Dad’s Holiday Cranberry Relish

My first cook book was a classic, The New York Times Cook Book by Craig Claiborne (Harper & Row, 1961). My ancient, rusty paperclip bookmarks tell the story of why I have kept it all these years. I use the book only a couple of times a year: Thanksgiving and Christmas. Clipped are Turkey, Stuffings, Mashed Potatoes with Variations, and Cooked Cranberry or Orange Relish.

We love it on the dinner table, but it’s even better as a condiment for turkey sandwiches. Lots more flavor than out-of-a-can.

Now a family must-have, Cranberry Relish uses cooked berries, not raw, and lots of sugar. Get over it. My family won’t let me play with this recipe. Having said that, I am going to be trying Keto-friendly versions to see if any sugar-substitutes have conquered the cool aftertaste issue. Suggestions?


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Cranberry Relish

based on the The New York Times Cookbook recipe
Course Condiment
Cuisine American
Keyword cranberry, orange, relish, Thanksgiving, turkey
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Cooling off time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Servings 12
Calories 164kcal
Author dad


  • 1 lb cranberries Fresh! If you can only get a 12 oz bag, adjust all amounts accordingly.
  • 2 cups sugar This is always a hard step for me, having done my best to severely limit sugar intake, but, hey, it's Thanksgiving and for family. Right?
  • 2 tsp orange zest I zest a whole, large naval orange and use it all. Love that orangeness.
  • 1/2 cup orange juice I fresh-squeeze the orange I zest and make up the rest of 1 cup with water.
  • 1/2 cup water If needed.
  • 1/2 cup almonds, blanched and slivered Any grocery should have these by the bag.


  • Rinse and drain the cranberries and place them in a medium pot over medium heat.
  • Add sugar, juice, zest, and water.
  • Stir well and often, cooking until all the cranberries have popped open. Lower the heat if thing seem too vigorous. Don't want to burn the berries.
  • Remove from heat and let the relish come to room temperature, stirring in the almonds while you wait.
  • Store the relish in a sealable container and refrigerate until needed. This relish is great at dinner and later on turkey sandwiches.


Calories: 164kcal | Carbohydrates: 42g | Protein: 0.5g | Fat: 0.2g | Saturated Fat: 0.01g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 0.03g | Monounsaturated Fat: 0.01g | Sodium: 2mg | Potassium: 106mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 38g | Vitamin A: 69IU | Vitamin C: 23mg | Calcium: 9mg | Iron: 0.1mg

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