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Murielle Banackissa

Sugar Free Cranberry Sauce

Print recipe
25 mins Prep: 5 mins Cook: 20 mins
Serves 10

Tangy, bright in flavor, and lightly sweetened with applesauce and maple syrup, this cranberry sauce is wonderful served alongside any holiday meal or as a condiment in wraps, sandwiches, and even tacos.


  • cups fresh cranberries
  • ½ cup unsweetened applesauce
  • ½ cup filtered water
  • ¼ tsp freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp maple syrup , optional


  1. Step 1

    Add cranberries, applesauce and water to a small saucepan and heat over high heat.

  2. Step 2

    When it starts boiling, reduce heat to medium low and simmer for 15 minutes or until the cranberries are soft, mixing every 5 minutes or so.

  3. Step 3

    Add pepper and maple syrup to taste.

  4. Step 4

    Remove from heat and let cool before transferring to a jar. Keep in the fridge for up to two weeks.

Common Questions & Swaps

  • No fresh cranberries? Swap them out for the frozen variety, you will just have to adapt the cooking time to allow for the berries to thaw.
  • Want extra sweetness? Add more maple syrup or use a sweetened applesauce.
homemade cranberry sauce in a glass mason jar

The holidays are right around the corner and I am sooo excited! My Instagram feed has started to be flooded with incredible looking holiday treats and I am seriously thinking of starting to catalog the ones I want to make for Christmas and New Years Eve dinner.

So far some of the ones that really caught my attention are:

In the meantime, I am still enjoying some of fall’s most delicious produce like Brussel sprouts, squash, pomegranates, sweet potatoes and of course cranberries!

I tend to buy cranberries in bulk and, if I don’t need them for a particular recipe, I simply freeze them to use throughout the winter.

homemade cranberry sauce in a glass mason jar

As you may know by now, I am a lover of all things sugar free. I regularly transform some of my favorite recipes and sweeten them solely with dates, date sugar or maple syrup – sometimes with success & other times with not so much success.

This cranberry sauce was a success! In the past, I used to make it the traditional way (with white sugar or lots of maple syrup), but recently decided to challenge myself and make it with as little maple syrup as possible and adding some applesauce instead.

I like using this sauce in wraps, sandwiches, tacos, in dressings and simply enjoying it as a condiment the same way I would eat ketchup and mustard – I tried eating it with stuffing I made for a client: out of this world! 

Just like any sauce, the possibilities are endless with this cranberry sauce.

If you decide to make it, feel free to share it on social media and tag me @muriellebanackissa.

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