Easy Homemade Cranberry Sauce

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Incredibly easy homemade Cranberry Sauce that is bursting with flavor thanks to the added Amaretto which gives it a slight nutty aroma. It goes perfectly with your Thanksgiving turkey and makes a great hostess gift too!

If you have always wanted to try making your own Homemade Cranberry Sauce for the holidays but are terrified as to what it might entail…well here you go! A super EASY sauce that comes together in a few minutes with just a few simple ingredients. It is just as easy as opening a can of that molded jelly “sauce” you buy in the store and I promise you that the flavor is a thousand times better! And perhaps the best part? It uses frozen cranberries, which you can buy months in advance (Yay to no last minute grocery runs when you are trying to prep a meal for 20+ people!).


I love making my own sauce for a number of reasons. You can control the amount of sugar you put in it (if you want to do less sugar, add in some fresh orange juice) and you can really let your creative side shine too! In fact, we have quite the secret ingredient that goes into ours…which is always getting “ooooo” and “ahhhhh” from our family. Don’t worry, I will share it with you as well! Ready for the step-by-step on how to make this delicious Cranberry Sauce?

Be sure to PIN THIS RECIPE so you have it for later! 


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The one thing that you NEED to have to make this sauce a success is a good potato masher for making sure your cranberries are fully mashed into the right consistency.

homemade cranberry sauce recipe 

Easy Homemade Cranberry Sauce

A super EASY Homemade Cranberry Sauce that comes together in a few minutes with just a few simple ingredients, and the delicious addition of Amaretto for a nutty flavor compliment. 
Course dipping sauce, Holiday Meals, sauce
Cuisine English, English-American
Keyword Holiday Meals, Homemade Cranberry Sauce
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 20 minutes
Servings 3 cups
Author Melissa


  • 4 c Frozen Cranberries you can use fresh if preferred
  • 1 c Sugar white granulated
  • 1 c Water
  • 1/2 tsp Ground Cinnamon
  • 2 oz Amaretto almond liquor


  • In a medium saucepan combine sugar and water over medium heat. Allow to boil and add in liquor. Cook for about 2 minutes to “burn” off the alcohol. Add in cranberries and cinnamon and continue to gently simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally to keep from burning.
  • Once cranberries begin to pop (about 5 minutes) you can gently mash and cook for another 3-5 minutes until the liquid dissolves and it begins to take on a jelly consistency.
  • Remove from heat and allow to cool before transferring to a sealed container. Refrigerate until ready to use (we make ours 2 days in advance!).
tips and tricks for the perfect cranberry sauce
  • Taste it as you go! If you like it more tart cut back on your sugar, and opposite if you like it sweeter!
  • Make it at least a day in advance, this will allow the sauce to cool to a nice consistency and give the flavors time to get stronger.
  • To get the nice chunky consistency use a potato masher and gently mash the cranberries as they cook.
  • Prefer a smooth sauce? No problem, once cooled add to a food processor or blender for 10 seconds to puree to a smooth and delicious spreadable sauce.
  • Get creative! We add Amaretto (almond liquor) to our sauce, but we have also added orange juice and zest in the past. You can take a small amount and add in different combinations of ingredients to see what you like best.

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51 thoughts on “Easy Homemade Cranberry Sauce

    • oliveblogger says:

      YES!!!! You need to make it yourself, you can cook it a little less time if you don’t want it as “jelly” but GIRL this is a must! It is so tasty.

  1. 21flavorsofsplendor says:

    This looks so yummy! My husband loves cranberry sauce during the holidays and would love this. I would definitely try adding orange juice and zest.

    • oliveblogger says:

      It is so so yummy when you add in the juice, we have done it that way many times. And the best part of homemade is the amount it makes, you can really cover your turkey with it (mmm!)

  2. A- says:

    Cranberry sauce is one of my favorite parts of Thanksgiving dinner! I made it a couple of years ago and now I refuse to use canned sauce. In the past I’ve added orange and some walnuts for a little crunch, but I’ll have to try out the Amaretto this year!

    • oliveblogger says:

      Isn’t it crazy, once you make your own there is no reason to use canned again. Especially with how creative we can get with our flavoring! I hope you enjoy it as much as we do!

    • oliveblogger says:

      You are so welcome, this is one of those recipes you should always have on hand and can pass down through the family!

    • oliveblogger says:

      Oh I hope you love it as much as us! We wanted to try something different a couple of years ago and it was the closest liquor to where I was standing (ha!) turned out to be my favorite change to the classic sauce so far!

    • oliveblogger says:

      I am with you! I plop it on my stuffing…potatoes and TURKEY ha! Guess you could say I have a slight cranberry addiction!

    • oliveblogger says:

      It is so yummy, we have added orange in the past as well and actually I bet it would be super tasty with both the Amaretto and orange!

  3. Catherine Brown says:

    It is just about that time again. You’ll never go back to canned once you’ve made your own. I think it’s delicious stirred into yogurt too. I love the addition of amaretto here too!

    • oliveblogger says:

      There is no more canned in our house either, fresh is best and so so easy to make! Try it with the amaretto and let me know what you think 😉

  4. Michelle Frank | Flipped-Out Food says:

    I love making my own cranberry sauce. I use fresh when I can find them in the fall, but my hubster is so addicted to turkey dinner that we have to celebrate “half Thanksgiving” each year: that means frozen cranberries. I would never have thought of adding amaretto: that sounds delicious!

    • oliveblogger says:

      I love that, we may need to steal the idea of a half-Thanksgiving too (we love all the flavors that go with it!). The amaretto really steps it up, complimenting the sweet and tartness from the cranberries! Enjoy

    • oliveblogger says:

      You have to try it, the amaretto just adds a nice depth to the cranberry sauce that leaves everyone wondering what your secret ingredient is!

  5. Azlin Bloor says:

    Awesome, nothing quite like homemade on a festive table, right down to the smallest detail. I love that your cranberry sauce isn’t smooth and there are whole cranberries in there to be enjoyed.

    • oliveblogger says:

      Thanks Azlin, cranberry sauce is all about texture for me! I know some people prefer smooth but there is something so nice about a chunky cranberry on top of my turkey!

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