Cranberry Sauce with Orange Recipe (aka Cranberry Chutney)

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cranberry sauce with orange recipe Elizabeth Rider

This cranberry sauce with orange is one of my all-time Thanksgiving sides!

Thanksgiving time in the US is one of my favorite times of the year. It means family, friends, celebration, giving, reflection, happy memories, and lots of delicious food. While the holiday season brings happy thoughts and feelings, it can also bring unhealthy food and too much sugar.

However, you can easily substitute unhealthy, sugary holiday foods – like cranberry sauce – with healthy, great-tasting alternatives. And in some cases the healthy version is even better than the original, keep reading to see what I mean.

Here is my cranberry sauce with orange recipe for my healthy twist on cranberry sauce; it’s sweet, tart, and healthy.

Fresh cranberries and walnuts pack a mean nutritional punch, and the orange and cinnamon flavors will leave you wanting more.

This recipe can easily be doubled if you have an extra-large crowd coming for dinner. It’s also perfect to make the day before you serve it, so it’s one less thing you have to worry about on Thanksgiving Day.

If I’m being totally honest, I do like this on Thanksgiving day, but I LOVE it on a turkey sandwich the next day. #priorities

Cranberry Chutney Recipe Elizabeth Rider

Cranberry Sauce with Orange Recipe Ingredients

  • Fresh cranberries: Fresh is best here! See the FAQs below for more.
  • Raw walnuts: Use raw, unsalted walnuts here. Many stores sell walnut pieces in the baking section, which cost less and work great. Leave them out if you’re allergic or don’t want them.
  • Navel orange: You’ll zest it before you juice it. I always grab 2 just in case the first one doesn’t have a lot of juice.
  • Honey: I like to use honey to sweeten most things, but white sugar or even brown sugar works, too.
  • Ground cinnamon: Cinnamon adds wonderful warmth and complexity to this dish.
  • Sea salt: A pinch of salt makes sweet things taste even sweeter. I use Real Salt sea salt here.

Cranberry Chutney Recipe Thanksgiving Elizabeth Rider

Cranberry Sauce with Orange FAQ

Can I use another nut other than walnuts?

Sure, why not! I think walnuts are best here, but almonds or pecans would be nice, too.

Can I leave out the nuts to make this cranberry sauce nut-free?

YES! You can replace the walnuts with 1/2 cup hulled raw sunflower seeds if you still want the texture, or leave them out altogether and replace them with another cup of cranberries.

Can I use white sugar instead of honey in this cranberry sauce with orange?

Why yes, you can. You can easily sub white sugar for the honey. Maple syrup would be a really strong flavor, which I normally love but not here. It will overwhelm the flavors.

Where do I get fresh cranberries?

Most groceries stores in the US and Canada have fresh cranberries around the holiday season. Find them in the refrigerated section of the produce department. If your store has frozen whole cranberries, those can work, too. Defrost them in the refrigerator overnight before using them.

Can I use a can of cranberry sauce to make this cranberry sauce with orange?

I wouldn’t because I don’t like the stuff in the can, but if it’s all you have, then use it. Omit the honey because the stuff in the can is already sweetened.

Like this recipe? Check out my Healthy Thanksgiving Recipe Roundup for more holiday meal ideas.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Cranberry Chutney Recipe Elizabeth Rider 3

Cranberry Sauce with Orange Recipe (aka Cranberry Chutney)

  • Author: Elizabeth Rider
  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 8-10 1x


This is my favorite cranberry sauce with orange to serve at the Thanksgiving table. It’s full of flavor & texture, and is good for you, too! It’s great on Thanksgiving day with the main course, and even better on a turkey sandwich the next day.


  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup raw walnuts
  • 12 teaspoon zest plus the juice of one orange
  • ½ cup raw honey, more or less to taste
  • ½ cup purified water
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 small pinch fine sea salt


Put all ingredients in a food processor and process for about 30 seconds, until well combined and finely chopped. Transfer to a sauce pan and heat on low for 30 minutes, stirring often. Serve warm or room temperature. Store in an airtight glass container in the refrigerator up to 3 days.

Cranberry Chutney Recipe Elizabeth Rider 3

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  1. Malia says:

    I made this today, it is delicious:) Excited to bring it to Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow as a healthy alternative to the can-o-cranberry sauce my MIL always serves, lol.

Hi, I'm Elizabeth

I'm a strong believer that life is too short to settle for anything less than living your best life. 

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