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Indian-Spiced Cranberry Sauce

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Cook Time:
15 mins
Prep Time:
10 mins

Chef notes

Thanksgiving in the Naik household looks very different from any other household — you won't find a turkey and you likely won't even find any meat. I am vegan and I grew up vegetarian, so my family is primarily vegetarian. We use this time to make dishes that have the essence of Thanksgiving but with a spicy Indian flavor (because who doesn't like some spice in their life?). And that is how this cranberry sauce was born — a little sweet, a little tang from the tamarind and a little spice from dried red chilies.

Technique tip: Don't have fresh cranberries? Frozen work just fine! Just make sure to thaw them before cooking. Additionally, leftover cranberry sauce can be turned into a Cranberry Gin Spritz!


  • 12 ounces fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup raw cane sugar
  • 2 tablespoons jaggery
  • 1 teaspoon tamarind paste (optional)
  • 3/4 cup orange juice or pomegranate juice
  • 2 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 whole dried red chilies
  • 1 pinch kosher salt



Combine all ingredients in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir until combined. Sauce will begin to slowly bubble and after 5 to 8 minutes; cranberries should begin to burst. Continue stirring until sugar is melted, and after another 2 to 4 minutes, remove from heat, cover and cool.


Once cooled, give it a small taste and adjust for salt, if necessary. Flavor should be tangy, sweet and slightly spicy. Remove cinnamon stick, cloves and chilies.


Pour into a bowl, cover tightly and cool for a minimum of 2 to 3 hours.