Spicy Jalapeno Cranberry Sauce makes a meal a party. A super easy recipe that cooks in 15 minutes and thickens beautifully when chilled. Perfect for Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner menus, and a whole lot more (tips and recipe ideas included).
Homemade cranberry sauce is always a star at any holiday meal!
It is the EASIEST recipe to make for Thanksgiving. It’s a perfect assignment for kids old enough to cook!
It only takes a handful of ingredients, cooks in 15 minutes and is always better than store-bought cranberry sauce.
This recipe kicks it up a notch in the flavor department.
Spicy Jalapeno Cranberry Sauce is a perfect blend of sweet and spicy flavors. It’s brings excitement to any dish it’s paired with.
It will be the talk of your Thanksgiving table!
Spicy Cranberry Sauce
As much as I love Thanksgiving food there can be a bit of a bland flavor about it all.
I like to include something with some spiciness.
Maybe it’s in my mind but I feel like it perks up the digestion and my palate too.
Spicy Jalapeno Cranberry Sauce is a delicious mix of sweet, savory and spicy flavors that are irresistible.
The end recipe is sweet and sassy!
Make Ahead Cranberry Sauce
This recipe can be made the day before using.
A ‘make ahead’ option on busy holiday cook days is always a great find!
The flavors may even be better when it is make a day ahead!
Spicy Jalapeno Cranberry Sauce Ingredients
This recipe includes classic cranberry sauce ingredients as well as a spicy touch!
- Jalapeno Peppers
- Kosher Salt
- Light Brown Sugar
- Granulated White Sugar
- Orange Juice
- Orange Zest
- Fresh Cranberries
Cranberries are usually only available around the winter holidays.
Stock up on some bags of cranberries when they are available and freeze them!
Then you can enjoy cranberry recipes all year long.
I put multiple bags in a few 1-gallon plastic zip-seal bag and freeze them. I can remove individual bags of cranberries and use them whenever the mood strikes.
PRO TIP: Removing Seeds from Jalapeno Peppers
I developed a trick to easily removing seeds from Jalapeno peppers. It’s fast but still requires precaution when handling spicy peppers
Wash hands thoroughly after handling peppers or wear some food safe gloves (rubber, vinyl, latex) when handling hot peppers.
The oils from spicy peppers can stay on hands long after touching or cutting peppers even if hands are washed.
If you touch your eyes or nose you will feel a burning sensation.
STEP 1: Slice the pepper lengthwise
STEP 2: Insert the rounded end of a small dining spoon underneath the white membrane and seeds at the top of the pepper.
STEP 3: Keep the curved back of the spoon flush with the inside wall of the pepper. Push the spoon up toward the stem end of the pepper, releasing the membrane and seeds.
STEP 4: Turn the spoon over and using the pointed end again scrape out (and discard) and remaining seeds.
How to make Cranberry Sauce – Step-by-Step
There are many great things about this recipe.
One of the best in my opinion is how easy it is to make! It’s fast too.
For a detailed printable recipe refer to the recipe card at the end of the blog post.
STEP 1: In a large saucepan combine all ingredients EXCEPT the cranberries. Bring to simmer and add the cranberries.
STEP 2: Simmer 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. NOTE: the cranberries will pop during cooking.
STEP 3: Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Transfer to a sealed container and fully chill.
NOTE: the sauce will thicken as it cools.
Storing Cranberry Sauce
Cranberry sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 10 days.
Can Cranberry Sauce be Frozen?
Yes! Put it in an airtight container and freeze for up to 2 months.
How to use leftover Cranberry Sauce
This recipe is great for so many dishes, not just a holiday meal relish!
- I’ve been making grilled cheese sandwiches on my Griddler with this spicy jalapeno cranberry sauce. Add grated cheese on your favorite bread, some cranberry sauce, more cheese and a second slice of bread.
- Quesadillas are another great way to use both leftover cranberry sauce and turkey.
- It is fantastic on the top of baked brie as an appetizer.
- Spread it on toast.
- Top a scoop of vanilla or chocolate ice cream with it.
- Put some in your smoothies.
This recipe is too good to only eat with holiday meals!
More Cranberry Recipes
- Fresh Cranberry Orange Sauce
- Slow Cooker Cranberry-Pear Sauce with Ginger
- Spicy Honey Cranberry Sauce
- Cranberry Salsa: an Easy Holiday Appetizer You’ll Love!
- Cranberry Pecan Goat Cheese Party Appetizer
- Cranberry Apple Hot Toddy
Try these Thanksgiving Recipes too!
- Au Gratin Potatoes with Green Chilies
- Easy Roast Turkey recipe
- Instant Pot Turkey Breast
- Chipotle Scalloped Sweet Potatoes
- Ginger Pear Pie
- Mini Pumpkin Pie Cheesecakes in Mason Jars
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Spicy Jalapeno Cranberry Sauce
- 2 Jalapeno Peppers seeded and diced
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/2 cup Light Brown Sugar
- 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
- 1/2 cup Orange Juice
- 1/2 cup Water
- 1/2 teaspoon Orange Zest
- 12 ounces Cranberries
- In a large saucepan combine the jalapeno peppers, salt, sugars, orange juice, water and orange zest. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and add the cranberries.
- Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring periodically (cranberries will pop while cooking). Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Transfer to a sealed container and fully chill. NOTE: the sauce will thicken as it cools.
Originally published: November 9, 2017
Get compliments every year!
Toni Dash says
Yay!! So glad to hear that Lisa. Happy Thanksgiving!
Sheryl D says
Love this! Could eat it by the spoonful. I left some seeds in for extra heat to balance the sweetness. This would be great spread on a turkey sandwich, which I intend to do. Thank you!
Karen P says
Loved the spicy/sweet! Excellent!
Do you think I can sub lime juice and lime zest for the orange?
Toni Dash says
My only concern is that lime is tart as are the cranberries. Orange is sweet which mellows out the cranberry tartness. The lime just might make it too amp’ed up on the tartness scale.
I used only 3/4 of a very large jalepeño, and oh wow! This is fantastic! I probably could have used the whole thing, but I can see myself eating this out of the serving dish by the spoonfuls when no one is looking! And of course, mixing a tablespoon of this into a margarita sounds divine. Thank you for all the detail you provided; it’s a fabulous recipe!
Toni Dash says
So glad you like it Lira! It’s a great to add some heat to compliment heavier Thanksgiving dishes! Happy Holidays!