Cranberry sauce: a Jell-O-jiggly mass filled with sugar (and who knows what else!) that always takes up space on the Thanksgiving table. This year, try making it from scratch. In this version, we swap out the sugar for honey. Fresh orange juice and zest add more sweetness and flavor, and the mystery ingredient— thyme—keeps dinner guests guessing (in a good way!).


  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice (about 1/2 orange)
  • 2 teaspoons orange zest
  • 1/4-1/3 cup honey
  • 2-3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 4 cups cranberries


  1. In a sauce pan, bring 3/4 cup water, orange juice and zest, honey, and thyme to a slight boil over medium-high heat.
  2. Add cranberries and stir. Return to a simmer, stirring occasionally, until cranberries start to burst.
  3. Reduce heat, stirring occasionally, until sauce reaches desired consistency.
  4. Remove thyme sprigs and discard. Remove from heat and let stand (sauce will thicken as it cools).