Serve up this easy to make and healthier side for the holidays! Our Instant Pot Cranberry sauce is naturally sweetened, lower in sugar than traditional cranberry sauce, allergy friendly, and is super easy to make in the Instant Pot!
Hey friends! Normally we stick with a lot of evergreen recipes on The Fit Cookie, recipes that aren’t really seasonal and are great year-round. But this year I wanted to add more seasonal recipes to help people with their allergy friendly holiday planning.
We’ve posted several great Thanksgiving and Christmas recipes the past couple weeks, and I wanted to share this last one with you today: Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce.
Our pressure cooker cranberry sauce recipe is super easy to make and it will help you save stove space during holiday cooking.
Plus it’s naturally sweetened and lower in sugar than most cranberry sauce recipes, so you can eat a little bit healthier even during the holidays. We also made this recipe allergy friendly: no nuts, dairy, soy, eggs, gluten, or grains (depending on the stevia you choose).
We’ve never really been big cranberry sauce eaters in our house (our Thanksgiving dinners are typically nontraditional), but I couldn’t wait to and make my own fresh cranberry sauce that was lower in sugar.
Read on for tricks and tips on how to make this recipe!
How to make lower sugar Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce
Here are the steps for making our Instant Pot cranberry sauce:
- Measure out your cranberries and wash them. Add them to the Instant Pot, CrockPot Express, or other pressure cooker.
- Add your orange zest, orange juice, maple syrup, powdered stevia (if using), and cinnamon and pour over the cranberries.
- Stir everything together, then close and seal your Instant Pot and cook for 6 minutes.
- Allow natural pressure release for 15 minutes, then open and stir, crushing any cranberries that have not split open.
- Stir in the stevia drops to taste, then allow to cool.
Our cranberry sauce recipe might seem a little runny at first, but trust the process: it will thicken as it cools.
And don’t worry if the liquid ingredients in this recipe don’t add up to a full cup of liquid for cooking in the pressure cooker: the cranberries will release liquid as they cook as well, so there is plenty of liquid in this recipe for cooking properly in the Instant Pot.
Ingredient notes for homemade cranberry sauce
I used orange juice, natural maple syrup, stevia drops, and baking Stevia to sweeten this cranberry sauce recipe, so it has a good flavor and doesn’t taste like it’s made with too much Stevia (which sometimes can have an off taste if you use lower quality versions).
Optionally, you can skip the baking Stevia and use just plain liquid stevia drops to add more sweetness to your Instant Pot cranberry sauce. Begin with 1/4 teaspoon liquid stevia and continue to taste test as you add Stevia 10 drops at a time until you reach your desired sweetness for this recipe.
You’ll want to make sure that you add your stevia after the recipe has cooked and cooled a bit, and use unflavored stevia unless you really want other flavors with it (like vanilla stevia) otherwise it might not tastes as good.
Even with the maple syrup, this recipe will be quite tart without the added stevia, so unless you like really tart cranberry sauce, don’t skip the stevia!
I added cinnamon to my cranberry sauce because I loved the combination of the cranberry, orange, and cinnamon together, and it tastes great together. But if you don’t like cinnamon, you can skip that altogether or swap it for something else, like a little allspice or ginger.
If you choose to replace the cinnamon with another spice, don’t replace it 1-to-1, add a little of your chosen spice and taste test to see if you want more. Remember, you can always add more but you can’t take it out once it’s added, so start sparingly.
Check out our other Thanksgiving and Christmas recipes:
- Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce (Naturally Sweetened)
- Garlic Roasted Rainbow Carrots
- Gluten Free Dairy Free Stuffing
- Gluten Free Dairy Free Sweet Potato Casserole
- Gluten Free and Dairy Free Holiday Pies
- Gluten Free Dairy Free Thanksgiving recipe roundup
- Crustless Pumpkin Pie (Gluten Free and Dairy Free)
- No Bake Pumpkin Pie (Gluten Free and Dairy Free)
- Ginger Apple Sparkling Cider
Instant Pot Cranberry Sauce (Lower Sugar & Naturally Sweetened)
- 4 cups fresh cranberries
- Zest of 1 medium orange
- ¼ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
- ½ cup pure maple syrup
- ¼ cup powdered Stevia for baking* (I used Stevia in the Raw for baking)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Stevia drops, to taste
- Measure out your cranberries and wash them. Add them to the Instant Pot or pressure cooker.
- Zest your orange over the cranberries. Then juice the orange.
- Measure out your orange juice orange juice, then whisk in the maple syrup, powdered stevia (if using), and cinnamon and pour over the cranberries.
- Stir everything together, then close and turn your seal/vent on your Instant Pot/pressure cooker to closed. Cook for 6 minutes on high pressure "Steam" (for CrockPot Express) or "Manual" (for Instant Pot).
- Once the cranberry sauce is done cooking, turn off the "keep warm" feature and allow the pressure to release naturally for 15 minutes.
- Do a quick pressure release, then open the pressure cooker and stir the sauce, crushing any cranberries that have not split open fully. It will look a bit runny at first, but it will thicken as it cools.
- Remove the liner with the sauce from the Instant Pot to help it cool faster, or scoop it into a dish to cool.
- Once it has cooled a bit, add your Stevia drops and test taste until you get the amount of sweetness you desire.
- Once this has cooled completely, serve this at room temperature or chilled (whichever you prefer). Enjoy!
Sarah Jane Parker is the founder, recipe creator, and photographer behind The Fit Cookie. She’s a food allergy mom and healthy living blogger based in Wyoming. Sarah is also an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, ACE Certified Health Coach, Revolution Running certified running coach, and an ACE Certified Fitness Nutrition Specialist