Skip to Content

Fresh Cranberry Orange Relish

Sharing is caring!

You are going to love this fresh cranberry orange relish; with its sweet and tart flavors mixed together it is the perfect cranberry side dish.

main image for fresh cranberry orange relish.

There’s a great debate in the world as to the best holiday cranberry side dish. Some people love cooked cranberry sauce, others love canned cranberry jelly complete with the lines of the can on the serving plate.

I was on team cranberry sauce until I was introduced to cranberry relish last year. And it was absolutely amazing. Why had I never heard of it before?

It’s so common that Ocean Spray Cranberry Orange Relish is a recipe on the Ocean Spray website. And still, I didn’t know about it.

If you are in the same position I was in, you are in for a treat. This relish is tart and sweet, fresh and cool. 

Just like homemade cranberry sauce is the grown up version of canned cranberry jelly, this fresh cranberry orange relish is the superstar version of homemade cranberry sauce. 

And this recipe really is so easy since it is a blender cranberry orange relish recipe.

That’s right, it’s made in the blender. No fancy kitchen appliances needed.

Really, even if you are not a chef, this is the perfect homemade thing for you to bring to the holiday meals. It takes 5 minutes and zero cooking.

Other than being easier and faster to make, the fresh combination of flavors in a relish are brighter and so much more appealing to me than the heavy, cooked flavors of a sauce or a jelly. 

And it can be used in so many things beyond a bowl on your Thanksgiving table. 

quartered orange in a food processor.

What is fresh cranberry orange relish?

Cranberry orange relish is a raw combination of cranberries and oranges. Since they aren’t cooked, it is not thick like a syrup or gelatin like canned cranberry jelly. 

Instead you get tart, fresh, delicious flavors that are not too sweet and a perfect side of fruit.

What is the difference between cranberry sauce, relish, chutney, jelly?

  • Sauce is smashed whole cranberries cooked in sugar to make a syrup-like texture. It is served cold and is sweet.
  • Relish is finely chopped raw cranberries mixed with sugar to make a chunky spread. It is also served cold but is both tart and sweet.
  • Chutney is chunky cranberries mixed with vinegar and sugar. It can be served cold or at room temperature.
  • Jelly is cooked cranberries with a lot of sugar and strained so there are no chunks or skin, just cranberry gelatin. It is often served straight out of the can complete with can lines showing on the plate.
fresh cranberries added to oranges with

What is in fresh cranberry orange relish?

  • Orange: this adds a bright orange flavor the goes so well with cranberries
  • Fresh Cranberries: raw cranberries are more tart than ones cooked in sugar, but they are so full of flavor!
  • Granular Sugar: this sweetens the dish so it isn’t overly tart, and it will bring out the flavors of both the orange and the cranberries

Pro Tip: Be picky about your cranberries! They are the star of the dish. Do not use any mushy or brown ones. You want them red and firm all over.

sugar added to food processor with oranges and cranberries in food processor

How to make fresh cranberry orange relish:

  1. Cut orange, remove seeds, and discard seeds.
  2. Blend orange and cranberries in batches.
  3. Place in a bowl, add sugar, and mix well.
  4. Cover and refrigerate.
  5. Garnish and serve!

Pro Tip: Do not overblend! If you don’t watch the blender, your perfect cranberry orange relish will turn into cranberry orange puree. The chunks make it a relish.

If you do get puree, it’s still delicious and makes a great pancake syrup or addition to salads.

Do you use the rind of oranges in fresh cranberry orange relish?

Yes! The rind is where most of the orange flavor is. You definitely want to keep the rind on before blending your oranges.

Pro Tip:  In most recipes where you use orange zest, you remove the white pith. Don’t do that in this relish! 

Keeping all the parts of the orange will balance out the overpowering taste of raw cranberries. You need the whole orange (minus the seeds) to make this dish shine.

cranberry relish placed in a bowl ready to serve.

Can I freeze fresh cranberry orange relish?

Yes! After making it you can freeze this for up to 3 months before serving. When you are ready to serve, just let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight. 

It will be as fresh as if it was made the day before. You can also make this a week in advance and let it sit in the fridge until serving.

side view of cranberry relish in a bowl

What do I do with fresh cranberry orange relish? 

Cranberry and orange relish is a condiment more than a traditional side dish. Most traditionally it is served on the Thanksgiving table as a condiment for turkey. Here’s how I like to use it:

  • Serve with holiday turkey or ham.
  • Serve on top of a cream cheese or brie and crackers appetizer.
  • Put it on top of ice cream.
  • Use it to flavor yogurt or oatmeal.
  • Serve with pancakes or waffles.
  • Use it as a condiment in sandwiches.
spoon placed in a serving bowl full of cranberry relish

What to do with leftover cranberry orange relish:

If you have leftover relish, here are some of our favorite ways to use it in other recipes:

bowl of cranberry relish with a spoon being held above full of relish.

More Fruit Recipes You’ll Love…

Whether you are serving this fresh cranberry orange relish as a holiday side or as a fancy cheese appetizer, you will love the fresh flavors. And with 3 ingredients and 5 minutes of prep time, you can pull it out anytime of the year!

Fresh Cranberry Orange Relish

bowl of cranberry relish with a spoon being held above full of relish.

You are going to love this fresh cranberry orange relish; with its sweet and tart flavors mixed together it is the perfect cranberry side dish.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes


  1. Quarter orange with the skin on.
  2. If there are any seeds, discard now.
  3. Place oranges with skins on into a food processor and blend.
  4. Add fresh cranberries to oranges and blend again.
  5. Add sugar and blend again.
  6. Scoop out mixture and place in a serving bowl.
  7. Serve immediately or chill until ready to serve.


This can be made several days ahead of time.

Nutrition Information:



Serving Size:


Amount Per Serving: Calories: 90Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 1mgCarbohydrates: 23gFiber: 1gSugar: 21gProtein: 0g

Sharing is caring!

Skip to Recipe