Spice up your holiday meal with this easy homemade cranberry sauce recipe. This spiced cranberry sauce is made with warm spices like cinnamon and cloves, and flavored with red wine and orange zest. It’s the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving turkey.

overhead view of spiced cranberry sauce in a small white dish on a countertop next to small glass of wine and a small dish of cranberries

Why I love this cranberry sauce recipe

There was nothing I liked more about celebrating the holidays in France than the vin chaudIt was sold at all the Christmas markets and even at most of Marc’s hockey games during the holiday season, so naturally, when the Christmas season is approaching, I can’t help but crave it.

But, since I refuse to start Christmas-ing until after Thanksgiving (with the exception of Christmas cookie testing), I thought it might be nice to infuse our Thanksgiving cranberry sauce with some mulled wine flavor.

Plus, who doesn’t want to put wine in their cranberry sauce? No one. It’s the perfect side dish for your Thanksgiving meal, whether its large or small. Although, you may want to double the recipe if you’re having more than 8 people.

side view of spiced cranberry sauce in a small white dish next to orange slices, anise, and cranberries

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Here’s what you’ll need to make it

Dairy free tip: Don’t forget that not all wine is dairy free! Read more about it in my article about vegan wine brands. We used Layer Cake pinot noir in this recipe, but any sweet red wine that you like will work great.

overhead close up of spiced cranberry sauce in a small white dish

How to make spiced cranberry sauce

Making this mulled wine cranberry sauce was beyond easy. You just need to buy a few slightly-of-the-ordinary ingredients, like star anise, but nothing you can’t find at your normal grocery store. Plus, now that you’ve stocked up on these items, you can easily make yourself some mulled wine for Christmas.

Gather your ingredients and put them in a sauce pan and bring to a boil

Boil in a saucepan and let them simmer away for about 20 minutes.

Remove it from the heat and let it cool.

Remove the aromatics from your sauce. If you’re smart, you’ll have created a small bundle with cheesecloth to keep them in, but if you’re awesome like me, you get to go on a fishing expedition for those cloves.

It might not seem like fun, but don’t worry, you should still have wine left in that bottle you opened. Or surprise your guests with a nice, spicy bite of cloves. I’m kidding. Well kind of… It depends on who’s coming to dinner.

Close up side view of spiced cranberry sauce with ingredients in the background

FAQS and tips for making homemade cranberry sauce

Is homemade cranberry sauce served hot or cold?

Traditionally it’s served chilled or at room temperature, but it’s also really great served slightly warm. So it’s totally up to you.

How long will homemade cranberry sauce keep?

Homemade cranberry sauce will keep in the fridge for up to 2 weeks. I prefer to use it within a week to ensure the best flavor.

Can you overcook cranberry sauce?

Yes. You really don’t want to overcook cranberry sauce because the sugar will turn to caramel and the sauce will be too thick.

How do you get the bitterness out of cranberry sauce?

If your cranberry sauce is too bitter, add a sweetener. Traditionally, sugar is used, but you can also add maple syrup, honey or brown sugar.

overhead view of spiced cranberry sauce in a small white dish on a countertop next to small glass of wine and a small dish of cranberries

This recipe would be great with:

More cranberry recipes you’ll love:

side view of spiced cranberry sauce in a small white dish next to orange  slices, anise, and cranberries
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Mulled Wine Cranberry Sauce | Homemade cranberry sauce, easy cranberry sauce, Thanksgiving recipe, Thanksgiving side dish, mulled wine #cranberrysauce #cranberry #Thanksgiving | @simplywhisked

Spiced Cranberry Sauce

  • Author: Melissa Belanger
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Total Time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: 8 servings 1x
  • Category: Condiments
  • Method: Stovetop
  • Cuisine: American
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Spice up your holiday meal with this easy homemade cranberry sauce recipe. This spiced cranberry sauce is made with warm spices like cinnamon and cloves, and flavored with red wine and orange zest. It’s the perfect addition to your Thanksgiving turkey.


Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 pound fresh cranberries
  • 3/41 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • Peel of one navel orange
  • 1 star anise
  • 3 whole cloves (or 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves)
  • 1 cinnamon stick (or 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon)

Instructions

  1. Combine ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to a boil.
  2. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until cranberries have popped and sauce has thickened, about 20 minutes.
  3. Allow cranberry sauce to cool completely or refrigerate overnight. Remove orange peel, cloves, anise and cinnamon stick before serving.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 1 cup
  • Calories: 239
  • Sugar: 55.4 g
  • Sodium: 5.4 mg
  • Fat: 0.8 g
  • Saturated Fat: 0.1 g
  • Carbohydrates: 63 g
  • Fiber: 3.9 g
  • Protein: 0.4 g
  • Cholesterol: 0 mg

Keywords: dairy free, egg free, vegan, gluten free, wine, cranberry, side dish, Thanksgiving, Christmas

Last Updated on October 8, 2021 by Melissa Belanger

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