An essential holiday side dish, Cranberry Orange Relish is so incredibly quick and easy to make, there is absolutely no reason you should ever feel tempted to buy the canned stuff. Today, I’m sharing with you two recipes – a no-cook cranberry relish and a cooked cranberry orange relish, depending on your personal preferences.
Cranberry Orange Relish Recipe
Does your family call it cranberry sauce or cranberry relish?
Until this year, I had only ever heard of cranberry sauce and when I first heard of cranberry relish, I envisioned something savoury and spicy.
What’s the difference between cranberry sauce and cranberry relish?
According to purists, cranberry sauce must be cooked while cranberry relish should be raw and tart. Because it’s cooked, cranberry sauce takes on a thick, sticky consistency while cranberry relish is softer and more closely resembles a textured applesauce. However, the two words have become interchangeable for many people – like dressing and stuffing. Some people even specify “cooked cranberry relish” or “uncooked cranberry relish,” further confusing things. Plus, most relishes are cooked and pickled – so why the exception for cranberries?!
How to Make No-Cook Cranberry Orange Relish
This recipe is adapted from Anthony Bourdain’s cranberry relish shared in his Appetites cookbook, which is actually a no-cook recipe.
If you’d prefer to stick closer to his original recipe, you’re actually going to grab a food processor instead of a saucepan and you’re going to mince the oranges and cranberries until they are super fine, and then add in all.that.sugar.
This recipe needs to be made the day before so that it can jellify over night in the fridge. It doesn’t develop a true “jelly” like consistency, it is more similar to the consistency of apple sauce.
I think both recipes are delicious – and I prefer his softer, less thick version for spreading on next-day turkey sandwiches – but I’ve found that people expect a thick, sticky cranberry sauce for the holidays so I’m providing both options for you to choose from.
Or maybe try both! Make one batch of Bourdain’s soft, uncooked relish, and one batch of the adapted, cooked relish and see which version your family prefers!
Cranberry Relish Ingredients
- 3 cups fresh cranberries (12 oz)
- 1 large orange, chopped
- 1 cup sugar
Tip: wash and scrub your fruit before making this recipe as we are including the skin in the recipe!
If you want to add another dimension of flavor, you can also add in a bit of spice like my friend Kylee did.
Kitchen Tools You May Find Helpful
- Food processor
- Measuring cups and spoons
- Spatula or spoon
Cooked Cranberry Orange Relish
Wash and scrub your orange and give your cranberries a thorough rinse, discarding any that look less than ideal.
Chop up your oranges and add to a saucepan with your sugar and cranberries.
Heat over medium heat until just before your desired consistency is met, stirring occasionally, about 15-20 minutes.
Remove the sauce from the heat before it hits the perfect consistency as it will continue to thicken for a couple minutes off of the heat.
You can serve this cranberry sauce warm or cold.
Grab your free printable for homemade cranberry orange sauce:
This homemade cranberry sauce is a holiday staple and is especially delicious when used as a condiment for all of those tasty leftovers!