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Homemade Cranberry Sauce

My family flew to Massachusetts for Thanksgiving to hang out with friends and family. While we were back there, I decided to make cranberry sauce for our family Thanksgiving. My cousins really enjoyed the cranberry sauce. When we were driving to our house in the South Shore near Duxbury, we saw a real live cranberry bog! I have a picture of it further down in this post. That cranberry bog contained some of the best cranberries I’ve ever seen! It was awesome.

Ahhhh. Good old cranberry sauce. If it’s not too sweet and not too sour, it’s a good one. Mine was a good one, so I know what it tastes like.

What I wonder about every time I see this photo is why there are cinder blocks held up by poles in the water. What in the world do cinder blocks do to a cranberry bog!? Anyways… don’t these cranberries look good? Everything is better when it’s fresh.  Have you ever seen a cranberry bog?

We actually had good weather in Massachusetts while we were there. We must have stolen some of San Diego’s sunshine and brought it back east. But even though we had sun and good weather, it was still COLD. In San Diego, cold is in the 60’s. You have to change your expectations a little on the east coast. Cold is not in the 60’s there, it’s in the 20’s and 30’s. I really like being in Massachusetts in the summer. Winter on the east coast doesn’t suit a California boy like me. You can see I’m feeling the cold in the picture above. I have one long sleeved shirt on, a fleece jacket, a sweatshirt, a beany, and sweat pants.

Now that is a picture of some good cranberries boiling. At this point I couldn’t wait to taste my Thanksgiving dish!

It’s done! The cranberry sauce was very yummy. It didn’t taste too sweet or too sour. It was so simple too! Just a handful of ingredients was all it took. This cranberry sauce is a traditional Thanksgiving recipe that has been used for years. I love this recipe.

And even a kid can make a dish for Thanksgiving… Like Me!

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Homemade Cranberry Sauce
So super easy... why would you ever buy it in a can?
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American
Servings 16 servings (¼ cup per serving)
Calories 94 kcal


  • 2 12 ounce bags fresh cranberries
  • cup granulated white sugar
  • cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (plus a little zest, if you'd like)
  • 1 stick cinnamon (or 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon)


  • Combine all of the ingredients in a medium saucepan.
  • Stir and heat over medium and simmer until the cranberries begin to pop and the sauce begins to thicken (15 to 20 minutes).
  • Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.


Tip: If you like your sauce less sweet and a little more tart, use only ½ cup of each kind of sugar.


Serving: 1servingCalories: 94kcalCarbohydrates: 24gProtein: 0.3gFat: 0.1gSaturated Fat: 0.01gPolyunsaturated Fat: 0.03gMonounsaturated Fat: 0.01gSodium: 4mgPotassium: 78mgFiber: 2gSugar: 20gVitamin A: 57IUVitamin C: 14mgCalcium: 15mgIron: 0.2mg
Keyword cranberries, cranberry sauce
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Recipe Rating


Saturday 22nd of November 2014

How do you make jell type?


Tuesday 25th of November 2014

I'm not sure that I completely understand your question Sharon... True cranberry sauce is with the actual berries. The jell-o like substance can be bought in cans at the store. I am unsure of how to make that homemade.


Friday 21st of November 2014

Even if you use the most basic recipe of sugar or other sweetener, berries, and water it is so good. I can't imagine how anyone could even like canned sauce once they've had real. But we can't all the same and that's good. Gives another outlet for the canned cranberry industry to make it.


Tuesday 25th of November 2014

I agree with you 100% LaDonna.


Wednesday 5th of December 2012

Last year I had homemade cranberry sauce for the first time and LOVED it! I'd never had a whole-berry sauce and liked it. I asked my mother-in-law for her recipe, and made it for Christmas. It was a hit. I just made it again for Thanksgiving this year, and it tasted good, but it didn't gel up right. :(

BTW, I love that you're showing your New England pride -- Harvard, Red Sox...

RecipeBoy's Grandma

Saturday 1st of December 2012

I have never seen or heard of a cranberry bog but it looks very interesting. Guess I'll have to investigate. Your sauce looked awfully good too! So did you,

Joanie from CLBB

Thursday 29th of November 2012

Very interesting picture of the bog. Your recipe looks great, will put it in the to-try stack, on top! I'm a native central North Carolinian, but I'm with you and your Californian temperature preferences. I do not like to be cold. And I don't even like to see snow on Christmas cards!! I'm probably one of a rare few NC natives who own about 5-6 down coats!!! And down gloves! As always, enjoy reading your blog and recipes (and your mom's, too)! Stay warm!