This 3-ingredient Cranberry Relish has been a family favorite for generations! It’s sweet and tangy and perfect paired with Thanksgiving turkey or served with chicken or pork.

In our family there are two groups of people; the gravy lovers and the cranberry lovers.  I am the leader of the latter group and I love to serve this cranberry relish on just about everything, but especially on my famous Thanksgiving Turkey!

A clear glass bowl of fresh cranberry relish with an orange slice on top.

Guys, I’ve already started my Thanksgiving menu planning. I’m going to throw in some new favorites this year to accompany our regulars.

We’ve been enjoying this Fresh Cranberry Relish at Thanksgiving for as long as I can remember. It wasn’t until recent years attending Thanksgiving dinner at friends homes that I’ve come to realize an ugly truth: Not everyone likes cranberry sauce!

GAH! How can this be, right? I’ll tell you how–> they have never tried this type of cranberry “sauce”. It’s technically a “relish” because the cranberries are not cooked and everything is cold and raw, BUT this stuff is pure gold. Honestly, it’s good enough to eat with a spoon.

What I LOVE about this recipe:

  • 3 ingredients.  Real, raw ingredients that are packed with flavor!
  • 5 minute prep.  No cook time! Just throw everything in a food processor and it’s ready to go!
  • Sweet and tangy. The flavors from the orange zest and the fresh cranberries go perfectly together, and the sugar adds the extra sweetness that the raw cranberries need.

Food processor with whole cranberries, orange slices and sugar in it.

Cranberry Relish or Cranberry sauce?

There is an important difference between cranberry sauce and cranberry relish and that is that cranberry relish is made from raw ingredients blended in a food processor (it’s more fresh and tart tasting) and cranberry sauce is cooked and often much sweeter than relish.

Serve Cranberry Relish on:

You could serve cranberry relish on many things but I particularly recommend:

  • Homemade rolls
  • Sandwiches (I love to use it in place of mayonnaise)
  • Turkey (or other roasted meats)
  • Yogurt – stir it into your favorite yogurt
  • Waffles – I love to serve it on top of homemade Belgian waffles.

Make ahead, Storing and Freezing Instructions:

To make-ahead: Cranberry relish can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

To freeze: Store cranberry relish in a freezer safe container for 2-3 months.  To use, remove it from the freezer and thaw it in the refrigerator.

More recipes for Fresh Cranberries:

A bowl of cranberry relish with a spoon serving a spoonful.
Don’t miss these Thanksgiving staples:

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Recipe

A clear glass bowl of fresh cranberry relish with an orange slice on top.
Prep 5 mins
Total 5 mins
Add to Meal Plan

Ingredients
 
 

  • 12 ounces fresh cranberries
  • 1 orange , with the peel ON
  • 1 cup granulated sugar

Instructions
 

  • Slice the very edge root ends off of the orange, just until you see the flesh. Leave the rest of the skin ON the orange and slice it into 8 pieces.
  • Place the fresh cranberries, orange slices and sugar in your food processor and process until smooth (or until no large chunks remain).
  • Refrigerate until ready to serve (it tastes best after being in the fridge for at least on hour) or for up to 1 week. Serve over turkey, chicken, pork loin etc.

Notes

To make-ahead: Cranberry relish can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.
To freeze: Store cranberry relish in a freezer safe container for 2-3 months.  To use, remove it from the freezer and thaw it in the refrigerator.

Nutrition

Calories: 330kcalCarbohydrates: 85gSodium: 2mgPotassium: 175mgFiber: 6gSugar: 75gVitamin A: 165IUVitamin C: 38.3mgCalcium: 27mgIron: 0.3mg

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Have you tried this recipe?!

RATE and COMMENT below! I would love to hear your experience.

I originally shared this recipe November 2016. Updated with improved photos and instructions October 2019.

The BEST Cranberry Relish ever! So much better than regular cranberry sauce! | Tastes Better From Scratch

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Lauren Allen

Welcome! I’m Lauren, a mom of four and lover of good food. Here you’ll find easy recipes and weeknight meal ideas made with real ingredients, with step-by-step photos and videos.

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Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Read comments, and sounds like a tradition for many. I just tried for 1st time.
    I have lost 40 lbs. and am trying to incorporate healtier alternatives. Our usual cranberry pomegranate juice is 4 points on WW.
    Made this recipe with Gentle Sweet instead of sugar and is delicious. Only thing is it tastes more like orange to me than cranberry. Probably depends on the orange that’s used.

  2. We use an old fashion food grinder to make ours … more texture to the cranberry relish … and add walnuts …delicious

  3. My Mom made this every Thanksgiving and I had lost the recipe. This tasted exactly like hers! Very refreshing and went so well with the turkey. I was able to make it ahead and it kept very well for several days. Next time I would food process the ingredients in two stages. The bottom half of my cranberry relish was blended very fine, the top was not. Even after stirring it was ground much finer than I wanted.

    1. My mom too. She passed away last month and I never got her recipe. I think she added an apple and pecans to her’s as well.

  4. I have never made anything with fresh cranberries and I am always a little curious when I see someone grab a bag at the store. Well, I won’t be anymore because this was fabulous! Even my pickiest eaters love this cranberry relish! So sweet and refreshing!

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