Holiday Orange-Cranberry Sauce

This is the classic sauce for accompanying a holiday turkey. Our version is loaded with oranges-fresh orange juice, orange zest, and thin strips of orange rind-candied ginger strips, and crunchy nuts. We also love to serve this sauce over pound cakes and butter cakes, as a dip for butter cookies, spread on morning toast and muffins and pancakes, or in a cranberry-cheddar sandwich. Of course the ultimate use is on a leftover turkey sandwich with stuffing and crunchy lettuce on toasted white or whole-wheat bread.

NotesYou’ll need 2 or 3 large oranges. First, use 1 orange to remove the rind (the outer peel without the bitter white pith) by slicing it off with a small, sharp knife or a wide vegetable peeler. Use another orange to grate the rind for zest and then squeeze both oranges for their juice.

Candied or crystallized ginger is available in the specialty food section of most supermarkets or at chocolate or candy shops.



Total Timeunder 30 minutes

Make Ahead RecipeYes

OccasionBuffet, Family Get-together

Recipe Courseside dish

Dietary Considerationegg-free, gluten-free, halal, kosher, lactose-free, peanut free, soy free, vegetarian


Taste and Texturefruity, light, sharp

Type of Dishfruit


  • 1¼ cups sugar
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 pound fresh cranberries
  • ¼ cup freshly squeezed orange juice (see Notes)
  • ¼ cup julienned orange rind (see Notes)
  • 1 tablespoon grated orange zest (see Notes)
  • 1 cup (3½, ounces) walnuts, pecans, or your favorite nut, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped candled (or crystallized) ginger (see Notes)


  1. Combine the sugar and 2 cups of water in a large saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, or until the sugar syrup begins to thicken slightly and turns a pale amber color.

  2. Add the maple syrup and cranberries and cook, stirring occasionally, until the cranberries begin to pop.

  3. Add the orange juice, rind, and zest and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes, or until the sauce begins to thicken slightly.

  4. Remove the sauce from the heat and add the nuts and ginger, stirring well. Let cool completely.

  5. Pour into a clean glass jar and cover; refrigerate for up to 1 week, or freeze for 6 months.


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