Florida Christmas Cranberries

Florida Christmas Cranberries





Florida Christmas Cranberries

lids for canning cranberries_small

 This year we decided to can our own Cranberry Sauce


Our Homemade Florida Christmas Cranberries Sauce

Trust me, this tastes much better than the store bought canned sauce.


We wanted to make our own, as opposed to buying it, as we have most years in the past.

Cranberry Sauce for Christmas_small

This was so very exciting, canning cranberries not only for ourselves but to give as gifts for Christmas.


We have our Florida Christmas Cranberries by the door, all dressed up and ready to give as gifts.


I had this beautiful Asian dress that I found at a thrift store which didn’t fit, so I thought I would cut it up to make the lovely fabric to use to put around the jar lids to give as gifts, along with some nice ribbons.



You can even see the zipper and the snaps from the dress I cut up and wrapped around the jar lids.


I like keeping gifts by the door to give to those that drop by.

gifts-by-the-door_small option_small

Merry Christmas Cranberries!


the cranberry sauce_small

Now for the Making of:


Here are the ingredients for making a single pot of Cranberry Sauce

6 Cups Water

3 Cups Sugar

1/2 Cup Honey

1 tsp Ground Cardamon

1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

1/2 tsp Sea Salt

1 tsp Ground Ginger

1/4 can Orange Juice Concentrate

1 tsp Ground Cloves

6 Packages of 12 oz. Ocean Spray Cranberries – rinsed

Zest of 1 Key Lime

Juice of 2 Key Limes

Juice of 3 Clementines

Zest of 1 Orange (We used Florida Naval Oranges)

Juice of 2 Oranges (We used Florida Naval Oranges)

1/4 of a Nutmeg Seed, Grated

all-the-cranberrys_small our-key-limes-and-nutmeg_small

In addition to the cranberries, we also wanted to add some of the juice and zest from our key lime’s on our tree.


Key Limes are Packed with Juice, they May be Small but they are mighty!

our-key-limes-from-our-backyard-tree_small our-backyard-tree_small

Our Key Lime Tree


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Gordon Getting Water out of our Fridge

We used two large pots for this recipe, as we doubled it.


Place your water in the pots, then the sugar.

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Turn your heat up to high, then add your Cardamon, Cinnamon…

cardamon_small ground cinnamon_small

Sea Salt…

Greek salt_small

Honey, and Powdered Ginger…

adding-honey_small chinese-ginger_small

Then add the Orange Juice Concentrate.

I used the orange juice concentrate, because I wanted and intense orange flavor.

Later, I also used freshly squeezed juice, and the zest to impart more depth of flavor to the sauce.


Now add the ground cloves.


Be sure to rinse your cranberries and give them a good looking over for any that may have spoiled.

Of the twelve bags we used, I may have found 4 berries that weren’t good.


Rinsing the Cranberries

rinsing all the cranberrys_small

With your liquid now boiling, place in your cranberries.

ingredients-ready-for-cranberrys_small ready-for-cranberrys_small bring-to-boiling_small



Now, I added the zest and juice of the Key Limes.

Be sure to zest them before you juice them!

grating zest of key limes_smallslicing the key limes_small

sliced the key limes for the cranberry sauce_smallkey-lime-juice_small

Now I added the zest and juice of the oranges and clementines.


juice-of-clementines_smallthe juice of naval oranges_small

 I used freshly grated nutmeg, because the flavor is more intense.


You can buy whole nutmeg for this.  Just grate over pot.

grating the nutmeg_small grating the nutmet 2_small

grated the nutmeg_small

Boil all the ingredients for about 10 min. stirring occasionally.

If you boil them much more, your berries natural pectin will break down, and the sauce will not thicken.

our cranberry sauce boiling away_small

Be sure to taste your sauce to ensure the flavor is what you like.

Don’t be alarmed, as the mixture cooks, the berries will pop.

Gordon tasting 1_small Gordon tasting 2_small


The Canning Process

jars for canning cranberries_small

We bought the jars and lids for this project. 

You don’t want large jars, buy something medium to small.

washing jars in the dishwasher_small

You can sterilize the jars in the dishwasher, just don’t touch the insides of them.

lids for canning cranberries_small

The jar lids we boiled in water ,on the stove top, in a pot, to sterilize them.

boil the jar lids in a pot on the stove to sterilize_small

Heat your lids just under a boil, much more and you will melt/ruin the rubber seal.

all of our pots boiling on the stove top_small

Start your water boiling in large pots for the canning process.

Everything assembeld_small

You now want to use a funnel to spoon the mixture into each sterilized jar.

ladel into sterilized jars_small ladel into jars 2_small

So using a funnel, place your warm sauce into your jars 1/2 inch from the top. 

This is called head space.

cranberry sauce by Gordon_small

Wipe down the jar’s top with a clean wet napkin, removing any sauce which might get in the way of the seal.

adding the lid with the stick 2_small adding the lid with the stick_small

Place a sterilized lid on top of the jar using a lid lifting tool.  You do not want to touch the jar lid seals.

When you have the seals on top of the jars, screw the bands on the jars, but not too tight.

boiling on the stove top_smallall those bubbles are the air escaping_small

Place your jars into the boiling water ensuring they are submerged.

Gordon placing all the jars into the pot to boil_small Gordon removing ready jars_small

Boil them for 15 min.

doing our canning_small

Using your jar lifting tongs remove the jars from the water and place them on a surface that can handle the extreme heat.

I used a large wooden cutting board. 

removing the jars once they are ready_small

As they cool, you will hear the lids pop.  This is the vacuum which is pulling your lid down on your jar.

This must happen on every jar. 

If it doesn’t, you have to process the jar and contents all over again or you can place it in your refrigerator and eat it within a week.

our 2016 batch of canned cranberry sauce_small


Our Christmas Dinner

Cranberry sauce is probably the most important accent for any special occasion.  Whether it be Thanksgiving, or Christmas, or maybe even Easter.  It adds that special tang that makes every bite we take taste just a little bit better.

Below are Photos of my Christmas Dinner Plate

julies-christmas-plate-2016_small no-room-for-my-plate-but-on-top-of-the-dressing_small

Cranberry Sauce in the Middle, Christmas Day

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This was our Christmas Dinner where our Cranberry Sauce was Featured

our-christmas-dinner-2_small christmas-dinner-help-yourself_small

Tur-Duc-En, Cornbread Dressing, Egg Noodles, Gravy, Cheesy Peas and Pearl Onions,

It was Perfect!


Merry Christmas!


Cranberry Sauce Eaten as a Mustard/Jelly on our Christmas Tur-Duc-En Club Sandwiches

bacon-turkey-sandwich-3-with-cranberry-sauce_small bacon-turkey-sandwich-for-leftovers_small

Our After Christmas Leftover Tur-Duc-En/Bacon Sandwiches

bacon-turkey-sandwich-2_small bacon-turkey-sandwich_small

So delicious!  Cranberry sauce makes a great condiment here.

We hope that you enjoyed!

Julie and Gordon


If you would like to check out some of our other Edible Gifts posts:

Gordon’s Award Winning Christmas Cookies


Florida Christmas Cranberries


Christmas Gifts From The Garden


Delicious Christmas Gifts


Santa’s Elves Kitchen Favorites

Seasonings Greetings