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Homemade Fresh Cranberry Relish Sauce Recipe

Fresh homemade cranberry sauce relish is a classic side dish for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner. Sweet and tangy with a deep beautiful red color that is the perfect look and delicious aroma smell for every holidaydinner. But you do not have to wait for the holidays as you can use fresh or frozen cranberries and have delicious cranberry sauce any time of the year.

Cranberry relish has been a favorite of mine since I was a little girl. I use to help my mother make this side dish from scratch every year. I will not turn away any form of cranberry relish. I love the canned, gel, and my most favorite is this fresh homemade cranberry sauce/relish.

At Christmas, I love to put brie cheese warmed in the oven.  Slice off the top of the brine and layer with cranberry sauce and some toasted walnuts. Heat at 350ยฐ just until the cheese starts to melt.  A simple delicious appetizer for your Christmas or New Year’s Party.

It is a delicious addition to any News Years’ Party Appetizer.  There are a lot of complicated wrapped brie recipes but we just make a simple warm cheese with warm cranberry sauce and toasted walnuts.

cranberry sauce in a white bowl a silver spoon with a christmas tree on the spoon handle and fresh cranberries on the counter

Our Family Tradition of Cranberry Relish

My mother had a hand crank grinder made of heavy metal that was attached to our kitchen counter. She would grind the raw fresh cranberries, with oranges, to make her relish. I could not have been more than six or seven when I remember helping her feed the cranberries into the little metal hopper at the top and helping her turn the handle. Each handful of fresh cranberry would make a sweet popping sound as my mother turned the handle. This is one of the fondest memories I have of helping my mother in the kitchen.

Homemade Fresh Cranberry Relish Recipe bright red cranberries in a pot

Jim’s mother also made the cranberry sauce fresh from fresh cranberries. The recipe on the back of the ocean spray cranberry package. I have not found my mother’s recipe, so we make Jim’s mother’s recipe each year. It’s very simple with few ingredients, fresh, bright, and refreshing.

At our Thanksgiving table, you will find her recipe along with the simple can you find in the store.

Homemade Fresh Cranberry Relish Recipe

Alternative Recipe for Cranberry Relish or Sauce

This year I wanted to spice things up a little when making our family’s cranberry sauce/relish. I love the flavors of orange that are classic of the recipe I remember as a kid and I love cinnamon at the holidays.

In the recipe below I substituted 1/2 cup of orange juice and 1/2 cup of water for the regular recipe of 1 cup of water. I also added just a pinch of cinnamon. It can out just delicious and had that hint of orange that is classic during Thanksgiving and Christmas.

cranberry sauce in a white bowl on a white counter with three cinnamon sticks and fresh cranberries on the counter.

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Cranberry Relish

5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star 4.7 from 3 reviews
  • Prep Time: 5
  • Cook Time: 15
  • Total Time: 20
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Side Dish
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American


Inspired by Ocean Sprayยฎ Company


Units Scale
  • 1 12 oz package of Ocean Sprayยฎ Fresh Cranberries
  • 1 cup of Sugar
  • 1 cup of Water


  1. Place cranberries, sugar, and water in a saucepan on the stove. Set to medium and bring to boil.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 min.
  3. Cool.

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  1. Nothing like a good cranberry sauce for the holidays!Yours looks yummy!

  2. Something new, something to try. Thanks – Friday Fiesta rocks.
    Have a very Happy Thanksgiving.

  3. I adore cranberry relish at Xmas and this recipe looks wonderful. The idea of it served warm over Brie and Walnuts sounds quite frankly GORGEOUS!Thank you for sharing with #FiestaFriday

  4. Cranberry relish is a favorite of mine too but I really didn’t develop a taste for it until I was a young adult. One of the easiest side dishes to make for Thanksgiving. Happy Fiesta Friday and thanks for sharing.

  5. Great recipe – once you’ve had ’em fresh, you’ll never have canned again! Thanks for sharing at the What’s for Dinner party! Have a great week and hope to see you again next week.

  6. Happy New Year! My kids are crazy for cranberries – I look forward to trying your recipe. I found your blog through

  7. Hi Susan, I enjoy making cranberry sauce each year and often give it for gifts! Yours sounds good, and I really like the idea of serving it with brie! Yummy! Thanks for sharing! Blessings, Janet

  8. I like you love all cranberry sauces! I have not tried it on brie, but I know it would be delicious. I need to try it. Thanks for sharing with SYC. Happy New Year!

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