Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce will make you wonder why you ever ate store-bought. A fantastic condiment for Thanksgiving turkey and more! It’s easy to make a few days in advance and keep in the refrigerator until your big event.
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I’ve probably hated cranberry sauce for 2/3 of my life. This is likely because every Thanksgiving, my mom would pull out a cut crystal serving dish, pop open a can of jellied cranberry sauce, and unceremoniously dump it on top. The SLURP-PLOP! sound it made was nauseating.
Then, she’d set it on the table with its own fancy serving knife so that everyone could cut slices off the can-shaped blob. Gah! HEINOUS.
“Why make it if you hate it?!” Why I just had to come up with Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce
Since I’m a food blogger living in Wisconsin—the cranberry capital of the world—it would be a crime indeed if I served a can-shaped blob at my Thanksgiving table. But people in my family DO like cranberry sauce, so…
A few years ago, I started playing with various cranberry sauce recipes. I came up with this flavor combination. Ginger and spice are the perfect foil to the tartness of the cranberries and orange. The sauce has been a hit ever since.
This recipe makes a thick, jelly-like cranberry sauce. Most of the berries are completely broken down. But, I like to save some to add near the end of the cooking time so that they retain some of their shape and texture. This also makes for a very pretty sauce, IMO. If you like yours smooth, buzz it with an immersion blender.
To serve, I put all of my Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce in a large serving bowl (preferably either clear, white, or in a contrasting color). I’ve also put individual servings in small ramekins. The latter is a really fun way to serve, but keep in mind that there’s a bit more work and a few more dishes involved.
I always make my Orange-Ginger Spice Cranberry Sauce as much as three days ahead. It keeps very well in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Are you a fan of work-ahead strategies for making a stress-free holiday dinner? Be sure to check out my Work-Ahead Thanksgiving Dinner Meal Plan (which, of course, applies to ANY holiday dinner!)!
Amazingly, I do enjoy cranberry sauce now—at least the homemade species. I can imagine pairing Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce with duck or lamb in addition to turkey.
Leftover Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce is, of course, great with leftover meat. I’ve discovered that it’s also delicious over plain Greek yogurt (I sometimes drizzle just a bit of organic maple syrup over the top) or atop oatmeal with a sprinkling of cocoa powder.
Stay tuned for more classic Thanksgiving recipes as we countdown to Turkey day here in the US!
I am linking my Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce recipe up with:
- #CookBlogShare (awesome recipes from food bloggers all over the world),
- #CookOnceEatTwice (recipes that taste just as good left over as when you made them to begin with), and
- #BrillBlogPosts (Great reads on a variety of topics from international lifestyle bloggers).
Orange-Ginger-Spice Cranberry Sauce
- 2 tsp. mild-tasting vegetable oil
- 2 shallots, - minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, - minced
- 12 ounces fresh cranberries, - 1 cup reserved
- 1 orange, - zested (with a rasp) and juiced
- 1 tsp. Chinese 5-spice powder
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 tbsp. cold water
- Warm the oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the shallot and cook until soft, stirring frequently, ~5 minutes. Add the ginger and sauté for an additional minute.
- Mix in all but the reserved cranberries, along with the orange zest and juice, sugar, 5-spice powder, and 1/4 cup water. Stir to dissolve sugar.
- Mix the cornstarch and water. When the mixture reaches a boil, stir in the cornstarch mixture.
- Reduce heat to low. Simmer until sauce thickens and berries have popped, 10 – 12 minutes. Stir in the reserved cup of berries. Cook an additional 2 minutes, or until the newly added berries are just starting to pop. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature or chill in therefrigerator before serving.
We prefer to keep some of the cranberries to be added near the end of the cook time so that they retain their shape and texture. If you prefer a more uniform consistency, add all of the cranberries at once.
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