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Vegan Cranberry Sauce

  • Author: Liz Madsen
  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: 4 cups 1x
  • Diet: Vegan


Sweet and slightly tart, this delicious Vegan Cranberry Sauce is far superior to store-bought and the perfect addition to any holiday plate.


Units Scale
  • 1/2 cup orange juice (see note 1)
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2/3 cup organic cane sugar (see note 2)
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar or coconut sugar (see note 2)
  • 12 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 small apple, peeled and finely diced (about 3/4 cup)


  1. Bring to a boil and dissolve sugars: Add the water, juice, and both sugars to a medium saucepan and bring to a boil over medium high heat, stirring occasionally. You want the sugars to dissolve.
  2. Prep fruit: Meanwhile, rinse and pick through the cranberries, discarding any mushy ones. Peel your apple and dice it finely.
  3. Simmer until thick: Add the cranberries and apple and stir, then lower the heat to medium low. Simmer for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. You may want to use a splatter screen because the cranberries can splatter as they burst. After 15 or 20 minutes and all of the cranberries have burst, your sauce will be somewhat thickened. It will also thicken in the fridge.
  4. Optional step: if you like your sauce completely smooth, you can use an immersion blender in the pot, or carefully transfer the mixture to your countertop blender and puree until smooth.
  5. Serve: Serve warm or cold, and definitely with a seitan turkey, vegan meatloaf, lentil loaf, or whatever vegan holiday dishes you have planned.
  6. Store: Refrigerate leftovers in an airtight container for up to 5-6 days or freeze for up to 3 months.


  • Note 1: Fresh squeezed or carton is fine. If going with carton OJ, make sure it doesn’t have added vitamin D--that’s often not vegan.
  • Note 2: A mix of sugars makes for the best flavor, but feel free to use your preferred sweetener. If you don’t want to use refined sugar, try coconut sugar or date sugar. If you’re using a liquid sweetener, I’d use less water or orange juice to make sure the vegan cranberry sauce reduces properly.
  • Note 3: Want ideas on customizing this recipe? Check out the brief section in my article above, labeled “How to Customize This Recipe.”
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Ingredient, Side
  • Method: Stove top
  • Cuisine: American, Thanksgiving

Keywords: Vegan Cranberry Sauce, Vegan, Oil-Free, Gluten-Free, Soy-Free, Nut-Free, Can Be Refined Sugar-Free