This is the best cranberry jam made with fresh orange juice! I do love cranberries, so I decided to make this basic cranberry side dish recipe with fresh cranberries and orange juice.
If you have some leftover cranberries make some cranberry orange scones for Thanksgiving morning.
Table of Contents
How to Cook Fresh Cranberries
- Be sure to use enough sugar. Sugar helps the sauce thicken so don’t cut back on the amount of sugar, or you may end up with a soupy jam.
- If your jam won't jell correctly, add a thickener like pectin or a cornstarch slurry. Cornstarch slurry is made by whisking together cornstarch and water to form a paste.
- Watch your fruit mixture so it doesn’t boil over.
- As the cranberries simmer, you'll hear a popping sound, don’t get freaked out, it’s normal. The popping sound is the berries bursting through the skin and releasing the natural pectin.
Variations and Substitutions
- Adding a little cinnamon or cinnamon sticks to the jam spices the flavor up a bit.
- Use maple syrup or honey instead of sugar.
Cranberries aren't just for holidays or turkey sandwiches, try some on pancakes or french toast, pork chops, stirred into yogurt, dolloped onto baked Camembert cheese, or one of my favorites, topped onto homemade biscuits.
Can I make this ahead?
Yes, especially if you are making this for a holiday meal, you have enough to do in the kitchen. Cranberry jam can be made up to one week before or freeze it for up to one month.
Stored in an airtight covered container your homemade cranberry jam will stay fresh for up to one week. If you don’t think you will use it within that time frame then pour the jam into covered airtight containers and freeze for up to one month.
Can I freeze fresh cranberry jam?
Yes, homemade cranberry sauce freezes well. make a larger batch and freeze it for later. Freeze your homemade sauce in an airtight container or freezer-safe plastic bag to prevent freezer burn. If there is any strange smell, flavor appearance, or mold, toss it!
Quick Cranberry Jam
- 1 10- ounce package about 2 cups cranberries, can use fresh or frozen
- ¾ cup orange juice or water
- ⅓ cup sugar
- Add all ingredients in a 1.5-quart saucepan and bring to a boil. Let boil for 4-5 minutes, stirring often so the mixture does not burn.
- Reduce heat and simmer for an additional 10 to 15 minutes or just until the cranberries start to break up and the sauce thickens.
- Remove from heat and serve warm or chilled.