Sweet Holiday Treat: Sugared Cranberries


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Sugared cranberries recipe by blogger Stephanie Ziajka on Diary of a Debutante

Sugared cranberries are my new favorite holiday garnish, and they’re so easy to make! They look absolutely beautiful in cocktails and on winter desserts and holiday charcuterie boards, and I’ve also started adding them to my cranberry brie bites (which are basically water crackers topped with a slice of brie, cranberry chutney, and 2-3 sugared cranberries). Keep reading for my simple three-ingredient sugared cranberries recipe, plus some fun and creative ideas for how to use sugared cranberries in cocktails, desserts, and around the home!

How to Make Sugared Cranberries

Blogger Stephanie Ziajka shows how to make sugared cranberries on Diary of a Debutante

Ingredients

Here’s everything you need to make a batch of sugared cranberries for cocktails, garnish, or just plain snacking (because they’re pretty darn tasty)–

  • 2 cups fresh cranberries– The fresher cranberries, the better. Not only will they look more vibrant, they’ll taste significantly better. 
  • 1 cup real maple syrup– Make sure you use 100% real maple syrup! It makes a difference!
  • 1 cup granulated sugar– Basic white sugar works best for this recipe, primarily for its color. You could try using coconut sugar, too, although I haven’t personally tried it!

Sugared Cranberries Recipe

Blogger Stephanie Ziajka shares her sugar covered cranberries recipe on Diary of a Debutante

Sugared cranberries are super easy to make– and my gosh are they pretty to look at! To start, wash the cranberries thoroughly and place them in a medium-sized bowl.⁠ Meanwhile, heat the real maple syrup in a small saucepan until warm (not hot or it’ll pop the cranberries) and pour it over the bowl of cranberries. Use a spoon to mix the syrup and berries thoroughly and make sure all the cranberries are fully coated. Cover and let soak in the fridge for at least 8 hours (preferably overnight). 

Step one of blogger Stephanie Ziajka's easy sugared cranberries recipe on Diary of a Debutante

Next, drain the soaked cranberries in a colander and set them aside. Pour some of the sugar (about 1/4th cup) into a baking dish and add in a quarter of the cranberries. If you pour in all the sugar at once, you’ll get too many clumps. Then, working in batches, roll them around with a fork or slotted spoon until lightly coated in sugar. Transfer them to a baking sheet or wire rack and repeat with all remaining batches of cranberries.

Step two of how to make sugar frosted cranberries for cocktails on Diary of a DebutanteStep three of blogger Stephanie Ziajka's frosted cranberries recipe on Diary of a Debutante

Allow them to dry for about an hour– and enjoy! Also, when prepared and stored properly (in an airtight container), these sugar-covered cranberries can last up to a week in the fridge. Keep reading for some tips on how to use sugared cranberries in cocktails, desserts, decor projects, and more!

Blogger Stephanie Ziajka shows how to make sugared cranberries for cocktails and desserts on Diary of a Debutante

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Sugared Cranberries

sugared cranberries recipe by blogger Stephanie Ziajka on Diary of a Debutante

Sugared cranberries are the prettiest holiday treats– and all you need are three basic ingredients to make a batch. Whether you’re using them as a garnish, as decor, or for just plain snacking, they’ll add a special pop of sweetness, color, and cheer to any holiday home!

  • Author: Stephanie Ziajka
  • Prep Time: 8 h 15 mins
  • Total Time: 8 h 15 mins
Scale

Ingredients

  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 1 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 cup granulated sugar

Instructions

Wash the cranberries thoroughly and place them in a medium-sized bowl.⁠ Meanwhile, heat the real maple syrup in a small saucepan until warm (not hot or it’ll pop the cranberries) and pour it over the bowl of cranberries. Use a spoon to mix thoroughly and ensure all the berries are fully coated. Cover and let soak in the fridge for at least 8 hours (preferably overnight). 

Drain the syrup-soaked cranberries in a colander and set them aside. Pour some (about 1/4th) of the sugar into a baking dish and add in a quarter of the cranberries. Working in batches, roll them around with a fork or slotted spoon until lightly coated in sugar. Transfer them to a baking sheet or wire rack and allow them to dry for about an hour– and enjoy!

Notes

Sugared cranberries can be stored in an airtight container for up to one week. 

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How to Use Sugared Cranberries

Blogger Stephanie Ziajka shows how to use sugared cranberries for garnish on Diary of a Debutante

Need some creative ideas for how to use sugared cranberries? Here are a few of my favorites–

  • Use them to garnish drinks
  • Use them to decorate cakes and pies
  • Add them to holiday appetizers
  • Use them to brighten up main courses
  • Wrap them up in a cute jar or ramekin and give them as a gift
  • Serve them as a snack
  • String them up into a garland for holiday decoration
  • What am I missing?!

And there you have it! Thanks so much for reading, y’all– and if you tried this sugared cranberries recipe for yourself, please don’t hesitate to let me know if you had any trouble. Questions, concerns, or complaints– I love hearing from you guys, and I’m happy to help! 

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