Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce with fresh apple is a bright and healthy addition to your holiday feast!  Easy, fast, and can be made ahead.   Maple-sweetened, and free of refined sugar, vegan and gluten-free!

Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce with fresh apple is a bright and healthy addition to your holiday feast!  Easy, fast, and can be made ahead.   Maple-sweetened, and free of refined sugar, vegan and gluten-free!  

What I love about Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce is that it is the perfect tart balance to rich foods.  Cranberries are super high in antioxidants and support healthy gut flora among so many other benefits!

This sauce is super simple to make.  The maple syrup gives rich flavor and mellows the tart cranberries, fresh orange zest give a bright balance, and fresh apple adds texture and more natural sweetness.

No need to keep it just to holiday meals.  This sauce is a lovely condiment for sandwiches, roasted squash, lentil dishes, scones, waffles…you get the idea!

ingredients in sauce

Ingredients in Cranberry Sauce

  • fresh cranberries
  • maple syrup
  • orange
  • apple
  • pinch of salt

washing cranberries

How to make Cranberry Sauce

Step one

Rinse and drain cranberries.

adding maple syrup to cranberries

Step two

Place in pot with maple syrup and just a pinch of salt.

cooking cranberries and maple

Step three

Bring to a simmer over medium heat, until lightly simmering, maple starts to bubble a bit and cranberries begin to pop, about 8 minutes.

It is okay if cranberries are in different stages of breaking down.  Some will be popped, some will still be whole.

dicing apples and orange

Step four

Zest an orange and cut away the peel and cut into small pieces (cranberry sized!).  Dice apple.

adding apple, zest and orange pieces to cranberries

Step five

Add zest, orange pieces and diced apple to cranberries.  It is fine to add in while cranberries are still warm.  The sauce will thicken up as it cools.

Refrigerate until ready to use.  Best if used within 2 days.

Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce with fresh apple is a bright and healthy addition to your holiday feast!  Easy, fast, and can be made ahead.   Maple-sweetened, and free of refined sugar, vegan and gluten-free! #cranberrysauce

Variations on Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce

Add one or more of the following:

  • a tablespoon of red wine or bourbon added in to cook with the cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • up to a tablespoon of fresh grated ginger

Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce with fresh apple is a bright and healthy addition to your holiday feast!  Easy, fast, and can be made ahead.   Maple-sweetened, and free of refined sugar, vegan and gluten-free! #cranberrysauce

Enjoy!

~Tonia

More recipes you may enjoy

Cranberry Orange Muffins with Rosemary

A Vegetarian Thanksgiving Dinner

Our BEST Thanksgiving Side Dishes

Turkey Grilled Cheese Sandwich with Cranberry Mustard

Stuffed Spaghetti Squash with Pecans, Kale and Dried Cranberries

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce with fresh apple is a bright and healthy addition to your holiday feast!  Easy, fast, and can be made ahead.   Maple-sweetened, and free of refined sugar, vegan and gluten-free! #cranberrysauce

Cranberry Sauce Recipe

  • Author: Tonia | Feasting at Home
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 8 minutes
  • Total Time: 18 minutes
  • Yield: 3 cups 1x
  • Category: Condiment
  • Method: Stove Top
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Orange Maple Cranberry Sauce with fresh apple is a bright and healthy addition to your holiday feast!  Easy, fast, and can be made ahead.   Maple-sweetened, and free of refined sugar, vegan and gluten-free!


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 4 cups cranberries, washed
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 orange, zested, then peeled and cut very small avoiding big parts of the membrane
  • 1 small apple, diced
  • pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. In a pot, cook cranberries, maple syrup and a pinch of salt over medium heat, until lightly simmering and cranberries begin to pop, about 8 minutes.  It is okay if cranberries are in different stages of breaking down.  Some will be popped, some will still be whole.
  2. Remove cranberries from heat.  Add diced apples, orange zest and chopped orange.  Mix to combine.  It will thicken as it cools.
  3. Refrigerate until serving.

Notes

This will keep 4 days in the fridge.  Best served within 2 days of making.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 3 tablespoons
  • Calories: 57
  • Sugar: 11.4 g
  • Sodium: 12.1 mg
  • Fat: 0.1 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 14.8 g
  • Fiber: 1.2 g
  • Protein: 0.2 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: cranberry sauce recipes, easy cranberry sauce, best cranberry sauce, healthy cranberry sauce, sugar-free cranberry sauce

Share this with the world!

Subscribe
to get recipes via email

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

Comments

  1. This is delicious! Just made it for our Thanksgiving gathering tomorrow. I did change proportions slightly as we like a cranberry heavy sauce. I doubled cranberries and started with 1 cup of maple syrup, ended up adding a bit more. One large orange and one large apple. I added cardamom and felt it was a little sharp, but then added vanilla and the two together is chef’s kiss! I’m going to have to hide it from myself so I don’t eat it all before tomorrow…

    1. Hahaha! Thanks so much Lisa- love your adaptions. Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for coming back and reviewing! Always appreciated.

  2. Thank you for this maple sweetened version with orange! Made some pretty big changes to suit finicky eaters and it was still delicious. Do not skip some microplaned orange zest!

    * 1/2 cup maple syrup (instead of 3/4)
    * no orange pieces
    * reduced orange zest to 1 brief, short microplaned stroke of zest per 1 TBS of cooked cranberries
    * zested the fresh apple instead of dice – fresh apple microplaned becomes sauce-like except that it retains all the good things about fresh apple (and it blends in with cranberry color)
    * doubled or tripled the apple (1 tsp fresh microplaned apple to 1 TBS cooked cranberries)

    With these changes, it ends up looking more like a simple traditional cranberry recipe. (Sorry for changing your already amazing recipe! : ) )

    The fresh apple, and maple with bit of orange make it food of the gods stuff. Thank you!

  3. This is delicious, I had lots of compliments when I served it with our Christmas dinner.
    As I had plenty left too I have just tried it for breakfast with some Greek yoghurt, absolutely delicious!

  4. So easy and good! I had used a different recipe in years’ past that was just ok, but this recipe was amazing! This year at Thanksgiving, everyone raved about how good the cranberry sauce was, whereas usually it’s a side on our table that no one really talks about. Loved the texture that the apple/orange add. I used a bit less maple syrup and still found it sweet enough.

  5. Learned a lesson here. Save some at home if I want any before taking this dish to add to a table. Not one bite left! Zero! Everyone LOVED it. I had to share the recipe. What a total win! Thank you! 😋

  6. I love this cranberry sauce! It’s not too sweet and the tart cranberry flavor pops through perfectly! I often use even less maple syrup for more tartness because that’s what my husband likes best. I have also used mandarins instead of oranges. Full syrup or less, mandarins or oranges, it’s perfect!

    Question: would I be able to omit the apple? I’m guessing the natural pectin in the apple helps the sauce set, but I’d like to make a sauce without the extra texture sometime. Just wondering if this would work. Thanks!

    1. I love how you make it your own Whitney! Love the tart version too. This will totally work without the apple!

  7. Hi there,

    I’ll be making this recipe for seven people. Will it be enough as is, or should I double the recipe just in case? Thank you.

    1. Hi, so that will give you around 2 1/2 tablespoons per person. I always like to have plenty so I might go with a double. It saves well, you can freeze it too!

  8. Bought too much cranberries for thanksgiving so I made this again tonight! It’s so tasty with the fruit additions. My husband and I just eat this by itself as a dessert haha.

  9. Perfect accompaniment!

    I followed this recipe exactly as written and everyone raved about the cranberry sauce with the turkey. I had planned to add a splash of orange liquor but forgot, and am glad I did. The simplicity of this recipe with the maple syrup really shines.

    Thanks Tonia ❤️

    1. Wonderful! It’s my favorite, I am so happy you all enjoyed! The orange liquor does sound good, though.

Our Latest Recipes