Nov 11

Crockpot Apple & Cranberry Sauce with Orange & Crystallized Ginger Recipe


Apple and Cranberry Sauce with Orange and Crystallized Ginger Recipe | #Thanksgiving

The barrage of holiday recipes has started. For my Canadian and other non-American readers, I urge you to think of these recipes not just for American Thanksgiving, but for the whole holiday season. In fact, our family tradition is to eat turkey at Christmas dinner, complete with mashed potatoes, stuffing, green beans, sweet potatoes and a double dose of gravy. For my family, it’s not a proper turkey dinner without our favorite
Maple & Brown Sugar Cranberry Sauce and my mother-in-law’s Crockpot Applesauce. Our favorite cranberry sauce will be making appearance again this year. In fact, I think my kids would have “words” with me if I didn’t make it. However, since variety is the spice of life (so they say), I thought it would be fun to have another version on hand for day-after sandwiches.

Between the family applesauce recipe and the pear applesauce I made this year, the crockpot (slow cooker) has always worked well for us. Not only does it fill the kitchen with the smell of the holidays, but it can be tucked away in the corner of the kitchen, freeing up stovetop space, which is at a premium when cooking a holiday meal. This version is filled with cranberries, fresh orange juice, orange zest and chopped crystallized ginger. As the apples cook down and the cranberries pop, the color takes on a ruby red hue. Before removing the sauce from the crockpot, be sure to taste it. If you find it to be too tart, just add an extra tablespoon or two of brown sugar to sweeten things up.

The recipe:
Place all of the apple pieces and cranberries in a large bowl and stir in brown sugar and orange zest.

Cranberry Ginger Applesauce Collage

Pour orange juice into the bottom of a large crockpot (slow cooker) and add the apple mixture.

Cover, turn the crockpot setting to Low, and cook for about 8 hours, stirring occasionally and breaking up the apple slices and popping cranberries with a wooden spoon as they soften.

Stir in crystallized ginger. Taste and add an additional tablespoon or two of brown sugar if you find the sauce too tart for your liking.


Serve warm or room temperature.


Other cranberry sauce recipes:
Cookin’ Canuck’s Maple & Brown Sugar Cranberry Sauce
Flavias’s Flavors’ Cranberry-Pomegranate Relish
Two Peas and Their Pod’s Fresh Cranberry Orange Sauce
Ciao Florentina’s Blood Orange Cranberry Sauce

Apple & Cranberry Sauce with Orange & Crystallized Ginger Recipe
From the kitchen of Cookin Canuck.
Serves: Approximately 4 cups
  • 4 medium Gala apples, peeled, cored, quartered & sliced
  • 1 (12 oz) package fresh cranberries
  • 5 tbsp brown sugar (or more to taste)
  • 1 tsp grated orange zest
  • ¼ cup fresh orange juice
  • ¼ cup chopped crystallized ginger
  1. Place all of the apple pieces and cranberries in a large bowl and stir in brown sugar and orange zest.
  2. Pour orange juice into the bottom of a large crockpot (slow cooker) and add the apple mixture.
  3. Cover, turn the crockpot setting to Low, and cook for about 8 hours, stirring occasionally and breaking up the apple slices and cranberries with a wooden spoon as they soften.
  4. Stir in crystallized ginger. Taste and add an additional tablespoon or two of brown sugar if you find the sauce to be too tart.
  5. Serve warm or room temperature.

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{ 59 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jessica @ How Sweet November 11, 2011 at 6:03 am

I adore crystallized ginger! That totally sold me. Love this.


2 Belinda @zomppa November 11, 2011 at 6:15 am

Lovely combination – love it, might have to be on the Thanksgiving table!


3 Heather (Heather's Dish) November 11, 2011 at 6:35 am

i did something similar with just cranberries…the apples are such a great addition though! and crystallized ginger?! be still my heart :)


4 Biren @ Roti n Rice November 11, 2011 at 6:52 am

I will have to try this cranberry sauce. Adding apples and crystallized ginger sounds like a yummy idea.


5 claudia lamascolo/aka pegasuslegend November 11, 2011 at 7:32 am

oh boy this sounds great I love crockpot recipes going to try this one with a dash of Amaretto in it too! Thanks this is an awesome time saver for me!


6 Kathy - Panini Happy November 11, 2011 at 7:52 am

I love the practicality of involving the slow cooker in Thanksgiving prep. The crystallizes ginger is an especially nice touch!


7 Bev Weidner November 11, 2011 at 8:03 am

My eyes are processing the beauty…..


8 Maria November 11, 2011 at 8:15 am

I love apples in my cranberry sauce! I will have to try ginger next time too!


9 brandi November 11, 2011 at 8:30 am

this is gorgeous! i love adding ginger in with the cranberries – and homemade is the only way to go when it comes to cranberry sauce.


10 Sally November 11, 2011 at 8:42 am

This is such a good idea for the busy holiday cooking season when stove and oven space is at a premium!


11 Annalise November 11, 2011 at 8:49 am

I love that this is a crockpot recipe. So easy! And as you said, frees up my counter for all the pies I’ve got to make. Love it!


12 Pretend Chef November 11, 2011 at 9:06 am

Perfect for Thanksgiving and sounds so easy to prepare. I would love to give this a try.


13 Carolinaheartstrings November 11, 2011 at 9:39 am

That looks delicious. Perfect for our Thanksgiving at the beach. Come visit. We have a terrific cranberry couscous.


14 Rachel @ Baked by Rachel November 11, 2011 at 10:13 am

Slow cooker dishes always win! Love that you added apples. I’m use to cranberry sauce being just that – not with apples. This is one of my favorite combinations :)


15 Joanne November 11, 2011 at 11:36 am

Love that recipe! I made something similar last year and it was so good and actually would work just as well as a dessert with ice cream on top. :) Variety!


16 Delishhh November 11, 2011 at 12:58 pm

Awesome – i do make Turkey for Thanksgiving but i also make ribs and the ribs go first :) For cranberry i made this cranberry and orange molds that are our of this world – i make extras just so i can eat them for dessert too :)


17 Lydia (The Perfect Pantry) November 11, 2011 at 5:02 pm

Perfect! I’m firing up all of my slow cookers for Thanksgiving — just need to find a place to plug them in!


18 heather November 11, 2011 at 6:52 pm

I’m all about the slow cooker this year. This looks SO delicious!


19 Jeanette November 11, 2011 at 8:26 pm

I’ve been loving my slow cooker lately – can’t wait to try this for Thanksgiving!


20 judee @ Gluten Free A-Z November 11, 2011 at 9:24 pm

I’ve been looking for a good cranberry sauce recipe and this is it. I love everything about it: the low sugar , the apples, the orange juice, the ginger, and the crock pot. Thanks for sharing it.


21 Betsy @ A Dancer In The Kitchen November 11, 2011 at 11:00 pm

I’m a fellow UT blogger! I finally got around to commenting and I just love your blog! I have some crystallized ginger in my pantry that I need to use up!


22 Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen November 11, 2011 at 11:14 pm

You had me at crystallized ginger!


23 Ashley@BakerbyNature November 12, 2011 at 5:01 am

Growing up we only ever had the jiggly canned cranberry stuff, which I avoided like the plague. But this… this looks amazing! I’m on side dishes this Thanksgiving, so we will definitely be giving this a try!


24 Katrina November 12, 2011 at 5:12 am

This sounds absolutely delightful!


25 Miss @ Miss in the Kitchen November 12, 2011 at 7:04 am

Looks gorgeous and I’m sure it tastes amazing.


26 Roxana GreenGirl {A little bit of everything} November 12, 2011 at 8:54 am

I love crystallized ginger!


27 Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. November 12, 2011 at 9:02 am

wow! This looks so wonderful Dara!!


28 A Canadian Foodie November 12, 2011 at 3:37 pm

This does look scrumptious – and I bet it tastes delicious right out of the bowl with a spoon! However, I have to admit, that when it comes to that old traditional meal, it is the plain old homemade cranberry sauce I crave – every time. I have made so many others… and am definitely tempted to make this one – but maybe to go with cheese as an appetizer. It looks that good – easily!
Happy Canadian Thanksgiving, BTW!


29 Courtney November 12, 2011 at 4:37 pm

This looks incredible!! Love the crystallized ginger!


30 Curt November 12, 2011 at 5:48 pm

That certainly does look delicious. I’ll bet it’s power packed with sweet flavor!


31 Liz November 12, 2011 at 6:06 pm

The crystallized ginger is a fabulous touch! I may have to make a teeny batch just for myself…..mmmmmmm.


32 Lana @ Never Enough Thyme November 12, 2011 at 6:15 pm

Fantastic cranberry sauce recipe, Dara. Love the addition of the crystallized ginger. Yum.


33 Nichol November 12, 2011 at 6:31 pm

Oh this sounds delish. I am a huge fan of cranberry sauce, any type and flavor!


34 Kulsum@Journeykitchen November 13, 2011 at 10:15 am

I have never really cooked with fresh cranberries! But this sauce I can imagine would go great with so many things!


35 Jen at The Three Little Piglets November 13, 2011 at 3:10 pm

The ginger sounds like it be so good with the cranberries and orange!


36 Cookbook Queen November 13, 2011 at 6:25 pm

I bet this does smell just amazing while it’s cooking!! Can’t wait to give it a try, cranberries are one of my favorites.


37 Kristi Rimkus November 13, 2011 at 8:56 pm

Love the addition of ginger. It would add sweet and a little heat. Perfect with roasted turkey!


38 Culinary Collage November 14, 2011 at 1:37 pm

I love homemade cranberry sauce and this recipe sounds wonderful!


39 Barbara | Creative Culinary November 14, 2011 at 3:37 pm

I think my favorite thing to make the past several years is cranberry sauce; there are so many options for flavoring it. This is one of my favorites…but you should not be surprised to hear I’m going to try adding a bit of vodka…sort of a ‘cosmopolitan’ cranberry sauce. I must say…just so you know and don’t see me sloshed over the computer screen…I love to cook with the booze but rarely actually drink it. Except maybe on Friday.


40 Wenderly November 14, 2011 at 5:54 pm

Love crystallized ginger! What a divine flavor combination not to mention stunning looking dish! Just beautiful.


41 November 14, 2011 at 6:49 pm

A gorgeous seasonal classic! GREG


42 MikeVFMK November 15, 2011 at 6:42 am

I had no idea cranberry sauce could look that frickin good. That first image is so pretty, Dara! Loving these recipes as we enter the holiday season (you know we had our thanksgiving but christmas is just around the corner) so these are all so helpful and full of new ideas.


43 Carolyn November 16, 2011 at 6:32 pm

Well, you know how much I love crystallized ginger. This would be a hit with me!


44 hope November 17, 2011 at 7:42 am

I made this last night. It smelled so good while cooking. I put it on high and was planning to stir it about every 45 minutes but I forgot about it at one point and went about 90 minutes without stirring and it burned (I was still able to salvage it though!). At that point it was cooking for 4 hours. If I would make it again on high, I would use a timer to remind me to stir or cook it on low.
Anyway, it is extremely delicious! I added about 7 tablespoons sugar total and may add more. I am freezing it until next week for Thanksgiving.
Thank you!!!!!


45 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) November 17, 2011 at 9:29 pm

Hope, thanks so much for letting me know. I have cooked it on High in the past without any troubles, which makes me wonder if different brands of crockpots heat a little differently. I’ll be sure to make a note in the recipe about frequent stirring.


46 Lauren November 19, 2011 at 5:00 pm

This cranberry sauce looks amazing! Do you think I can make it with frozen cranberries? I live in Australia and sadly, cranberries are something that do not grow here! I’m American and am going to attempt making my first ever Thanksgiving dinner for my Aussie friends. And for an extra challenge I’ve decided to do it in a country where they don’t have all the ingredients I need :) Help please!


47 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) November 19, 2011 at 9:29 pm

Hi Lauren, I admire your tenacity in making a Thanksgiving dinner while living abroad. Good for you! I don’t see why you couldn’t make this with frozen cranberries, but I have never actually tried it myself. I would defrost the cranberries first and then make the sauce as directed. Let me know how it turns out!


48 Lauren November 21, 2011 at 7:05 pm

Thank you! I’ll try it and report back! Lucky for me, my friends will have nothing to compare it to :)


49 Jessi November 10, 2012 at 7:15 pm

How long will this be good for? I would like to make some and put in jars for gifts before we let out for the Thanksgiving holidays.


50 Mary Thompson December 10, 2012 at 1:49 pm

I would like to know how long after making the crockpot cranberry & apple with orange and crystallized ginger will keep in the fridge. Please let me know soon. Thank you. Mary.


51 Dara (Cookin' Canuck) December 10, 2012 at 2:08 pm

Hi Mary, I’ve stored it in the fridge for up to 5 days. It also freezes really well. I hope you enjoy it!


52 Mary Thompson December 10, 2012 at 4:16 pm

Thank you so much for getting back to me so fast. I’m making this for a work Christmas dinner on the 14 th. I’m looking forward to trying this.


53 Mary Thompson December 18, 2012 at 11:11 pm

I made this for my work Christmas dinner and it was a hit even with the one that were not fond of cranberries. I will be making this every year. Thank you for the awesome recipe.


54 CiaoFlorentina November 12, 2014 at 10:51 pm

Yummy! What a great idea to add the crystalized ginger! brilliant !


55 Amy November 20, 2014 at 4:47 am

How many servings does this make? I’m hosting somewhere between 15-20 people, and I’m wondering if I need to double the recipe and/or adjust cooking time if so…


56 Dara November 23, 2014 at 2:11 pm

Hi Amy, the recipe makes about 4 cups. So, it all depends on how much your guests like cranberry sauce. If you ration 1/4 cup per person, that would serve approximately 16 people. To be on the safe side, I’d probably make 1 1/2 time the recipe, which may require you to cook it slightly longer. I hope you enjoy it!


57 Erin November 28, 2014 at 11:46 am

I followed this recipe exactly, but the end results turned out a brownish color, and the taste was really off. Any idea what the reason could be for that?


58 Dara December 1, 2014 at 4:11 pm

Hmm…I’m not sure what went wrong as I haven’t experienced that, but I’m sorry to hear that it didn’t turn out for you. A few possibilities: 1) It’s possible that your LOW setting is a little hotter than mine. Perhaps try cooking it for a shorter time. 2) Were the cut apples sitting out for awhile before going into the crockpot? I’m just wondering if they started to brown before being cooked. 3) Were the cranberries really fresh? I know I’ve bought bags of cranberries in the past that had some less-than-stellar cranberries in the bunch.


59 Yokuyst November 24, 2015 at 3:10 pm

My crockpot has something in it now. Can I cook this on top my stove on low heat?


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