This recipe for easy homemade cranberry sauce made with maple syrup & lemon peel is deliciously tart, versatile, and can be paired with savory or sweet. Serve at Thanksgiving or Christmas! Maple syrup and lemon peel brighten up this sauce!
This homemade cranberry sauce with maple syrup and lemon peel is super simple to make! It has a deeper, richer flavor because it’s not sweetened with just sugar alone but instead with maple syrup. I prefer lemon instead of orange because I feel lemon adds a brighter citrus flavor than orange. The lemon zest adds a wonderful citrus flavor without the added tartness from lemon juice. I find that cranberries are already tart enough. 🙂
Most cranberry sauce recipes can be overly sweet so I use water instead of orange juice but still get the citrus flavor from the lemon peel. Lightly sweetening with maple syrup and sugar add the perfect balance between tart and sweet. You can adjust to your liking but I find this recipe absolutely perfect!
So often I see leftover cranberry sauce go to waste during the holidays. It’s a shame because it can be used in other savory recipes or dessert recipes. It’s literally a berry jam! This is a quick and easy, versatile homemade cranberry sauce with maple syrup that goes with just about anything. So the next time you have leftovers from the holidays try it in different ways!
Tips for homemade cranberry sauce with maple syrup:
- For the lemon peel, I like to keep it all in once piece so it's easy to fish out. Be careful to avoid the pith as that can make it bitter. You can also substitute orange peel if that's what you have on hand.
- Use pure maple syrup. You can substitute honey or agave syrup but please no artificial maple syrup!
- Cranberry sauce thickens as it cools so keep that in mind as it's cooking.
- For a thicker sauce, cook it 5 minutes longer and mash more of the berries against the pot.
- Make ahead of time and serve it cold or reheat it on medium low heat until it's warm.
- Keeps in the fridge for up to a week in an air tight container.
- For a thinner, smoother sauce - strain the sauce and add a bit of water to thin out to the consistency you desire. Perfect for serving with desserts such as this panna cotta recipe.
I hope you enjoy this recipe for homemade cranberry sauce with maple syrup! Please share, rate, and comment below. I’d love to hear from you!
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Homemade Cranberry Sauce with Maple Syrup
- 12 oz bag of fresh or frozen cranberries
- ¼ cup sugar
- ½ cup maple syrup
- 1 cup water
- the peel of one lemon in one piece
- If using fresh cranberries, wash them under cold running water. Next pick out any bruised cranberries.
- Add all the ingredients to a pot over high heat.
- Once it comes to a rolling boil, reduce to medium and cook for 10 minutes. The cranberries will break down and the sauce will thicken. Remove the lemon peel.
- Store in an airtight container if not serving right away.
✎ Recipe Notes
- If you want a thicker sauce - cook for 5 additional minutes and take a masher and give the cranberries a few good mashes until it's the consistency you like.
- If you want a thinner, smooth sauce - strain it and add some water to thin it out to the consistency you desire.
- Storage: Store leftovers in the fridge for up to 4 days; freeze for up to one month.
*Nutritional information is an estimate, calculated using online tools.