Cranberry SaladCranberry SaladCranberry Salad

A few times over the years I remember my mom making cranberry salad. It was a mix of jello and cranberries and other tidbits of fruit with a dollop of whip cream on the top. It was more of a dessert for me and my sisters, but I’m always looking for a reinvention of the cranberry sauce we serve every year at Thanksgiving.

I have made about 4 different cranberry sauces, one from Sherrie and another from Leslie which over the last two years have been major hits with my followers. (I will post the link to those recipes at the bottom of this page.)

I have recreated the cranberry salad recipe for canning and it’s very close to the original. I omitted the jello and used Clear Jel as my thickener. The consistency is less “jiggly” but the flavor is awesome.

It can be a side dish or used for other purposes like a topping on pastries, pancakes and waffles, or a yogurt or ice cream topping. I left the fruit somewhat chunky since I like that texture rather than everything being so creamy like a sauce. You can also add nuts at the end just before ladeling into the jars.  It’s not sweet like a pie filling but just enough sugar to cut the tartness of the cranberries and pineapple.
Clear Jel is available at the Hoosier Hill Farms! 

Cranberry Salad

Cranberry Salad

Cranberry Salad
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 1 d 2 hrs
Total Time 1 d 2 hrs 10 mins
Course Salad
Cuisine American
Servings 30


  • 3 1/2 cups (approximately 2 - 12oz bags) fresh cranberries, chopped
  • 1 large can (20 oz) pineapple (crushed or tidbits - reserve the liquid)
  • 1 small can (11oz) mandarin oranges
  • 1/4 C. bottled lemon juice
  • 2 C. sugar
  • 1 1/2 C. cranberry juice
  • 1/3 C. clear jel & 1/3 C. sugar & 1/3 cup pineapple or cranberry juice
  • 1 C. chopped walnuts or pecans (optional)



  • Cook cranberries with 1/2 cup sugar and 1/2 cup cranberry juice in saucepan till boiling. Add pineapples, oranges, lemon juice, remainder of cranberry juice and sugar.
  • Cook about 15 minutes more till the mixture comes back to a boil. Meanwhile in a separate bowl mix with a whisk Clear jel and sugar and 1/3 cup of the reserved pineapple juice. If there isn't enough pineapple juice you can add either cranberry juice or water to get to the 1/3 cup.
  • Once the fruit in the pot comes to a boil add the Clear Jel mixture while stirring. Cook until slightly thicken.
  • Remove from heat. At this point if you are using the nuts you will add them now, stirring them in gently to incorporate. 

Filling the jars:

  • On a dishtowel place hot jars and ladle into hot jars to 1/2" headspace in the jar.  Remove air bubbles and adjust head-space , if necessary, by adding more sauce.
  • Wipe rim with clean cloth or paper-towel, center lid on jar, screw band down till resistance is met, then increase to fingertip-tight.


  • Make sure your rack is on the bottom of the canner and place the jars in the water bath making sure that the water covers each of the jars by 1 to 2 inches. Add hot water to the canner if it doesn't measure up.
  • Cover the pot and turn up the heat under the canner and wait for the water to start boiling. Once the water has come to a boil start your timer for 10 minutes.
  • When complete turn off the heat and remove the cover and let the jars sit for another few minutes.
  • Remove the jars and place them back on the dishtowel in a place that they will sit overnight to cool. Do not touch or move them till the next morning.


  • Sometime in the next hour your jars will be making a "pinging" or "popping" noise. That is the glass cooling and the reaction of the lids being sucked into the jar for proper sealing. Some recipes may take overnight to seal. Check your lids and reprocess any jars that did not seal after waiting several hours.


  • Make sure to label your jars after they have cooled with the name of the recipe and the date canned.
Keyword Cranberry Salad