[Collage photographs: Joshua Bousel]
Cranberry sauce has been the butt of loads of Thanksgiving jokes, due to recollections of the plasticky canned selection that so many Individuals grew up with. In my household, although, my mother’s do-it-yourself cranberry sauce has all the time been a spotlight of Thanksgiving. Although some folks harbor a tender spot for the canned stuff, to me one of the best cranberry sauce is a distinct beast altogether—fruity and tart, candy however not too candy, and thick however not artificially gloopy.
Not solely does ditching the can let you make a really nice fundamental cranberry sauce, it offers you room to experiment with different flavors that complement the tart berries. All types of fruits, spices, and different components have the power to remodel an odd cranberry sauce into one thing really memorable.
To assist get you began, we have rounded up 9 of our favourite cranberry sauce variations, flavored with apple and orange, pear and ginger, jalapeño and lime, and extra.

The World’s Best Cranberry Sauce[Video: J. Kenji López-Alt]A terrific batch of do-it-yourself cranberry sauce requires simply 4 components: cranberries, sugar, water, and a pinch of salt. As a result of cranberries are so excessive in pectin, you will not want some other thickeners to get the sauce to set. When you’re snug with this fundamental recipe, attempt customizing it with different flavoring brokers—orange zest and a cinnamon stick are a pleasant contact.
The World’s Best Cranberry Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Apple-Orange Cranberry Sauce[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Including apple and orange to a fundamental cranberry sauce helps to emphasise one of the best qualities of the dish. Right here, chopped Granny Smiths amplify each the berries’ tartness and their sweetness, whereas orange juice and zest add a robust shiny edge.
Apple-Orange Cranberry Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Pear and Ginger Cranberry Sauce[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]Gentle, candy pear and spicy ginger make a superb (and fall-appropriate) mixture that we have put to work in different dishes, together with a unbelievable Pear, Riesling, and Ginger Sorbet. This cranberry sauce incorporates each contemporary and crystallized ginger to offer the sauce a pleasing kick, whereas chopped pear supplies sweetness for steadiness. Should you aren’t positive how a lot spice your crowd is keen to deal with of their cranberry sauce, be at liberty to chop again on the crystallized ginger right here.
Pear and Ginger Cranberry Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Cranberry Sauce With Candied Pecans[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Cranberry sauce is helped out immensely with just a little textural distinction, and a handful of pecans makes an particularly good addition. However relatively than settling for simply plain previous nuts, right here we toast them with a spiced brown sugar glaze earlier than chopping them up and mixing them into the sauce. Just a bit little bit of cayenne within the spice combine helps to steadiness out the cinnamon and sugar.
Cranberry Sauce With Candied Pecans Recipe »Again to the complete record Spiced Crimson Wine Cranberry Sauce[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]This complicated cranberry sauce is impressed by a basic winter beverage, mulled wine. We swap in pink wine for the water usually used to prepare dinner the berries and add cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice. Molasses and maple syrup give the sauce a extra layered sweetness than one made with white sugar.
Spiced Crimson Wine Cranberry Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Cranberry-Pomegranate Sauce[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]

Similar to within the earlier recipe, plain water will get the boot in favor of a extra flavorful cooking liquid. Right here, it is tart pomegranate juice, which provides the sauce an additional dimension of fruit taste. The mouth-puckering, crunchy pomegranate seeds we stir in after cooking will clarify that this is not your grandma’s cranberry sauce, however the taste remains to be conventional sufficient to maintain any visitor happy.
Cranberry-Pomegranate Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Spiced Cranberry Sauce[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]This cranberry sauce is bursting with acquainted fall flavors—orange, cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg, and cloves—nevertheless it additionally incorporates a secret ingredient: spiced rum. There’s not sufficient rum right here to hit you over the pinnacle, nevertheless it does add some nice depth of taste.
Spiced Cranberry Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Smoky Jalapeño and Lime Cranberry Sauce[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]This cranberry sauce is about as removed from conventional as you will get. Tailored to face as much as a smoky barbecued turkey, it is made with contemporary jalapeños, lime juice, and some teaspoons of mezcal for complementary smokiness. Take away the seeds from the peppers to offer the sauce extra of a fruity taste than an intensely spicy one.
Smoky Jalapeño and Lime Cranberry Sauce Recipe »Again to the complete record Cranberry-Apple Relish[Photograph: Joshua Bousel]This final recipe is not a cranberry sauce in any respect, however pulsing contemporary cranberries, apple, sugar, orange juice, and orange zest collectively in a meals processor will get you an identical flavors in a thicker kind akin to a relish. It additionally takes simply 10 minutes to make, so it is the right possibility should you really feel overwhelmed by the remainder of your Thanksgiving prep duties.
Cranberry-Apple Relish Recipe »Again to the complete record

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