Cranberry Sauce

A quick and delicious recipe for cranberry sauce using fresh or frozen cranberries. Recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson.

cranberry sauce in jug

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

No Christmas feast is complete without some cranberry sauce, and considering how easy it is to make cranberry sauce from scratch, I would highly recommend doing so instead of reaching for the shop-bought kind.

cranberry sauce in jug with reindeer

Cranberry Sauce Recipe

This cranberry sauce recipe comes from Nigella Lawson, an author I turn to frequently throughout the year, but even more so at Christmas time. Her recipe for Redder Than Red Cranberry Sauce forms part of my Christmas ritual, especially since I find it hard to resist buying fresh cranberries at this time of the year to use in desserts and cakes.

Making this cranberry sauce is also an excuse for me to use my bottle of Swiss cherry brandy called Röteli. I’m not much of a drinker, but I do love the taste of strong alcohol in cooking and baking! We were once in Davos for a weekend of skiing and I brought back a bottle of this cherry liquor as a souvenir. I love to use it in most desserts with cherries, but it also works well with cranberries.


Cranberry Sauce

cranberry sauce

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A quick and delicious recipe for cranberry sauce using fresh or frozen cranberries. Recipe adapted from Nigella Lawson


  • 300400g (approx 12 oz) fresh cranberries
  • 200g (1 cup) caster sugar
  • 45ml (3 tablespoons) Röteli or other cherry brandy, Cointreau, Grand Marnier or ruby port
  • 75ml (1/3 cup) water


  1. Place all of the ingredients into a large saucepan over medium-high heat.
  2. Let the mixture simmer gently for about 10 minutes, stirring the sauce occasionally to squash the cranberries.
  3. Once most of the cranberries have broken down, the sauce should have thickened. Keep in mind that the sauce will thicken considerably upon cooling.
  4. Pour the sauce into a serving bowl and allow to cool.

Kitchen Notes

I like to serve the cranberry sauce at room temperature or even warm. But if you make it the night before, or even further in advance and keep it in the fridge, stir it well before serving.

If you don’t like the taste of alcohol in your cranberry sauce, you could also substitute the alcohol for orange juice, but you will have to add more sugar to sweeten the sauce – just keep tasting until you reach the desired sweetness.

To convert from cups to grams, and vice-versa, please see this handy Conversion Chart for Basic Ingredients.


  • Serving Size: Serves 10 to 12
  • Calories: 70

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  1. Julia 16 April 2018

    This is absolutely fantastic! Sounds worth a try!