Cranberry Sorbet

Bright pink and refreshing cranberry sorbet, made with fresh cranberries, sugar, cranberry juice, and orange zest.

  • Prep time: 3 hours
  • Yield: Makes about 1 quart


  • 12 ounces fresh or thawed frozen cranberries (about 3 1/2 cups), washed and drained, stems removed and discarded, bruised or spoiled cranberries discarded
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups white cranberry juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh lime or orange zest


1 Cook the cranberries with sugar, water, and cranberry juice: Place cranberries, sugar, water, white cranberry juice, and salt in a saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes, until all of the berries have popped and the sugar has dissolved.

2 Cool, blend, and press through strainer: Cool for 10 minutes. Working in batches, purée in a blender until smooth. Press through a fine mesh strainer to remove seeds and pulp; discard seeds and pulp.

3 Add corn syrup, zest, and chill: Stir in corn syrup and zest. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled, several hours or preferably overnight.

4 Process in ice cream maker: Process in your ice cream maker according to the manufacturer's instructions.

Right out of the ice cream maker the sorbet will be rather soft. If you would like it firmer, transfer the sorbet to an airtight container and put in your freezer for a couple of hours.

Once frozen, you may need to let it sit for a few minutes at room temperature before serving.

For variations, try adding a tablespoon of chopped fresh ginger to the cranberries, or a tablespoon or two of orange zest.

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  • Kay Shumway

    Try making it with frozen cranberries and orange juice using confectioner’s sugar instead of granulated. I make raspberry sorbet this way with frozen raspberries. You don’t need an ice cream maker and can serve it right after you make it in the Cuisinart.

  • Travis

    Elise, this looks very nice. If I’m in a hurry, would it be okay to chill down the sauce using an ice bath under the bowl? Thanks for your help!

    That should be fine. Just make sure it is chilled. ~Garrett

  • Sara

    I made this regular cranberry juice with a little extra sugar and it tasted great!

  • Angela

    This recipe is fabulous use of cranberries. I made it with clementines and added a sprig of mint for garnish. The result was full of rich cranberry flavor. Thanks a million!

  • meuse ardennes

    I’m French. Elise, your blog is very beautiful. I like the sorbet, it’s very good.

  • jimmer

    Wonderful. This is really good.

    I made the recipe on Wednesday and let it sit in the refrigerator over night and then put it in the ice cream maker yesterday.

    This is a real “keeper” recipe for us.

    Thank you.

  • Brigid

    Have you tried Sugared Cranberries? They are a cranberry lovers’ paradise, and so simple to make. I made them for the first time this year and am giving these instead of cookies this season. You can find the recipe at Cooking Light, but in a nutshell, you steep whole berries in a simple syrup overnight, then roll them around in superfine sugar, let them dry an hour or so, then package them up (quickly, before you eat them all). Did I mention how beautifully jewel-like they are? An extra bonus is you can keep the leftover cran-infused syrup for use in cocktails and other bevs, or give it away with the jewels.
    These would make a lovely garnish for your sorbet.
    Also, I noticed the corn syrup in your sorbet recipe, which reminded me that I’ve been meaning to let you know that it works the same magic for homemade popsicles. I experimented a lot this past summer and finally perfected a homemade root beer popsicle using either the corn syrup or glycerin (food grade). Glycerin seems the best at creating the best slushy,soft-ish ice pops ( about 2 teaspoons in an approx. 4 cup batch).

  • Debi Roybal

    Can you use Golden Syrup (liquid cane sugar) instead of corn syrup?

    Also, if you can get 100% cranberry juice is this an acceptable substitute for white cranberry juice?

    Not sure about the Golden Syrup, give it a try and let us know! As for the cranberry juice, it should be fine, but it might be extra tart. Be sure to taste it as you may want to add a bit more sugar to it. ~Garrett

  • Fermat

    You could buy 12 or 15 bags of fresh cranberries and store them in the freezer to have in the summer for sorbet and other goodies. My Mom did that every year. She did like her cranberries.

  • Clara

    Cranberries freeze beautifully. Just put them in your freezer in the bags or boxes that they come in. They will last for at least one year. If you do this in the fall when they are available, you can have cranberry sorbet in the summer. For most recipies, you don’t even have to thaw then.

  • Sara

    This looks great. I usually don’t make ice creams or sorbets with corn syrup. Is it for flavor or does it help with the texture?

    Corn syrup will help with keeping the sugar from crystalizing and getting icy. It will help keep a smooth texture. ~Elise

  • Shanan

    My dear friend here (Portland, OR) calls something very close to this Cranberry Ice. Her family serves it every Thanksgiving in a sorbet bowl along side the plate, and instead of traditional cranberry sauce. I’ve had it at her table a number of years, but this year we were honored to have her and her family at our place for Turkey Day and they brought it along. Everyone loves it, especially the kiddos who feel like they get to eat icecream before/during dinner rather than waiting till the end.

  • LenaMarie

    Jane says ‘where would I buy white Cranberry juice’ My comment is “what is white cranberry juice”? Never heard of it, and I’m always ready to try something new, but I missed this. I can, however, taste this sorbet already. Yummy.

    You can find it in most stores and is actually pretty common. It’s cranberry juice with the tannins removed, and is often mixed with a bit of white grape juice. ~Garrett

  • Jane

    Cranberry Sorbet sounds wonderful but where on earth would I buy “white cranberry juice”. I can’t even find “cranberry” juice in the stores. It is always mixed with other juices. Its called “Cranberry Juice Cocktail”.

    I just bought it at the store. A mixture of water and some orange juice might work well too. ~Garrett

  • Ellen

    This reminds me of my grandmother’s recipe: 1 bag cranberries, 1 cup orange juice, 3 cups each sugar and water, cooked on the stovetop until bubbly, frozen, and stirred every few hours. Not nearly so smooth or creamy as this recipe looks, but juicy and flavorful, and we thought it was SO elegant served in cocktail glasses at the beginning of Thanksgiving dinner (including one memorable Thanksgiving when the freezer door popped open and nobody noticed, and we had cold cranberry soup instead :-) If I ever get an ice cream maker, I’ll be sure to try this recipe instead – much more sophisticated, and the addition of ginger sounds perfect.

    What a wonderful story Ellen! As for the ice cream maker, cuisinart makes a great one that’s affordable. Honestly, it’s a device I get lots of use out of, especially in summer and spring. ~Garrett

  • margot

    About how many servings does this make? I’m thinking of making this for a dinner party of about 12 people…should I double the recipe?

    It makes about a quart and a half I would say, so for 12 substantial servings? Yes, I would double it. If you don’t have that large an ice cream maker though, just do it in batches. ~Garrett