Make Ahead

Nanny's Cranberry Sauce

November  7, 2011
4.7 Stars
Author Notes

This recipe has traveled through the generations of my family on my mom's side, and it's a jewel in our crown of goodies. In Louisiana, this is made with mayhaw juice which we always had to get at the annual Mayhaw Festival. I've not had much luck procuring it in recent years as I live in DC (though I once contacted a delightful farmer I found online who froze and shipped me some from his trees) but apple juice is a good replacement.
This is the best cranberry sauce I've ever had, and I really mean that. Thanksgiving night often finds us all mingling around the open fridge, eating leftover sauce with spoons straight from the jar. In addition to a "must" at our Thanksgiving and Christmas tables, this sauce elevates a turkey sandwich to greater heights, is great with roast pork, with yogurt in the morning, or again, plain for a little treat.
My grandmother and I spent an afternoon in the kitchen many years ago as she taught me to make this. It was such a special time with her, and I hope you enjoy it as much as we all have throughout the decades. —em-i-lis

  • Makes 6-7 half pints
  • 2 cups mayhaw juice, or apple juice (but not apple cider)
  • 4 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 small lemon, finely diced (including peel)
  • 1 small apple, peeled and diced finely
  • 4 cups sugar
  • 1-2 shakes cinnamon
In This Recipe
  1. Prepare your canning pot, jars, bands, lids and so forth.
  2. Mix juice, berries, lemon and apple in a large stock pot and let come to a boil. Add sugar and cinnamon and boil 8 minutes. Keep stirring, and when the temperature reaches 220 and the sauce is starting to slick sheet-like off the back of a wooden spoon, another 15 mins maybe, ladle it carefully into your jars.
  3. Slide a thin knife or chopstick or the like along the inside edges of the jar to let any air bubbles in the jam escape, screw on the lids and bands and process in your boiling water bath for 10 minutes. Process in a canning pot.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Laura Shubert
    Laura Shubert
  • em-i-lis
  • lorigoldsby

4 Reviews

Laura S. November 3, 2018
Amazing. Wonderful. Thank you for sharing this gem
Author Comment
em-i-lis November 3, 2018
I just made some too! :) It makes me so happy you love this too. Thank you!
Author Comment
em-i-lis November 8, 2011
Thank you, Lori!
lorigoldsby November 7, 2011
Nice story to go along with the recipe!