Sparkling Sugared Cranberries

Hi friends! It’s Holiday party season. When you’re invited to a potluck, do you bring classic recipes you’ve used for years, or search for something new and different? I am in the “new and different” category. Our November Master Food Preservers class was all about Abundant Appetizers and I wanted something fun (and tasty!) that could be used in a variety of different ways. These Sparkling Sugared Cranberries fit perfectly! You may have seen them before, but they are new and different to me!

They take a bit of time to make. An overnight soak in an orange flavored simple syrup. An hour resting on a drying rack after being rolled around in sugar. But after that, the possibilities are endless!

They can be eaten straight out of a bowl, or off the drying rack… no judgement. I shared on Facebook the batch for our Appetizer class might not make it due to “quality control testing!” They’re just so good! Plus, they pop in your mouth, which is always fun! They’re beautiful added to sweet cakes or cupcakes. Nestled on a cracker with a slice of brie and a sprig of mint, these Sparkling Sugared Cranberries take savory to a whole new level. They will become one of your new holiday favorites!

Sparkling Sugared Cranberries

A versatile treat! Serve this sweet-tart appetizer on it’s own, use to top a cracker with Brie or as decoration for cakes, cookies and pies! Whatever you wish!

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 3  2-inch by 1-inch strips of orange zest
  • 8 ounces fresh cranberries
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup Baker’s or superfine sugar, adding more sugar if needed

!Make simple syrup

Bring 1 cup granulated sugar, water, and orange zest to a boil in a small saucepan. Simmer until the sugar is dissolved, about 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool 10-15 minutes. Syrup must be cool so the cranberries don't pop

Pour cranberries into a half-pint or pint mason jar and pour cooled syrup over the top. Weigh down with a sandwich baggie full of additional syrup, to keep cranberries fully submerged. Put lid on the jar and place in refrigerator until chilled, at least 6 hours, preferably, overnight.

Once cranberries are chilled, drain the cranberries in a colander, reserving the simple syrup for another use.

Place remaining sugars in a medium bowl.  Add cranberries to the bowl a few at a time. Gently roll the cranberries in the sugar until well coated.  Work in small batches to prevent sugar from getting too moist or it will clump.  Add more sugar, if necessary.  Place sugared cranberries on a baking sheet to dry for at least 1 hour.

Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to a week. If they last that long!

What’s your favorite holiday appetizer? Share with me in the comments below! I’d love to hear.

Some other fun appetizer ideas you might like are my Spinach Puffs or Double Stuffed Mini Potatoes YUM!

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