Things To Do With Cranberries

by candy47

Cranberries are abundant from October to December, they're easy to work with requiring no preparation at all.

Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners are usually accompanied by a bowl of cranberry sauce or, in some cases, a jellied roll dropped out of a can. Whole fresh cranberries sold by the bag in grocery stores are in abundance and inexpensive during the holiday season. I always buy several bags and freeze them for use at a later time. I'll have fresh cranberry juice year round, it's easy to make and so are a lot of other treats with fresh cranberries. Cookies, cakes, breads, jellies, continue reading for ideas and recipes.

Above photo courtesy of Pixabay

Everybody's Favorite - Cranberry Sauce

Made from real cranberries

Making cranberry sauce is much easier than you might think and it's healthier than any of the canned sauces


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 12 oz. bag fresh cranberries

In a colander rinse cranberries and remove any stems and bad cranberries. Bring water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add sugar to boiling water and stir until sugar dissolves. (just a few seconds) Add cranberries. Return to boil then reduce heat to med/low and simmer for about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour sauce into bowl and allow to cool slightly before placing in refrigerator. Serve cold.

Helpful Hint: Cranberries will pop and splatter during boiling so be sure to use a big enough saucepan.

Extra:  You can make cranberry juice the same way, just increase the water to 1 1/2 quarts.  The amount of sugar is up to you.  

Easy Homemade Cranberry Sauce

Cranberry Nut Muffins

The easy way
  • 1 box Pillsbury nut bread/muffin mix (requires milk, vegetable oil and eggs)
  • 1 ½ cups fresh cranberries - coarsely chopped                                       

Follow all the directions on the box then add chopped cranberries before pouring batter into muffin tins. Bake as directed on box.

The easy way to make cranberry muffins
Cranberry Muffins
Cranberry Muffins
Photo credit: Pixabay
It's good for you too!
Cranberry Pumpkin Smoothie
Cranberry Pumpkin Smoothie
Photo credit: Pixabay

Cranberry Pumpkin Smoothie


  • 1 15 oz. can pure pumpkin
  • 1 cup yogurt - plain or flavored, your choice
  • 1/2 cup milk (more if you want a thinner smoothie)
  • 1 cup fresh cranberries
  • 1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (optional)

Place all ingredients in blender. Blend until all ingredients are combined and mixture is smooth.


Cranberry Cookies

These will practically melt in your mouth.  I think it's because of the white vegetable shortening.

  • 1 cup white vegetable shortening (Crisco)
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease cookie sheets. 

With an electric mixer beat shortening and sugar in a medium bowl until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and egg, mix well.

Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a separate bowl. Add to shortening mixture, mixing until a soft dough forms. Stir in cranberries. Immediately drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto cookie sheet. Bake 10 minutes or until golden. Cool on wire rack.

Makes about 3 dozen cookies.

Cranberry Cookies

Cranberry Cookies
Cranberry Cookies

A Little Something Different

Here we have the diva of decorating herself, Martha Stewart showing us how to make a cranberry wreath and a cranberry cocktail. Also, lesser known yet just as talented, crafters sharing their work.


DO NOT use frozen cranberries for craft projects as they will become soggy when they thaw out. Frozen cranberries are for cooking and baking only!

Storing Fresh Cranberries

Simply place a bag of fresh cranberries in the freezer. Don't wash them before freezing. When ready to use rinse with cold water and remove stems and bad cranberries. Cranberries can be frozen for up to one year.

Virtual tour of a Cranberry Bog

This video takes us underwater and overhead to see the bogs where cranberries grow. 

As far back as the 17th century, Native Americans believed cranberries had medicinal properties to help relieve liver ailments, blood disorders, loss of appetite and they even applied it topically to wounds.  Those beliefs have been confirmed by scientists today.

Cranberry Bog in the City

New York City

The closest I have ever been to a cranberry bog was at Rockefeller Center in New York City. Ocean Spray had actually set up a cranberry bog outdoors at street level. I passed by just as workers were setting up the attraction. As you can see from the pictures they had a cranberry juice bar and cranberry cocktail tables set up in a water-filled bog of cranberries.

Visit Ocean Spray for some new and old recipes with cranberries.

Rock Center Cranberry Bog
Rock Center Cranberry Bog
Photo by Candy Dorsey
Cranberry Bog Juice Bar, Rock Center
Cranberry Bog Juice Bar, Rock Center
Photo by Candy Dorsey

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Updated: 11/27/2016, candy47
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candy47 on 08/08/2017

The cranberry cookies are a big hit at Christmas! No, the items made with uncooked cranberries aren't edible, although you can eat them they're not very tasty.

DerdriuMarriner on 08/08/2017

candy47, What appears to be the most popular cranberry-filled creation? Sauce clearly for Thanksgiving, but what about Christmas? Are the chains and wreaths edible?

candy47 on 08/26/2016

Thanks Irene, I added a link to Ocean Spray! Love the idea of warm cranberry sauce on french toast.

candy47 on 09/16/2015

Thanks Mira. Glad you liked it!

Mira on 09/16/2015

I found the process of growing cranberries fascinating. Thank you so much for your article and the link to the video! Pinning it

blackspanielgallery on 09/15/2015

It is nice to see them in things other than juice and sauce.

candy47 on 09/15/2015

Thanks Frank. It was quite unusual to see a cranberry bog in the heart of Manhattan.

frankbeswick on 09/15/2015

A nice article. The idea of setting up a cranberry bog is interesting. Some people do it by having a boggy area next to their garden ponds, where the cranberries are cultivated.

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