The 50 Best Cranberry Recipes You Could Possibly Try This Holiday Season
Ah, cranberries. It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without them. But these tart, juicy cuties can do way more than break down in a semi-gelatinous cranberry sauce. In fact, we’ll be using them in everything from cocktails and appetizers to mains and desserts this holiday season. Here, the 50 best cranberry recipes to try all fall and winter long. (And no, we’re not being hyperbolic when we say that.)
2. Cranberry-Mint Holiday Punch
Quench the thirst of a crowd in minutes. This big-batch cocktail boasts sparkling wine, vodka, triple sec and a bunch of fresh fruit.
3. Cranberry Margarita
You only thought tequila season ended after Labor Day. It turns out slightly sour cranberry juice is just the match for the earthy, semisweet spirit.
4. Cranberry Apple Sangria
Star anise, fresh herbs, cloves and cinnamon spice up this sweet-and-sour sipper. Make the cocktail a few hours ahead of your guests’ arrival so it has plenty of time to chill.
5. Easy Cranberry Moscow Mule
A little cranberry juice cocktail goes a long, long way. Want to keep the drink from getting diluted? Freeze some extra whole cranberries and use them to keep your drink cold instead of ice cubes.
6. Cranberry, Brussels Sprouts and Brie Skillet Nachos
Melty Brie and sharp white cheddar are salty, creamy and decadent. Sweet cranberry sauce and tender roasted veggies add heartiness and zing to this starter that everyone at your table will be psyched about.
7. 5-Ingredient Red-Wine Cranberry Sauce
Wait, are you still using the canned stuff? This beauty only takes 20 minutes to whip up…and it gets spiked with a third of a bottle of dry red wine. We recommend using Merlot or Pinot Noir.
8. Cranberry-Brie Puff-Pastry Pops
Skip the boring crudités and pigs in a blanket. These dough pockets filled with cranberry sauce and gooey Brie cheese are way more seasonal, surprising and delicious.
9. Cranberry Walnut Grain-Free Granola
Crunchy bits like sunflower seeds, hemp seeds and pepitas will give you all the energy you need to take on Black Friday’s best sales. It even gets a dash of pumpkin pie spice for good measure. All you have to do now is decide between Greek yogurt and milk.
10. Baked Brie with Cranberries and Pomegranate
Oh, hey there, Christmas. Nothing kicks off a holiday party like a mountain of melted cheese topped with nuts, herbs and seasonal fruit. Just make sure you don’t get carried away before dinner.
11. Mini Cranberry, Pistachio and Chocolate Panettone
If you’re one of those people who always gives your coworkers and friends homemade cookies for the holidays, try these tiny cake-brioche hybrids. They’re just as traditional as the ones you can get at the supermarket (but nowhere near as dry).
12. Sweet Potato Crostini
OK, swapping standard potato chips for roasted sweet potato slices was a solid start. But topping them with smoked salmon and cranberry-almond topping? Now that’s just plain genius.
13. Cranberry-Brie Pie Crust Bites
Like cheese and crackers, only 100 times classier. Store-bought pie crust and cranberry sauce make this 15-minute masterpiece possible.
14. Balsamic Cranberry Roast Chicken
If your family doesn’t do turkey, you’re looking at an entrée that’s just as pretty and twice as easy to pull off. Thanks to the cast-iron skillet, you won’t even have to brown the thighs and drums on the stove before popping them in the oven.
15. Turkey Smashed Avocado, Cranberry and Mashed Potato Waffle Melts
You’re looking at the best Black Friday brunch around. Not only are the melts ridiculously tasty, but they’re a creative way to use up lots of leftovers in one shot.
16. Favorite Green Salad with Apples, Cranberries and Pepitas
Granny Smiths, dried cranberries and pumpkin seeds are pretty much the holy trinity of fall salads. But the apple cider vinaigrette complete with honey and Dijon mustard puts this salad over the top.
17. Whole Wheat Pancakes with Cranberry Maple Syrup
File this recipe under Ways We Never Thought to Use Leftover Cranberry Sauce.
18. Perfect Popovers with Cranberry Butter
These airy pillows of deliciousness come together with only five pantry staples. Just wait until you taste them drenched in tart, salty cranberry butter.
19. Roasted Cranberry Brown Sugar Pork Chops
You can never have too many 30-minute dinners up your sleeve. These get super caramelized and sticky after marinating in red wine, brown sugar and pomegranate juice.
20. Brown Sugar Roasted Chicken Enchiladas with Fire-Roasted Tomatillo Cranberry Sauce
The enchiladas are loaded with seasonings—plus white cheddar, gouda and cotija cheeses. But the sauce steals the show every time, thanks to spicy chipotle chiles, coconut milk and garlic.
21. Minty Green Salad with Cranberry Vinaigrette
Trust us, there’s nothing boring about this work-lunch wonder. The dressing starts with homemade cranberry-maple compote. But the real star here is the roasted coconut-sugar pecans.
22. Turkey Cranberry Grilled Brie Cheese Sandwich
Wave goodbye to your leftovers. Everyone’s going to want one of these ooey-gooey beauties.
23. Quinoa-Stuffed Butternut Squash
You’ll want to add this vegetarian meal to your regular rotation. The kale and chickpeas make it nutritious and filling, and your kids will be excited about all the grated Parmesan.
24. Slow Cooker Cranberry-Pecan Stuffing
Why should cranberry sauce have all the fun on Thanksgiving? The tart winter fruit can so get in on everyone’s favorite side. This one’s full of Italian sausage and made with sweet Hawaiian rolls.
25. Leftover Thanksgiving Turkey and Cranberry Aioli Sandwich
Bet you never thought to mix tangy mayonnaise with leftover cranberry sauce, huh? The mayo’s creaminess totally balances the cranberry sauce’s sour notes. You can thank us later.
26. Sous Vide Cranberry-BBQ Salmon
This is seriously one of the easiest, most flavorful marinades you’ll ever make. Not into sous vide? Go ahead and bake the salmon instead.
27. Easy Cranberry Basil Shrimp Cocktail
This seafood hors d’oeuvre is always the first to go come cocktail hour. Give the classic a modern twist by adding fresh cranberries, citrus juice and herbs to the cocktail sauce.
28. Butternut Squash Tacos with Cranberry-Jalapeño Relish
Taco Tuesday just got way, way wintry. Once you combine sweet squash, spicy ginger and tart Granny Smiths, you’ll forget all about your usual carnitas. (At least until summertime.)
29. Cranberry Chicken
Psst: The pretty glaze is made almost entirely from pantry staples. Serve the thighs over wild rice with a side of Brussels sprouts for an earthy, autumnal touch.
30. Cranberry Salsa
No matter how fancy your holiday party is, no one ever turns down chips and salsa. Make it seasonal by using pear, apple and citrus instead of traditional tomato.
31. Turkey Cranberry Pasta Salad
Crunchy celery and toasted pecans. Juicy leftover turkey. Tender bowtie pasta. How can you go wrong?
32. Garlic Rosemary Chicken with Cranberries
If you can only find frozen cranberries instead of fresh, don’t panic. Just thaw them, toss them in brown sugar and skip the white wine vinegar.
33. Pasta with Kale, Kalamata Olives, Dried Cranberries, Toasted Garlic and Feta
Call it crazy spaghetti. Call it kitchen sink pasta. Either way, it’ll only take you mere minutes to pull together from start to finish. We’ll take extra cheese, please.
34. Easy Cranberry-Pecan Sandwich Cookies
Trust us: You’ll have the most creative contribution to the office cookie swap. Store-bought cranberry jam is totally cool, but our homemade version is worth the elbow grease if you have the time.
35. Cranberry Apple Danish
Ready to have your mind blown? These morning glories are made with leftover cranberry sauce, plus six other basic ingredients. When your guests assume you bought them from a fancy bakery, just smile and nod.
36. Matcha-Cranberry Linzer Cookies
You usually make red- and green-frosted sugar cookies for Christmas. Keep the festive color scheme with this sophisticated alternative, made with matcha powder and store-bought jam.
37. Mini Cranberry Potpies
You’ve had more chicken potpies than you can count. But what about a sweet potpie? It’s stuffed with cranberries, orange juice, brown sugar, maple syrup and warm spices.
38. White Chocolate Macadamia Oatmeal Cranberry Cookies
Brown sugar-oatmeal cookies are good as-is. Add crunchy macadamia nuts, dried cranberries and white chocolate chips to the mix, and they go from tasty to divine.
39. Cranberry Sauce Cheesecake Brownies
Yup, you read that right. Swirl the leftover side through homemade cream cheese filling for an impressive marbled look.
41. Cranberry Christmas Cake with Butter Sauce
You might think butter sauce sounds like something you’d put on pasta, not dessert. But this one’s spiked with sugar, cream and vanilla, so we’re sure you’ll change your mind at first bite.
42. Apple Cranberry Pie
A lattice crust will impress even the pickiest of relatives. But tiny, apple-shaped pie crust cutouts on top? Now that’s next-level.
43. Cranberry Coffee Cake
Oh, what’s this? Looks like your daily gingerbread latte’s new best friend to us. Don’t be shy about the brown sugar-cinnamon streusel.
44. Cranberry Orange Smoothie
If you’d rather start your day with something light after all that turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and pie, we have your back with this three-ingredient smoothie that’s bursting with vitamin C.
45. Lemon Cranberry Pound Cake
Think of this treat as a glimmer of brightness during the dark, dreary months. P.S., we could straight-up bathe in the lemon glaze.
46. Cranberry Orange Custard Pie
We love cranberry sauce, jam and pie filling just as much as the next girl. But cranberries are also breathtaking when left intact. Especially when they’re poking out of citrus custard.
47. Cranberry Bliss Cookies
Save yourself a trip to Starbucks for their famous seasonal bars and make these cookies instead. They’re super soft, fluffy and buttery.
48. Cranberry Cake with Orange Glaze
Sour cream ensures that this cake turns out moist every single time. Oh, and you’ll want to put the two-ingredient glaze on everything you ever bake.
49. White Christmas Cranberry Layer Cake
Oh, you fancy, huh? This stunner will blow all your guests away, from the homemade jam to the dreamy white chocolate buttercream to the sugared cranberries.
50. Christmas Cranberry Sorbet Rosé Mimosa
Our favorite kind of dessert? The kind that doubles as a cocktail, of course.