What’s the best thing about this delicious homemade sweet and tart cranberry sauce? The fact that it’s effortlessly easy and absolutely perfect! You’re going to want to have this bright, tangy, and sweet sauce on your dinner table this holiday season.
This instant pot cranberry sauce is perfect for savory meats (hello turkey and ham) or use it in/on sweet treats (cranberry cheesecake using my 2-ingredient cheesecake recipe? yes, please!).
You only need 3 things to make this sauce:
- apple juice (or another type of juice/water)
- sugar/sweetener of your choice
I know many people use orange juice in their cranberry sauce, but I’ve always been team apple juice. Cranberries are tart, and apple juice adds a fruity sweetness to the jam, and it allows me to get away with using a bit less sugar. That said, you can use orange juice or water if you’d like.
No need to buy cranberry sauce
Making my instant pot cranberry sauce is honestly easier than opening up a can of store-bought sauce. Seriously. Dumping cranberries into a pot = much easier than finding a can opener and, you know, using it to open a can of sauce…
Plus, homemade cranberry sauce is so much better than canned. Unless you’re like my brother and prefer the “ridges” that come from a can of jellied cranberry sauce… in which case, I don’t think we can be friends (unless we’re related), lol. And yes, bro, if you’re reading this, I will have a can of sauce just for you, and I will also be annoyed about it come Turkey day. 🙄😂
Back to my homemade cranberry sauce. No need to stand by the stove waiting for cranberries to pop – instead, dump them into your pressure cooker and sit down on the couch with your feet up. Put on a Christmas movie (thank you, Netflix) and chill.
Make the sauce in advance – one less thing to do over the holidays!
This is one thing you can make pretty well in advance. I feel like cranberry sauce always tastes better after a few days anyway – the tartness mellows out a bit, and it gets nice and jammy after chilling in the fridge.
Homemade cranberry sauce will last in the fridge for around 10 days and in the freezer for a couple of months.
So make this for Thanksgiving and save leftovers (if there are any) for Christmas! Or make a double batch and freeze half.
- 24 ounces fresh cranberries two 12 ounce packages
- ¾ cup apple juice
- 1½ cups sugar or maple syrup/honey/sweetener of choice, adjust to taste
Optional additions (I prefer to leave mine plain):
- Orange or lemon zest
- Vanilla extract
- Pinch of cinnamon or nutmeg or cardamom
- Rinse cranberries and add them to the pot along with the apple juice (you can set ½ cup cranberries aside if you prefer whole berries in the sauce, otherwise add all of the cranberries to the pot).
- Secure the lid, close the pressure valve and cook for 1 minute at high pressure.
- Naturally release pressure for 10 minutes.
- Remove the lid, stir in the sweetener and mash the cranberries with a spoon if needed (if you reserved cranberries at the start, add them now and press sauté to cook them for a couple minutes).
- Turn off the instant pot and let the sauce cool down in the pot (this will also cook the additional whole cranberries a bit).
- Taste and add more sugar if needed.
- Once the sauce is cool, keep it in an airtight container in the fridge for a week or in the freezer for a couple months.