You won’t believe how hands off this easy cranberry sauce recipe is! Set the slow cooker and walk away. Made with fresh cranberries, orange marmalade and brown sugar. We make this the night before a special holiday.
Homemade cranberry sauce is a must along with turkey breast and brown sugar ham. You can make the entire holiday dinner in slow cookers if you have a few. Try my bourbon cranberry sauce for a fun twist on this recipe!
Why Make Homemade Cranberry Sauce
If you grew up eating cranberry sauce from the can, you have no idea how delicious homemade cranberry sauce is. Using the slow cooker, this is a simple recipe that will take your holiday dinner to a whole new level.
This Slow Cooker Cranberry Sauce recipe is perfect for those who want to enjoy their Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner without spending all day in the kitchen! With your slow cooker and a few ingredients, you can have your cranberry sauce and eat it too.
How to make homemade cranberry sauce in the crockpot:
- Fresh cranberries– Find the cranberries in the produce section.
- Orange marmalade– Orange is the perfect compliment to cranberry sauce and orange marmalade adds sweetness and flavor.
- Brown sugar– This gives a richness to the sweetness of cranberry sauce. If you are out of brown sugar you can use white sugar in a pinch.
Step One – Add the cranberries to the crockpot and pour over the orange marmalade.
Step Two – Stir until the cranberries are coated with the marmalade. Cover and cook on high for 4 hours.
Step Three – After the cooking time is up, add the brown sugar.
Step Four – Stir and pop any un-popped cranberries with the back of a spoon. Stir until a thick and beautiful sauce forms.
What can I do with extra cranberry sauce?
If you have extra homemade cranberry sauce and need to use it up here are some great ideas.
- Use it as a topper for pancakes along with whipped cream.
- You can also use the leftover homemade cranberry sauce in things like meatballs, chicken or even pork loin. Adding cranberry sauce creates a savory and sweet dish that is delicious even outside of the holidays.
- You can also use the cranberry sauce over things like pumpkin pie or cheesecake.
You want to use brown sugar as the main sweetener in this cranberry sauce. In addition to the brown sugar, you are using orange marmalade. This adds the orange flavor but also adds a bit of sweetness.
There is a small seed inside of the cranberries. Some people are concerned and try to remove the seeds that rise to the top after the cranberries burst. There is no need to remove the seeds from the cranberries, for the are very tiny and edible.
If the cranberry sauce isn’t thick enough for some reason, you can take the lid off the slow cooker at the end of the cooking time and let some of the liquid evaporate. It won’t take much time at all.
You can make the cranberry sauce a few days in advance, in fact it’s better to make the day ahead. Even if you are making it the day you want to use it, it is best to let it sit for a few hours to get the right texture and consistency that you are looking for.
There is just about the flavors of cranberry and turkey that go perfect together. The sweet and tart of the cranberry sauce goes perfectly with turkey. It is also goes amazing with ham.
Once the cranberry sauce has cooled, place it in an airtight container. It will last in the fridge for about a week. If you still have some after a week you will want to freeze it. You can freeze the cranberry sauce for up to 6 months. Place it in a freezer bag and make sure to remove the air. When you are ready to use, place it in the refrigerator for about 24 hours before it is needed. This recipe is not meant to be canned, for canning thick recipes calls for special ingredients and procedures.
For a holiday dinner along with turkey or ham, traditionally cranberry sauce is served cold as a side or topping. Though if you are using cranberry sauce in a recipe, it’s ok to heat it.
Slow Cooker Cranberry Sauce
- 24 oz. fresh cranberries (two 12 oz. bags)
- 13 oz. orange marmalade (I use Bonne Maman)
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (add at the end of the cooking time)
- NOTE – This is best served cold, make the day before or early in the day and refrigerate for a few hours.
- Add the cranberries and orange marmalade to the slow cooker, stir to combine.
- Cover and cook on HIGH for 4 hours. After the cooking time is up, stir and pop any un-popped cranberries with the back of a spoon. Add the sugar and stir.
- Add the ingredients to a pot. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring often for 15 minutes.
- Once the cranberries start to cook and pop, turn down the heat to low and continue cooking for about 10 minutes until a thick sauce forms.
How to Video:
Nutrition info is auto-generated. This information is an estimate; if you are on a special diet, please use your own calculations.