40 Can’t-Miss Cranberry Recipes to Make This Season

updated Oct 21, 2022
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Credit: Brittany Conerly

Every year I anxiously await the arrival of fresh cranberries at my local grocer, and once they get here I’m always quick to toss a few bags in my cart — because they don’t stick around nearly long enough. The good news is that when you store fresh cranberries correctly, they’ll keep for three to four weeks in the fridge or up to a year in the freezer (yes, you can freeze fresh cranberries!).

Other than cranberry sauce and chutney, I used to wonder about what to make with fresh cranberries. But not anymore, because I now know that the acidic tartness and subtle sweetness of fresh cranberries makes them a natural fit for baked goods like quick bread, muffins, scones, and tarts. They also add a puckery punch and festive flair to drinks and appetizers, and even savory skillet dinners.

Here are 40 of our best cranberry recipes — sweet and savory — to make this season.

Cranberry Recipes for Baking

From quick breads and muffins to pies and tarts to cookies to cakes, you’ve for a lot of options for turning a bag of tart cranberries into a sweet treat.

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Cranberry Vanilla Breakfast Buckle
This fruit-filled coffee cake will satisfy your sweet tooth any time of day.
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Cranberry-Orange Quick Bread
The orange-scented quick bread is studded with tart cranberries and perfect with a mug of hot tea.
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Cranberry-Glazed Chewy Almond Cookies
The sweet-tart fresh cranberry glaze is totally what makes these gluten-free cookies so crave-worthy.
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Citrus-Cranberry Tart
This festive tart features a spiced speculoos cookie crust, a citrus-cranberry curd, and a sweet-tart cranberry glaze.
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Cranberry Vanilla Morning Buns
These yeasted morning buns are filled with a sweet-tart cranberry compote and drenched in a simple, vanilla-rich glaze.
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Cranberry Crumb Pie
The citrus-kissed cranberry filling provides tangy contrast to the sweet, buttery crumble topping in this festive pie.
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Cranberry Cake
This buttery cake gets its volume from whipped egg whites, which also happens to produce an outrageously moist and tender cake, with the richness of a classic fruitcake.
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Fresh Cranberry Scones
These flaky, not-too-sweet scones are finished with a rum glaze, but it you'd prefer to skip it, try sprinkling on some crunchy turbinado sugar instead.
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Cranberry Curd Bars with Walnut Shortbread Crust
Tangy-sweet cranberry curd meets buttery walnut shortbread for a twist on the classic lemon bar.
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Cranberry Cream Cheese Cookie Filling
Of all the ways to use leftover cranberry sauce, this cream cheese frosting tops the list. In addition to cookies, try spreading it on biscuits, scones, cakes, and quick breads.
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Savory Cranberry Recipes

Here’s all the proof you need that cranberries aren’t just for baking and making cranberry sauce. They’re also a natural partner to savory foods, especially chicken, pork, and cheese.

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Cranberry Chicken
Cranberry chicken may feel like a festive holiday dish, but can be enjoyed all year round.
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Stuffing Fritters with Cranberry-Jalapeño Sauce
Meet one of our favorite ways to give leftover cranberry sauce new life, with a serious kick.
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Cranberry & Brie Grilled Cheese
This is a must-make anytime you've got leftover cranberry sauce or chutney in the fridge.
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Turkey, Cranberry, Cheddar Skillet Monkey Bread
This warm and cheesy monkey bread makes use of your leftover Thanksgiving turkey and cranberry sauce.
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Baked Brie with Cranberry Sauce
When you need an appetizer that's guaranteed to impress, remember that you can never go wrong with warm, creamy cheese smothered in sweet cranberry sauce.
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Slow Cooker Cranberry Pork Chops
Partnering pork chops with sweet-tart cranberries is even better than it sounds.
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Grilled Bread Dressing with Cranberries and Leeks
This recipe calls for dried cranberries, although I happen to love using fresh instead. Just skip the step for soaking them in vinegar, and roughly chop before mixing into the dressing.
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Easy Cranberry Recipes

When you want to keep things simple, this lineup of drinks, apps, and sides has your back.

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Cranberry Salad
Cranberry salad is holiday nostalgia at its finest, complete with fruit, mini marshmallows and nuts, all tied together with heaps of soft whipped cream.
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Cranberry Brie Bites
This easy appetizer promises buttery puff pastry, creamy Brie, sweet-tart cranberry sauce, and toasted walnuts in every bite.
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Cranberry Margarita Recipe
The tartness of the cranberries pairs beautifully with the classic margarita trifecta: tequila, orange liqueur, and lime juice.
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Festive Cranberry Fizz
This fizzy, sweet and bitter punch is perfect as is, but if you're in the mood for something boozy, a splash of gin makes for a good addition.
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Cranberry Sauce
Consider this your template for making this classic sweet-tart sauce with just three ingredients.
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Cranberry-Cherry Chutney
This isn't your average Thanksgiving cranberry sauce. This one is just the right amount of sweet and tart. It's made with dried cherries, fresh cranberries, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, and light brown sugar. It'll be your new favorite side dish!
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Slow Cooker Cranberry Sauce
This is a classic "dump it and forget it" recipe that will show you how to make the easiest batch of cranberry sauce to feed the whole crowd.
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Very Basic Cranberry Sauce
It doesn't get much easier than this super basic recipe for simple cranberry sauce made with fresh or frozen cranberries, sugar, and water.
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Fig Cranberry Sauce
Dried figs, warm spices, and a splash of booze are just the ticket to jazzing up basic cranberry sauce.
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Sparkling White Cranberry Sangria
This seasonal sangria starts with white cranberry juice and fresh cranberries.
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Cranberry Mors
Mors is a tart, cranberry-based refresher that's great served chilled or warm.
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Cranberry Pitcher Margaritas
A quick four-ingredient recipe for pitcher margaritas flavored with cranberry juice, perfect for the Thanksgiving season.
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White Cranberry Margarita
This refreshing white cranberry margarita is the perfect winter cocktail — suitable for Christmas, New Year's Eve, or even just a snowy day. It's a simple mix of just four ingredients, and a garnish of glittered cranberries and rosemary adds some seriously festive sparkle.
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Dried Cranberry Recipes

Dried cranberries are readily available all year round. You probably already know that they’re great for snacking. Here’s some great inspiration to use them for cooking and baking.

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Cranberry Orange Scones
These tender and buttery scones - chock-full of juicy cranberries and zippy orange - will be the baked good you'll want to make all fall and winter long.
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Vegan Stuffing
This plant-based stuffing recipe - brimming with with buttery, bread, and herb stuffing flavor - might be vegan, but much in the spirit of Thanksgiving, it deliciously cater to the dietary preferences of everyone at the table.
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Cranberry Bliss Bars
This popular Starbucks treat is even better homemade.
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Wild Rice Pilaf with Squash, Pecans, and Cranberries

Glowing with dried cranberries, fresh herbs, and cubes of roasted butternut squash, serve this up as a side or a hearty meat-free main.

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Wild Rice Pilaf with Wild Mushrooms, Roasted Chestnuts, and Dried Cranberries

This colorful recipe for wild rice pilaf is full of mushrooms, chestnuts, and dried fruit.

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Couscous Salad with Butternut Squash and Cranberries

The versatility of this make-ahead side can't be beat. Not only does it make a lot, it can be served warm or cool, and keeps well for day.

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White Chocolate Cranberry Bar Cookies

Lightly scented with orange zest and studded with white chocolate chips and dried cranberries, these sweet treats are full of holiday flavor and take next to no time to pull together.

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Adeena Sussman's Jeweled Rice
This sweet, savory, and herby rice dish is a side dish that will steal the show.
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Thanksgiving Slaw

Don't let the name fool you, this wilt-free slaw is a great addition to your table all your long.

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