Cranberry sauce, you knew it was coming. What would Thanksgiving be without a bowl of these sweet, tart, ruby red jewels? Today I’m not just sharing any old cranberry sauce recipe, nope, this is Bourbon Orange Cranberry Sauce, and it’s amazing!
Growing up did you eat homemade cranberry sauce or the canned version? I’ve always eaten the homemade stuff, while my husband grew up on the canned kind. When I asked him last week if he still liked cranberry sauce he was all, “I love it”! That was then followed by, “we’re talking about canned cranberries, right”? Well, that’s not what I was talking about, so of course his face fell slightly. I shouldn’t be surprised, this is the guy that prefers white bread over wheat, seedless jello like jelly over chunky real fruit filled jam, and has a secret love for boxed macaroni. I have to say though, he has come a LONG way since I met him back in high school. He has accepted that he has a crazy food blogger for a wife who is constantly trying new and sometimes bizarre flavor combinations. He has graciously stuck both good and bad tasting food experiments in his mouth regardless of whether it was something that sounded appealing to him or not. So despite the fact that I wouldn’t be serving him cranberries that “shlooped” out of the can, I knew that he would be a good sport and try this Bourbon Orange Cranberry Sauce.
This cranberry sauce is bursting with flavor! The orange flavor is quite prevalent in the sauce, but it stands up perfectly with the tart cranberries. The sauce is sweetened just enough with a combination of sugar and maple syrup, and the bourbon, well that’s just the icing on the cake! Bourbon adds a slight vanilla, caramel flavor to the cranberries which is exactly what this tart citrusy cranberry sauce needs. If you are completely opposed to using alcohol or you don’t have any on hand you can omit it, but I highly recommend splurging and getting some.
The Bourbon Orange Cranberry Sauce comes together in a snap! Simply add the sugar, syrup, bourbon, orange zest, orange juice, and two cinnamon sticks to a saucepan and heat it over medium high heat until it comes to a boil. Let it boil for a few minutes then add in the cranberries. Cover the saucepan with a lid and turn the heat down to medium low so that the cranberries are simmering. Let them cook for 12-15 minutes until they start to pop. After the sauce is cooked, use the back of a fork or a potato masher to break up the cranberries. That’s all there is to it! The cranberries can be made a day ahead of time and kept in the fridge until you are ready to serve them. For everyone out there who grew up on canned cranberry sauce, my husband included, be brave this year and try this delicious delicious bourbon and orange flavored version!
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