Let this sweet, easy side dish cook quietly in the corner while the rest of your kitchen is busy! Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce is a delicious dish to add to any meal, most famously known for being part of a Thanksgiving table. Cooking cranberries in a pressure cooker could NOT be easier!
I feel like cranberry sauce preferences is one of those hot holiday meal debates. We are divided in our family on the topic. Half of us love the gloopy stuff from the can and half of use love homemade. I'm in the homemade camp. It is the best! Up until this year I have prepared it easily on the stove top, but I'm in love with preparing it in the Instant Pot (of course!).
It's as easy as throwing a few simple ingredients into a pressure cooker, giving it a stir and letting it do its thing for a few minutes. And if you're making this for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, this frees up valuable kitchen space for other important things like turkey, stuffing, potatoes, etc. Don't limit yourself to just holidays with this sweet side, though. Serve it year round with any meal!
HOW TO MAKE INSTANT POT CRANBERRY SAUCE
Rinse a bag of fresh cranberries.
Add orange juice, orange zest, sugar, cranberries, cinnamon and nutmeg to an Instant Pot.
Stir and place the cover on the pot and set timer to 2 minutes on high pressure (pressure cook setting). It will take the IP around 10 minutes to build up pressure before it begins cooking.
When cooking time is done, do a 10 minute natural release. Release the remaining pressure with a quick release, remove the cover and give mixture a stir. Allow it to cool completely.
Transfer the mixture to a serving dish, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to serve.
Replace fresh cranberries with frozen cranberries, if desired.
This side dish is 100% gluten free, wooo!
For extra flavor, consider adding 1 tablespoon of maple syrup or brown sugar or a couple vanilla beans to the mixture before boiling.
When storing homemade cranberries, press plastic wrap directly onto its surface before refrigerating. This will prevent a film from forming on the surface and it will keep the sauce fresh.
Add 2 cinnamon sticks to the pot before cooking for an extra punch of cinnamon flavor!
The mixture will thicken as it cools, so do not be alarmed if it is on the runny side just after cooking.
CAN YOU FREEZE CRANBERRY SAUCE?
You can absolutely freeze cranberry sauce with amazing results. Place it in an air-tight container and freeze for 3 to 4 months. When ready to defrost, let thaw completely in the refrigerator overnight.
WHAT TO DO WITH LEFTOVER CRANBERRY SAUCE
You might think that once Thanksgiving dinner has passed, your cranberry sauce should pass, too. This is not the case! There are many options for repurposing the delicious, red sweet sauce. Here are a few suggestions:
Throw it into a Thanksgiving Leftovers Stromboli. This is a FAVORITE in our house!
Smear it over leftover turkey.
Build a Thanksgiving Leftovers Grilled Cheese Sandwich! YUM!
Use it as a sauce for your next sweet pizza, maybe with brie cheese, pear slices and honey.
Replace it with the jelly in this Crockpot Meatballs recipe.
CAN DOGS EAT CRANBERRY SAUCE?
In small quantities, cranberry sauce is perfectly safe for dogs. Be aware, however, that it can have a fairly high sugar content, which can lead to stomach issues. Also, if the sauce is canned, read the label! Some versions contain grapes or raisins, which are toxic to canines.
HOW LONG DOES HOMEMADE CRANBERRY SAUCE LAST?
When stored properly in an air-tight container in the refrigerator, homemade cranberry sauce will last 10 days.
OTHER MAKE AHEAD THANKSGIVING RECIPE IDEAS
Speaking of potatoes, this Sweet Potato Casserole is a must-have Thanksgiving dinner option.
Make the dessert ahead of time to save yourself a ton of time! These TOTALLY DELICIOUS Pumpkin Bars stay perfectly fresh when stored in a covered container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
The stove top version of Homemade Cranberry Sauce can also be made a day ahead.
BEST RECIPES TO MAKE IN AN INSTANT POT
The list of recipes you can make in an Instant Pot is endless! It can act as a slow cooker, saute pan, steamer, rice maker, yogurt maker and pressure cooker. It can cook soup, chili, pasta, meat, potatoes, veggies, cake, beans and so much more. Here are a few of my favorite Instant Pot recipes:
Chicken Breasts - Cook tender, perfect chicken breasts in the Instant Pot every single time! Start with thawed or frozen to create the most delicious chicken you will ever make.
Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs - Instant Pot Hard Boiled Eggs are easy to make and they turn out PERFECTLY every single time. Cooking eggs in a pressure cooker makes removing egg shells a breeze!
Steamed Artichokes - Fresh artichokes might look intimidating, but don't be shy! You can cook them perfectly in just 10 minutes (a bit longer if you don't have an Instant Pot) and with little effort you'll get to the heart of the delicious vegetable. Steam the artichokes for a great healthy snack or a side dish!
Goulash - Make comforting, hearty Goulash in your Instant Pot! This American version of Goulash could not be easier or more delicious. It cooks perfectly every time and is done in only 30 minutes. Perfect easy dinner any night of the week!
Chicken Noodle Soup - Make a batch of comforting Chicken Noodle Soup in the Instant Pot! Using a pressure cooker will save you time and will produce the most perfectly cooked soup you’ll ever taste. Great, quick meal for any night of the week or for your next gathering!