Spicy Cranberry Sauce

I think cranberry sauce might be one of the most debated dishes at holiday meals.  Do you make it from scratch or get in the can?  Leave it tart or add copious amounts of sugar?  Eat it on it’s own or use it as a turkey topping?  Each family has their own preference and it’s usually steeped in tradition.  We’ve always done it this way so we’re going to keep doing it this way.

Delicious canned cranberries. Look at those rings!

Delicious canned cranberries. Look at those rings!

Well my cranberry palate has changed over the years.  When I was younger, I was all about the canned cranberries.  Nothing was better than opening the can and shaking it back and forth until the glob of cranberries, shaped exactly like the can rings and all, slid out onto the plate.  I loved slicing rings off of that glob and gobbling them up.  I’m sure the crazy amounts of high fructose syrup had nothing to do with that…  Then as I got older I really started to like the cranberry relish that my mom made every year.  It was a mix of cranberries, apples, oranges, and spices.  I liked the tartness of the cranberries with the sweet of the apple and I liked the simplicity of the dish.

Then my mother in law brought a new cranberry sauce to Thanksgiving this year and it was amazing.  It was a Guy Fieri recipe and it was a sweet and spicy sauce that was just awesome.  I had to control myself so I didn’t eat the whole container!  Luckily, I was able to snag some leftovers and got to enjoy the cranberries for a little longer.  But once they were gone, I knew that I needed to make some more.  So I looked up the recipe and realized that I had none of the ingredients other than the cranberries.  Since I didn’t want to make a trip to the store just to get the ingredients for one dish, I decided to see if I could make my own version.


With a minimal amount of ingredients, I was able to recreate the sweet and spicy sauce that I had fallen in love with.  This is a really easy dish to make and you can use this sauce for numerous other dishes.  I’ve mixed it into oatmeal, used it as a topping for fish, tried it on some cookies, and even just eaten it with a spoon.  It’s that versatile.  Ok, enough talking about cranberry sauce time to go make some!

Spicy Cranberry Sauce


*adapted from Guy Fieri’s Red Devil Cranberries

  • 1 cup whole cranberries
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder (less if you don’t want it as spicy)
  • 1/4 tsp salt


1.  In a medium saucepan, bring 1 cup water and 2 tbsp honey to a boil and then immediately lower to a simmer.  Add in the cranberries and stir occasionally.  Keep stirring until the cranberries start to burst.

2.  Add in all the seasonings and stir to combine.  Keep the heat on low and cook until the sauce has reduced and started to thicken.

3.  Taste and adjust the seasonings to your taste.  Turn off the heat and let the sauce cool.  As it cools it will thicken even more.  Store in an airtight container in the fridge.


That’s it!  It’s a fairly simple process and the sauce keeps for awhile in the fridge.  Because cranberries are so abundant and cheap right now, you can make big batches and then freeze so you can have a delicious sauce for weeks to come.  I hope that you enjoy your weekend and I’ll see you on Monday!

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