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I grew up never touching that disgusting looking gelatinous can shaped cranberry sauce at the Thanksgiving table. Like many of my food experiences I was probably selling a whole berry-cranberry sauce at Whole Foods when I tried it for the first time. Geez...that's fun! Sweet, tart, tangy, red.
everything is in the pot

*UPDATED* 11-22-11
Over the years I have grown to really appreciate the high quality whole berry versions. I prefer the chutney style more than the jellied that is for sure. Replacing some of the water for orange juice, adding citrus zest, and lots of spice is the only way to go as far as I am concerned. When putting this version together I looked for a few key components.

1. no refined sugar
2. a complementary fruit flavor to go with the citrus and cranberry
3. a lot of spice and citrus flavor

So here you have it. Takes about 10 minutes to prep and about 15 minutes to cook.

*NOTE: I updated the original recipe to use less date sugar and cook the sugar on its own for a minute. The texture and flavor with the increased maple syrup turned out much better. I also replaced the OJ for water as the zest and juice was overpowering the flavor of the cranberries.

just as the cranberries start to pop and split open


Servings:  makes about  2 ½ cups

1 cup water
1 tsp. of orange zest
1/4 cup organic date sugar
3/4 cup maple syrup
3 cups fresh cranberries (12 ounce bag)
1 Tbls fresh grated ginger root
1 ripe pear diced finely
2 (3-inch) cinnamon sticks
6 whole cloves
1/4 tsp fresh ground nutmeg

Place date sugar, water, and maple syrup in a medium saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil. Cook for a minute to breakdown date sugar a bit.  Add the remaining ingredients and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries all pop, about 10 minutes. Leave no cranberry un-popped! Remove from heat and let cool slightly.  Transfer to a covered container and refrigerate until just before use. 


  1. This looks like a great recipe and it's so nice to see someone writing them with REAL ingredients.

  2. thanks! It is tasty stuff. The date sugar is a little granular texturally as it does not dissolve like refined white sugar. I will be making another batch tonight and experimenting with the technique a bit.

  3. I grew up on date sugar. It is definitely a little different. Any suggestions from your experiment? I will be making it tomorrow night.

  4. Amy-I just updated with the results of the experiment. The flavor of the OJ and zest overpowered the cranberry too much. I also wanted a less granular texture so I toned down the date sugar and increased the maple syrup. Hope you like it.

  5. Here is a hint about how to overcome the granular texture of date sugar. Just put the dry date sugar in a blender and blend it until it is like powder. It then mixes into other ingredients without having a grainy texture.
    Date sugar is a whole food -- just dehydrated dates -- so it is healthier then something like maple syrup. Of course, it also adds a date flavor and absorbs water, making some things too thick, but sometimes you can use that to your advantage, to thicken things!
    Keep up the good work! I love what you're doing!

  6. Delisa-thanks for the tips on the date sugar!

  7. I'm going to have to try this, or perhaps adapt your ideas into my sauce. What I have done up to now is simply toss the bag of cranberries, a can of unsweetened apple juice concentrate, and a cinnamon stick into the pot and cook it down. It works, but ends up a little too tart. Yours sounds divine.

  8. I heard you speak at whole foods last month to the wellness club. Can you post the burger recipe using kidney beans? Thanks

  9. absolutely! it will be up pretty soon. Thanks for asking. My 6 year old had his happy adoption day a few days ago and as part of the celebration he got to decide what we would eat for dinner. He requested the veggie burgers!


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