Friday, February 15, 2013

Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Cranberries Aren’t Just for Thanksgiving Any More! 

Cranberry sauce is much easier to make than you might think.  A few years ago I got so frustrated when reading the labels on canned cranberry sauce. I could not find one can that did not have high fructose corn syrup! 

That’s when I began to make my own.  

First, you need to wash your cranberries. Pick out the wilted, bruised, and damaged ones. Use only crisp, fresh berries.

Bring your water to a boil. Let ‘em Pop! 

Here is the recipe I got from the Wisconsin Cranberry Grower’s Association:
  • 3 cup cranberries
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1-1/2 cup sugar

  • If you want to make cranberry sauce with nice chunks of berries in it, simply stir.
  • If you want to make the smooth gelled sauce, use a potato masher and simmer longer.  I like the whole berry version better.

Watch that Pot 

You need to watch it carefully. It will foam up quite a bit and might overflow. If it looks like that might be happening, lower the temp, blow on it and/or give it a stir. The foam will go down.


Keep stirring and simmering for about ten minutes. 


Before long, it will get really thick. When you can scrape the bottom of the pan and it comes clear like this, the sauce is ready. 

Measure Portions 

I use a ¼ cup portion scooper and plop it out onto my fruit leather trays.  be sure to spray your trays with non-stick spray first.  Notice that it’s fairly thick and lumpy.


I simply take my racks and give them a little tap on the counter, like you would if you were settling a cake batter into a cake pan.  They spread out and are more even in thickness. 

This time I let these dry for about seven days. It may take less time, but I was too ill to be sure.   

Remember, sweet things take longer to dry. 

Linda’s Note: In the past, I got too impatient with my cranberry sauce. Figured it should be done in three days or so. It always seemed a bit sticky, and I didn’t like that. It will keep when it’s sticky, but it’s a nuisance. This was a happy accident for me.  By letting it dry so much longer, it was completely dry and wasn’t sticky at all. That made it perfect. (Actually, I was too sick to mess with it ... or even care about it at the time)

What to do With Dehydrated Cranberry Sauce:
  • These dried wafers are fantastic on turkey or chicken sandwiches
  • They can be placed on top of a roast pork or ham half way through the cooking process.
  • Delicious just as a snack.
  • Snip them into pieces and add to your favorite salads, as you might use craisins.
To find out more delicious things you can do with cranberries, check over this link to the Wisconsin Cranberry Grower’s Association: 



  1. I sure hope this means you are feeling much better! Wow what a flu this year, eh?!

  2. Have you ever tried rehydrating the sauce after it is dehydrated? I want to use it for a backpacking trip but I'm not sure if it will work.

    1. Hi Anne,

      I've never bothered rehydrating the cranberry sauce. It's absolutely delicious as a finger food! We eat it like a fruit leather snack. Sometimes I put it in sandwiches. If you snip or tear the pieces and mix them in with chicken salad, it's fantastic.

      As far as backpacking food, it's great just as it is.