The Best Cranberry Sauce

Chef Mitch here!

In some ways this holiday season has shaped up to be the easiest of all time. No travel, no obligations—just couch time and lots of food.

As Christmas is almost here, today I’m sharing my mom’s cranberry sauce recipe, which we serve at both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Thanks to Mom, the cran is my favorite dish on the table.

Listen, I get it. The jellied cran can tube glob is disgusting—and because of that, cranberry sauce gets a bad rap. But people have it all wrong. They hate the can, not the cran!

Cranberries are the antidote to all the starchy, heavy, gravy-laden dishes filling the rest of your plate this season. They’re the perfect Christmas food. Cranberries are native North American fruits—one of the few!—and they’re even festive-looking.

This recipe is simple. Chop fresh cranberries, citrus, and a cup of sugar in a food processor or blender. There’s no simmering, no stirring and hardly any cleanup. Even better, the dish can be prepared in advance and refrigerated for a day or so to intensify the flavors. It’s just about as easy as opening that dreaded can.

I’d recommend a double or triple batch as these crans go fast.

The Best Cranberry Sauce
The Best Cranberry Sauce
Thanksgiving and Christmas sauces


  • One 12 oz package of fresh cranberries
  • One large naval orange
  • One cup of granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup water or orange juice


  1. Quarter orange and remove seeds. Leave peel intact.
  2. Place cranberries, quartered orange, sugar and water in food processor.
  3. Pulse until sauce congeals at preferred granularity.
  4. Chill before serving.

Chef Mitch. OUT!

Thanksgiving and Christmas sauces