apple orange cranberry sauce recipe

Apple Orange Cranberry Sauce

Easy to prepare, gently-spiced, and bursting with fruit flavor, this cranberry sauce is a lovely addition to any Thanksgiving feast. 
For an adult version of a classic, try spiking the sauce with a few tablespoons of orange liqueur. Apple Orange Cranberry Sauce can be made 3 days in advance of serving. Stored prepared sauce tightly-covered in the refrigerator.
Recipe adapted from "Triple-Cranberry Sauce," Bon App├ętit, November 1993
Course Side Dish
Cuisine American, Vegetarian
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings 12 servings (1/4 cup each)
Calories 115kcal
Author Amanda Biddle


  • 1 cup cranberry juice cocktail concentrate , defrosted
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 12 ounce package fresh cranberries , rinsed and drained
  • 1/2 cup dried sweetened cranberries (2 ounces)
  • 1 large apple (such as Fuji), peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 3 tablespoons sweet orange marmalade
  • 2 tablespoons fresh orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons grated orange zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1-2 tablespoons Grand Marnier or Cointreau (optional), to taste *


  • In a heavy saucepan, combine cranberry juice concentrate and granulated sugar. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add fresh and dried cranberries and diced apple, stirring to combine. Return to a boil and reduce heat to maintain a steady simmer. Cook, about 10 minutes, stirring frequently, until apples are tender, sauce thickens, and cranberries "pop." Remove from heat.
  • Stir in orange marmalade, juice, zest, cinnamon, cloves, and orange liqueur (if using). Transfer to a bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until chilled to let the flavors meld. Serve chilled or at room temperature.


*Since the liqueur is added after the sauce is simmered, it will not evaporate, making it unsuitable for children or anyone unable to consume alcohol.
An additional note, 11/24/14: As per the comments below, the cranberry juice cocktail concentrate lends an extra layer of cranberry flavor (and a hint of tartness) to the sauce. If you aren't able to get the frozen concentrate, or would prefer not to use it, you can substitute 1 cup of water and 3/4 to 1 cup (total) granulated sugar (depending on how sweet you like your cranberry sauce).


Calories: 115kcal | Carbohydrates: 29g | Sodium: 4mg | Potassium: 55mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 40IU | Vitamin C: 15.6mg | Calcium: 7mg | Iron: 0.2mg