Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce

Use your Instant Pot to make classic cranberry sauce that’s virtually set it and forget it. Cross one more thing off your holiday meal prep list!

Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce Next to a Bowl of Mashed Potatoes, a Bowl of Green Beans, and Table Napkin with Orange Slices and Cinnamon Sticks

Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

I grew up on homemade cranberry sauce, and it is a highlight of my holiday meal. My mom would add cinnamon sticks, orange peel, and even star anise to her cranberry sauce. 

Making cranberry sauce in an Instant Pot makes homemade sauce a breeze, without the worry of burning, boiling, or losing precious space on the stovetop. This no-fuss recipe is the perfect way to cross off your to-do list before a big holiday like Thanksgiving. You can make this recipe up to 5 days ahead of time, so you can focus on the rest of your holiday meal instead.

Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce

Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

Natural or Quick Release?

This recipe requires a natural release of pressure. A quick release stops the cooking process quickly, so it’s best to use it when cooking dishes that you want to avoid overcooking. A natural release is perfect for dishes that have more liquid, like this cranberry sauce, where you want a well-cooked sauce. It’s a completely hands-off way of cooking cranberry sauce!

The Cranberries Thicken the Sauce

If you’ve ever wondered how cranberry sauce thickens without added thickeners a, it all comes down to pectin! Pectin is a naturally occurring carbohydrate found in many fruits and vegetables, and in high concentrations, it acts as a  gelling agent. Cranberries are naturally high in pectin, and as your sauce cools, it will thicken to a perfect consistency.

Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce Next to a Bowl of Green Beans

Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

Fresh or Frozen Cranberries

You can use fresh or frozen cranberries interchangeably in this recipe! If you can’t find fresh cranberries, substitute frozen and let sit at room temperature to thaw slightly before adding them to the instant pot. Alternatively, you can make this with frozen cranberries and add 1 minute to the cooking time. 

Make It Your Own

  • Prefer it sweeter? Increase the sugar to 1 cup.
  • Add your own spices, like 1/8 teaspoon cloves or nutmeg, for a twist on this recipe!
  • Try adding a peeled, chopped apple for a cranberry-apple concoction.
  • Experiment with maple syrup instead of sugar in this recipe, reducing the orange juice by half.
Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce Next to a Bowl of Green Beans and Table Napkin with Orange Slices and Cinnamon Sticks

Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

More Recipes for Cranberry Lovers

Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 4 mins
Pressure Releasing Time 25 mins
Total Time 34 mins
Servings 18 servings
Yield 4 cups

If you prefer a classic cranberry sauce, omit the cinnamon stick, ginger, and orange zest.

Ingredients

  • 2 (12-ounce) bags cranberries (8 cups), fresh or frozen

  • 2/3 cup sugar

  • 1 cup orange juice

  • 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick

  • 1 teaspoon finely grated orange zest

  • 1 teaspoon finely grated fresh ginger

Special Equipment

Method

  1. Combine the ingredients:

    Place the cranberries, sugar, orange juice, cinnamon stick, orange zest, and ginger in a 6-quart Instant Pot.

    Cranberries, Cinnamon Stick, Ginger, and Orange Zest in an Instant Pot for Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce Recipe

    Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

  2. Program the pressure cooker:

    Select the manual or pressure cook setting and program to cook at high pressure  for 4 minutes. Check that the pressure release valve is  sealed.

    Simple Tip!

    You can make this with frozen, unthawed cranberries and add 1 minute to the cooking time. 
    The Instant Pot will take 5-7 minutes to come up to temperature.

  3. Release the pressure and cool the sauce:

    When the cooker beeps, turn it off and let the pressure release naturally (this will take about 18-25 minutes). Remove the lid and let the sauce cool to room temperature. The sauce will thicken as it cools.

    Cranberry Sauce in Instant Pot

    Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

  4. Serve:

    Remove the cinnamon stick before enjoying. Mash it to break up the cranberries more, if you like.

    Refrigerate the cranberry sauce in an airtight container for 5-7 days.

    Did you love the recipe? Leave us stars below!

    Cranberry Sauce in Instant Pot

    Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

    Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce Next to a Bowl of Green Beans and Table Napkin with Orange Slices and Cinnamon Sticks

    Simply Recipes / Micah Siva

Nutrition Facts (per serving)
53 Calories
0g Fat
14g Carbs
0g Protein
Show Full Nutrition Label Hide Full Nutrition Label
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Nutrition Facts
Servings: 18
Amount per serving
Calories 53
% Daily Value*
Total Fat 0g 0%
Saturated Fat 0g 0%
Cholesterol 0mg 0%
Sodium 1mg 0%
Total Carbohydrate 14g 5%
Dietary Fiber 1g 5%
Total Sugars 10g
Protein 0g
Vitamin C 12mg 62%
Calcium 6mg 0%
Iron 0mg 1%
Potassium 59mg 1%
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.
Nutrition information is calculated using an ingredient database and should be considered an estimate. In cases where multiple ingredient alternatives are given, the first listed is calculated for nutrition. Garnishes and optional ingredients are not included.