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Sugar Dusted Cranberries | Chris Cooks

November 13, 2022

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Ok, I know some of y’all out there think cranberries aren’t worth the time. And while I personally love a good homemade cranberry sauce, I do realize that the gelatinized version that comes from the can isn’t always the most appealing.

Sugar Dusted Cranberries  |  Chris Loves Julia

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Well, this cranberry snack isn’t a sauce. It’s not a topping. And it’s not difficult at all. Cranberries, sugar and water are all you need – though you can add in some other elements like cinnamon, nutmeg and clove if you want – just a touch if so, but I do mine without all the stuff.

Sugar Dusted Cranberries | Chris Loves Julia

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Both Thanksgiving and Christmas I have several bowls of these sitting around the table, within reach of every seat. Because once the main courses have been eaten and tummies are “full,” these keep the party going. Company will stay and chat for hours, picking at these little gems the entire time.

Sugar Dusted Cranberries | Chris Loves Julia

Of course, they can be a little tricky in our humid climate, but if you find them getting sticky, just pop them back in the freezer for 15-20 minutes. Give them a try this year! And if you’re a cranberry sauce lover, don’t think it has to be one or the other. Make ’em both and amp up the cranberry – seriously, these are so addicting.

Sugar Dusted Cranberries | Chris Loves Julia
Sugar Dusted Cranberries | Chris Loves Julia
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Sugar Dusted Cranberries

An awesome snack to have on your holiday table. Frozen, sugar-dusted cranberries. Sweet, tart, a touch of bitter. So, so tasty – you and your guests will be picking at them all evening.
Course: Side Dish, Snack
Keyword: christmas, cranberries, holidays, Thanksgiving


  • 2 bags fresh cranberries washed, picked through to remove soft ones
  • 1 cup sugar just white granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 2 cups caster sugar this is a finer texture than granulated, but not as fine as powdered. perfect for this.


Soak the cranberries

  • Place the cranberries in a zip top bag, along with the granulated sugar and water. Gently toss to dissolve the sugar and coat the cranberries. Push as much air out as you can without popping the cranberries. Set in the fridge for at least 2 hours but up to 24.

Drain & freeze the cranberries

  • Pour the cranberries and syrup onto a baking sheet with a cooling rack on top to separate out the syrup. If you don't have this, you can pour them into a strainer first. Spread the cranberries in one even layer, and place in the freezer for at least 2 hours, but again, up to 24.

Dust the cranberries

  • In another baking sheet, add 1/2 the caster sugar and spread evenly. Add the cranberries, then top with the other half of caster sugar. shake the pan around to coat the cranberries evenly. Place in the freezer for 15-30 minutes.
  • Add to a bowl, serve cold. Enjoy!

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What do you think?

  1. Jennifer Andersen says:

    5 stars
    So delicious straight from the freezer and a lovely addition to my holiday cocktails!

  2. Laureen Watts says:

    5 stars
    I make mine with a cooled simple syrup. Soak in the frig over-night, strain into a bowl, then into a zip-lock with super fine sugar. Spread on a sheet pan to dry. Delish! Save that cranberry infused simple syrup to make an additional batch or for another recipe that asks for a simple syrup.

  3. REK981 says:

    I will be making this year in addition to cranberry sauce! They look great!

  4. Julie says:

    Have you ever made these ahead of time? Would they last in the freezer for longer than the 24 hours in step 2? I think I’ll try this this year!

  5. Ellen says:

    Definitely making these this year! If one wants to add cinn/clove, when should it be added?

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