Although bright red, sour-ish cranberries are ubiquitous from October through 'til February or so, they're generally relegated to a sauce of some kind. Now, cranberry sauce is delicious, and whether you have it with Tofurkey, turkey, nut loaf, or just straight from the bowl with a spoon, its tanginess is downright addictive. That said, these little ruby globes can be used for a lot more than just sauce, as the 10 recipes listed here will illustrate. Check them all out after the break!
Orange and Cranberry Scones, via The Food Network
This gorgeous breakfast treat is as lovely drizzled with honey as it is slathered in Earth Balance.
- 4 cups plus 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar, plus additional for sprinkling
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon grated orange zest
- 3/4 pound cold unsalted butter, diced
- 4 extra-large eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 cup cold heavy cream
- 1 cup dried cranberries
- 1 egg beaten with 2 tablespoons water or milk, for egg wash
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar, plus 2 tablespoons
- 4 teaspoons freshly squeezed orange juice
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, mix 4 cups of flour, 1/4 cup sugar, the baking powder, salt and orange zest. Add the cold butter and mix at the lowest speed until the butter is the size of peas. Combine the eggs and heavy cream and, with the mixer on low speed, slowly pour into the flour and butter mixture. Mix until just blended. The dough will look lumpy! Combine the dried cranberries and 1/4 cup of flour, add to the dough, and mix on low speed until blended.
Dump the dough onto a well-floured surface and knead it into a ball. Flour your hands and a rolling pin and roll the dough 3/4-inch thick. You should see small bits of butter in the dough. Keep moving the dough on the floured board so it doesn’t stick. Flour a 3-inch round plain or fluted cutter and cut circles of dough. Place the scones on a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Collect the scraps neatly, roll them out, and cut more circles.
Brush the tops of the scones with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the tops are browned and the insides are fully baked. The scones will be firm to the touch. Allow the scones to cool for 15 minutes and then whisk together the confectioners’ sugar and orange juice, and drizzle over the scones.
Cranberry Almond Breakfast Bars, via Clabber Girl
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup rolled oats
- 1/4 cup flax seeds (optional)
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup orange juice
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, such as canola
- 1/3 cup honey or agave syrup
- 1 egg
- 1/2 cup chopped almonds
- 1/2 cup dried cranberries
- 1/2 cup raisins OR chocolate chips (or a mix of the two)
Preheat the oven to 350°. Coat an 8 x 8 or 9 x 9 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray or brush with oil.
In a medium size bowl, mix together the flour, oats, flax seeds, baking powder, baking soda and salt. Make a well in the center and whisk in the orange juice, vegetable oil, honey and egg. Stir in the almonds and cranberries.
Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan. Cut through the moist dough with a knife, forming 3 evenly spaced rows. Turn the pan, make 4 more cuts of evenly spaced rows. (The dough will bake together, but the pre-cutting will make it easier to cut through and separate after baking).
Bake for about 25 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool and serve.
Winter Salad with Dried Cranberries, Oranges, and Pecans, via Epicurious
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons orange juice
- 6 tablespoons dried cranberries
- 3 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- 1 tablespoon grated orange peel
- 6 cups mixed baby greens
- 3 oranges, peel and white pith removed, segmented
- 3/4 cup pecans, toasted
Bring 1 cup of orange juice to simmer in heavy small saucepan. Remove from heat, mix in dried cranberries, and let stand until softened, about 30 minutes. Drain well; discard soaking juice.
Whisk oil, vinegar, orange peel and remaining 3 tablespoons orange juice in small bowl to blend. Mix in cranberries. Season dressing to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be prepared 1 day ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.)
Place greens in large bowl. Toss with 2/3 of dressing. Divide greens among 6 plates. Add orange segments to bowl; toss with remaining dressing. Top salads with orange segments and pecans.
Boozy Holiday Cocktail
Cranberry juice pairs gorgeously with vodka, but you can make a non-alcoholic version of this simply by omitting the booze-ahol.
- 1 ounce vodka
- 1/2 a cup of fresh cranberries
- Lime slices
- Ice cubes or shavings
- 1/2 cup 100% pure unsweetened cranberry juice
- 1/2 cup club soda or tonic water
- 1/2 teaspoon simple syrup or agave nectar
Pour the vodka into your glass, followed by a couple of cranberries and a slice of lime. Toss in the ice, followed by the cranberry juice and club soda. Add the sweetener to taste (optional), squeeze a bit of lime juice in, and garnish with a slice of lime on the rim or a few fresh cranberries on a decorative pick. If you like, you can also add a bit of mint to this, or else swap out the lime in favor of orange or tangerine slices.
Goat Cheese Crusted With Cranberries and Pistachios
- 2 tablespoons roasted pistachios, chopped
- 2 tablespoons dried cranberries, chopped
- 1 8- to 10-ounce log of fresh soft goat cheese (chèvre)
- Crackers or slices of bread
Combine the pistachios and cranberries on a large plate, and roll the goat cheese log around in it until totally covered. Serve with an assortment of crackers or bread slices, and do try to hold back from eating the entire thing yourself until your guests arrive.
Feel free to omit the nuts in case of any allergies, and just swap in some chopped dried cherries and a bit of cracked pepper instead.
Cranberry Chutney, via Kitchen Parade
This recipe can be made in advance and canned in a hot water bath for about 20 minutes: not only does it preserve well, but it’s a great DIY holiday gift!
- 1 cup water
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries (or 16 ounces if you prefer more cranberry taste)
- 1/2 cup golden raisins
- 1/2 cup toasted pecan pieces
- 1 cup dried apricots, diced (or other diced dried fruit)
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cardamom
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon fresh ginger, grated (optional)
- 2 tablespoons brandy, dark rum or other spirit (optional)
- Additional toasted pecans and cranberries for garnish (optional)
Place water and sugar in a heavy four-quart kettle and bring to a boil.
Meanwhile, rinse berries, removing any bruised or bad ones. Add berries to syrup and return to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and let simmer until berries begin to pop.
Add remaining ingredients (except spirits) and simmer for 5 – 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until mixture thickens. Then add spirits and simmer another 1 – 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool before serving , or else pack hot into clean, sterilized jars and process in a hot water bath for preserving.
Wild Rice with Dried Cranberries and Nuts
- 3/4 cup uncooked wild rice
- 3 cups stock (onion, chicken, vegetable, or mushroom)
- 1/2 cup medium pearl barley
- 1/4 cup dried cranberries
- 1/4 cup dried currants
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1/3 cup slivered almonds, toasted lightly
Rinse and drain the wild rice, then place in a saucepan. Add broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
Remove from the heat, and stir in barley, cranberries, currants and butter. Spoon into a greased 9 x 9 inch baking dish.
Cover and bake at 325° for 55 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Add almonds and fluff with a fork.
*Note: You can make this gluten-free by swapping out the barley for white rice, OR by cooking the wild rice for 30 minutes instead of 10, using quinoa instead or barley, and then baking for 25 – 30 min.
Cranberry-Sage Stuffing Savory Muffins
These are great morning niblets if you don’t have a sweet tooth, or just excellent portion-controlled bites of stuffing-y goodness.
- 6 cups of bread cubes (1/2 inch cubes)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 6 celery ribs, sliced
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1/2 cup butter or Earth Balance
- 8 fresh sage leaves
- 1 sprig of thyme
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1/2 cup vegetable or onion stock
- Salt and pepper to taste
Place your bread cubes on a parchment-lined baking sheet and bake at 375 F for 10 minutes.
While the bread is crisping, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium skillet pan. Add in the diced onions and sautée them for about a minute over medium-high heat. Add in the celery and cook until tender, then transfer the vegetables to a large mixing bowl.
Remove the toasted bread cubes from the oven and transfer them to the same large mixing bowl. Line the baking sheet with clean parchment paper, add the cranberries, and bake them for 15 to 20 minutes. While the cranberries are cooking, melt 1/2 cup of butter over medium heat to brown it, but be careful not to burn it.
Let the butter cool down for a minute, and then add 6 of the sage leaves and the sprig of thyme, stirring so the herbs are completely covered. Let the butter stand for about 5 minutes to become infused with the herbs. Remove the cranberries from the oven and transfer them to a small bowl. Toss with 1 teaspoon of sugar until coated.
Mince the remaining sage leaves. Add the beaten eggs to the mixing bowl that’s holding the bread cubes and veggies. Stir until all cubes are coated, then add in the browned butter, straining out the herbs. Again, stir until coated. Add the stock and repeat: the cubes should be dampened, but not overly soggy. Add salt and pepper, fold in the cranberries, and add the sage leaves.
Fill 12 greased muffin tins with the stuffing mixture, and be sure to pack the mix in there so that the muffins stay together at the base. If you don’t they will fall apart when removing them from the pan. Bake for about 20 minutes until the tops are golden brown. Remove and let cool before removing them from the pan.
Cranberry and Pear Pie via The Food Network.ca
This gorgeous, gluten-free pie is a holiday favorite in my family. (Thanks, Anna Olson!)
- 2 cups brown rice flour
- ½ cup tapioca starch
- ¼ cup sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 cup chilled cream cheese
- 1 cup chilled unsalted butter
- 2 egg whites
- 3 cups peeled and sliced Bartlett or Anjou pears (about 4 medium pears)
- 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1 ½ cups sugar
- 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
- 2 teaspoons finely grated orange zest
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¼ teaspoon ground allspice
- 1 egg, whisked with 2 Tbsp of water, for brushing
For the crust, combine the rice flour, tapioca starch, sugar and salt. Cut the cream cheese into large pieces and the butter into pieces about half that size (so that they work into the dough evenly) and cut in until the dough is a rough, crumbly texture. In a small bowl, whisk the whites until frothy and then add to the dough, mixing until it comes together. Shape the dough into 2 discs, wrap and chill until firm, about an hour.
For the filling, toss the pears and cranberries with the sugar, tapioca starch, zest, vanilla and allspice.
Preheat the oven to 375 F. Pull the first disc of pastry from the fridge, unwrap it, sprinkle lightly with rice flour and place it between 2 sheets of parchment paper. Roll the dough into a circle bout 12 inches across. Remove the top layer of parchment paper and transfer the pastry to a 9-inch pie plate and peel away the remaining layer of parchment. Fill the pie with the fruit filling.
Roll the second disc of dough in the same manner and place it on top of the fruit filling. Trim and pinch the edges of the dough and use scissors or a paring knife the cut holes in the top to allow steam to escape. Brush the top of the pie with the egg wash and place the pie on a parchment or foil-lined baking tray. Bake the pie for about 50 minutes, until the crust is a rich brown and the filling is bubbling. Cool the pie completely to room temperature before slicing, or chill and serve cold.
Post-Holiday Cleanse Juice
After all of the indulgence of the holidays, you might be feeling a little rough around the edges. Most of us tend to eat and drink a bit more than we “should” in the season of celebration, and a detox in the last week of December (or right after January 1st) is often beneficial. This juice is as delicious as it is good for you, and can be a tasty first step in sloshing all the extra “ick” out of your kidneys, liver, and other innards.
- 1 pear, sliced
- 1 apple, sliced
- 1 celery stalk
- 1/2 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
- 1 handful of spinach
- 1 large cucumber, peeled
Put all of the ingredients through a juicer, finishing with the cucumber. Feel free to pour a little bit of water through the juicer to get all the last droplets of juice out. Serve chilled.
An avid permaculture gardener, locavore, and novice (but enthusiastic!) canner, Lana Winter-Hébert joins Inhabitat after spending the last decade working as a writer and event guru for non-profit/eco organizations. In addition to her work with this site, she writes features and blog posts for Vegan Cuts, Green Pigeon, and several event planning websites based in London, UK. Currently, Lana divides her time between writing, and doing collaborative projects with Winter-Hébert: the design studio she runs with her husband. Best described as “endearingly eccentric”, she spends any spare moments wrestling with knitting projects, and devouring novels by obscure Czech writers. A Toronto native, she has recently chosen to leave that splendid city in favor of a tranquil lakeside nook in rural Quebec, where she and her Sir co-habitate with two hand-raised sparrows that live in their writing-desk.