Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce

This Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce is staple on our Thanksgiving Table! Some people think of cranberry sauce as an after thought, but I think it’s the glue that holds the Thanksgiving Meal together! The tartness cuts through the heaviness of all the other dishes.

I know there is a lot of controversy over fresh vs. canned cranberry sauce, jellied vs. whole berry. My mom always made fresh cranberry sauce, so that’s my favorite. I prefer the cranberry sauce to have some whole berries and some completely broken down.

The addition of the orange zest brightens up the whole dish! The orange marmalade adds a nice orange flavor, but also “gels” the sauce together. This cranberry sauce is the perfect sweet and tart Thanksgiving side. It’s basically a whole berry cranberry sauce that is quick and super easy to make. You can make this sauce a couple days in advance. The hardest thing about this recipe is remembering to take it out of the fridge and putting it on the table. (I’ve forgotten too many years.) What’s funny is someone always says, “Where’s the cranberry sauce?” and then I remember to its still in the fridge!

Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce is Super Easy to Make!

This Cranberry Sauce only takes about 10-15 minutes to make. Just throw everything, except the orange marmalade into a pot, bring it to a boil and cook for 10 minutes or so. Then add the orange marmalade, cool and put in the fridge. Its that easy!

Every year, Joe and I host a big Thanksgiving dinner for all our friends. I make my Herb Roasted Turkey, Sweet Potato Casserole, Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce and a zillion other sides. It surprises me by how quickly the cranberry sauce goes every year! Of course, its not really a Thanksgiving dinner without this sweet tart cranberry sauce.

Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce

5 from 2 votes
Recipe by Margaret Sanfelippo Course: SidesCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy


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This Fresh Homemade Cranberry Sauce is an easy-to-make whole berry cranberry sauce with a hint of orange zest.


  • 12 oz 12 fresh cranberries

  • 1 cup 1 water

  • 1 cup 1 sugar

  • 1/4 tsp 1/4 salt

  • 1 tbsp 1 orange zest

  • 2 tbsp 2 orange marmalade


  • Combine cranberries, water, sugar, salt and orange zest in a medium pot. Give it a good stir and bring to a boil over high heat.
  • Once the mixture comes to a boil, lower the heat to medium-low and let simmer until the cranberries have popped and the mixture has thickened (about 10-15 min). Stirring occasionally.
  • When the mixture has reached its desired consistency, turn off the heat. Add the orange marmalade.
  • Cool for 1 hour at room temperature. Place in the refrigerator for at least a hour before serving.


  • This recipe can be made up to 3 days in advance.

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