Orange Bourbon Cranberry Sauce

November 26, 2012 by Ali

I know that Thanksgiving cranberry time is now past, but bookmark this recipe for Christmas because — if you can’t tell by the title — it will definitely kick your holidays up a notch.

The credit for this one goes to my lovely sister, Sarah, who is the cranberry queen of our family. Every year, she and her husband Jeff (a.k.a. Gimme Some Oven’s talented web designer!) research creative new recipes to try for Thanksgiving. And once again, they did not disappoint. We all gathered at their place in Chicago this year for an all-day homemade feast, featuring a pomegranate-mustard-glazed turkey, yummy stuffing, creamy mashed potatoes, blue cheese green beans, homemade sourdough and na’an, pumpkin cheesecake…and this orange bourbon cranberry sauce.

Once I taste-tested the cranberries, I asked if I could take a quick photo to share with you all before they disappeared. And it’s a good thing I did, because I’m pretty sure¬†everyone went back for seconds with these. So tangy, sweet, and delicious. And that extra kick of bourbon made them extra fun. Highly recommend giving them a try!

What was your favorite food this Thanksgiving?

Orange Bourbon Cranberry Sauce

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 20 minutes

Yield: About 4 cups


  • 2 (12 oz.) packages of cranberries
  • 2/3 c. white sugar
  • 1 1/3 c. brown sugar
  • 3/4 c. fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 3/4 c. water
  • zest of one orange, plus extra for garnish
  • 1-3 Tbsp. bourbon (to taste)


Place all the ingredients in a medium saucepan and cook on medium-high for 15-20 minutes or until most of the liquid has reduced, stirring occasionally. Once most of the cranberries have popped, remove from heat and let rest for at least 15 minutes.

Serve garnished with extra orange zest. Or cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week. (Simply rewarm the cranberries later to serve.)

Recipe slightly adapted from Sweet Savory Life

(c) 2013 Gimme Some Oven. All rights reserved.

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About Ali

Ali Ebright is a freelance recipe developer and food writer/photographer, and blogs at Gimme Some Oven and Gimme Some Life. She also loves all things music, traveling near and far, actually making things from Pinterest, cozying up with a good book and her sweet pup, Henry, and spending time with a wonderful group of friends. Come say hello and follow Ali on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ & Instagram.

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22 thoughts on “Orange Bourbon Cranberry Sauce

  1. These were the best cranberries I’ve ever made! There are none left, and I am sad. Thank you for sharing your recipes!

    - Stacy Menifee

  2. This looks so good. I love cranberry sauce and I have added it to my Mouth Watering Mondays post so come on over to see it at Cheers, Tara

    - Tara

  3. This was my first time making cranberry sauce. I have now sworn off eating the canned stuff ever again. It was fun and it tastes amazing! Thank you for sharing the recipe.

    - Ashley

  4. Orange and cranberry is such a great combination, this will be perfect for our Christmas meal!

    - Kathryn

  5. So pretty! I made a cranberry orange cake for Thanksgiving and that was my favorite. :) And I’ve taken your advice and bookmarked this. Can’t wait to try it out! Although I think I’ll try it with honey.

    - Erin @ Texanerin Baking

  6. I think stuffing is my favorite side, but the cranberry sauce is a close second. Seriously love your kicked up sauce!

    - Stephanie @ Eat. Drink. Love.

  7. My fave food was the dressing, as always. But these yummy cranberries were a close second.

    - Ali's Mom

  8. Eek, while I’m usually a dork who likes the canned version, I cannot resist this gorgeous cranberry sauce. Hello, it’s pretty, and two, it’s homemade, and three, it has bourbon in it. Nuff said.

    - Hayley @ The Domestic Rebel

  9. I made a similar recipe the other night but without bourbon. I love a hint of bourbon in foods, so I’ll have to give it a try. Dried cherries are my new favorite thing to put in cranberry sauce.

    - Laura Dembowski

  10. Bourbon is definitely the way to go with cranberries, I have made it this way the past couple of years. Next time I am adding brown sugar for sure!

    - Cassie | Bake Your Day

  11. Don’t you just love how pretty cranberry sauce is? This will be perfect for Christmas now!

    - Carrian-Sweet Basil

  12. oh man. not sure i can wait until christmas to try this. yum.

    - bet

  13. My favorite T-Day food was (and always is) my Grandma’s homemade rolls topped with homemade strawberry jam. She sent some home with me, and I polished ‘em all off yesterday : )

    - Sarah M.

  14. stop it – this sounds sooo good! great idea adding in that bourbon. :)

    my favorite food this year was the stuffing, as always. amen.

    - little kitchie

  15. I have a cranberry recipe coming up next week if I can hurry up and get it finished :) but it doesnt have bourbon in it. You were the SMART one :)

    - Averie @ Averie Cooks