This cranberry syrup is an easy condiment made with just five ingredients. The orange and cinnamon-infused syrup is perfect for mixing into drinks, or drizzling over skillet pancakes, French toast, or ice cream.
Want to add a little festive flair to your holiday cocktails, mocktails, and breakfast treats? This stunning ruby-hued simple syrup is exactly what you need.
Add it to a cranberry pomegranate cocktail, or mix it with ginger ale or club soda for an easy holiday mocktail. Stir it into your morning tea, or drizzle it over gingerbread pancakes, French toast, waffles, or ice cream.
Ingredients and Substitutions
- Cranberries--You can use fresh or frozen cranberries here. If using frozen, you don't need to thaw them, but it will take slightly longer for the mixture to come to a simmer.
- Cinnamon stick--I recommend using a cinnamon stick instead of ground cinnamon here. Ground spices will give you a cloudy syrup.
- Orange zest--You can substitute lemon zest, if you prefer.
How to Make Cranberry Simple Syrup
- Combine the cranberries, water, sugar, cinnamon, and orange zest in a medium saucepan. Bring to a gentle simmer over medium heat, and cook gently just until the cranberries begin to burst. Remove from the heat and let it steep for 5 minutes.
- Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve.
If you're going to be using it mixed into something, such as a warm cup of tea or a cocktail, just give it a good stir. It will dissolve when you mix it with another liquid. If you're using it on its own for pouring over pancakes or waffles, you can warm it up to help it dissolve, or stir in a little warm water to loosen the sauce.
The leftover cooked cranberries from this cranberry syrup recipe are a sweet spiced treat that are perfect for spooning over ice cream or swirling into yogurt or your morning oatmeal.
Yes. If you want to be able to use it in small quantities, freeze it in ice cube trays. Once frozen, place the cubes in a resealable bag and keep in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw as much as you need at a time.
Tips and Troubleshooting
- Don't simmer the syrup for longer than instructed in the recipe. Cranberries are very high in pectin, and if you cook it too long, you'll end up with cranberry sauce.
- Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 1 month or freeze for up to 3 months.
- The recipe can be doubled or tripled easily.
- This recipe is suitable for gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan diets.
The Most Important Thing to Remember
The most helpful advice I can give you when making this homemade cranberry simple syrup recipe is don't boil it for too long or too rapidly. Keep it at a gentle simmer and don't cook it for any longer than 10 minutes or it will thicken to the consistency of cranberry sauce when it cools.
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Cranberry Simple Syrup
- 2 cups (210 g) cranberries
- 1 cup (200 g) granulated sugar
- 1 cup (237 ml) water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 tablespoon orange zest
- In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries, sugar, water, cinnamon stick, and orange zest.
- Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce the heat to maintain a gentle simmer. Cook at a gentle simmer until the cranberries are just beginning to split, and the liquid is red, 8 to 10 minutes. Don't cook for longer than 10 minutes.
- Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the mixture steep for 5 minutes.
- Strain through a fine mesh sieve. Let the syrup cool completely before refrigerating.
- Don't overcook--Don't simmer the syrup for longer than instructed in the recipe. Cranberries are very high in pectin, and if you cook it too long, you'll end up with cranberry sauce.
- Storage and freezing--Store in a sealed container in the fridge for up to 1 month or freeze for up to 3 months.
- Scaling--The recipe can be doubled or tripled easily.
- Dietary--This recipe is suitable for gluten-free, dairy-free, and vegan diets.