Spiced Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir

A delightful spin on classic cranberry sauce. Spiced cranberry sauce with ginger, Pinot Noir red wine, curry powder, and Chinese five-spice.

Spicy Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir
Elise Bauer

Here is a delightful spin on a fall favorite—cranberry sauce. The cranberries are cooked in Pinot Noir and spiced with curry, ginger, fennel seeds, and other spices.

A Simply Recipes reader shared this Epicurious recipe with me, which so sounded intriguing, we just had to try it!

Spicy Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir
Elise Bauer

I reduced the sugar and the curry powder a bit and the cranberry sauce came out beautifully—sweet, but not too sweet, seeped in the flavor of a good Pinot Noir, and enlivened with a rich blend of spices.

I highly recommend it if you would like to stretch a bit beyond the standard cranberry sauce.

Spiced Cranberry Sauce with Pinot Noir

Prep Time 5 mins
Cook Time 25 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Yield 2 1/2 cups

Chinese 5-spice is a common spice mix for Chinese cooking. If you can't find it, we've included directions on how to make your own.


  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 2 cups fresh or frozen cranberries (about 8 ounces)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 cups Pinot Noir or other dry red wine
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon curry powder
  • Large pinch of Chinese five-spice powder*


  1. Heat oil in large saucepan over medium-high heat. Add cranberries and fresh ginger; stir until cranberries begin to burst, 3-5 minutes.

  2. Add wine and sugar; boil until mixture is reduced to 2 1/2 cups, about 15 minutes.

  3. Add crystallized ginger, curry powder and five-spice powder.

    Serve sauce cold or warm.

    *How to make your own Chinese five-spice powder

    Chinese five-spice powder Ingredients:
    1 teaspoon peppercorns
    4 star anise
    1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
    1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
    1 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seeds

    In a dry skillet, roast peppercorns by shaking the pan over low to medium heat until the aroma of the peppercorns is released (about three minutes). Grind the roasted peppercorns and 4 star anise in a blender or pepper mill. Mix in ground cloves, ground cinnamon, and ground fennel seeds. Grind the seasonings until very fine. Store in an airtight container.