Seriously Best Ever Bourbon Cranberry Sauce - Cranberry Craze Pt 2

November 20, 2011

No, really! From one cranberry addict to another, this sauce is mindblowing. I am absolutely smitten. In love. Addicted. Obsessed. Love-it-so-much-I-should-marry-it. If I could possibly be any more emphatic in my praise of this recipe, I would, but I feel like shouting in all caps about HOW UNBELIEVABLY AMAZING this recipe is seems, well, obnoxious -- which completely defeats the purpose! This sauce rocks my socks, people, and very few recipes can do that.

**Update: Since I've been taste-testing cranberry sauce recipes all day, I did a mental swap on this one! D'oh! Fortunately for you, dear reader, both of these recipes are serious prize winners!**

It's that good. So now, I have to share it with you. 

Understand, I don't share very well - and particularly not culinary creations that I have slaved over prepared. I love entertaining and cooking for family and friends, but when I find a recipe like this -- like finding a diamond in the rough -- and I prepare it, late at night, just for me -- well, sharing isn't on the menu. But you see, if I share it with you, then not only will I no longer be alone in my delight, but it's the type of sharing that doesn't involve me giving up any more of this heaven-sent sauce than I have to -- unless you request I ship it to you, in which case, I flat out politely and respectfully decline. 

Here it. is. The best cranberry sauce of your life -- and probably the easiest, too.

Not too sweet, not too tart, and with a complex blend of flavors that could rival any 5-star kitchen. Think mulled wine + cranberries + a little kick from the ginger. Wow. Wow. Pour stuff in pan, heat, stir, devour. Ready in 20 minutes - swear on my sauce! Really, it's that easy.

Psst! Use this addictively delicious sauce in my Gluten Free Cranberry Almond Bundt Cakes!

This recipe is naturally gluten free, milk / dairy free, soy/corn/peanut/tree nut free, eggless and vegetarian / vegan. Holy cow - basically, everyone can love it!

Spiced Red Wine Cranberry Sauce
Serves 1-8 (depending on your level of generosity)

3/4 cup dry red wine (merlot / pinot noir)
2 cups sugar
3 cinnamon sticks
1 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and halved
12 oz / 3/4 lb / 3 cups / 1 bag fresh cranberries

In a 1 Qt saucepan, combine wine and sugar, stirring well. Add cinnamon sticks and ginger. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 5-7 minutes, or until the liquid begins to reduce a little bit. Add cranberries and continue to simmer for 12-15 minutes, or until cranberries are soft / breaking apart and the sauce begins to thicken. At this point, you can be done - skip to the bottom and enjoy! Or... Mash your cranberries with a sturdy whisk / potato masher thing (I don't have one, but I imagine it would have been awesome), just to break up the cranberries and simmer for another 5 or so minutes to thicken a little bit more.

Remove from heat and discard cinnamon sticks + ginger pieces. Allow the sauce to cool.  Serve warm or at room temperature, or refrigerate for up to 10 days -- the flavors only get better as they chill out in the fridge. (Pun intended.)

Bourbon Cranberry Sauce

1 lb / 16 oz (about 4 cups) fresh cranberries
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground coriander
1/4 tsp ground ginger
Dash of cayenne pepper
1/4 cup bourbon / whisk(e)y
2-3 Tbsp orange juice

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In a 9×13-inch oven-safe glass / ceramic baking dish, stir together everything but the booze bourbon and OJ. Cover with foil and bake for 30 minutes; stir well to dissolve remaining sugar -- and make sure you get to the corners! Continue baking another 30 minutes. Remove from oven, stir in bourbon and OJ then allow to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature; refrigerate up to one week.

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bean's picture

Umm where is the bourbon? I love wine but the title said bourbon

Kelsey Ganes's picture

Ha! oh wow, what a 'DUH!' moment! I added the bourbon recipe - so sorry!

bean's picture

Thanks! now I have to decide which one to make this week :-P

ThomasG's picture

You are right. I totally agree with you.

Sue/theviewfromgreatisland's picture

What a gorgeous photo, and you've convinced me about the cranberry sauce. I just made a great hot pepper cranberry sauce, but I was wondering how a spiked version would be. I'll try this for sure.