zested and juiced
- ½ cup honey
- ½ cup maple syrup
- Add all ingredients to a medium-size saucepot. Bring up to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally until the mixture becomes thick.
- Remove from heat and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve. ***Can be stored for up to four days.
More Thanksgiving Classics
If you’re looking for more ideas to help you celebrate the season, I’ve got you covered. These easy to make, showstopping side dishes are destined to become family favorites in no time!
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